Social cognitive theory (SCT) is a psychological model of behavior that asserts that learning occurs through observation within a social context. According to SCT, people observe the behaviors of others and the resulting consequences and use those observations to inform their own behaviors. The theory emerged largely from the work of Albert Bandura. According to Bandura, SCT is founded on reciprocal triadic relations among personal, behavioral, and environmental factors. The major theoretical components of SCT include modeling, outcome expectations, self-efficacy, goal setting, and self-regulation. SCT has been applied to a variety of disciplines such as psychology, education, business, and health communication. Within education, SCT has been used to understand classroom learning, student motivation, and academic achievement. This entry describes the history of SCT, its core ...
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