Theories Of Teaching And Learning Essay

1158 Words Jun 7th, 2015 null Page
Numerous theories about teaching and learning have developed over time and have been utilized to explain how learning may occur and what the role of a teacher is in the learning process. Classifying and organizing the learning theories has been difficult due to an overlap in some of the concepts or key elements. Reese and Overton (1970), however, determined two basic models for learning theories: the elemental model and the holistic model. United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO, 2015) defines learning as “a process that brings together personal and environmental experiences and influences for acquiring, enriching or modifying one’s knowledge skills, values, attitudes, behaviour and world views” (Most influential theories of learning, para. 1). Each learning theory, regardless of the model that best describes it, attempts to explain how learning occurs. The elemental model “represents the universe as a machine composed of discrete pieces operating in a spatio-temporal field” and is a “reactive and adaptive model of man” (Knowles, Holton III, & Swanson, 2015, p. 101). Learning theories that are part of the elemental model include behaviorism, connectionism, classical conditioning, contiguity of cue and response, and the systematic behavior theory. Watson has been described as the “father of behaviorism” (Knowles et al., 2015, p. 102) and suggested that learning occurs when behavior is changed through a link between a stimulus and a…

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