The learning theory of Thorndike (connectionism) represents the original Stimulus –
Response [S-R] connectionism: Learning is the result of associations formed between stimuli
and responses. Habits are formed as a result of such S-R associations.
What are the educational implications of this theory?
1. The law of exercise emphasizes practice in learning. The educational strategies need
to focus on drill, repetition, review.
2. The law of effect expects that the child is given due motivation and recognition.
Distribute the questions throughout the class. Listen and reinforce the answers.
Encourage peer to peer interaction.
3. The law of readiness emphasizes the need to let the child be ready for the experience.
4.The law of effect which underlies the use of incentives and systems of reward and
punishments has proved to be the most significant contribution to the theory of learning.
To know more about this theory and other theories of learning, read the book From chalk to Talk The Art of Teaching chapter 2.