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Chapter 9

Chapter 9 – Psychological Perspectives on Criminality.docx

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Sociology 2266A/B
Lisa Lyons

Chapter 9 – Psychological Perspectives on Criminality Social Learning Theory (pg 294)  Cognitive functioning is central to social learning theory  Role of modelling o A form of learning that occurs as a results of watching and imitating others o Individuals can learn new behaviours through direct experience or by observing the behaviours of others  Bandura suggested that aggressive behaviour can be learned from 3 sources 1. Family a. Children of parents who respond aggressively to problems will tend to use similar tactics b. Child abused kids will later become abusers 2. Subcultural influence (influence of social model and peers) a. Community that values fighting and aggressiveness 3. Symbolic modelling a. Violence on tv b. Positive relationship between viewing violence and aggressive behaviour i. Level of association is small ii. Decreases ones sensitivity towards acts of violence c. Child subjects shows less automatic reactivity to a scene of real life interpersonal aggression if they had first watched a violent scene from a tv show i. A measurement of the extent to which an indivudals physical organism reacts to external stimuli  Bandura also found that deterrence takes 2 forms o Direct  Punishment is used to discourage current transgressors of such activity in the future o Vicarious  Punishment serves as a general detterant to others  Bandura identifies 3 major sources of deterrence against criminal activity o Legal sanction  Legal consequences to transgressions o Social sanction  Reflect negative social consequences that criminal stigmatization can have for an individual o Self sanction  Moral standards  Most effective detterant Operant conditioning  Use of rewards and punishments to increase the probability or frequency of a given response  BF Skinner  the basic process by which an individual’s behaviour is shaped by reinforcement or by punishment  One way response can be learned is by shaping o Rewarding approximations of some target behaviour until the behaviour gradually progresses to the desired response  Behaviour learned through punishment  Main component in Akers social learning theory is differential reinforcement o Balance of rewards and punishments that govern behaviour o Reinforcement refers to any process that strengthen a behaviour while punishment is a process that weakens a behaviour  Group home provides reinforcing environment o Emphasis on family life and social skills o Achievment Place in Lawrence, Kansas o token economy system where points can be earned or lost  a behaviour therapy procedure based on operant learning principles, individuals are rewarded (reinforced) for positive or appropriate behaviour and are disciplined (punished) for negative or inappropriate behaviour Antisocial Perso
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