SOCIAL LEARNING PERSPECTIVE
Similar to the
behavioral theories in assuming that:
is formed via interaction with the environment.
largely environmentally determined and situation specific.
processes and their effects on behavior are key to understanding personality.
differ in the ways they think about themselves, other people, and the world;
cognitions (rather than “traits”) are key to understanding personality,
Cognitions can be measured systematically.
Cognitive change is the key to personality change.
COGNITIVE SOCIAL LEARNING THEORY: WALTER MISCHEL
between intuitive belief that people are consistent and the empirical
findings that indicates that people are inconsistent.
Context of Behavior: The “solution” to the paradox.
average relationship between self-report personality measures and behavior: r
consistency across situations, but consistency across time within similar
Situational hedges: "Person does x when y."
"Johnny will hit back [behavior] when teased [situational hedge]."
combinations of behavior with situation are consistent for various normal
personality traits, e.g. aggressive, friendly, withdrawn
“redefined” as learned ways of adapting to specific situations
constructs: trait terms used to describe themselves and other people (e.g.
descriptions above all vary from one person to another—each person has unique
interpretations (meanings) of these stimuli.
typical examples of "fuzzy" categories
what can a person do? Cognitive: what can a person think?
Not the same as
performance (i.e. what a person actually does)
are subjective and determine performance.
expect will determine what I will do.
Important kinds of expectancies include:
Behavior-Outcome Expectancies: what will happen if I behave in a particular way?
Expectancies: What will happen next?
Related to one’s ongoing awareness of the environment.
Self-Efficacy Expectancies: Can I do it?
Notice that: “What will happen if I do X?” is not the same as “I successfully
can do X!”
of outcomes (given the particular individual’s goals or values)
is the value of the reward? Not all people will equally value the same
Systems and Plans
the ability to
defer immediate gratification for a larger future goal.
self-regulatory system—or ego control—a core “ego strength”
helps children learn to delay gratification?
are the future consequences for children who do not learn to delay
Research with children (and into
Visibility of reward (more difficult to delay)
Thinking about something else (less difficult to delay, and can be taught)
Modeling (another effective training technique)
Authoritative (compared to permissive) mothers are more likely to teach children
the ability to delay gratification.
Predicts cognitive & social competence years later in
that preschool children who are better able to delay gratification become high
school students who:
are more attentive and able to concentrate
are better able to verbally express themselves (i.e. put
their ideas into words)
are less impulsive and more reasonable
cope with stress and frustration more calmly and
COGNITIVE SOCIAL LEARNING THEORY: ALBERT BANDURA
mutual (bi-directional) influences of
B: behavior P:
person E: environment
of Behavior: The Self-System
their own behavior (are self-directed), but vary in how effectively they exert
How do people
regulate their behavior?
By adapting goals,
then observing, evaluating, modifying, and eventually rewarding one’s behavior
as we attempt to achieve these goals.
self-observation (of performance)
self-response (e.g., rewards)
= believing that
one can do what needs to be done to achieve a goal.
to particular behaviors.
changed by learning.
self-efficacy results in more effort and persistence at a task; low
self-efficacy contributes to discouragement and quickly abandoning a task.
result, more confidence = better performance, more likely to reach goals
(assuming confidence is realistic).
not the same as “outcome expectations”
Correlates of Self-Efficacy
Self-efficacy is correlated with immune system functioning under
Research finding: low self-efficacy when performing a stressful task interferes
with immune system functioning (i.e., situation is less stressful when
approached with high self-efficacy—I can cope.)
Processes: Noticing/Observing the Model’s Behavior
distinctive, affective valence, complexity, prevalence, functional value
Observer: sensory capacities, arousal level, motivation, perceptual set, past
Retention Processes: Remembering the
Behavior--Putting it into memory
Symbolic coding, cognitive organization,
symbolic rehearsal, motor rehearsal
Reproduction Processes: Doing It--and being able to do it
availability of component responses
self-observation of reproductions
Processes: Wanting It--Deciding that it is worth doing
Learning is not the same as performance.
Learning or Modeling: also
called vicarious learning or imitative learning
Learning can occur
powerful models are more influential than more attractive models
Models can also
influence standards for behavior (standards necessary to self-reinforce)
“superior standards” models, young boys demand better performance of themselves
on a bowling task before rewarding themselves.
models (television, movies, videogames)
Remember learning is not always evident in immediate performance.
behavioral learning principles, plus
self-efficacy expectations, especially for phobias and other anxiety disorders.
Clients often think more about their inability to manage their anxiety than the
danger in the situation.
Remember that low efficacy expectations are not the same as low outcome
self-efficacy leads to persistence toward our goals (including therapy goals).
Expectations Through Therapy
accomplishments--Mode of induction:
participant modeling, performance desensitization, performance exposure,
experience--Mode of induction:
modeling, symbolic modeling
persuasion--Mode of induction:
suggestion, exhortation, self-instruction, interpretive treatments,
arousal--Mode of induction:
attribution, relaxation, biofeedback, symbolic desensitization, symbolic
striving toward goals: the goals we set are important.
The Person in the
as a group we can
do what needs to be done; can
difficult goals that one person would not have been able to accomplish alone.
regulate one’s behavior to live up to high moral standards; people “turn off”
their moral standards by a variety of techniques (e.g., “ends justifies the
means”, displacing responsibility, dehumanizing victims)