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Updated by Sam Burrough on Jul 11, 2015
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Sam Burrough Sam Burrough
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Social Learning Theories - the basics

Few of us have time or inclination to read up on the theories behind social learning, yet we are quick to adopt new ideas. If we don't understand the thinking we may sleep walk into another "Learning Styles" catastrophe. Two of the most respected bloggers in our field took the time to introduce and criticise a long list of theorists. This list covers Dewey, Vygotsky, Bruner, Bandura & Siemens. Two different perspectives and lots more links to follow in each post for more information.
Learning with 'e's: Dewey
Experiential learning
Donald Clark on Dewey
Did you know that Dewy headed up the commission that investigated Trotsky in Mexico? John Dewey, like Socrates, was a philosopher first and educational theorist second, and like Socrates, his progressive educational theory has been simplified to the level of caricature. It is often assumed that he favoured an extreme version of discovery learning.
Donald Clark on Vygotsky
Lev Vygotsky, the Russian psychologist, died young at 37 in 1934, but is as influential as any living educational psychologist. In ' Thought and Language' and ' Mind in Society', along with several other texts, he presents a psychology rooted in Marxist social theory and dialectical materialism.
Donald Clark on Bruner and scaffolding
Jerome Bruner, a key player in the US Head Start initiative, has long been in favour of educational reform. The Process of Education (1960) laid out his general views on the subject, Bruner is still an active writer and The Culture of Education (1997) makes an appeal for a broad based culture of learning beyond the narrow confines of traditional schooling.
Donald Clark on Bandura
Albert Bandura is a Canadian psychologist who marked a sea-change in psychology, towards cognitive investigation. Although steeped in, and influenced by, behaviourism, his theories transcend traditional behaviourism into what was called 'Social Learning Theory', although he now calls it 'Social Cognitive Theory. The dropping of the word 'learning' is significant.
Donald Clark Plan B - Connectivism
So George Siemens has lost interest in social media as "there is no there there " (plagiarising Gertrude Stein). Now I'm not an uncritical zealot when it comes to social media and have spoken out against the hype, but to claim there's no substance at all to social media is wrong.
Learning Theory v5 - What are the established learning theories?
Fantastic map of established Learning Theory