Albert Bandura is a renowned psychologist who developed the social learning theory. This theory suggests that individuals learn by observing and imitating the behavior of others around them. In this article, we will discuss an example of Bandura’s social learning theory.

Bobo Doll Experiment

One of the most famous examples of Bandura’s social learning theory is the Bobo doll experiment. This experiment was conducted by Bandura himself in 1961, and it involved children watching an adult interact with a Bobo doll, which is a large inflatable doll with a weight at the bottom that makes it bounce back when knocked down.

The Experiment

In this experiment, Bandura divided children into three groups. The first group watched an adult play aggressively with the Bobo doll. The second group watched an adult play affectionately with the doll, while the third group did not watch any interaction with the doll.

After watching the interaction, each child was placed in a room with various toys, including the Bobo doll. The researchers observed how each child played with the toys.

The Results

The results were fascinating. Children who had watched aggressive behavior towards the Bobo doll were more likely to replicate that behavior by punching and kicking it. On the other hand, children who had watched affectionate behavior towards the Bobo doll were less likely to act aggressively towards it.

The study concluded that children learn from their environment and are more likely to imitate behavior they observe around them. This study cemented Bandura’s social learning theory and showcased how easily children can pick up behaviors from their surroundings.


Bandura’s social learning theory is still relevant today in understanding how individuals learn from their environment. The Bobo doll experiment remains a classic example of this theory in action as it demonstrated how easily children can pick up aggressive or non-aggressive behaviors from their surroundings.

By understanding the social learning theory, we can be more mindful of the behaviors we display in our own environments and how they may influence those around us. This knowledge is useful in creating a positive and nurturing environment for ourselves and those around us.