Ethical Issues in Observational Learning Term Paper by Nicky

A look at some ethical concerns from a psychological experiment.
# 150089 | 840 words | 2 sources | APA | 2012 | US

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This paper describes an experiment, known as the "Bobo Experiment",and some ethical concerns that arose because of it. First the paper describes the experiment and the control group, which involved children observing violent behavior by adults toward a doll. Then, it presents the result. Next, the paper addresses some ethical concerns regarding the children that participated in the study. In particular, the paper notes that observation and learning can lead to behavioral changes, and this makes it unethical to engage in any further experiments with subjects that are unable to give informed consent.

From the Paper:

"One such investigation was the Bobo Experiment conducted by Albert Bandura. After witnessing adult models aggressively beating, sitting on, and throwing an inflated doll, children were then presented with the same toys that were in the room during the model's aggressive behavior (Isom 1998). Other children were presented with the same toys, but had not witnessed the aggressive behavior of an adult model. In the experiment, children who witnessed the aggressive behavior were almost all equally aggressive towards the Bobo doll as the models. (Isom 1998). Bandura, and many others since, have interpreted the results of this experiment as evidence of social or observational learning, asserting that aggressive behavior is something that children learn by witnessing it. According to the theory, this makes them believe that the behavior is acceptable and therefore something that they themselves may act out."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Isom, M. (1998). "Albert Bandura: The social learning theory." Florida State University. Accessed 29 August 2009.
  • Van Wagner, K. (2009). "Social learning theory." Accessed 29 August 2009.

Cite this Term Paper:

APA Format

Ethical Issues in Observational Learning (2012, January 25) Retrieved January 25, 2021, from

MLA Format

"Ethical Issues in Observational Learning" 25 January 2012. Web. 25 January. 2021. <>