Characteristics Of Learning Theories: Behaviorism, Social Learning Theory, Cognitivism And Constructivism

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Teaching can be characterized as commitment with students to empower their comprehension and use of information, ideas and procedures (Sequeira, 2017). It incorporates configuration, content choice, conveyance, evaluation and reflection. Besides, learning can be characterized as the movement or procedure of picking up information or ability by considering, working on, being instructed, or encountering something (Sequeira, 2017). Learners are group of people that gains knowledge from the teachers. Teacher is the person who transfers the knowledge to the students. Learning theories give a premise to see how individuals learn and an approach to clarify, portray, dissect and foresee learning. In that sense, a learning theories encourages us settle on increasingly educated choices around the structure, improvement and conveyance of learning. Learning theories include explanations to help understand how information is being used, how knowledge is being developed, and how learning is being achieved. There are five central paradigms of learning theories such as behaviorism, social learning, cognitivism, constructivism, and humanism.

Andragogy and pedagogy

Through Andragogy, or philosophy of adult learning, adults are believed to have specific learning needs (Graham, 2017). Andragogy applies to any form of adult learning and has been extensively used in the design of organizational training programs. According to Malcolm Knowles who was one of the pioneers in this field, there are 6 main characteristics of adult learners.

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Self-idea focuses about adults turning out to be increasingly self-coordinated and free as he/she develops. Adults normally need to pick what they need to realize, when they need to learn it, and how they need to learn (Unknown, 2020). One of the most significant contrasts between encouraging kids and instructing adults is the self-idea of grown-up students (Peterson, 2019). This supposition implies that teachers can give more decisions to students, for example, enabling them to plan their very own tests, as well as giving a collective learning condition that encourage shared regard.

Experience. Under this methodology teachers urge students to associate their past encounters with their present information base and exercises. Students were taught to bring out their past information, conclusions, and encounters (Peterson, 2019). Teachers should be knowledgeable in how to help students in drawing out pertinent past information and encounters. Besides, teachers must realize how to relate the aggregate of students’ encounters to the present learning encounters.

Readiness to learn. Adults are ready to learn the things they need to know and do to handle real-life situations effectively (Peterson, 2019). Adults want to know what they can do in the present, making future-oriented preparation successful. The teachers can use readiness by exposing the students to more effective role models, setting up them in career planning, and giving them with diagnostic experiences to assess the gaps in their personal competencies between where they are now and where they want to and need to be.

Problem centered focus. Some adults wants to see the important of the utilization of learning. Thusly, they look for learning openings that will empower them to take care of issues (Peterson, 2019). Adults as students don’t want to find out about material that doesn’t fit into their lives (Peterson, 2019). The teachers need to tailor their guidance to explicit issues that their students face. Andragogy is tied in with investing more energy doing than learning and the nature of guidance is significantly more significant than subject inclusion.

Motivation. The incentive to learn is enhanced when there is a direct relevance of the ‘lesson’ in real-life situations, especially in relation to the learner’s specific concerns (Unknown, 2020). The need to gain applicable and sufficient information is of paramount importance. The teacher’s job in these cases is just to energize this inspiration and help the students to keep up energy toward adapting so they can move past any uneasiness they may feel about their circumstance. Listen cautiously for encouraging minutes and exploit them. At the point when a student says or accomplishes something that signs another theme, be adaptable and talk about it, even quickly, to show your students that their advantages are significant.

Adults need to know why they have to get the hang of something. Adults need to realize how might this benefit them – how this new information will tackle an issue or be promptly applied (Unknown, 2020). Adults need to know why they have to master something before embraced learning. The teachers must assist the students with getting mindful of their ‘need to know’ and make them understands about value of learning.

Pedagogy is the study of instruction theory and practice. It concerns the underlying values and principles which influence our approaches to learning, teaching and evaluation.

Behaviorism theory

Behaviorism, otherwise called social brain research, is a hypothesis of learning dependent on the possibility that all practices are gained through conditioning. Conditioning happens through communication with nature. Behaviorists accept that the reactions to ecological boosts shape the actions (Cherry, 2019). As indicated by this way of thinking, behavior can be examined in a methodical and detectable way paying little heed to inside mental states (Cherry, 2019). Some behaviorists accepted that any individual can conceivably be prepared to play out any errand, paying little respect to hereditary foundation, character characteristics, and inner musings (inside the cutoff points of their physical capacities). It just requires the correct molding.

Classical Conditioning

Ivan Pavlov first studied classical conditioning in detail through dog experiments, and published it in 1897 (Vinney, 2018). Classical conditioning is a behaviorist theory of learning (Vinney, 2018). It places that when a normally happening improvement and an ecological stimulus are over and over combined, the ecological boost will in the long run inspire a comparative reaction to the common stimulus.

Classical conditioning can likewise be utilized in classrooms by teachers. For instance, to battle tensions and fears where a student is fear of insects, so a teacher may over and over show an individual a picture of an insect. This will make the student to undergo the relaxation technique. The outside stimulus which is the insect picture continuously responses the inner stimulus which is the fear of the student. This is because it has become a conditioned stimulus that prepares the body for a conditioned response to the insect (Vinney, 2018).

Operant Conditioning

B. F. Skinner, a well-known American psychologist, is often considered Operant Conditioning’s founder (McLeod, Skinner – Operant Conditioning, 2018). Operating conditioning is a learning mechanism that happens by rewarding a certain activity or removing reward for unwanted behaviour. Therefore, there is a connection between that action and its effect.

Operant conditioning can be applied in educating as customized guidance, as long as the data is given in little lumps with the goal that reactions can be strengthened. Behavior adjustment as a treatment technique is seriously utilized on account of students with learning troubles. In any case, in normal students it can shape their aptitude execution, while it additionally assists with management of student. As referenced over, one method for giving uplifting feedback is by praising, empowering and cheering students so as to change their behavior in an ideal way.

Social learning theory

Social learning theory, speculated by Albert Bandura, sets that individuals gain from each other, by means of perception, impersonation, and displaying (McLeod, 2016). The hypothesis has regularly been known as a scaffold among behaviorist and intellectual learning speculations since it envelops consideration, memory, and inspiration. Individuals learn through watching others’ conduct, frames of mind, and results of those behaviors. The steps that involves in observational learning and modeling method are attention, retention, reproduction and motivation (Cherry, How Social Learning Theory Works, 2019). In the field of education, Bandura’s theory of social learning has important implications. Teacher can use role model or demonstration techniques to the students for better understanding. Because adults or even kids learn skills or techniques or get an idea by observing others. For example, demonstrating on how to draw and then students follows that. Bandura’s social learning hypothesis suggested that learning can likewise happen just by watching the activities of others.


The previous cognitivist is Lewin (1951) which proposed the field of hypothesis. He portrayed learning as the consequence of the efficient changing respected to the field of intellectual structure, which is included one’s sense and the muscle control (Mattar, 2018). The following cognitivist is Jean Piaget (1960s) the therapist from Switzerland. He is one of the organizer of cognitivism hypothesis. He proposed his thought which watched the difference in psychological capacities yielded by psycological perspective.

It is imperative to understand the rule of the cognitivism so as to have understanding about the hypothesis. As one of the advertiser of cognitivism hypothesis Piaget has proposed a few focuses managing the standards of the cognitivism. As indicated by Piaget’s perspective that he advice the educators that they should mindful of the student’s points of view and the conditions under which scholarly structures are set up at various ages. He proposed at any rate four standards of cognitivism in regards to training. The first is the significant of readiness. This principle refers to the process of assimilation in which students try to adjust their circumstances. Experience, instructive or something else, doesn’t just happen to a student then again it should consistently be acclimatized to current intellectual structure. Through this procedure a students is urged to achieve the information dependent on his/her experience.

Teachers are required to assist learners in the optimum way of organizing information so that it can be easily assimilated. Teachers can manage the classroom by establishing and dividing the students into certain groups and then group meetings, one-on-one interactions with a students and consistent enforcement of boundaries and rules. For example, mind mapping will help students take better notes, enhance understanding and promote innovation, as one of the most effective learning strategies. Teachers should encourage students to become more interested in developing their knowledge.


John Dewey (1933/1998) is frequently referred to as the philosophical originator of this methodology. Bruner (1990) and Piaget (1972) are viewed as the central scholars among the intellectual constructivists, while Vygotsky (1978) is the significant scholar among the social constructivists. Constructivism is fundamentally a hypothesis – in light of perception and logical examination – about how individuals learn. It says that individuals develop their very own comprehension and information on the world, through encountering things and considering those encounters. At the point when we experience something new, we need to accommodate it with our past thoughts and experience, possibly changing what we accept, or perhaps disposing of the new data as immaterial. Regardless, we are dynamic makers of our own insight. To do this, we should pose inquiries, investigate, and survey what we know.

The constructivist theory of learning will point to a number of different teaching methods within the classroom. Usually, it means encouraging students to use active techniques (experiments, real-world problem-solving) to create more knowledge and then reflect on what they are doing and how their understanding is changing (HOLZ, 2017). The teachers can use discussion method. For example, using discussion clusters where members of a class are divided into smaller groups of four to six participants, and one or two questions about a topic are given to the clusters. One cluster member is chosen to record and submit ideas of the community to the whole class. This technique is especially useful in larger classes, and may encourage the participation of shy students.


In 1943, Maslow depicted his progressive system of necessities in ‘A Theory of Human Motivation’ distributed in Psychological Review. Later during the late 1950s, Abraham Maslow, and different analysts held gatherings to examine building up an expert association committed to an increasingly humanist way to deal with brain science. They concurred that subjects, for example, self-realization, inventiveness, distinction, and related points were the focal topics of this new methodology (Cherry, Overview of Humanistic Psychology, 2019).

In 1951, Carl Rogers distributed Client-Centered Therapy, which portrayed his humanistic, customer guided way to deal with treatment. In 1961, Journal of Humanistic Psychology was set up.

Humanistic brain science is a point of view that underscores taking a gander at the entire individual and stresses ideas, for example, through and through freedom, self-viability, and self-realization. Instead of focusing on brokenness, humanistic brain science endeavors to assist individuals with satisfying their latent capacity and expand their prosperity. Humanistic brain science, additionally frequently alluded to as humanism developed during the 1950s as a response to the analysis and behaviorism that ruled brain research at the time.

Maslow accepts that the enthusiastic correspondence among educator and understudies is the most essential kind of conduct for people. No matter how the understudies figure, the educator ought to treat their perspectives with compassion and build up enthusiastic correspondence with them. Let the understudies choose the substance and the inspiration of learning by themselves. The instructor can direct the understudies to orchestrate their learning movement and simultaneously, the educator can offer some valuable and essential conditions.


This talk was sorted out truly to show the hypotheses and research that served to advise our ebb and flow understanding regarding learning and to shape instructive practice for the greater part a century. Instructors might be pulled in to one hypothetical methodology dependent on their own understanding as students, and that approach may adjust well to the learning objectives of their courses and educational program. While our comprehension of learning and instructing may extend as the objectives of training shift and new research and speculations are introduced, there is an incentive in understanding the hypothetical apparatuses at present accessible to instructors and how they can be applied to inquiries of today.


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