Applications of theories and findings of empirical studies from the learning perspective


Applications are discussed throughout the explanations of key concepts. However, more information is given below on specific areas.
Make sure that you can explain the following:
  • Which specific learning theory is being applied?
  • What are the key points of the theory?
  • Which specific case study/studies support that theory?
  • What were/are the findings of these empirical studies?
  • What are the limitations of the findings?
  • What system/application was designed on the basis of that theory and how does it work?
  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of the system?


Dysfunctional behavior

For alcoholism and schizophrenia, refer to the page on Operant conditioning


See your handout on 'Clinical Characteristics' (Eysenck, M. Key Topics in A2 Psychology,2003, p. 244)
  • Review your information on depression and the behavioral approach.
See also the page on learned helplessness
  • Consider implications of these findings for connections to the cognitive approach (in terms of implying internal assessments or self-appraisal as well as the necessity for the individual to have appraised the external situation/factors)

Therapeutic interventions
Now - consider different applications:
  • Behavior shaping programs
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapies that treat both the behavior and the cognitive factors (which means they accept the existence of the cognitive factors)
Begin with Seligman's work on learned optimism

Analysis of behavior - Does it require a multi-dimensional approach?

Treatment of phobias

Review the information under classical and operant conditioning


The behaviorist orientation to learning

Behavior modification in the classroom

Token economies