Bandura – Social Learning Theory

“In social learning theory Albert Bandura (1977) states behavior is learned from the environment through the process of observational learning.” this evidences what I have said before about how highly influenced children can be, they learn from the environment and society around them through observation.

“Children observe the people around them behaving in various ways. This is illustrated during the famous Bobo doll experiment (Bandura, 1961).”

“Individuals that are observed are called models. In society children are surrounded by many influential models, such as parents within the family, characters on children’s TV, friends within their peer group and teachers at school.  Theses models provide examples of behavior to observe and imitate, e.g. masculine and feminine, pro and anti-social etc.” So if these models provide examples of behaviour to observe, this must be why children behave like adults. Everyone is influenced by what is around them, so maybe this is why adults act like children. Maybe more adults who have children are more likely to act this way because they are always around children, their behaviour is going to pass off on them. So again, the two groups of ages have merged together.


Bobo doll experiment:

Basically the Bobo doll experiment is a study of children’s behaviour after watching an adult model act aggressively towards a Bobo doll. It shows how the child may be influenced by those around him.



McLeod, S. A (2011) Bandura – Social Learning Theory [online] available from <; [27 November 2014]

McLeod, S. A (2011) Bobo Doll Experiment [online] available from <; [27 November 2014]