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Psychology of Learning

The psychology of learning is a theoretical notion, based on the idea that learning is process that leads to changes in behavior. Learning implies that there will be long-term changes in behavior that are the result of experience. Much of the psychology of learning comes from both classical conditioning, characterized by the work of Pavlov, and operant conditioning, which was developed by B.F. Skinner.

Psychology of Learning

The psychology of learning takes current research in neuroscience, neurobiology and cognitive psychology in order to improve teaching and enhance the learning of students. Empirical research has shown that there are several factors that either enhance or inhibit learning. Student engagement, for example, tends to decline with the promise of a reward, but increase with intrinsic motivation. Additionally, learning, memory, and reasoning all become enhanced when students are able to interact with real-world examples.

For teachers, this theoretical framework can enhance student achievement by understanding when learning is maximized. Factors that can achieve this include the presentation of information in multiple formats, active participation by students, clear expectations, scaffolding of material, and involving students in the inquiry into the subject as well as reflection upon learning. When students assess their knowledge and reflect critically, they are better able to retain information and learn.

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