Topic 5b: Social Cognitive Approach {by 11/11}

There are two readings due this week – Mischel (1968) & Bandura (1976).  Address the following discussion point.  Similar to your previous discussion on Kelly and Mischel last week, identify a couple of points related to Bandura’s social learning theory that resonate with your understanding of cognitive-behavioral theory.   Your original post should be posted by the beginning of class 11/11.  Have your two replies no later than 11/13.  *Please remember to click the “reply” button when posting a reply.  This makes it easier for the reader to follow the blog postings.

Advertisements

44 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Brittany King
    Nov 07, 2015 @ 19:13:48

    Cognitive behavior theories maintain a view point that cognitions play a role in behavior change and that both behavioral and cognitive approaches to understanding and helping human beings is important. These theories integrate work from the behavioral and social cognitive levels with insights and methods. The cognitive behavior approach examines how people process and use information about themselves and their social worlds and then studies the cognitive and emotional tools they develop for coping with these life changes.
    Similarly, in Bandura’s social learning theory it states that learning is produced through modeling due to the informative function. This happens through exposure where the person’s observations are acquired symbolically and represent modeled activities which serves as guides for acceptable behavior (Bandura, 1976). Bandura called attention to the importance of observation learning for both personality development and change. In this theory, observational learning can help remove fears or create them while also inducing strong emotional reactions. With the cognitive-behavior theory, there is focus on how individuals focus on and process information about themselves and the world and based off of that, they react to it. In both of these theories, there is the thought that the environment can have an impact on both development and behavior change. With Bandura social learning theory the focus is on observational learning with the environment and with the cognitive-behavior theory, the focus is on the reaction to how an individual processes information in that environment.

    Reply

    • Jillian Harrison
      Nov 09, 2015 @ 15:25:57

      Brittany,

      I enjoyed your point about how observational learning can work in both positive and negative ways, such as teaching fears or modeling appropriate behavior. I think that in developmental settings, such as when a child is at school when they are younger, it is easier to present more positive observational opportunities. But it is also important to remember that observations and model occur all of the time. So when an individual witnesses a traumatic event, or watches violence on TV or in video games, they are also learning different behaviors associated with those events, which are not always appropriate or healthy responses.

      Reply

    • Marisa Molinaro
      Nov 12, 2015 @ 13:28:40

      Brittany,
      We gave similar answers about the importance of observational learning and modeling that allows us to dictate the way we will handle certain situations. It is important to remember that there are many CBT approaches that can be found in Bandura’s work and the way you explained them helped me have a better understanding of the similarities. How we process information and use this to express how we impact the world around us plays a big part in who we are as people and how we interact with each other.

      Reply

    • Mark Joyce
      Nov 12, 2015 @ 20:45:20

      Brittany, you did a great job capturing the essence of Bandura’s learning theory. The other approaches overlooked how powerful observation can be in the acquisition and development of behaviors and personalities. The increased focus on environmental influences was an important shift represented in social learning and cognitive-behavioral theory. The acquisition, observational learning, derived from our environment and the way that information is processed has considerable influence on an individual. In my own clinical experience, modeling was one of the centerpieces of the therapeutic approach. Working with young children up to adolescents, I found how profound of an approach modeling can be. One area in particular where I noticed significant improvement was in interpersonal relationships. The modeling done by staff members was able to display what healthy means of communication looked like, with time and feedback they were able to incorporate these observations into their daily lives.

      Reply

  2. Jillian Harrison
    Nov 09, 2015 @ 15:20:35

    The shift to cognitive-behavioral theories in the realm of personality psychology marked a shift in understanding that cognitive functioning and mental events play an important role in personality development, behavior manifestation, social functioning, and learning. Albert Bandura proposed the notion that individuals learn through observation and modeling. This type of learning occurs when an individual watches others or how they react to their surroundings, events, and symbols (Mischel, et al., 2008). The learner is not externally reinforced or required to actually perform the response in order to indicate that learning has occurred. This theory emphasizes the importance of cognitions and individual thoughts in order to best understand human behavior and why it occurs. Bandura’s theory suggests that it is possible for individuals to learn and behave in ways without being externally reinforced, such as with behaviorism, and without having trauma or unresolved issues that manifest as behaviors, such as with psychodynamic theory. Bandura also believed in the idea of self-efficacy, where a person must believe that they can be successful in any given situation in order to do so. This belief is vital to the execution of certain behaviors or responses as it influences the goals and expectations a person has for themselves. It has been made clear that behaviorism has its place in personality psychology, but theorists such as Bandura have also made it clear that cognitions and mental events also play an important role in personality development and the ability to understand personality from a professional perspective.

    Mischel, W., Shoda, Y., Ayduk O. (2008). Introduction to personality: Toward an integrative science of the person (8th ed., pp. 155-208). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.

    Reply

    • Janean Desjardins
      Nov 12, 2015 @ 00:01:51

      Jillian,
      I appreciate your thoughts on Bandura’s view of self-efficacy. A person must have the motivation to follow through with their actions or goals. A person’s self-efficacy will influences the goals that one sets for themselves and whether or not they will take risks to attain these goals. Expectations of the outcomes of these situations will influence future behavior. People rely on past experiences and observation of what has happened to others as means to determine future actions.

      Reply

      • Gabriel Lamptey
        Nov 13, 2015 @ 22:53:59

        Janean,

        Your statement “People rely on past experiences and observation of what has happened to others as means to determine future action” is also inline with Bandura’s view of vicarious reinforcement, where individual’s watch someone else being reinforced for a behavior, and because they identify with that person (the model), when the model is reinforced, is as if they are being reinforced as well. For example, if a teenager identifies with a criminal, and the criminal is brought to justice for committing a crime, observing the criminal punished for their bad behavior or choices, could deter the teenager from admiring the punished behavior and if they had intentions of one day practicing that behavior, they are now forced to make better decisions for their future.

        Reply

    • Bridget Kesling
      Nov 13, 2015 @ 22:26:21

      Jillian, I like how you pointed out the shift in all four elements of, personality development, behavior manifestation, social functioning, and learning. I find it imperative that we as upcoming clinicians, understand the full impact that cognition plays in these areas of development. Healthy cognition’s lead to higher chances of optimal functioning throughout all these topics.

      Reply

  3. Mark Joyce
    Nov 10, 2015 @ 17:13:04

    Bandura’s social learning theory has several facets which resonate with cognitive-behavioral theory. Bandura’s conceptualization of motivational functions shares similarity with schematic approaches. Individuals exhibit motivational drives due to the positive or negative consequences associated with the behavior. These drives are shaped by past experiences and these expectancies mirror schematic thinking. The cognitive-theory approach of using schemas, or organized cognitions, regarding potential outcomes is a powerful marker of the cognitive processes undertaken by individuals. Another similarity originates from attentional processes and their need for accurate perceptions. The encoding process of new information is essential in determining the long term establishment of cognitions and according to Bandura, modeling is a powerful form of conveying desired behavior. If the modeling that is received is maladaptive or unhealthy, the resulting cognitions learned will have a propensity for dysfunction. Much like we discussed earlier in the semester, punishment by application is an example where modeling can lead to further displays of aggression or other unwanted behaviors. Bandura’s social learning shared the assumption that the environment has a significant effect in shaping the behaviors and cognitions of individuals.

    Reply

    • Jillian Harrison
      Nov 10, 2015 @ 17:49:28

      Mark,

      I liked your example about punishment and modeling. Bandura’s concept of modeling explains the grave effect that physical punishment can have on children. By witnessing aggression, they then learn aggression and other violent tendencies that have been taught to them through observation. I think that this theory explains this learning phenomenon more clearly than the behavioral theory because children are usually not reinforced for violent and aggressive behaviors, so it would be a mystery as to how they learn to engage in those behaviors without external reinforcement. Bandura’s social cognitive theory fills in the gaps where behaviorism fails to explain learning and behavioral manifestation.

      Reply

      • Gabriel Lamptey
        Nov 13, 2015 @ 22:38:36

        Jillian,

        Your point regarding children learning without active engagement but by observation, explains the very reason why many parents vehemently object to their children watching television programs or playing video games with violent or adult content, especially in recent years where quite a number of murders are committed by high school and college students, and these events have drawn national attention and media coverage. The concern is that children will find that these violent behaviors produces outcomes desirable by the perpetrator and may be inclined to act in similar fashion.

        Reply

    • Marisa Molinaro
      Nov 12, 2015 @ 13:31:40

      Mark,
      I found your explanation of the schematic approaches of Bandura’s learning theory to be helpful in understanding their relationship to CBT approaches. I also liked how you connected this theory to applying punishment to remove undesired behaviors. The environment that we receive reinforcement or punishment plays a big role in how we will act in future situations that are similar. By modeling the behavior from those around us, and seeing the situations in which they may be punished or rewarded, we can make future decisions on how we ourselves will treat those situations.

      Reply

  4. Marisa Molinaro
    Nov 10, 2015 @ 18:52:28

    Bandura was one of the first theorists to shift away from strictly behaviorism and move towards a more cognitive approach. He did recognize the importance of classical conditioning and reinforcement, but believed that by observing those around us allows us to learn the most by modelling and using cognitive processes (Mischel et al., 2008). This is learning that occurs in the external world and uses cognition to make these connections. This shows that we do not simply need “shaping” which was suggested by Skinner, but that we learn the right and wrong way to do things by cues and self-instructions. Bandura also believed that we have the capacity to be agentic and exercise self-regulation and self-reflection when making decisions about our environment and our behavior (Mischel et al., 2008). Another important aspect of Bandura’s social learning theory is self-efficacy. This is the belief that we behave and act in the correct way based on the situation that we are in (Mischel et al., 2008). Bandura’s social learning theory has many aspects that are similar to cognitive behavioral therapy. In CBT the belief is that we make our own decisions based on the world and our situations around us. Bandura also feels that we learn the most from observing and modeling others and this can influence one’s fear and expectations about the world around them. It is also an important to remember that the environment in which you are in plays a big role in the decisions that you make, and this is emphasized in both Bandura’s theory and CBT.

    Mischel, W., Shoda, Y., Ayduk O. (2008). Introduction to personality: Toward an integrative science of the person (8th ed., pp. 155-208). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.

    Reply

    • Taylor Gibson
      Nov 13, 2015 @ 12:36:10

      Marisa,

      I think that one of the strengths of Social- Learning theory that you briefly touched on is that unlike behaviorism, which contends that in order for a behavior to be learned it must be shaped by reinforcing progressively closer approximations of the desired behavior, Bandura believes that a human oftentimes justs needs to observe a behavior to perform it. However, something that differentiates humans and high intellect animals from other creatures is that instead of simply observing and repeating a behavior because it is being reinforced people have the capability to watch another person perform the behavior, watch and evaluate the consequences of that behavior, and then decide whether or not that behavior is productive. I also think that Social-learning theory is a theory that was developed in response to spending time with growing (and learning) humans instead of rats or pigeons. Bandura acknowledges higher cognitive processes that are occurring in people, especially children but I think Skinner would have met his match and revised his theory if he encountered a four-year-old whose favorite question was “why?”

      Reply

    • Jacleen Charbonneau
      Nov 13, 2015 @ 20:42:28

      Marisa,

      I agree with your point that we must learn right from wrong through self-instruction and cues. Depending on what it is that’s being judged as right or wrong may depend upon the individual’s environment. As you had mentioned, the environment is important part in one’s decisions. I believe Bandura is very accurate in this belief, and I appreciate how he recognized approaches like classical conditioning before concluding that the best learning is through modeling. I like the approach of modeling because one does not have to necessarily be reinforced with external rewards, but may perform an action due to sole desire. This may perhaps also lead to a quicker process of learning.

      Reply

    • Bridget Kesling
      Nov 13, 2015 @ 22:31:07

      Marisa, I really like how you pointed out the idea that individuals learn right from wrong through self-instruction and cues. Looking at an individuals schema right and wrong maybe interpreted differently. An example of this would be an individual who feels it is right to physically harm someone to correct a behavior, while others feel like there is no reason that one should be physically harmed for a behavior. This is important to keep in mind when working with families with different ethic and cultural backgrounds.

      Reply

  5. Janean Desjardins
    Nov 10, 2015 @ 23:57:02

    Mischel (1968) & Bandura (1976). Address the following discussion point. Similar to your previous discussion on Kelly and Mischel last week, identify a couple of points related to Bandura’s social learning theory that resonate with your understanding of cognitive-behavioral theory.

    Cognitive-behavioral theory’s principle is that an individual’s cognition plays a significant role in the development of emotional and behavioral responses to life situations. Cognitive processes and content are accessible and can be known, although they the person may not be immediately aware. With proper therapy and treatment one can be brought to awareness. Cognitive process and thinking is the way that people respond to the environmental situations around them. Cognitive approach studies how people process themselves and the world around them. They use this information and can modify the person’s behavior that has been learned. Bandura’s social learning theory is based through Informative Functioning and Modeling behavior. People would not only perform a behavior that would produce a response but they would also see the effects it produced. Allowing the person to observe the different outcomes of their behavior, they can judge which response matches which behavior. If the person makes an accurate call on their behavior and gets the response they are looking for, it will strengthen their future course of action. If they get the opposite response it will be weakened. “Learning by response consequences is largely a cognitive process, consequences generally produce little change in complex behavior when there is no awareness of what is being reinforced (Bandura, 1976).” This is parallel to cognitive-behavioral theory is the sense that one has to be aware of their behavior and their environment around them in order for anything to change. Awareness is crucial in any learning situation and once a person is aware of their situation, feelings, thoughts, or surroundings you have something to work with. Bandura also saw modeling behavior as another way of social learning. Human behavior is generally learned through observation and is not naturally obtained. People develop new behaviors by observing others and create them as their own. Through observation they are able to see the errors others make and correct those errors when they perform the behavior. Many people will take on the behaviors of the groups of people they are with or friends they hang out with. People will be drawn to those that reflect their own qualities and reject or ignore one that does not. Comparing Bandura’s social learning theory modeling behavior to cognitive-behavior theory both are used to change behavior. Bandura see modeling as people viewing others to change their own behavior to fit into the world. Cognitive-behavioral theory one helps to recognize maladaptive behavior and change it.

    Reply

    • Taylor Gibson
      Nov 13, 2015 @ 13:05:35

      Janean,

      I think you made a great point in your post. One of the most important parts of both Social learning theory and cognitive behavioral theory is the ability to attend to details regarding behavior and consequences.

      Reply

  6. Jacleen Charbonneau
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 00:29:43

    Albert Bandura’s social learning theory explains how thoughts interact with one’s emotions. According to Bandura (1976), people learn according to their consequences. For example, differential reinforcement allows a person to differentiate which behaviors are successful, or not successful, based on outcome. Response consequences, on their own, have the ability to strengthen responses. When learning, responses are not only performed by an individual, but they also result in noticeable effects. Individuals may notice varying results of one’s actions, ultimately creating hypotheses regarding what responses fit properly in which environments (Bandura, 1976). This, in turn, allows individuals to map out his or her actions for the future. This concept of differential reinforcement is similar to my understanding of cognitive behavioral therapy because, after a person challenges an automatic thought that is resulting in distress, he or she may notice a substantial difference in his or her emotions. Therefore, when one challenges his or her thoughts successfully, he or she will likely use such strategies in the future. 
     
    The emphasis on thought is found heavily within Bandura’s social learning theory. In order for behavior to change according to one’s outcomes, thought must be involved (Bandura, 1976). Reinforcing consequences provide information to individuals regarding how to obtain outcomes that are helpful, as well as how to stay away from undesired ones. Bandura (1976) noted that learning by response consequences is a process related to cognition, and because of this, one must be able to notice what is being reinforced before behavioral change can result. He also noted that, although responses are able to be positively reinforced, one’s thoughts may interrupt the strength of reinforcement. In other words, if individuals do not think a reward will take place on future occasions— by the result of some additional form of information— then there will not be an increase in reinforced responses. This heavy emphasis on thought relates to cognitive behavioral therapy in that such therapy guides individuals to become initially aware of their thoughts before working with them to produce favorable outcomes. 

    Bandura’s description of motivational function describes how experiences of one’s past results in expectations that specific actions will provide benefits to the individual, as well as allow them to avoid any negative consequences in the future. Therefore, people’s behaviors are motivated by what they think the future will bring (Bandura, 1976). This expectation within thought is also often addressed in CBT.

    Bandura, A. (1976). Origins of behavior. In A. Bandura, Social learning theory (pp. 15-55). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

    Reply

    • Mark Joyce
      Nov 12, 2015 @ 20:43:58

      Jacleen, you pointed out an important feature of Bandura’s theory that resonated with my understanding. One of the most important facets, personally, of observational learning is observing the consequences of other’s behaviors. After spending considerable time on operational conditioning, it seems logical to make the assumption that behaviors can be acquired by analyzing the consequences for other peoples behavior. This mechanism is interesting in that it can both increase and potentially decrease the likelihood of a behavior. Dating far back in human history there have been public displays of punishment which serves a dual purpose of punishing an individual for their actions and discouraging others from repeating that act. The strong relation to cognitions leads to individuals analyzing events that happen to others and this form of learning speaks to the strength of observational learning.

      Reply

    • Colleen Popores-LaFleur
      Nov 13, 2015 @ 22:42:45

      Jacleen,

      I appreciate your inclusion of motivational function in your discussion of Bandura. This is an important component as it speaks to a cause of behavior. Your description brings me back to our readings of Kelly from last week, in that individuals have expectations that can influence their behavior. Kelly talked about constructs and the idea that people anticipate events, much like the idea that a person’s past can influence what they expect from specific actions. However, Bandura emphasizes that many of our expectations can come from what we observe through social learning, and may not come directly from our own behavior.

      Reply

  7. Colleen Popores-LaFleur
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 00:32:10

    Bandura expands on behavioral theory, which focuses solely on observable events. He acknowledges the process of classical and operant conditioning, in which learned behaviors are automatic and do not require conscious awareness of the relationships between actions and outcomes. Bandura expands on the role of motivation, meaning that a person anticipates possible consequences and change their behavior accordingly. This emphasizes the importance of cognition and how it influences behavior.

    Bandura also states that while some behavior is learned through experience, it can also be learned through observation. In other words, a person can learn through the ideas they have formed about the behaviors of others and their consequences. This relates to cognitive-behavioral theory as it implies a thought process that was not considered relevant to pure behavioral theorists. In order to learn through modeling, a person must be consciously aware of the experiences of others and the consequences of their behaviors. They may pay more attention to certain events or people, and this may be influenced by their personal characteristics and/or situational and environmental circumstances. Bandura also states that a person must have the capacity to understand and retain the information they are observing, which again emphasizes a dynamic interplay between cognitions and behaviors.

    Reply

  8. Erin Mamott
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 10:22:02

    The thing I really like about social learning theory is in part the acknowledgment of thoughts as part of the learning process. Including both explicit and implicit thought. The other part is that the theory recognizes humans as social beings. Up to now, many of the theories seem to downplay the importance of social contact for the individual, choosing to focus instead on individual perspectives. While individual perspectives and interpretations are important, so is social contact. In the unfortunate cases of feral children there is a definite lack of development which can be difficult or impossible to correct. The more difficult cases are the ones with no social contact for many years, starting in infancy or early childhood. While some individuals may be able to handle limited to no social contact, it is usually well into adulthood when this can occur without drastic impairment.

    Social learning theory is different from the other theories we have learned about thus far. This theory provides an account for why individuals are able to learn from seeing, or hearing about, the mistakes of others (Bandura, 1976). Humans can learn from the consequences of other’s actions. Social learning theory is unique. Unlike psychoanalysis, where everything goes back to mom or dad, social learning theory says that the models are many and diverse (Bandura, 1976; Mischel, 1968). Unlike behaviorism, where only the behaviors of the individual are affected by reinforcement or punishment, social learning theory says that the consequences from anyone’s behavior can affect the individual’s future behavior (Bandura, 1976). Unlike person-centered, where the individual is either fully aware of the here-and-now and self-actualized or not at all, social learning theory says that awareness can be in various degrees and it can still be possible to achieve higher functioning (Bandura, 1976). Social learning theory is refreshing. It is a refreshing step towards cognitive-behavioral theory.

    Reply

    • Salome Wilfred
      Nov 12, 2015 @ 19:00:30

      Erin,

      I really enjoyed reading your blog this week. I agree that explicit and implicit thoughts are very important in the learning process. As discussed last week in Kelly’s theory, an individual’s personal constructs determines how they view situations and events; and these constructs are based off past situations and relationships. Bandura’s theory of observational learning highlights this importance when he discusses the 4 constructs necessary for observational learning (specifically attention). I really appreciate that you highlighted the importance of social contact. Since humans are social beings and since many seek connection it is probably a very important aspect in learning that most past behaviorist neglected.

      Reply

    • Colleen Popores-LaFleur
      Nov 13, 2015 @ 22:52:04

      Erin,

      I like the way you compare Bandura’s theory of social learning to several different theoretical approaches. I agree that much of Freud’s theories center on mom or dad. However, a child would still learn a lot of behaviors from their parents in the context of social learning theory. Children often mimic their parents and see the perceived consequences of their parents’ actions. The parents are most often who the child observes and interacts with early in life, but it is true that they can learn behavior from a wide range of people. They see the consequences of their siblings’ behavior, and when they go to school they will observe and learn from their peers. This differs from psychoanalysis as it is not any intrinsic motivations but seeing how others behave and what the consequences are that teach a person what they sh0uld expect when they act.

      Reply

  9. Heather Lawrence
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 11:50:00

    Bandura believed behavior is the result of that learned from experience. His theory stressed the importance of observational learning through imitation and modeling. In explaining human behavior, he believed people are goal oriented and have specific intentions and purposes. Cognitive behavioral theory determines how people emotionally experience and react to their environment. Clients learn new and more effective ways of thinking. The client’s early childhood history is taken into account; however behaviors continue to be reinforced throughout the lifespan because of patterned thought processes. This thought process includes the continuous reciprocal interaction between cognitive, behavioral, and environmental influences. Clients explore maladaptive thoughts and learn to replace them with new rational and appropriate thinking. The primary differences between the two theories are the emphasis on overt behavior in behavioral theory and in cognitive theory. The focus is on cognition or individual thought processes. Bandura’s theory is a bridge between behaviorism and cognitive –behavioral theory. In cognitive behavioral the client- therapist relationship is key to the therapist’s ability to correctly implement behavioral techniques. Functioning as guides and teachers, they continually assess the client and strategize and set goals in agreement with the client. The therapist and client collaboratively evaluate the client’s progress through empathy and sensitivity. Bandura tends to ignore developmental stages over a lifetime. It does not explain motivation or personality changes over time. One learns from the observation of others as opposed to being able to learn from their own life experiences. Because of this, the understanding of how a child learns through observation and how an adult learns through observation are not differentiated and factors of development are not included.

    Reply

    • Erin Mamott
      Nov 13, 2015 @ 18:17:25

      At the end of your post you mention that Bandura overlooks development. I am not sure that Bandura completely disregards the developmental stages over a lifetime. While Bandura was not a developmental psychologist, hence the apparent lack of focus on development, Bandura does seem to indicate that observational learning is a type of learning which individuals can use from an early age/stage. This observational learning does not necessarily ever stop, but rather how each individual processes the information and uses it becomes more sophisticated and complex. There is no need for Bandura to necessarily differentiate between how the child and adult learn through observation. The observational portion is not what changes but the maturity of the individual.

      Reply

  10. Taylor Gibson
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 12:40:33

    I appreciate Bandura’s belief that the efficacy of many different therapeutic processes derive from their common ability to increase an individual’s belief in their own self-efficacy. Cognitive- behavioral therapy works by changing the way that a person thinks. If a person believes that they aren’t able to help themselves that feeling of helplessness becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy that can become difficult to overcome. However, a therapeutic process that empowers someone to achieve even small successes increases their belief in themselves. I believe that this change in thinking can be instrumental in improving the life of someone who is struggling.

    I also think it is interesting that Bandura felt that changes made through performance accomplishments were more salient and less susceptible to extinction. Unlike other forms of therapy which rely upon the client simply talking or the therapist telling the client how to change, cognitive-behavioral theory utilizes homework assignments that allow the client to practice and improve their own skills. These performance accomplishments aim to gradually build the client’s perceptions of self-efficacy. In this way CBT is very close to Bandura’s social learning theory.

    Reply

    • Janean Desjardins
      Nov 12, 2015 @ 00:13:37

      Taylor,
      I enjoy that you bring up the use of homework assignments in cognitive behavior therapy. It can be very beneficial for patient to have homework assignments outside of the therapy session to assist with the therapeutic process. Helping to keep the patient involved in their own care and working toward their own process and goals. This will build a persons self-efficacy and help them build the skills they need to make decisions and set appropriate goals that are attainable. One can see the association with social learning theory and homework assignments with CBT when Bandura discusses the changes through performance accomplishments.

      Reply

    • Brittany King
      Nov 12, 2015 @ 16:39:47

      Taylor,

      You have a great grasp on Bandura’s social learning theory. I appreciate your take on the homework assignments with CBT. As a class, we talked in our counseling class about homework assignments and how the client being able to practice their skills in the moment is so useful to both the client and the therapist. One thing I like about the homework is that the client is practicing their skills and once they can see they are able to utilize them in a moment of crisis, their perception of self-efficacy will build. I thoroughly enjoyed reading your post, great job!

      Reply

  11. Salome Wilfred
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 13:11:14

    Bandura’s social learning theory suggest that most behaviors are learned through observation and experience opposed to the belief that individuals are equipped with inborn repertories of behavior. He believed that if all individuals learned what behaviors were appropriate and effective solely through experience it would be very hazardous and laborious (Bandura, 1976). Therefore, observational learning is a protective way for individuals to form ideas of how new behaviors are performed for later occasions. His emphasis on the process of observational learning and the four components resonates with my understanding of cognitive-behavioral theory. Bandura discusses that in order for an individual to learn through observation the individual must learn the behavior from someone they value, remember the behavior that is modeled, practice the new learned behavior, and have motivation to learn the new behavior (Bandura, 1976). These four components are not only necessary in the social learning theory but also in cognitive-behavioral theory.

    While Bandura’s theory of social learning is important and demonstrates to be true there remain people who do not seem to truly learn from other people’s behaviors that they observe. In other words, I know many people who seem to need to test things and experience things before they truly learn because observation alone does not seem sufficient. Do you think this is a result of lacking one of the four components for observational learning or other unknown factors?

    Bandura, A. (1976). Origins of behavior. In A. Bandura, Social learning theory (pp. 15-55). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

    Reply

    • Erin Mamott
      Nov 13, 2015 @ 18:33:05

      I know some people who have to try things for themselves too (I am sure most people know someone like this). In some cases it may be a missing component, such as not observing someone of value or not enough motivation to learn a new behavior. To some degree I think there are cases where it is a sense of pride or an inflated sense of self. Considering the sense of accomplishment and self-efficacy when completing a task, some instances of “refusing” to learn through observing others may be an attempt to heighten the feeling of successfully completing the task. In other cases there might be a sort of inflated self, where the individual thinks “well I’m not them so it won’t happen to me.” Others may be stubborn and refuse to look at it any other way than their own, including learning from other people’s mistakes. Another individual comes to mind who simply refuses to feel subordinate to someone and so will refuse to learn from other’s examples.

      Reply

  12. Jason Prior
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 13:59:54

    Bandura’s social learning theory has some very close ties to the cognitive-behavioral theory. Bandura conceptualized that an organism can learn behavior and cognitive patterns through the observation of behavior as modeled by other organisms. Essentially a person can learn a behavior through the observation of said behavior, even if the person did not exhibit that behavior and was not reinforced by the environment. For example, a person will be with a group of friends who enact a specific behavior. The individual, after seeing the behavior modeled, will begin to emit the behavior as well. Part of this is because of the cognition that comes with the behaviors. There must be a motivation for the individual to learn the behavior. The person believes that the behavior is acceptable and is adaptive to the environment. Once the behavior has been emitted by the individual, the behavior will be reinforced or will not be reinforced. In order for one to be successful in a learned behavior, the person must believe they are capable of succeeding at it. This show the link that Bandura felt connected thoughts and actions. That being said, not all behaviors or cognitions learned are through observation are ultimately adaptive. Maladaptive behaviors and cognitions can be learned through observation and carried on by the learner.

    Reply

    • Brittany King
      Nov 12, 2015 @ 16:45:57

      Jason,

      While learning about the social learning theory, in particular modeling where an organism can learn behavior and cognitive patterns through observation modeled by another organism, I could not help but think of my nephew. Recently, my nephew who is two, has been going around throwing his hands in the air and saying ‘yeah, yeah”. When I saw him do this, I asked my sister who taught him that and she said that he saw a WWE wrestler do it on TV and then started to mimic the wrestler. When she said this, I automatically thought about how he observed another organism modeling a behavior, and then learned that behavior. Being able to make a connection between the theories we are learning whether it is in a clinical reference or not really helps drive home the point. Great post, Jason!

      Reply

    • Salome Wilfred
      Nov 12, 2015 @ 18:48:20

      Jason,

      I really appreciated your example of observational learning. When I think of observational learning I immediately think of children and how they observe their parents behavior. The behavior we observe from our peers and people we consider our friends is just as, if not more, important. Bandura’s theory is demonstrated every day through peer pressure, especially in adolescents. With that being said, I wonder if family therapy is just as effective as it use to be? While I believe that family therapy is essential when working with adolescents I wonder if it translates well into the interpersonal relationships adolescents have with their peers.

      Reply

  13. Julia Sherman
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 14:26:01

    Bandura’s discussion of learning through modeling demonstrates many of the core principles of cognitive-behavioral theory (Bandura, 1977). Bandura theorized that most of our learning is actually acquired through observing the behaviors of others. This theory is consistent with cognitive theory because it emphasizes the importance of mental events in learning. The fact that a great deal of our learning is a result of observing our environment implies that mental events play a significant role in human development. This brings to mind the research done by professor Burton L. White of Harvard University, who found that although infants had been assumed to be primarily oral as Freud had theorized, infants do most of their learning and exploring visually (Mischel, Shoda, & Ayduk, 2008). It is not surprising, then, that humans learn from modeling.

    This is not to say that Bandura rejected behavioral theory. To the contrary, Bandura discusses the ways in which individuals learn “by direct experience” (Bandura, 1977, p.16). Bandura (1977) discusses, for example, the means by which people are either rewarded or punished for their behavior, and how this leads to different behavioral results. Additionally, he mentions that when an individual believes that he or she will no longer receive a reward for a behavior, despite how rewarding the behavior had been previously, the behavior will become extinct. This is consistent with behavioral theory, which found that if an organism is only extrinsically motivated to exhibit a behavior, the behavior will grow extinct upon withdrawal of the reward (Mischel, Shoda, & Ayduk, 2008). Bandura viewed learning as being comprised of both observational and experiential learning, and although he theorized that the majority of this learning was observational, he believed that experiential learning was also an important facet to understanding the totality of human behavior (Bandura, 1977).

    Reply

  14. Ana Cerda
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 15:14:42

    I found that the concept of information processing was very interesting and related to CBT. Information processing involves taking in information from our environment and associating the relationships between behaviors and consequences. According to Bandura (1977), we form ideas of how to match responses and organize them in order to develop new behaviors. Overall, all behaviors are guided by prior assumptions and ideas rather than the consequences following an act. The CBT model holds that some issues arise from cognitive distortions, in which we tend to process information from our environment incorrectly and make inaccurate assumptions about our world; these cognitive distortions are similar to the concept of information processing in social learning.
    Another interesting aspect of the social learning theory is observational learning. Observational learning is modeling behavior that is observed encoded and processed. Based on the observed consequences as well as the direct consequences, the behavior may be imitated or avoided. Modeling serves to provide an individual with information and symbolic representations of behaviors. These representations then function as guides to direct us in how to behave. Without much research, I wonder, from a CBT view, would modeling serve as our mental representations of the world?

    Reply

  15. Meagan Monteiro
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 15:34:44

    In order to make the shift from behaviorism to cognitive-behavioral theory, different theories had to bridge the gap between behaviorism and cognite-behavioral theory. Bandura’s social learning theory shares many themes with cognitive-behavioral theory. His theory acknowledges the influence of past experiences and how positive and negative effects or contingencies influence the frequency of specific actions. However, rather than this being an unconscious and unintentional way of existence, Bandura asserts that “the cognitive capacities of humans enable them to profit more extensively from experience than if they were unthinking organisms” (Bandura, 1976, pg 16). Bandura concluded that the responses to actions or contingencies in behaviorism aren’t simply favorable or unfavorable outcomes but rather serve several functions. These functions include responses used to gather information, responses used to motivate or responses that reinforce. The functions of responses are directly related to Beck’s triad of cognitions. Responses are informative because they provide information on how to behave in certain situations. As such, cognitions are supported or unsupported through these responses. These responses or outcomes change the behavior and therefore the thought driving the behavior. Responses can also serve as motivations whereas past experiences or past responses create expectations. These expectations are driven by planning or in other words thought. People plan out what to do, what their goals or expectations are and how to achieve them. This is congruent with the cognitive-behavioral theory of thoughts driving behaviors and behaviors also influencing cognitions. With this relationship between cognitions and behaviors comes the reinforcing function of responses. In this process much like in cognitive-behavioral theory, there are cognitions before and after the behavior. The thoughts before influence the behavior and the thoughts after influence both the behavior and the cognitions. This aspect of the social learning theory is directly correlated to cognitive-behavioral theory and Beck’s triad.

    Another similarity between Bandura’s social learning theory and cognitive-behavioral theory is the concept of awareness. Bandura asserts that in order for social learning to take place, people have to attend or pay attention to certain people, certain situations, and certain details. There are many factors that go into what people attend to such as the environment, people’s personalities and perceptions of people’s behavior but one of the most important factors is a person’s own perspective. People’s past experiences and environment affect what details people remember and what aspects of a situation people attend to. This in turn affects how people interpret a situation. In cognitive-behavioral theory, psychological distress is the result of maladaptive cognitions. These cognitions can be the result of a focus on negative details rather than positive ones. If a person has negative automatic thoughts that have been conditioned by behavior and consequences, then they are more likely to attend to and think about more negative aspects of their life. Thus feeding the cycle. Based on these similarities, Bandura is able to pave the way for cognitive-behavioral theory.

    Reply

    • Jacleen Charbonneau
      Nov 13, 2015 @ 20:27:57

      Meagan,

      I like how you mentioned Bandura’s assertion that attention must be involved within social learning theory. Paying attention to one’s own perspective is something that we don’t usually do, and making a conscious effort to do so clearly produces desirable results according to Bandura. The inclusion of past experiences is refreshing because it had been excluded in behaviorism for so long. Bandura’s theory of social learning seems like a great balance of both past and present.

      Reply

  16. brian faust
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 15:55:14

    Albert Bandura’s theory of social learning and cognitive behavioral therapy share a number of differences, but also share common a common foundation. Bandura’s social learning theory states that behavior is learned through the environment by utilizing observational learning. Bandura believed that individuals were “active informants’ in their information processing. Bandura believed that individuals were aware the correlational relationship between their behaviors, and the antecedent consequences that may follow. This could not occur without utilizing cognition. The individuals that are observed are called models. We begin to encode the behavior of these models, and assimilate them into our own behaviors. Bandura describes “identification” as the process of internalizing a behavior that is learned from others. Cognitive behavioral therapy focuses on how on solving problems through remedying distorted cognitions and changing maladaptive patterns of behavior. Like Bandura’s theory of social learning, CBT can not be successfully implemented without cognitive processes. By identifying their own cognitions, they can begin to identify their own behavior.

    Reply

  17. Bridget Kesling
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 15:59:15

    Address the following discussion point. Similar to your previous discussion on Kelly and Mischel last week, identify a couple of points related to Bandura’s social learning theory that resonate with your understanding of cognitive-behavioral theory.

    When looking at Bandura’s social learning theory I really enjoyed his ideas surrounding creative modeling influences and the diffusion of innovation. The idea of creative model influencing suggests that their are many things that can influence one’s way of doing something and a person can have multiple models in which to pull information. A person with a more diverse group of models is more likely going to have a style that is uniquely different than those around them that have models that are similar. A person with a diverse group of models will take what they like from each individual and integrated it into their own skill set. This is important when looking at cognitive-behavioral therapy because we understand that when we are working on changing cognition that a lot of the cognition’s are influenced by many different sources around the individual.
    The second idea addressed that I would like to highlight is diffusion of innovation. This is the idea that when new behaviors or cognition’s are present that they serve a purpose. If that purpose is not gaining the reward it is seeking then over time the cognition or behavior will decrease and dissipate. This is an interesting thing to look at through a cognitive-behavioral theory because, when trying to influence cognition it is important to see what purpose that cognition is serving the client. If it is serving as a protective factor it may be harder to modify then if it is used as an attention seeking behavior.

    Reply

    • Julia Sherman
      Nov 13, 2015 @ 22:50:59

      Bridget,

      I also find Bandura’s theory of creative modeling influences to be an interesting part of his theory. It is a fun idea to think about, and it makes a great deal of sense. From infancy, human beings observe the people around them and learn from their behaviors. In general, infants are exposed more to their parents than anyone else, which may explain why children often exhibit their parents’ behaviors later in life. However, I do believe that a large part of each individual’s personality is something that they are genetically born with and do not learn. People may learn from the behaviors that they observe that “stick out” to them more than others, but I believe that there is an innate part of personality that influences exactly WHICH of those observed behaviors sticks out.

      Reply

  18. Gabriel Lamptey
    Nov 11, 2015 @ 23:55:54

    Theorists who focus on social learning like Bandura, are more interested in the processes of acquiring new responses by imitating the behavior of another, known as modeling. They are also interested in comprehending how people develop psychological disorders through their relationship with others and through their observation of other people. Bandura’s theory of social learning also focuses on the factors that influence the way people perceive themselves and others and the formation of judgments about the causes of behavior, also known as social cognition. The social cognition perspectives theorize that not only do direct reinforcements influence behavior, but so do indirect reinforcements which individuals develop or learn by watching others engage in particular behaviors and seeing them either rewarded or punished. For example, a child could develop aggressive behaviors by watching his father in different circumstances exhibit aggressive, and confrontational behaviors in his interaction with others.
    Bandura’s work also touched on self-efficacy, an individual’s perception of competences in various events of life. Bandura further explained that people will try harder to succeed in difficult tasks if they are confident that they can complete these task or goals. This concept can be applied to addictions, self-esteem, motivation, interpersonal behavior and other facets of psychological phenomena. For example, in the phenomena of addiction, if an individual does not believe that can control their addiction or substance use, they will be less likely to follow through a treatment plan to help them remain sober. Related to that, individual’s who lack self-efficacy in a given situation can be given needed support to boost their confidence in their capabilities to make progress or succeed and enhance their self-worth. In cognitive behavioral explanation, an individual with low self-efficacy will be described as having a distorted or negative belief system about themselves resulting poor self-worth or view.

    Reply

    • Julia Sherman
      Nov 13, 2015 @ 22:33:01

      Gabriel,

      I liked the example you gave of modeled learning, in which a child may learn aggressive tendencies from observing those behaviors from his father. The simple example brings up a lot of questions about the specifics of modeled learning and how effective it can be. For instance, how does age affect observational learning? Certainly a child would be more influenced by watching aggression than an adult, which means that understanding human development is important to this theory. Also, how does the relationship between the individual and the model affect the learning process? Children are likely to exhibit their parents’ behaviors when they get older, even when the child did not particularly like those behaviors, which may suggest that the parent-child relationship has a major affect on observational learning. In any event, although I may have a lot of questions about it, I have a great deal of respect for Bandura’s theory and find that it is hard for me to refute.

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Adam M. Volungis, PhD, LMHC

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 43 other followers

%d bloggers like this: