Blending the world of Special Education with General Education
Constructivism vs Behaviorism
In Behaviorism, it focuses in one particular view of learning: a change in external behavior achieved through a large amount of repetition of desired actions, the reward of good habits and the discouragement of bad habits. In the classroom this view of learning led to a great deal of repetitive actions, praise for correct outcomes and immediate correction of mistakes. In the field of language learning this type of teaching was called the audio-lingual method, characterized by the whole class using choral chanting of key phrases, dialogues and immediate correction. Within the Problem Based Learning (PBL) environment, students may be encouraged to engage with the learning process and their peers within the group by positive reinforcement from a skilled facilitator to increase positive actions of engagement, contributions and questioning. Negative behaviors e.g. lack of engagement, negative contributions, could be minimized by the facilitator using negative reinforcement. Within the behaviorist view of learning, the "teacher" is the dominant person in the classroom and takes complete control, evaluation of learning comes from the teacher who decides what is right or wrong. The learner does not have any opportunity for evaluation or reflection within the learning process, they are simply told what is right or wrong. The conceptualization of learning using this approach could be considered "superficial" as the focus is on external changes in behavior i.e. not interested in the internal processes of learning leading to behavior change and has no place for the emotions In Constructivism, it explains how knowledge is constructed in the human being when information comes into contact with existing knowledge that had been developed by experiences. It has its roots in cognitive psychology and biology and an approach to education that lays emphasis on the ways knowledge is...
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