19 Dec 2022


Behaviorism in the Classroom: What It Is and How to Use It

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Discipline in classroom setup is paramount for students’ success, and development and the majority of teachers demand that from their students. To students, however, discipline might appear as a way of punishment as opposed to seeing it as a way of demanding the best out of them. As a way of trying to find the best methods to teach, many methods have been brought up by different scholars. Operant conditioning is a technique which has gained its place among the teaching fraternity and psychologists as a way that helps teachers learn the behavior of their students and get the best out of them. It is made up of two main concepts which include reinforcement and punishment. While reinforcement is mainly concerned with making the behavior more likely to be repeated in future, punishment, on the other hand, is concerned with weakening the response for stimuli. There is positive and negative reinforcement. They strengthen and remove stimulus respectively. Punishment, on the other hand, weakens response by delivering an aversive stimulus (Kauchak, 2016)

In the video, reinforcement is evident; there is positive and negative reinforcement. Positive reinforcement strengthens a behavior by adding pleasant stimulus and has been used as a classroom management tool. An example of such is rewarding a student after performing well in class. Negative reinforcement, on the other hand, involves the removal of unpleasant stimulus from the students. Telling the student to sit quietly while the teacher collects the tests or risk having lunch 5 minutes later is an example of an aversive stimulus. 

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Reinforcements are essential for learning among students. As a way of evoking responses from the students and providing reinforcements, contracts, behavior modification, and consequences are some of the methods used by teachers in classrooms. All these strategies are examples of behaviorist instructional strategies applied in a classroom to enhance the understanding among students and enables teachers to address their attitudes (teach-nology.com, 2017)



Kauchak, D. &. (2016). Introduction to Teaching: Becoming a Professional. Pearson. 

teach-nology.com. (2017, 3 5). operantcond.html . Retrieved from http://www.teach-nology.com: http://www.teach-nology.com/tutorials/teaching/operantcond.html 

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StudyBounty. (2023, September 17). Behaviorism in the Classroom: What It Is and How to Use It.


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