User-Generated Content in Education/Social Learning and Information Processing Theory


This page is to inform those interested in Social Learning Theory and Information Processing Theory.

What is Social Learning TheoryEdit

Social Learning Theory was created by the psychologist Albert Bandura [1] . Bandura’s theory on social learning emphasizes “the importance of observational learning, imitation, and modeling." [2] Social Learning Theory centers on the social constructs of how children observe and responde to modeling, where children focus on "the importance of observing and modeling the behaviors, attitudes, and emotional reactions of others." [3] Bandura found that to promote effective modeling that there are four steps that need to be taken, and they are attention, retention, reproduction, and motivation. [4] Children learn through experiences, both positive and negative, from who is within their environment and what goes on within their environment. Parents,characters on TV, friends within their peer group, and teachers at school are prime examples of models that children will imitate. [5]

Educational ImplicationsEdit

  • Students often learn a great deal simply by observing other people.
  • Describing the consequences of behaviors can effectively increase appropriate behaviors and decrease inappropriate ones.
  • Modeling provides an alternative to shaping for teaching new behaviors.
  • Teachers and parents must model appropriate behaviors and take care that they don't model inappropriate ones.
  • Teachers should expose students to a variety of other models.
  • Students must believe that they are capable of accomplishing school tasks.
  • Teachers should help students set realistic expectations for their academic accomplishments.
  • Self-regulation techniques provide effective methods for improving behavior.

(List is courtesy of

Key Example of Social Learning TheoryEdit

Within Bandura's research is a key example that gives merit to his research on Social Learning Theory. This example is known as the Bobo Doll Experiment. Here is a link to SimplyPsychology that provides a detailed desciption of Bandura's experiment: (

What is Information Processing TheoryEdit

The information processing theory is based on us understanding information and processing it instead of just acting out of a stimuli. Information processing theory discusses the “process” for which this occurs. The process for which information is stored is a process that builds on one another to thus provide the highest level of learning such as metacognition. When we get someone learning information so deeply that they can make connections and then think about what they learn knowledge becomes stronger.

A brief description of the theory is that stimuli is brought to a learners attention and important into their sensory memory. At this point it is either forgotten or if enhanced with various modalities it will be recognized and placed into short-term memory. As student works with the new information by practicing, repeating and applying to functional true-based scenarios such as rehearsal and chunking and then it will be placed into long-term memory. When information is stored in long term memory it can be used for synthesis and analysis to connect known and unknown information to build gestalts or metacognitive thinking. We want our students using metacognitive thinking to create innovators of today and tomorrow.

Educational Implications of Information Processing TheoryEdit

  • Information should be as engaging in as much automated processing as possible (
  • Helping students use their prior knowledge when learning new information promotes learning (
  • Being automated makes it easier to select information most relevant to the task (
  • Learning strategies improve information processing because learners are more efficent and process information at a deeper level (Pressley & Harris, 2006; Pressly & McDonald-Warton, 1997)

Visual Example of Information Processing TheoryEdit

IPT1.JPG. Source:


  2. Cherry , K. (2012). Albert bandura biography (1925- ). Retrieved from
  3. Amarasing, P. (n.d.). University of South Alabama Online Learning Labratory: Social Learning Theory. Retrieved from
  4. Boeree , G. (2006). personality theories: Albert bandura. Retrieved from

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8.Wallace, B. Ross, A & Davis, J. Information Processing Theory:Benefits and Limitations=</ref>

9. Gray, P.,"Pyschology", 6th ed. (2010). New York:Worth =</ref>

10. Google Images; Information Processing Theory =</ref>

11. Pressley, M., & Harris, K.R (2006). Cognitive Strategy instruction: From basic research to classroom instructions. In P.A.Alexander & P.H. Winne (Eds). Handbook of educational psychology

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Last modified on 2 December 2012, at 23:12