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Running head: BLOG ONE: SOCIAL LEARNING THEORY

Blog One: Social Learning Theory


Eric J. Walsh
EDUC 633
Liberty University

BLOG ONE: SOCIAL LEARNING THEORY


Social Learning Theory
Social learning is simply defined as learning by observing or interacting with
others (Atkisson, O'Brien, & Mesoudi, 2012, pp. 519-520) in group or inter-individual
settings. The Social Learning Theory (SLT) is an extension of operant conditioning
[which] assumes that behavior is a function of consequences[acknowledging] the
existence of observational learning and the importance of perception in learning
(Robbins & Judge, 2009, pp. 57-58). Social groups are settings where two or more
people who have a common identity, who interact, and who form a social relationship
(Satterlee, 2009, p. 54), and the classroom is the main social groups for adult learners.
Social learning between adults provides opportunities to reduce feelings of social
isolation (Christiansen & Bell, 2010, p. 803) which helps deal with the challenges of a
new learning environment.
Relationship-motivated learners seek the feeling of community shared with their
fellow learners (Conner, 2004, pp. 13-17). The third stage of Maslows Hierarchy of
Needs is belonging (Satterlee, 2009, pp. 173-174), characterized by existing within a
community (Bonvillain, 2011). Experimental psychologist David McClelland took this
further with his Trichotomy of Needs. His second group of human needs suggests The
need for affiliation is found in people who are concerned about establishinggood
interpersonal relationships, being liked, and having the people around them get along
with each other (Satterlee, 2009, p. 175).
David Kolbs theories on experiential learning are commonly referenced in
modern education. According to Kolb, learning is defined as the process of creating

BLOG ONE: SOCIAL LEARNING THEORY


knowledge, and knowledge results from the combination of grasping and transforming
experience (Kolb & Kolb, 2005, p. 194). His Experiential Learning Theory (ELT)
draws on multiple theories of human learning and development, suggesting learning is a
transaction between the person and the social environment (p. 199).
David A. Lutz declares cooperative learning has long been used as a social
learning strategy to enhance students interpersonal relationships while mastering
content (2011). This focus on active learning allows adult learners to actively
participate in kinesthetic learning through physical activities and social interaction
(Parker & Parker, 2007, pp. 7-8). The focus on social interaction provides alternative
methods of reading, retaining, and testing, which provide more creative methods for both
the instructor and learner to share and retain lesson material. Research shows adult
learners have a preference for active learningand learning in context of performance
and reality (Curry, 2008, p. 20).
Applying social learning in a distance education environment simply requires
Collaboration on a single project (Horton, 2012, p. 400) utilizing tools like blogs,
message boards, and online conferencing (Clark & Mayer, 2011, pp. 284-285) to
exchange information used to complete an assignment.

BLOG ONE: SOCIAL LEARNING THEORY


References
Atkisson, C., O'Brien, M. J., & Mesoudi, A. (2012). Adult learners in a novel
environment use prestige-based social learning. Evolutionary Psychology, 10(3),
519-537.
Bonvillain, D. G. (2011, January). Why Maslow? Military Intelligence Professional
Bulletin, 37(1), 27-31. Retrieved from http://p2048www.liberty.edu.ezproxy.liberty.edu:2048/login?
url=http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.liberty.edu:2048/docview/1017696057?
accountid=12085
Christiansen, A., & Bell, A. (2010). Peer learning partnerships: Exploring the experience
of pre-registration nursing students. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 19(5-6), 803810. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2702.2009.02981.x
Clark, R. C., & Mayer, R. E. (2011). E-learning and the science of instruction: Proven
guidelines for consumers and designers of multimedia learning (3rd ed.). San
Francisco, CA: Pfeiffer.
Conner, M. L. (2004). Learn more now: 10 simple steps to learning better, smarter &
faster. Hoboken, NJ, USA: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
Curry, S. (2008). The adult learner. International Anesthesiology Clinics, 46(4), 17-26.
Horton, W. (2012). E-learning by design (2nd ed.). San Francisco, CA: Pfeiffer.

BLOG ONE: SOCIAL LEARNING THEORY


Kolb, D. A., & Kolb, A. (2005). Learning styles and learning spaces: Enhancing
experiential learning in higher education. Academy of Management Learning and
Education, 4, 193-212. doi:10.5465/AMLE.2005.17268566
Lutz, D. D. (2011, August 09). Multi-modal learning strategies for all students. Retrieved
from SouthEast Education Network: http://www.seenmagazine.us/articles/articledetail/articleid/1663/multi-modal-learning-strategies-for-all-students.aspx
Parker, L. W., & Parker, K. L. (2007). Learning with style and skill: a description of a
self-calculating, computerized learning styles profile and study skills inventory
and its use for diagnosing and prescribing learning. Liberty University,
Education. Lynchburg: Liberty University.
Robbins, S. P., & Judge, T. A. (2009). Organizational behavior (13th ed.). Upper Saddle
River, NJ, USA: Prentice Hall.
Satterlee, A. (2009). Organizational management and leadership; a Christian
perspective. Roanoke, VA: Synergistics, Inc.