Learning Theories and Models Research Paper

Pages: 4 (1174 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: ≈ 8  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Teaching

Also, consistent with developmental theory, he did not regard all learners as blank slates, but believed that past social influences had an impact upon learning. The sociability of individuals had an innately positive effect in most instances, as children could learn a great deal from modeling others in their peer group and elsewhere. This person is known as the more knowledgeable other (MKO) and can help the child learn and move beyond the zone of proximal learning (McLeod 2007). In the workplace, this is often an older, official mentor rather than a teacher.

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Humanistic theories of learning, in contrast, stress that learning itself is not necessarily the goal of instruction. Rather, learning itself should be a rewarding process, not the gold stars emphasized by behaviorism. Unlike constructivist approaches, rather than the teacher leading and shaping the student, the student is the guide for the learning process. "The humanist teacher is a facilitator, not a disseminator, of knowledge. Participatory and discovery methods would be favoured" (Sturt n.d.). The student may select what he or she wishes to learn, based upon the philosophy (also echoed in constructivism) that learning how to learn and reinforcing the innate structures that promote learning are important. Humanistic philosophies of education are heavily influenced by Rogerian psychology which stresses the need to bolster the self-esteem and self-concept of the individual as a path to mental health and healing. The 'open classroom' approach has no set schedule. Students, based upon their own learning styles (kinesthetic, verbal, visual, spatial, and so forth) can choose how they learn different subject matters. The disadvantage with this approach is that students may be unaware of subjects that exist that might be interesting to them, and may fail to learn 'the basics.' Also, the intimacy required for humanistic approaches can be unrealistic, although some humanistic concepts such as cooperative learning and teamwork are occasionally seen in the workplace.

Research Paper on Learning Theories and Models One Assignment

Handout: Theories of learning

Behaviorism/Conditioning (Behavioral theory)

Operant conditioning -- rewarding positive behaviors and punishing negative behaviors

Based upon the experiments and theories of B.F. Skinner

Places an emphasis on external behaviors, rewards, and motivators

In the classroom, drilling assignments, reviewing material (over-learning), and building assignment concepts from the basics to more complex problems is stressed

Constructivism (Cognitive theory)

Allows students to construct knowledge, rather than sees students as a blank slate, tries to make use of existing knowledge and cognitive structures within students

Teachers 'shape' learning in a social format

Vygotsky and the zone of proximal learning -- moving out of the learning comfort zone under the guidance of a MKO (more knowledgeable other) who acts as a mentor and model

Learning is a social process

Humanism (Rogerian theory)

Student-directed acquisition of knowledge

Learning is an internally rather than externally-driven process

Based in Rogerian theory and the need to bolster the individual's self-esteem

Actualization of the self is given priority over knowledge and skill acquisition

The open classroom concept: Students direct their own knowledge based upon individual learning styles


Behaviorism. (2011). Teaching guide for graduate instructors. UC Berkeley. Retrieved from:


Constructivism as a paradigm for teaching and learning. (2013). Concept to Classroom.

Retrieved from: http://www.thirteen.org/edonline/concept2class/constructivism/

McLeod, S.A. (2007). Vygotsky. Simply Psychology. Retrieved from:


Sturt, G. (n.d.). humanistic approaches to teaching. Psychology A-levels. Retrieved from:

http://homepage.ntlworld.com/gary.sturt/human.htm [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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