Learning & Teaching Foreign Languages

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Reflex Arc

1896

In early work at the University of Chicago, where Dewey was head of a philosophy department which included both psychology and pedagogy, he developed the concept of the reflex arc to explain early learning experiences such a child learning not to touch a flame.  While behaviourists accounted for such learning as a habit which the child develops in response to the pain experienced as a result of touching the burning stimulus, Dewey took a more inclusive view, taking prior experience, context and level of engagement or involvement into account.

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