Learning an Introduction Organisation Behaviour Notes
Learning an Introduction Organisation Behaviour Notes :-
Learning An Introduction
Learning is one of the important psychological processes determining the human behaviour. The complex way in which the human beings behave is all learned. If we want to explain and predict behaviour, we need to understand how people learn. Learning is a continuous process. It occurs all the time. Learning is any relative permanent change in behaviour that occurs as a result of experience. We can say that changes in the behaviour indicate that the learning has taken place and that learning is a change in behaviour. As man grows older, this unused mental capacity will help him in adapting to changed conditions and circumstances. This unused mental capacity will be used with the help of learning. In fact, practically all human behaviour is either directly or indirectly affected by learning. Learning is an important concept in the study of human behaviour.
Concept Organisation Behaviour
In a layman’s view, “learnings is something we did when we went to school.” In reality, each of us is continuously going to school. Learning is occurring all the time. With every new experience, new event or new situation we learn something. But this concept of learning is purely theoretical. Learning is a change knowledge, skills and expertise which are relatively permanent. Temporary changes may be only reflexive and fail to represent any learning. If reinforcement does not accompany the practice or experience, the temporary changes in behaviour will eventually disappear. It si reinforcement which makes learning or change in behaviour. Early behaviourists like Watson and skinner have used learning as a relation or association between two types of incidents. Based on this concept, the principle of conditioning has been developed. However, many psychologists do not agree with this view and they have viewed learning as a relatively enduring change in behaviour. Learning is used in many context. A few important definitions of learning are given below:
According to T.R. Mitchell, “Learning is the process by which new behaviours are acquired. It is generally agreed that learning involves change in behaviours, practicing new behaviours, and establishing permanency in the change.”
According to E.R. Hilgard, “Learning is a relatively permanent change in behaviour that accurs as a result of a prior experience.”
According to W.Mc Gehee, “Learning has taken place if an individual behaves, reacts responds as a result of experience in a manner different from the way he formely behaved.”
Nature or Learning
- Change in behaviour : Learning involves a change in behaviour, thought this change is not necessarily an improvement over previous behaviour. The change in behaviour may be good or bad from an organization’s point of view although learning usually connotes improved behaviour. For example, bad habits like smoking prejudice and stereo type are often learned by individuals.
- Change in behaviour must be relatively permanent : To constitute learning, change should be relatively permanent. Temporary changes may be only reflective and fail to represent any learning. Any temporary adaptations are not covered in learning.
- Change must be based on some experience, practice or training : The behavioural change must be based on some form of practice, experience or training. Any change in behaviour due to physical maturation, any disease or physical damages do not constitute learning.
- Reinforcement : The practice or experience must be reinforced in order for learning to occur. If reinforcement does not accompany the practice or experience the behaviour will eventually disappear.
- Learning is reflected in behaviour : A change in an individual’s thought process or attitudes not accompanied by behaviour is not learning. Further learning needs to result in behaviour potentiality and not necessarily in the itself.
Theories of Learning
Learning, as discussed above, is the acquisition of new behaviour. People acquire new behaviour frequently. However, experts do not agree on what is the process through which new behaviour is acquired, and still there is disagreement on the theory behind it. This has resulted into the development of many theories of learning. Many of these theories are well-established while others are in the process of evolution. These theories can be grouped into three categories: conditioning theory also known as connectionist or behaviouristic theory, cognitive learning theory, and social learning theory.
Classical conditioning theory is the association of one event with another desired event resulting in behaviour. The most well known experiments on classical conditioning were conducted by lvan Pavlov, the Russian psychologist, who won the Noble Prize for his experiments on the subject. Palov conducted an experiment on dogs and tried to establish a stimulus-Response (S-R) connection. Conditioning is the process in which an ineffective object or situation becomes so much effective that it makes the hidden response apparent. In the absence of this stimulus, hidden response is a natural or normal response. Conditioning has two main theories: classical conditioning and operant conditioning.
Difference between classical and operant conditioning
- In classical conditioning, a change in the stimulus (unconditioned stimulus to the conditioned stimulus) will elicit a particular response. In operant conditioning one particular response out of many possible ones occurs in a given stimulus situation. The critical aspect of operant conditioning is what happens as a consequence of the response.
- In classical conditioning, behaviour is a result of stimulus either of first order or high order. In operant conditioning much possible behaviour can result in particular stimulus situation.
- During the classical conditioning process, the unconditioned stimulus serving as a reward is presented every time. In operant conditioning the reward is presented only if the organism gives the correct response. The organism must operate in the environment to receive the reward. The response in instrumental in obtaining the reward.
Implications of the theory
Cognitive theory of learning has number of implications. Most of the early human relation training programs were based on this concept. Various training programs were designed to strengthen the relationship between cognitive cues (organizational, supervisory and the job procedures) and worker expectation (incentive payments for good performance) cognitive learning is achieved by thinking about the perceived relationship between events and individual goals and expectations. Cognitive theory of learning assumes that the meaning assigned to stimuli. Cognitive theorists argue that the learner forms a cognitive structure in memory, which preserves and organizes information about the various events which occur a learning situation. Today, the cognitive theory is very much alive and relevant. In organizational behaviour the cognitive approach has been applied mainly to motivation theories.
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