We will write a custom Essay on Technology Changing Human Behavior: Theory & Practice specifically for you
301 certified writers online
The two videos “Piano Stairs” and “The World’s Deepest Bin” can be seen as examples of classical conditioning. Thus, people’s behavior is shaped with the help of certain stimuli (Harasim 33). In this case, the stimuli are sounds. People find it more interesting to use stairs when music is produced. They also have fun when they put rubbish in a funny rubbish bin. The experiments are aimed at changing people’s behaviors to healthier or more socially accepted ones. Interestingly, people choose the behavior taught with pleasure as the technology provides the stimuli that encourage people to change.
Similar experiments can be held in the workplace setting. For example, many employers try to encourage employees who smoke to quit this bad habit. There are various programs and plans. It is possible to equip the areas for smoking with certain sensors. Thus, when there is somebody in the room, some unpleasant music or sounds should play (too loud, too creepy, and so on). People will soon try to avoid the area and will quit smoking (at least, at work). Of course, it is important to make sure that there are smoke sensors across the premises. It is also necessary to introduce larger fines for smoking in non-smoking areas. This classical conditioning could work.
Of course, to make the effect lasting, the music should be there for a long period. At least, the experiment will have to continue for three or four months. Operant conditioning may be required. For example, some researchers stress that external rewards have a significant impact on shaping people’s behavior (Deci 105). It is also important to encourage employees to be in the office rather than in the smoking areas. Praise or even some small rewards can be given to those who quit smoking at work.
As for the classroom environment, classical conditioning can also be used. There is often a problem that students do not pay attention to materials displayed by the teacher. To shape this undesirable behavior, it is possible to equip a room with a monitor that traces the movements of students. There are such technologies. For example, there is an application that traces the smile of a person and takes a photo of a smiling person only.
The monitor should also divide the class into squares where each student is a square. Those who watch the video (slides, look at the board, and so on) will be depicted as green squares and those who look at another thing will be depicted as red squares. Of course, all students will want to be (or, at least, seem) good students and will have to look at the necessary thing. Again, if to take into account the ideas of some researchers, this behavior can be prolonged with the help of rewards. Operant conditioning can make the necessary behavior a norm. Students may be praised for paying attention and they can even get good marks or additional points.
In conclusion, it is possible to note that the use of technology for shaping behaviors is an effective strategy. Classical conditioning can be very efficient. At the same time, it is important to remember that operant conditioning can be used to make the desired behavior a norm. Thus, the use of certain stimuli is beneficial for shaping behavior. However, to make people behave in a certain way for a long time, it will be necessary to add a reward or even punishment.
Deci, Edward L. “Effects of Externally Mediated Rewards on Intrinsic Motivation.” Journal of personality and Social Psychology 18.1 (1971): 105-115. Print.
Harasim, Linda. Learning Theory and Online Technologies. New York, NY: Routledge, 2012. Print.
“Piano Stairs.” YouTube, uploaded by Rolighetsteorin. 2009. Web.
“The World’s Deepest Bin.” YouTube, uploaded by Rolighetsteorin. 2009. Web.