Observation of Models and its influence on Behavior

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In his famous Social Learning Theory, Albert Bandura notes that children observe the behavior of people around them and tend to copy it (Schultz, 2016). People who are observed are commonly referred to as models. Children, for instance, take models to be their parents, friends, teachers or characters on television. After paying close attention to their behavior, children later imitate whatever they observed. In most cases, children imitate the people they think are similar to them. For instance, a girl will tend to imitate her mother more than she imitates her father. In return, the society either rewards or punishes the behavior a child imitates. From the models we observe, we could end up learning either good or bad. However, we tend to imitate more, that which is acceptable socially thus making the chances of learning good things higher as compared to learning bad things (Bandura, 2016).

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Ever since he started schooling, my elder brother has consistently been a good performer. When I became of age I realized that this did not come easy, he put in a lot of effort in his school work. I have all along considered him my role model. Just as he does, I spend much of my time doing research hoping to achieve better academic results. On the other hand, I have often found myself in trouble as a result of being in the wrong company. At around age six, I joined a group of naughty boys in my neighborhood who were a little older than me. They always found themselves in trouble and as expected soon I found myself in the same situation.

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  1. Schultz, D.P., & Schultz, S.E. (2016). Theories of Personality. Boston: Cengage Learning.
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