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B.F. Skinner (1904-1990)
inventor, and social
• Skinner was interested in
Famous for the skinner box
& the teaching machine.
The term “operant conditioning”
originated by the behaviorist B. F.
Skinner, who believed that one should
focus on the external, observable causes
of behavior (rather than try to unpack the
internal thoughts and motivations)
Operant conditioning is a method of
learning that occurs through rewards and
punishments for behavior. Through operant
conditioning, an association is made between
a behavior and a consequence for that
Reinforcement in the Classroom
Student get a points after finishing assignment.
Student receive an award for writing short
An "A" on your well written paper.
By using symbols like smiley faces, 'Good
Work' stamps, stickers.
Student receive a sticker for wearing your ID to
Punishment in the Classroom
The teacher yells "stop talking!" in the middle of the
lecture to the class and all the other students glare at
Student's cell phone rings in class. Teacher takes a
student's cell phone away in class.
You receive a detention for being tardy to class.
When a child produces a desirable behavior and is
rewarded for doing so, that particular behavior will
Teachers can use this idea to use positive
reinforcement to encourage students to behave in
Encouraging words and rewards can help a student
establish better behavioral patterns.
The Teacher Should:
Give the learner immediate feedback.
Break down the task into smaller steps.
Repeat the directions as many times as
Work from the most simple to the most
Give positive reinforcement.