A behavioral perspective

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A behavioral viewpoint is an approach that uses the stimulus-response relationship to describe the learning and behavior processes. This link is necessary, and certain conclusions can be drawn from it. As an observer, I can detect whether a behavioral, cognitive, or constructivist method is being employed by observing an instructor carry out a class exercise or activity (Watson & Skinner, 2004).

First, the instructor should persuade students to change their behavior, according to behavioral theory. Furthermore, this movement must be visible (Sheafer, 2017). As a result, an instructor who uses this strategy should modify the pupils' behavior.  Secondly, the learning process has to be focused on the observable events as opposed to mental (Sheafer, 2017). Whereas learning is a psychological process, the behavioral approach tends to lean more on observable characteristics as a sign of knowledge. Therefore, as an observational marker, I would look for gestures, facial expressions, and body language that suggest that the students are learning what they are taught (Dettori, 2011).

Cognitive psychology deals with the manner that people perceive, think, and express themselves. The cognitive approach differs in behaviorist perspective as it acknowledges that learning is a mental process (Watson & Skinner, 2004). Therefore, only because there are no observable features that are indicative of education does not mean that learning has not taken place. As an observer, I would ask the students questions regarding the class activity to ascertain whether they had learned what they were taught. This way, I will give them an opportunity to express themselves and their perception of the newly imparted knowledge. How well or how poor they will represent this knowledge is a marker of cognitive perspective in play (Dettori, 2011).

The reason I used the sources from the reference list is because they give a clear insight into behaviorism, cognitivism, and constructivism. They elaborate on these types of learning giving relevant examples and distinguishing features of each technique. These academic sources acted as the guidelines on what to look out for in the instructor’s teaching style.


Dettori, G. (2011). Constructivism and social learning – by Alan Pritchard & John Woollard. British Journal of Educational Technology, 42(1), E15-E16.

Sheafer, V. (2017). Using digital storytelling to teach psychology: A preliminary investigation. Psychology Learning & Teaching, 16(1), 133-143.

Watson, T. S., & Skinner, C. H. (Eds.). (2012). Encyclopedia of school psychology. New York: Springer Science & Business Media.

April 19, 2023

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