Learning theories – have a go!
Using learning theory, state the stimulus and the response:
1. Sheila is told after a mini-stroke (TIA) that she needs to take up moderate levels of physical activity. She immediately contacts her local phase IV rehab instructor.
2. Kevin joins a gym after some disparaging remarks about his weight from his work colleagues.
3. Emily reads an article about the benefits of exercise and starts attending group exercise classes.
4. James feels lethargic and unfit/unhealthy, so he hires a personal trainer.
5. Edith has high blood pressure and is told by a friend that exercise can help lower it to some extent. She joins a gym.
Using learning theory, state what has happened in the following scenarios. Use the terms stimulus, response, reinforcement, reward, punishment where appropriate:
- Kathy joins a gym and finds that she really enjoys it and has made several new friends. She looks forward to going each time.
- Charlotte has just had her first proper gym workout and was aching for the next three days. The aches and pains she has experienced has made her feel less inclined to exercise in the future.
- Andy has made a friend at the gym and they have agreed to be ‘training buddies’. Andy now feels more motivated to train as he feels less isolated in the gym now.
- Lynne has had her first gym workout with her personal trainer. Although she finds it quite hard and finds her co-ordination is sometimes lacking, her personal trainer constantly reassures and praises her for her achievements and effort. This makes her feel good about herself and her ability. She looks forward to her personal training sessions.
- Georgina attends an aerobics class for the first time. She cannot seem to get a grasp on moving to the beat and phrase of the music. As a result, she appears to be clumsy and uncoordinated. All the other members of the class seem to be working in perfect harmony with the instructor, making Georgina feel awkward and embarrassed, longing for the end of the session.
- Kate had her gym induction last week and has come today for her first solo workout. She cannot find her programme card or remember how to use the machines or perform the exercises she was shown. There are no fitness instructors around apart from one young lad who is deep in conversation with a young woman. She asks him for some assistance and he begrudgingly spends five minutes rushing through a couple of machines before making his excuses and rushing back to the woman. She is still totally confused and immediately leaves, making a complaint on her way out. The whole experience has left her feeling disgruntled and annoyed. She does not relish going back and starting again.
- Sean is so keen to get going with his fitness regime that he trains every day at quite a high intensity. He soon finds that his body rebels against the excessive and relentless strain he is placing on it, and he experiences extreme fatigue, aches and pains. This is so severe that it actually impairs his work and family life. He becomes frustrated and disappointed by this and drops out of his programme altogether.
- Margaret has recently started regularly attending a walking programme. After a few weeks, she feels a lot healthier and has shed a few pounds of weight. She really enjoys going and has made lots of new friends.
Use Bandura’s Social Learning Theory for this question. For each of the scenarios listed below, state whether a behaviour has been learned. Give your reasons.
- Janine observes that her best friend is now looking a lot slimmer and more toned, as well as feeling more confident about herself. Janine’s friend attributes this to her exercise programme. Janine feels that she too would like to receive these benefits.
- Ben is going on holiday in several weeks time, and is a bit nervous because he thinks he looks too fat for the beach. He buys a health and fitness magazine and notices that everyone in it has the perfect body, seemingly due to exercise. Ben also wants a body like that and dreams of having a ‘six-pack’.
- Maria watches a TV programme where the presenter is singing the praises of exercise, and lamenting unhealthy lifestyle behaviours. Maria finds the content of the programme quite interesting, but finds the presenter very annoying, especially as the presenter never actually states how to actually implement the advice she keeps giving.