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Albert Bandura

Born: 4-Dec-1925
Birthplace: Mundare, Alberta, Canada

Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Psychologist
Party Affiliation: Democratic

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Bobo doll experiments

Psychologist Albert Bandura developed the concept of reciprocal determinism to help explain aggression in adolescents. Reciprocal determinism suggests that in addition to the effect of a child's environment on behavior, a child's behavior also alters his/her environment, thus forming a loop wherein behavior — good or bad — is reinforced. Bandura’s Social Learning Theory builds on both behaviorist and cognitive learning theories, and posits that, through imitation, modeling, and observation, people learn their behaviors from one another. He has also advanced the concept of personality developing as an interaction of behavior, environment, and a person’s psychological processes.

His landmark experiments, first conducted in 1961, are the so-called "bobo doll studies." Bandura allowed some children at a daycare center to witness an adult hitting a small, inflatable doll decorated with human or clown imagery (called a bobo doll), while other children were not exposed to this play-violence. Children who witnessed aggression toward the bobo doll were more likely to be aggressive in their own behavior, both physically and verbally, than children who did not witness the aggression. Many experts have maintained that this demonstrably establishes that aggressive behaviors are learned through observation.

Wife: Virginia Varns (nursing instructor, m. 1952, two daughters)
Daughter: Mary (b. 1954)
Daughter: Carol (b. 1958)

    High School: Mundare Public School, Mundare, Alberta, Canada (1943)
    University: BS Psychology, University of British Columbia (1949)
    University: MA Psychology, University of Iowa (1951)
    University: PhD Psychology, University of Iowa (1952)
    Scholar: Wichita Child Guidance Center, Wichita, KS (1952-53)
    Teacher: Psychology, Stanford University (1953-64)
    Professor: Psychology, Stanford University (1964-)

    APS William James Award 1989
    APA E. L. Thorndike Award 1999
    American Academy of Arts and Sciences 1980
    American Psychological Association President (1973)
    Association for Psychological Science
    Canadian Psychological Association
    Institute of Medicine 1989
    International Union of Psychological Sciences
    Psi Chi Honor Society
    Society for Research in Child Development
    Western Psychological Association President (1980)
    Democratic National Committee
    Naturalized US Citizen
    Canadian Ancestry
    Polish Ancestry Paternal
    Ukrainian Ancestry Maternal

Author of books:
Adolescent Aggression (1959, non-fiction; with Richard Walters)
Social Learning and Personality Development (1963, non-fiction; with Richard Walters)
Principles of Behavior Modification (1969, non-fiction)
Psychological Modeling: Conflicting Theories (1971, non-fiction)
Aggression: Social Learning Analysis (1973, non-fiction)
Social Learning Theory (1977, non-fiction)
Social Foundations of Thought and Action: A Social Cognitive Theory (1986, non-fiction)
Self-Efficacy in Changing Societies (1995, non-fiction)
Self-Efficacy: The Exercise of Control (1997, non-fiction)


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