Who Developed Social Cognitive Theory Quizlet?


Vincent White

When it comes to understanding the origins of the Social Cognitive Theory, it is important to acknowledge the contributions of its developer, Albert Bandura. This groundbreaking theory has had a significant impact on the fields of psychology, education, and communication.

Albert Bandura: The Mind Behind Social Cognitive Theory

Albert Bandura, born in 1925 in Mundare, Alberta, Canada, is a renowned psychologist who has made substantial contributions to the field. He is widely recognized for his development of the Social Cognitive Theory and his groundbreaking research on observational learning.

The Development of Social Cognitive Theory

Social Cognitive Theory (SCT) emerged from Bandura’s dissatisfaction with traditional behaviorist theories that focused solely on external factors to explain human behavior. Bandura believed that people are not just passive recipients of environmental influences; rather, they actively engage with their environment and learn by observing others.

Observational Learning:

At the core of SCT lies the concept of observational learning or modeling. Bandura argued that individuals acquire new behaviors by observing others and imitating their actions. This process involves four key steps: attention, retention, reproduction, and motivation.

  • Attention: In order to learn from observation, individuals must pay attention to the model’s behavior.
  • Retention: After observing a behavior, individuals need to retain it in their memory for later use.
  • Reproduction: Once a behavior is stored in memory, individuals can reproduce it when necessary.
  • Motivation: Motivation plays a crucial role in determining whether an individual will reproduce an observed behavior or not.


Another key concept within SCT is self-efficacy, which refers to an individual’s belief in their ability to successfully perform a specific behavior. Bandura argued that self-efficacy influences an individual’s motivation, effort, and persistence when facing challenges.

The Impact of Social Cognitive Theory

Bandura’s Social Cognitive Theory has had a profound impact on various fields, including psychology, education, and communication. This theory has provided valuable insights into human behavior and learning processes.

In the field of education, SCT has influenced instructional design by emphasizing the importance of modeling and providing opportunities for observational learning. Teachers can create effective learning environments by presenting positive role models and allowing students to observe and imitate desirable behaviors.

In the realm of psychology, SCT has expanded our understanding of personality development, motivation, and the acquisition of new behaviors. It has also influenced therapeutic approaches by highlighting the role of modeling in behavior change.

Furthermore, SCT has had implications for communication studies. Bandura’s theory underscores the influence of media on individuals’ behavior and attitudes. Understanding how people learn from observing media representations has become increasingly relevant in today’s digital age.


In conclusion, Albert Bandura is the brilliant psychologist behind the development of Social Cognitive Theory. Through his groundbreaking work on observational learning and self-efficacy, Bandura has revolutionized our understanding of human behavior. The Social Cognitive Theory continues to be widely recognized for its practical applications in fields such as education, psychology, and communication.