Learning Theories An Educational Perspective Sixth Edition

Learning TheoriesAn Educational PerspectiveSixth EditionDale H. SchunkThe University of North Carolina at GreensboroBoston Columbus Indianapolis New York San Francisco Upper Saddle RiverAmsterdam Cape Town Dubai London Madrid Milan Munich Paris Montreal TorontoDelhi Mexico City Sao Paulo Sydney Hong Kong Seoul Singapore Taipei TokyoVice President/Editor in Chief: Paul SmithEditorial Assistant: Matthew BuchholzMarketing Manager: Joanna SabellaManaging Editor: Central PublishingProject Manager: Laura MesserlyFull-Service Project Management: Sudeshna Nandy/Aptara®, Inc.Operations Specialist: Laura MesserlyComposition: Aptara®, Inc.Photo Researcher: Annie PickertDesign Director: Jayne ConteCover Designer: Suzanne DudaCover Image: ShutterstockPrinter/Binder: Courier/WestfordCover Printer: Lehigh-Phoenix ColorText Font: 10/12 GaramondCredits and acknowledgments borrowed from other sources and reproduced, with permission, in this textbook appearon appropriate page within.Copyright © 2012, 2008, 2004, 2000, 1996, 1991 by Pearson Education, Inc., publishing as Allyn & Bacon, 501Boylston Street, Boston, MA, 02116. All rights reserved. Manufactured in the United States of America. Thispublication is protected by Copyright, and permission should be obtained from the publisher prior to any prohibitedreproduction, storage in a retrieval system, or transmission in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical,photocopying, recording, or likewise. To obtain permission(s) to use material from this work, please submit a writtenrequest to Pearson Education, Inc., Permissions Department, 501 Boylston Street, Boston, MA, 02116, or emailpermissionsus@pearson.com.Library of Congress Cataloguing in Publication DataSchunk, Dale H.Learning theories : an educational perspective / Dale H. Schunk.—6th ed.p. cm.Includes bibliographical references and index.ISBN-13: 978-0-13-707195-1ISBN-10: 0-13-707195-71. Learning. 2. Cognition. 3. Learning, Psychology of. I. Title.LB1060.S37 2012370.15’23—dc22201004846810 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1ISBN-10:0-13-707195-7ISBN-13: 978-0-13-707195-1DedicationTo Barry Zimmerman,mentor, colleague, and friendBrief Contents1 Introduction to the Study of Learning12 Neuroscience of Learning293 Behaviorism714 Social Cognitive Theory1175 Information Processing Theory1636 Constructivism2287 Cognitive Learning Processes2788 Motivation3459 Self-Regulation39910 DevelopmentGlossary489References501Author Index539Subject Indexiv444550Contents1Three Learning Scenarios 25Introduction to the Study ofLearning 1Kathy Stone’s Third-grade Class 25Jim Marshall’s U.S. History Class 26Gina Brown’s Educational PsychologyClass 26Learning Defined 3Precursors of Modern LearningTheories 4Learning Theory and Philosophy 5Beginnings of the Psychological Study ofLearning 7Structuralism and Functionalism 8Learning Theory andResearch 10228Neuroscience ofLearning 29Organization and StructuresFunctions of Theory 10Conducting Research 11Assessment of LearningSummary 27Further Reading14Direct Observations 14Written Responses 15Oral Responses 16Ratings by Others 16Self-reports 18Neurophysiology of LearningInformation Processing SystemMemory Networks 46Language Learning 49Relation of Learning andInstruction 18Historical Perspective 18Instructional Commonalities 19Integration of Theory and PracticeCritical Issues for LearningTheories 21How Does Learning Occur? 22What is the Role of Memory? 23What is the Role of Motivation? 23How Does Transfer Occur? 24Which Processes are Involved inSelf-regulation? 24What are the Implications forInstruction? 2531Neural Organization 32Brain Structures 33Localization and Interconnections 37Brain Research Methods 39Brain Development20434350Influential Factors 50Phases of Development 51Critical Periods 52Language Development 55Motivation and Emotions58Motivation 58Emotions 60Instructional Applications 62Relevance of Brain Research 62Educational Issues 63Brain-based Educational Practices 64Summary 67Further Reading70vviContents3Modeling ProcessesBehaviorism 71Connectionism73Trial-and-error Learning 73Laws of Exercise and Effect 74Other Principles 75Revisions to Thorndike’s TheoryThorndike and Education 76Classical Conditioning75Contiguous ConditioningDevelopmental Status of Learners 133Model Prestige and Competence 134Vicarious Consequences toModels 135Motivational Processes84Instructional Applications146Conceptual Overview 146Self-efficacy in AchievementSituations 147Models and Self-efficacy 149Motor Skills 152Instructional Self-efficacy 153Health and Therapeutic Activities 154Instructional Applications 156Models 157Self-efficacy 157Worked Examples 158Tutoring and Mentoring102Behavioral Objectives 103Learning Time 105Mastery Learning 107Programmed Instruction 109Contingency Contracts 112Summary 114Further ReadingSelf-Efficacy88Conceptual Framework 89Basic Processes 89Behavioral Change 98Behavior Modification 100Self-regulation 102138Goals 138Outcome Expectations 143Values 14582Acts and Movements 84Associative Strength 84Rewards and Punishments 85Habit Formation and Change 85Operant ConditioningInfluences on Learning andPerformance 13378Basic Processes 79Informational Variables 81Biological Influences 81Conditioned Emotional Reactions123Theories of Imitation 123Functions of Modeling 125Cognitive Skill Learning 129Motor Skill Learning 1311164Social CognitiveTheory 117Conceptual Framework forLearning 119Reciprocal Interactions 119Enactive and Vicarious Learning 119Learning and Performance 122Self-regulation 122Summary 159Further Reading5158162Information ProcessingTheory 163Information Processing System165Assumptions 165Two-store (dual) Memory Model 165Alternatives to the Two-store Model 168Attention171Theories of Attention 171Attention and Learning 172Attention and Reading 174ContentsPerception175Vygotsky’s Sociocultural TheoryGestalt Theory 175Sensory Registers 178LTM Comparisons 179Two-Store Memory ModelLong-Term Memory: Storage183Private Speech and Socially MediatedLearning 248Private Speech 248Verbalization and Achievement 249Socially Mediated Learning 251Self-regulation 252191Propositions 191Storage of Knowledge 191Production Systems and ConnectionistModels 196MotivationMental ImageryConstructivist LearningEnvironments 261204Key Features 261APA Learner-Centered Principles 263213Representation of Spatial Information 213Imagery in LTM 216Individual Differences 217Instructional Applications6Instructional Applications 265Discovery Learning 266Inquiry Teaching 268Peer-assisted Learning 269Discussions and Debates271Reflective Teaching 271217Advance Organizers 218Conditions of Learning 219Cognitive Load 223Summary 224Further Reading254Contextual Factors 254Implicit Theories 256Teachers’ Expectations 258Long-Term Memory: Retrieval andForgetting 200Retrieval 200Language ComprehensionForgetting 209240Background 241Basic Principles 242Zone of Proximal Development 243Applications 245Critique 247180Verbal Learning 181Short-term (working) MemoryLong-term Memory 184Influences on Encoding 187viiSummary 274Further Reading2762277Constructivism 228Constructivism: Assumptions andPerspectives 230Overview 230Perspectives 232Situated Cognition 233Contributions and ApplicationsPiaget’s Theory of CognitiveDevelopment 236Developmental Processes 236Implications for Instruction 239234Cognitive LearningProcesses 278Skill Acquisition280General and Specific Skills 280Novice-to-expert ResearchMethodology 281Expert-novice Differences inScience 283Conditional Knowledge andMetacognition 284Conditional Knowledge 285Metacognition and Learning 286viiiContentsVariables InfluencingMetacognition 288Metacognition and Behavior 289Metacognition and Reading 290Concept Learning292The Nature of Concepts 292Concept Attainment 294Teaching of Concepts 295Motivational Processes 298Problem Solving299317Historical Views 317Activation of Knowledge inMemory 318Types of Transfer 319Strategy Transfer 321Teaching for Transfer 322356358Expectancy-value Theory 359Familial Influences 361Contemporary Model of AchievementMotivation 362Self-worth Theory 364Task and Ego Involvement 366Attribution Theory366Locus of Control 367Naïve Analysis of ActionAttribution Theory ofAchievement 368367371Goals and Expectations 372Social Comparison 372Goal Theory324374Goal Orientations 376Conceptions of Ability 379Perceived ControlComputer-based LearningEnvironments 325Distance Learning 328Future Directions 330380Control Beliefs 380Learned Helplessness 381Students with Learning Problems332Worked Examples 332Writing 334Mathematics 337Summary 342Further Reading349Pretask 357During Task 357Posttask 358Social Cognitive TheoryTechnology and InstructionInstructional ApplicationsModel of Motivated LearningAchievement MotivationHistorical Influences 299Heuristics 302Problem-Solving Strategies 304Problem Solving and Learning 309Experts and Novices 310Reasoning 311Implications for Instruction 315TransferCognitive Consistency TheoryHumanistic Theory 351Self-Concept382383Dimensions and Development 383Self-concept and Learning 385Intrinsic motivation 386Theoretical Perspectives 386Overjustification and Reward 389344Instructional Applications 3928Motivation 345Historical PerspectivesDrive Theory 347Conditioning Theory347348Achievement Motivation Training 392Attribution Change Programs 393Goal Orientations 395Summary397Further Reading398Contents9Perspectives on DevelopmentSelf-Regulation 399Behavioral TheorySelf-monitoring 401Self-instruction 404Self-reinforcement 405Knowledge RepresentationSpiral Curriculum 458405Conceptual Framework 405Social Cognitive Processes 407Cyclical Nature of Self-regulationSocial and Self Influences 414Information Processing Theory411415Model of Self-regulation 415Learning Strategies 417428Motivation and Self-Regulation431Volition 432Values 434Self-schemas 434Help Seeking 435465Socioeconomic Status 465Home Environment 468Parental Involvement 469Electronic Media 472Developmental ChangesImplications 476436436444Beginnings of the Scientific Study ofDevelopment 446Historical Foundations 446Philosophical Foundations 446The Child Study Movement 447474475Instructional Applications 477Learning Styles 478Case’s Instructional Model 482Teacher-student Interactions 483Summary 486Further Reading443DevelopmentDevelopmental Changes 460Developmentally AppropriateInstruction 461Transitions in Schooling 463Motivation and DevelopmentInstructional Applications10457Contemporary DevelopmentalThemes 460Family Influences427Sociocultural InfluencesImplicit Theories 430Summary 441Further Reading452Bruner’s Theory of CognitiveGrowth 457Social Cognitive TheoryAcademic StudyingWriting 436Mathematics 439449Issues Relevant to Learning 450Types of Developmental TheoriesStructural Theories 455401Constructivist TheoryixGlossary487489References501Author IndexSubject Index539550PrefaceThe study of human learning continues to develop and expand. As researchers from various theoretical traditions test their ideas and hypotheses in basic and applied settings,their research findings give rise to improvements in teaching and learning by students ofall ages. Especially noteworthy is how topics once seen as not intimately connected withlearning—such as motivation, technology, and self-regulation—are increasingly beingaddressed by researchers and practitioners.Although the field of learning is ever changing, the primary objectives of this sixthedition remain the same as those of the previous editions: (a) to inform students of learning theoretical principles, concepts, and research findings, especially as they relate toeducation and (b) to provide applications of principles and concepts in settings whereteaching and learning occur. The text continues to focus on cognition, although behaviorism also is discussed. This cognitive focus is consistent with the contemporary constructivist emphasis on active learners who seek, form, and modify their knowledge,skills, strategies, and beliefs.STRUCTURE OF THIS TEXTThe text’s 10 chapters are organized as follows. The introductory chapter discusses learning theory, research, and issues, as well as historical foundations of the study of learningand the relation of learning to instruction. At the end of this chapter are three scenariosinvolving elementary, secondary, and university settings. Throughout the text, these threesettings are used to demonstrate applications of principles of learning, motivation, andself-regulation. Chapter 2 discusses the neuroscience of learning. Presenting this materialearly in the text is beneficial so that readers better understand subsequent links made between brain functions and cognitive and constructivist learning principles. Behaviorism,which dominated the field of learning for many years, is addressed in Chapter 3. Currentcognitive and constructivist views of learning are covered in the next four chapters: socialcognitive theory; information processing theory; constructivism; and cognitive learningprocesses. The final three chapters cover topics relevant to and closely integrated withlearning theories: motivation; self-regulation; and development.NEW TO THIS EDITIONReaders familiar with prior editions will notice many content and organizational changes inthis edition, which reflect evolving theoretical and research emphases. Self-regulation,which in recent editions was covered in other chapters, now is a chapter on its own. Thischapter highlights the importance of self-regulation in learning and reflects the increasingxPrefacexiemphasis on self-regulation by researchers and practitioners. Given the prevalence of technology in schools and homes, the text includes new sections on learning from electronicmedia and in computer-based learning environments. In prior editions, content-area learning and instructional models were covered in separate chapters. In this sixth edition, thismaterial is integrated into other chapters at appropriate places, which provides better coherence and connection between learning and content instruction. Some chapters havebeen reordered in the text, and some topics have been shifted within chapters to providea better flow. The continued growth of research relevant to academic learning led to newterms incorporated into the glossary and to more than 140 new references.This edition continues to provide many examples of learning concepts and principlesapplied to settings where learning occurs. Each chapter after the introductory chaptercontains a new section on instructional applications. Chapters open with vignettes that illustrate some of the principles discussed in the chapters and also contain many informalexamples and detailed applications. Many of the latter are set in the scenarios describedin Chapter 1. Most of the applications in the chapters pertain to K-12 learners, but applications also address younger and older students and learning in out-of-school settings.The text is intended for use by graduate students in education or related disciplines,as well as by upper-level undergraduates interested in education. It is assumed that moststudents have taken a prior course in education or psychology and currently work in aneducational capacity or anticipate pursuing an educational career. In addition to courseson learning, the text is appropriate for any course that covers learning in some depth,such as courses on motivation, educational psychology, human development, and instructional design.ACKNOWLEDGMENTSI gratefully acknowledge several individuals for their assistance with this project.Throughout my career, many colleagues have enriched my thinking about learningprocesses and applications, including Albert Bandura, Curt Bonk, James Chapman, HerbClark, Lyn Corno, Peg Ertmer, Doreen Ferko, the late Nate Gage, Marilyn Haring, CarolynJagacinski, Mark Lepper, Dave Lohman, Judith Meece, Sam Miller, Carol Mullen, the lateJohn Nicholls, the late Frank Pajares, the late Paul Pintrich, Don Rice, Ellen Usher, ClaireEllen Weinstein, Allan Wigfield, Phil Winne, and Barry Zimmerman. I continue to benefitfrom activities with members of professional organizations, especially the Motivation inEducation Special Interest Group of the American Educational Research Association, andDivision 15 (Educational Psychology) of the American Psychological Association. Mylearning has been broadened by many outstanding students, teachers, counselors, administrators, and superintendents with whom I have worked. Sincere thanks go to graduate and undergraduate student collaborators for their assistance on research projects.For many years, my editor at Pearson Education was Kevin Davis. I am so thankfulfor all the guidance and support provided by Kevin, which has served to strengthen andimprove this text. With this edition, Paul Smith assumed the editorial responsibilities, andhe has done a fantastic job. It has been a pleasure working with Paul. Special thanks alsoare due to Matt Buchholz and Cynthia Parsons at Pearson for their editorial assistance. IxiiPrefacewish to thank the following reviewers of the fifth edition: Ronald A. Beghetto, Universityof Oregon; Denise Ward Hood, Northern Arizona University; and Sherri Horner, BowlingGreen State University. At the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, I appreciate theassistance with administrative tasks provided by Tomi Register, Liz Meeks, and MelissaEdmonds-Kruep.I am ever grateful for the love and encouragement from my parents, the late Mil andAl Schunk, and for the ways that friends Bill Gattis, Rob Eyman, Doug Curyea, and thelate Jim Tozer have helped me keep life’s priorities straight. I express deep gratitude toCaryl and Laura Schunk for their understanding, support, encouragement, and love sincethe first edition of this text appeared in 1991. Caryl assisted with many of the examplesand applications based on her experiences in K-12 education. Laura, who was a babywhen the first edition was published and today is poised to graduate from college, is anintelligent, motivated, and sociable young woman. The impact of learning in her life continually brings this text close to home.Chapter1Introduction to theStudy of LearningRuss Nyland teaches an education course for graduate students on cognitiveinstruction and learning. It is toward the end of the semester, and, as class finishesone day, three students approach him: Jeri Kendall, Matt Bowers, and TrishaPascella.Russ:Jeri:Russ:Jeri:Matt:Russ:Trisha:Russ:What’s up? Wasn’t I clear today?Dr. Nyland, can we talk with you? We’ve been talking, and it’s late in thecourse and we’re still confused.About what?Well, we’ve been studying all these theorists. It seems like they’re sayingdifferent things, but maybe not. Bandura, Bruner, Anderson, Vygotsky, andthe others. They make different points, but then some of what they sayseems to overlap what others say.Yeah, I’m so confused. I read these theorists and think like, yeah, I agreewith that. But then it seems like I agree with everything. I thought youwere supposed to have one theory, to believe one way and not others. Butit seems like there’s a lot of overlap between theories.You’re right Matt, there is. Most of what we’ve studied in this course arecognitive theories, and they are alike because they say that learninginvolves changes in cognitions—knowledge, skills, beliefs. Most theoristsalso say that learners construct their knowledge and beliefs; they don’tautomatically adopt what somebody tells them. So yes, there is muchoverlap.So then what are we to do? Am I supposed to be something like aninformation processing theorist, a social cognitive theorist, a constructivist?That’s what I’m confused about.No, you don’t have to be one or the other. There may be one theory thatyou like better than the others, but maybe that theory doesn’t addresseverything you want it to. So then you can borrow from other theories. Forexample, when I was in grad school I worked with a professor whosespecialty was cognitive learning. There was another professor who did12Chapter 1Jeri:Russ:Matt:Russ:Trisha:developmental research. I really liked her research, probably because I hadbeen a teacher and was interested in development, especially the changesin kids from elementary to middle school. So I was a learning theorist whoborrowed from the developmental literature and still do. It’s ok to do that!Well that makes me feel better. But it’s late in the course, and I guess Iwant to know what I should be doing next.Tell you what—next class I’ll spend some time on this. A good place tostart is not to decide which type of theorist you are, but rather determinewhat you believe about learning and what types of learning you’reinterested in. Then you can see which theory matches up well to yourbeliefs and assumptions and maybe do as I did—borrow from others.Isn’t that what you call being eclectic?Perhaps, but you may still have one preferred theory that you then adaptas needed. That’s okay to do. In fact, that’s how theories are improved—byincorporating ideas that weren’t in them originally.Thanks Dr. Nyland. This is really helpful.Learning involves acquiring and modifyingknowledge, skills, strategies, beliefs, attitudes,and behaviors. People learn cognitive, linguistic, motor, and social skills, and these can takemany forms. At a simple level, children learnto solve 2 ϩ 2 ϭ ?, to recognize y in the worddaddy, to tie their shoes, and to play withother children. At a more complex level, students learn to solve long-division problems,write term papers, ride a bicycle, and work cooperatively on a group project.This book is about how human learningoccurs, which factors influence it, and howlearning principles apply in various educationalcontexts. Animal learning is de-emphasized,which is not intended to downgrade its importance because we have gained much knowledge about learning from animal research. Buthuman learning is fundamentally different fromanimal learning because human learning ismore complex, elaborate, rapid, and typicallyinvolves language.This chapter provides an overview of thestudy of learning. Initially, learning is definedand examined in settings where it occurs. Anoverview is given of some important philosophical and psychological precursors of contemporary theories that helped to establishthe groundwork for the application of learning theories to education. The roles of learning theory and research are discussed, andmethods commonly used to assess learningare described. The links between learningtheories and instruction are explained, afterwhich critical issues in the study of learningare presented.At the end of this chapter are three scenarios that involve learning with elementary, secondary, and college students. Background information is given about the learners, teachers,instruction, content, setting, and other features.In subsequent chapters, these scenarios will beused to exemplify the operation of learningprinciples. Readers will benefit from seeinghow different learning principles are applied inan integrated fashion in the same settings.The opening scenario describes a situationthat happens to many students when they takea course in learning, instruction, or motivationand are exposed to different theories. StudentsIntroduction to the Study of Learningoften think that they are supposed to believein one theory and adopt the views of thosetheorists. They often are confused by the perceived overlap between theories.As Russ says, that is normal. Although theories differ in many ways, including their general assumptions and guiding principles,many rest on a common foundation. This textfocuses on cognitive views of learning, whichcontend that learning involves changes inlearners’ cognitions—their thoughts, beliefs,skills, and the like. These theories differ inhow they predict that learning occurs—in theprocesses of learning—and in what aspects oflearning they stress. Thus, some theories areoriented more toward basic learning andothers toward applied learning (and, withinthat, in different content areas); some stress

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