Social Cognitive Theory, Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning
Introduction, Bandura, Mayer & Other Points
Today’s society is full of forceful media. Information is constantly presented, whether it be through the books, newspapers, magazines, television, radio stations, or computers that connect us to the internet on interview, not to mention social network sites and other communication platforms. We may try to limit our media exposure, but it is impossible to avoid it these days.
This week’s articles start to explain how we absorb information in our media-saturated society. The articles, to some extent, illustrate the importance of working memory and the ways information is stored, through visual and verbal codes. Questions are raised about what cognitive conditions must exist for adequately processing information in multimedia environments. Think about the following concepts during this course and as we analyze media artifacts.
Bandura & Social Cognitive Theory
Bandura’s article is about the role of media in shaping the way we think. The major premise is that we can learn by observing others. He considers vicarious experience to be the typical way that human beings exchange with the world. He uses the term modeling to describe two processes of response acquisition, and he claims that modeling can have as much impact as direct experience.
Memory is a cognitive function, so Bandura’s theory moves beyond mere behaviorism. Like most communication theorists, he believes that the ability to use symbols sets humans apart from the limited stimulus-response world of animals. Bandura believes that humans interpret stimuli, as opposed to just responding to them. According to his Social Cognitive Theory, humans are agents who use symbols to help them understand the world. We are able to regulate and reflect on not only our own actions, but in a vicarious sense on the actions of others. Because access to the information is getting more convenient, we are increasingly likely to shape our thoughts around what we see through media. Bandura warns of negatives, the mass media’s “disinhibitory power.” It is possible that media effects allow for displacement and diffusion of responsibility for those who act antisocially.
Bandura stresses the influence of observational learning on their behaviors. Individuals may tailor their own behaviors based on representations of the media, which makes use of a symbolic environment outside of individuals’ immediate surroundings. People are influenced to adopt or reject behaviors and ways of thinking based on the rewards or punishments given to their models; this occurs after internalizing what has been observed. Modeling after the media allows reality to be distorted and previous values may be altered with more ease.
The article also illustrates the idea of multiple determinism, in that our environment (media specifically) shapes thinking, behaving and feeling. As individuals move through life, it is necessary for them to make a global model of the world to understand it.
Bandura’s article concludes that the mass media not only creates personal attributes but also can alter pre-existing ones based on exposure. Exposure plays a large role in the process of social learning theory. Evidence shows that social learning theory and one’s sense of self-efficacy predicts such diverse outcomes as alcohol abuse, smoking cessation, coping with feared events, and recovery from medical procedures. Television and film models, in particular, seem to exert a powerful impact. One major implication is that television is shaping people’s motivation and behavior on a daily basis. The social learning theorists have been especially concerned with it effects, more specifically with televised violence and use of alcohol and drugs effecting today’s youth.
Mayer & Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning
Mayer’s Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning is based on three core assumptions: first, humans posses separate information processing channels for visually represented material and auditory represented material. The information is then processed separately but concurrently in working memory. Eventually the information from both channels are integrated and connected to other information already held in long-term memory. Second, humans are limited in the amount of information that can be processed in each channel at one time. People who are listening to any presentation can only hold a few images and a few sounds in working memory at one time. Third, humans actively engage in cognitive processing to construct coherent mental representations of their experiences. Active learning occurs when we apply cognitive processes to the incoming material. The result of this processing is the creation of a mental model of the information presented.
The message to take away from Mayer is that we have the ability to be active participants in processing information. This can be achieved by organizing concepts, paying attention to selected information and integrating new information with pre-existing knowledge.
In a cognitive approach, integrating this information involves complex processes constrained by properties of the learner’s cognitive system, and especially by the capacity of working memory. They also suggest that the visual and the spatial components of visuospatial working memory should be considered separately. Finally, they emphasize the need to consider the limitations in cognitive resources available to the learner.
Mayer’s cognitive theory of multimedia learning stresses the importance of working memory and understanding that it is limited in the amount of knowledge it can process. Mayer goes on to show how multi-media learning occurs when the learner engages in five kinds of processes, which include selecting words and images, then organizing words and images, and finally integrating the two.
Sweller’s & Cognitive Load Theory
Cognitive Load: Is a term that refers to the load on working memory during instruction. This instruction may be aimed at teaching learners problem-solving skills, thinking and reasoning skills including perception, memory, language, etc., (Sweller, 1998).
Sweller’s theory of cognitive load suggests that learning happens best under conditions that are aligned with human cognitive architecture. He builds a theory that treats schemas, or combinations of elements, as the cognitive structures that make up an individual’s knowledge base. Sweller provides specific recommendations relative to the design of instructional material. These recommendations include: changing problem solving methods to avoid means-ends approaches that impose a heavy working memory load, by using goal-free problems or worked examples; eliminating the working memory load associated with having to mentally integrate several sources of information by physically integrating those sources of information; eliminating the working memory load associated with unnecessarily processing repetitive information by reducing redundancy; and increasing working memory capacity by using auditory as well as visual information under conditions where both sources of information are essential to understanding.
Bandura and Mayer’s research will be helpful as we discuss media throughout the semester. Keep them in mind from this point forward we analyze different types of media and in your general consumption. All will be relevant for your papers as supportive concepts.
Top Ten List of the Most Critical Factors That Influence Memory
- The self-reference effect
- The level of processing determines the amount of material remembered
- (Metcalfe & Kornell, 2007)
- (Anderson, 2005)
Best Way of Memorizing 15 words
TOP 4 MOST CRITICAL FACTORS THAT INFLUENCE MEMORY
4. Can you see it and read it?
The dual-code theory claimed that there are separate representations for visual and verbal information in the human mind (p. 108). Allan Paivio’s research (1971, 1986) demonstrated that human memory may be more effective if information is encoded in both image and text. The best way to memorize Chandler’s 15 word list may be to associate images with each word. This could also be a form of elaborative processing as the visual details may embellish each term with additional information (p. 194). Does the added sensory information of imagery help with your memory span or activation spreading?
<img src=”http://www.virgilwong.com/phd/tc/2009/summer/cognition-and-learning/week1/images/all.jpg” mce_src=”http://www.virgilwong.com/phd/tc/2009/summer/cognition-and-learning/week1/images/all.jpg” alt=”15 words” width=”510” height=”306” border=”0” />
3. Does it relate to you?
Per Gota’s post, the self-reference effect is quite evident; people’s memory seem to be better with information they regard as important to themselves. In addition to hanging up photos and writing down Chandler’s 15 words for memorization, as Gota suggested, it is also important to associate each object with something personal to you or a friend (Greenwald and Banjeri, 1989). You could think about a delicious chocolate chip cookie you shared with your best friend last week or how your cat loved to sip your beer during Monday night football games…
2. Can you visualize it in time and space?
Jennifer’s demonstration of the method of Loci was an outstanding example of using a fixed sequence of locations to cue her memory retrieval, as we read in the text. Does her picturesque and pleasant narrative also show effective incidental learning? Is there a large depth-of-processing involved in reading her text?
1. Are you traumatized by it?
Not to sound like a bad Stanley Milgram experiment, but a strong electrical shock following each word would indelibly etch Chandler’s words deep into the hippocampus. Unlike a vicarious viewing of tragic events on television, these true flashbulb memories will also likely be more accurate given your direct experience of the trauma (Palmer, Schreiber, and Fox, 1991).
Cognitive Science in Education
Cognition and Learning
Metcalfe, J., & Kornell, N. (2007). Principles of cognitive science in education: The effects of generation, errors and feedback. Psychonomic Bulletin and Review, 14, 225-229
Questions and Answers
- Background Research: The Bronx Project
- Questions That Arose from The Bronx Project
- Results and Discussion
- Follow-up Study and Implications
Human Memory: Encoding and Storage
Cognition and Learning
Chapter 6 from Cognitive Psychology and Its Implications, Sixth Edition by John R. Anderson; Publisher: Worth Publishers. Pub. Date: 2005 ISBN: 0716701103
This chapter focuses on the processes involved in getting information into memory.
Questions and Answers
How do specific functions of memory relate to certain parts of the brain?
The frontal structures of the brain process and create new memories, whereas the temporal structures (i.e. internal hippocampal regions) are needed for the storage of these memories.
What is sensory memory? How has it been studied? What are some discoveries related to sensory memory?
Sensory information is held briefly in cortical sensory memories so we can initially process it.
What was the theory of short-term memory?
Atkinson and Shiffrin’s theory of short-term memory postulated that as information is rehearsed in a limited-capacity short-term memory, it is deposited in long-term memory. But what turned out to be important was how deeply the material is processed.
What was the theory of working memory?
Psychologist A. Baddeley at the University of York proposed that we have an articulatory loop and a visuospatial sketchpad, both of which are controlled by a central executive.
What parts of the brain appear to be responsible for maintaining different types of information in working memory? How was this studied?
Different areas of the frontal cortex appear to be responsible for maintaining different types of information in working memory.
What determines the speed and probability of accessing a memory?
The speed and probability of accessing a memory are determined by the memory’s level of activation, which in turn is determined by its base-level activation and the activation it receives from associated concepts.
What is spreading activation?
Activation spreads from presented items through a network to memories related to that prime item.
What are the processes for getting information into memory?
What are some of the problems of retrieval?
What are some of the problems specific to elaborative processing?
What are the interactions between how a memory is processed at study versus at test?
What are the activation based retrieval processes facilitated by these processes?
- Sensory Memory
- A Theory of Short-Term Memory
- Working Memory
- Baddeley’s Theory of Working Memory
- The Frontal Cortex and Primate Working Memory
- Activation and Long-Term Memory
- An Example of Activation Calculations
- Spreading Activation
- Practice and Strength
- The Power Law of Learning
- Neural Correlates of the Power Law
- Factors Influencing Memory
- Elaborative Processing
- Techniques for Studying Textual Material
- Meaningful versus Nonmeaningful Elaborations
- The Method of Loci
- Incidental versus Intentional Learning
- Flashbulb Memories and the Self-Reference Effect
The Science of Cognition
Cognition and Learning
Chandler Seokmin Kang
Chapter 1 from Cognitive Psychology and Its Implications, Sixth Edition by John R. Anderson; Publisher: Worth Publishers. Pub. Date: 2005 ISBN: 0716701103
"Cognitive psychology is the science of how the mind is organized to produce intelligent thought" – and how that mind "is realized in the brain." (p. 2) This chapter discusses motivations for studying cognitive psychology, the history of the field, and how brain physiology relates to cognition.
Questions and Answers
Why do people study cognitive psychology?
People study cognitive psychology because “basic cognitive processes underlie great feats of intelligence such as scientific discovery.” (p. 3) Humans have an inherent desire to understand the natural world – including the fascinating and complex processes of our intelligence. The human mind far surpasses any technology today in terms of sophistication, intricacy, and adaptability. While artificial intelligence research has yet to replicate how people learn, reason, solve problems, and process languages, the replication of these functions does not seem to be a technological impossibility. The 1978 Nobel Prize winner, Herbert Simon, created computer programs that simulated thought processes behind major scientific discoveries. Ohm’s law for electric circuits, for example, was shown to involve “basic cognitive processes (that we study in cognitive psychology) operating together in complex ways to produce brilliant results.” (p. 3)
What are the implications of cognitive psychology for other fields?
Cognitive psychology can be a strong basis from which to better study and understand other fields in the social sciences. It could help answer questions in areas such as:
- Clinical Psychology - Why do certain thought malfunctions occur?
- Social Psychology - How do people behave in groups?
- Political Science - How are people persuaded one way or the other?
- Economics - How are economic decisions made?
- Sociology - Why are some ways of organizing groups more effective and stable than others?
- Linguistics - Why do natural languages have certain features?
What are some practical applications of cognitive psychology?
The result of studying cognitive psychology can improve intellectual performance.
What is the early history of cognitive psychology?
In the last 125 years, it has been realized that human cognition could be the subject of scientific study rather than just philosophical speculation.
What were particularly achievements by German psychologists at the turn of the 20th Century? German psychologists used introspection - a method of using highly trained observers to report on the content of their own consciousness – to study how the mind works.
What dominant concept was rejected by American psychologists in the second half of the 20th century? Why was this important? Behaviorism, the view that psychology should only be concerned with external behavior and not the inner workings of the mind, was rejected by American psychologists.
What was the cognitive revolution? What were the major causes for breaking away with behaviorism? Developments in information theory, AI, and linguistics triggered a departure from behaviorism.
What are information-processing analyses?
Information-processing analysis decomposes a cognitive task into a set of abstract information-processing steps.
What is cognitive neuroscience?
Cognitive neuroscience is the study of how cognition is realized in the brain.
What are neurons? What are their components? How do they work?
Neurons are cells that accumulate and transmit electrical activity.
How is information represented by neurons?
How is the brain organized?
What parts of the brain support which cognitive functions?
What is the important of topographic organization?
What methods are used in cognitive neuroscience? How are they used? What do they reveal?
What are unique benefits to fMRI in cognitive neuroscience?
- Early History of Psychology, Boring 1950
- Boden (1996) AU
- O’Nuallain, McKevitt, MacAogain (1977) consciousness and cognitive science
- Cognitive Neuroscience
- Cognitive Psychology
- Cognitive Science
- Journal of Experimental Psychology: General
- Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition
- Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance
- Journal of Memory and Cognition
- Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology
- Psychological Review
- Intellectual Curiosity
- Implications for Other Fields
- Practical Applications
- How to Study This Book
- The History of Cognitive Psychology
- Early History
- Psychology in Germany
- Psychology in America
- The Cognitive Revolution
- Information-Processing Analyses
- Cognitive Neurosciene
- The Brain and Cognition
- The Neuron
- Neural Representation of Information
- Organization of the Brain
- Localization of Function
- Topographic Organization
- Methods in Cognitive Neuroscience
- Using fMRI to Study Equation Solving
RYT Hospital-Dwayne Medical Center
Psychology of Media
Here’s the course description for my first class in the Cognitive Studies/Intelligent Technologies PhD program here at Columbia University.
"Covers psychological theories and research that relate to various media and what people learn directly and indirectly from them. Students explore the psychology behind media and its effects them, peers and the public at large. Our course will examine the internet, mobile media, video games and how learning and media go hand in hand to facilitate understanding and decision-making. You will be introduced to psychological theories and research, and the cognitive processes of media development."
Our first assignment includes readings, which I’ll summarize and analyze on this blog, as well as a brief introduction posted to the class site. Here’s what I wrote up: