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Behaviorism

What role does technology play in this?


Basic Behaviorism
Behavior and content can be learned through
reinforcements, associating new material to
old stimuli, and modeling (social learning)
Early behaviorists based learning modules
around contingencies of reinforcement:
What are the circumstances surrounding
reinforcement?
What conditions are reinforcing behaviors (good or
bad)?
If the learning is not the desired outcome, how we
can change the reinforcer?
Basic Behaviorism
As soon as behaviorism was
developing, so was the use of
technology to prove the power of the
theory
Sydney L. Pressey, John B. Watson,
B.F. Skinner, pioneered techniques
leading to computer assisted instruction
(CAI)
Computer Assisted Instruction
Programmed instruction where material is
broken into frames
When the learner proves that the material has
been learned, he or she is given positive
reinforcement
New material is presented that builds upon the
old
Several Principles at Work:
Immediate feedback
Complex learning through response chains
Dialogue with instructor at every point
History of Technology
As It Pertains to Behaviorism

1925 Multiple Choice Machine (S.L.


Pressey)
1950s Program created by Norman
Crowder trains troubleshooters in US
Air Force to find malfunctions in
electronic equipment
1958 Skinners Rote-and-Drill Teaching
Machine
More Recent Uses of Technology
As It Pertains to Behaviorism

Computer Assisted Instruction Practices


Accelerated Math: personalized
assignments printed, bubble score sheets
are scanned, computer prints immediate
scores, reports, and feedback
Educational Online Games (e.g.
www.brainPOP.com)
More Recent Uses of Technology
As It Pertains to Behaviorism

Training or StAIR modules


MIOSHA Bloodborne Pathogen training
Classroom Instruction StAIR (e.g. Solving
Systems of Linear Equations)
Microsoft Flight Simulator for Educational
Use
are just a few examples!
Which of the following scenarios
is missing a step in a behaviorist
teaching approach?
Teacher lectures a topic, asks a question, student answers
correctly and receives candy from the teacher.

Coach asks players to work hard in the big game,


they all do, and coach cancels sprints at the next practice.

Phys. Ed. Teacher covers unit on baseball and takes all


students who hit a homerun to a Tigers game.

Mom talks to young child about importance of picking up his toys after
he finishes playing with them, child picks up after himself, and mom hugs child.
What is Behaviorism?
Is this presentation an example of using
technology for behaviorist principles?

YES NO
Oh Yeah!
Bummer, remember...
Computer Assisted Instruction
Programmed instruction where material is broken
into frames
When the learner proves that the material has been
learned, he or she is given positive reinforcement
New material is presented that builds upon the old
Several Principles at Work:
Immediate feedback
Complex learning through response chains
Dialogue with instructor at every point
Congratulations! Youre right!
There are several reasons this scenario doesnt fit:
Students may not find a trip to a Tigers baseball game rewarding.
The baseball unit probably covered batting strategies,
but hitting a homerun isnt a skill that can be taught.

Moving on
Recall that Behaviorism is
Behavior and content can be learned through reinforcements,
associating new material to old stimuli, and modeling (social
learning)
Early behaviorists based learning modules around
contingencies of reinforcement:
What are the circumstances surrounding reinforcement?
What conditions are reinforcing behaviors (good or bad)?
If the learning is not the desired outcome, how we can
change the reinforcer?
As soon as behaviorism was developing, so was the use of
technology to prove the power of the theory
Sydney L. Pressey, John B. Watson, B.F. Skinner, pioneered
techniques leading to computer assisted instruction (CAI)
References
Early CBI Systems and Their Antecedents Timeline,
http://argyll.epsb.ca/mkarstad/timeline/
Learning Theories of Instructional Design,
http://www.usak.ca/education/coursework/802papers/mergel/brenda.htm
Scheepers, Detken, Learning Theories: Behavorism, April 8, 2000,
http://hagar.up.ac.za/catts/learner/2000/scheepers_md/projects/loo/theo
ry/behavior.html
Yovits, M.C. (Ed.), Advances in Computers, Vol. 18. New York: Academic Press,
1979, pp. 173-229.

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