Behavioral Theories Summary - Essay Example

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It is well known that the behavior change of a person cannot be forced to show up but can be trimmed and shaped by application of expert and applicable recommendations when the person seeks for a piece of advice. As a piece of advice for Nick a 21-year old student wrestler at Cal Baptist College, I will apply three behavioral change theories that I will use in offering them advice regarding the ways they can obtain a positive change in his ambitions as a wrestler. With the knowledge that Nick needs to maintain a standard weight for him to fit in his wrestling group, I will dedicate most of my time in studying about the behavioral theories that apply to positive change.

Behavioral Theories

Social Cognitive Theory

In this theory, the ways Nick as my target demographic in a college environment exercises puts an influence on his environmental and personal factors and his self-efficacy. In the application of this theory, Nick will apply the sense of self-efficacy whenever he thinks of taking part in the exercise. I will use social cognitive theory in analyzing the behavior change in my demographic. For that case, I will implement the theory in stimulating the need to take part in the exercise plan as scheduled in the gym plant and everyday morning running training. As a projection for his benefit and personal goals in the participation of international competition.

For better and an effective change, Nick will be advised to observe his associates in the college and their personal goals for visiting the fitness club. He will enhance and change his reluctant nature to follow the schedule strictly by focusing the outcome of the training in view of fitness frenzy members who are their projection is always to achieve the best every day. The theory helps people to try new behaviors that may be challenging, but they just develop a mentality that they will make a real change of behavior.

Pros and cons of Social Cognitive Theory


Change comes as a result of the social environment (Schunk, 2012).

It involves many coaching, psychological coaching and ways of fear removal.

Focuses mostly on the learner in the manner that he or she needs to be a self-learner


It requires involvement of a lot of effort to achieve efficacy

Youths can choose wrong models as their suitable models

Self-Determination Theory

In this theory, an individual will be motivated to change their behavior by getting the motivation that comes from social connectedness in a social group. For that reason, they will be motivated to function and work effectively in the social group to gather his or her initiative. Motivation in participants who apply autonomy in their scheduled exercises get the high social support which offers them a high motivation that shapes their desire and participation in sports. Taking Nick as an example, the social support he obtains from his peers in the college helps him to realize the need for maintaining a constant exercise schedule. His reluctance ends because of social connectedness that boosts his self-determination. Also, self-determination theory is a contributing factor to both extrinsic and intrinsic motivation that is better than the dichotomy. Nick can apply self-determination theory by viewing the people in his college and their ambitions in life then he will be motivated to come up with a strategy to ensure that his success is upheld (Deci & Ryan, 2011).


Counter attacks the challenges hence enhancing long-term learning for development

It increases the interpersonal involvement

It enhances ones perfection development through reflecting


For the people who face evaluation, they tend to develop the sense of intrinsic demotivation.

People will tend to get bored whenever they think of an assessment program ahead of them (Deci & Ryan, 2011).

Transtheoretical Theory

The transtheoretical model helps an individual during exercise in developing a given behavior through strategic induction that are in the transtheoretical stages. For effective intervention, Nick needs to match the stages of transtheoretical change to produce his schedule for a high-level exercise (Prochaska, 2013). What are the stages of an effective change?

I. Precontemplation- if Nick does not exercise, then he will be in a stage of pre-contemplation, and he will be in a state where he does not intend to change his behavior despite his foreseen future as a wrestler.

II. At this stage, Nicks pre-contemplation behavior changes within six months after getting aware of the pros and cons of starting a change for the projection of his future. He will be helped to learn the health risks of starting and ending an exercise.

III. Preparation- in this stage, an individual is ready to start an action for a change in the immediate future. It involves making up a plan of action like joining the gym the way Nick has already made up his mind. He should apply the stage of behavior change to also think of consulting about the good measures of effective fitness frenzy club visits (Prochaska, 2013).

IV. The action is the fourth stage in which people follow their newly made modifications in life as a projection for an observable change. Actions characterize it through a follow-up of the preparation in stage three.

V. The fifth stage of behavior change is Maintenance. It involves making some specific modifications of ones lifestyle to avoid relapse. Nick must adjust his education, social, cultural and family culture to concentrate in his ambitions and projections for a change in exercise plans. Cons

The theory puts great ignorance on the social environment that change occurs.

There are no set criteria that can be used to determine a persons progress

No time frame is indicated

It does not address the biological environment, development and the social issues related to it


It tailors its constructs in an appropriate way for the readiness to start change.

An individuals sense of determination is readily applicable.



Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (2011). Self-determination theory. Handbook of theories of social psychology, 1, 416-433.

Prochaska, J. O. (2013). The transtheoretical model of behavior change. In Encyclopedia of behavioral medicine (pp. 1997-2000). Springer New York.

Schunk, D. H., & Usher, E. L. (2012). Social Cognitive Theory and. APA educational psychology handbook, 1.


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