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Behaviourism and Constructivism

Compare and contrast two different approaches to learning/ development and their application in a research field/ topic of your choice (e.g. media, community, disability etc.)


Two Theories – Behaviourism and Constructivism

Research field – Education


In your answer you might want to consider the different perspectives we have explored in relation to how the learner can be understood. 


Questions you might want to ask of the two perspectives or theories could include:

  • How is the individual learner/ human subject/ developing person conceptualised?
  • What approach does each theory adopt in relation to epistemology or methodology?
  • What weight is given to individual capacity versus collective endeavour?
  • What is the relationship between an individual and their environment?
  • How are learning/ development & the role of learner conceptualised – active, passive?
  • How is the teacher/ educator/ psychologist/ youth-worker/ media educator conceptualised? How would each perspective conceptualise a good teacher/ educator/ psychologist/ youth-worker/ media educator?
  • What kinds of principles would teachers, psychologists, schools, youth organisations or educational media draw upon were they to adopt one/both of these perspectives?
  • Where is the place and significance of society, culture, media and politics in each specific theory of learning?


  1. Clarify your terms

You can begin by defining the key terms, concepts and theories in your assignment question, or you can define key terms as you go along. Just remember, there could be more than one understanding of each term that you use. You will have to explain why you have chosen your particular definitions. Here you should refer to researchers and writers and how they have defined concepts and terms in their work.


  1. Define your focus

Try to choose a focus for your essay.


  1. Develop and structure your argument



Last Updated on February 1, 2018

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