Learning theories



This guide introduces some of the big names in behaviorist learning theory, from early theorists like Thorndike and Watson through Pavlov’s animal experimentation to B. F. Skinner (pictured left). Behaviorism focuses on observable behaviors in learners, with learning being demonstrated when the appropriate response is given to some stimulus. [Keep reading]


This guide introduces some of the big names in cognitivist learning theory, from Dewey to Piaget (pictured left). Cognitivism places learning in the mind of the learner, where mental maps (or schema) undergo constant construction and adaptation based on new information being encountered and processed. [Keep reading]


This guide introduces some of the big ideas in social constructivist learning theory, largely based on the work of Lev Vygotsky (pictured left). For constructivists, emphasis is placed on social interaction between the learner and others. Dialogue becomes the vehicle by which ideas are considered, shaped and developed, and learning can be best facilitated by more knowledgable others scaffolding or supporting learning. [Keep reading]

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