Social Learning Theory Vs Labeling Theory

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Two theories that can be compared are the Social Learning Theory and the Labeling Theory. When comparing these two theories we can use the juvenile crime of stealing to see how the theories are similar and different. The social learning theory basically states that crime like other behaviors is learned. The other theory, labeling states that certain things or children aren’t necessary deviant until society labels them as so. These two theories also have positives and negatives pertaining to how effective they are in the causes of juvenile delinquent behavior. First, the Social Learning theory is defined as when people or in this case juveniles learn from each other from either observation, imitation, or modeling. The version of this theory …show more content…

The labeling theory is based on society and how they effect the juvenile which has the impact on them to do more deviant acts and fall into the label. For example, if a child stole something from a store and everyone found out in the community they might call him a stealer and that would become their label. That label would then lead to the juvenile stealing more often. In contrast the social learning theory focuses on the juvenile themselves. The social learning theory is how oneself deals with the deviant traits they learn from watching others or imitating them. An example of this would be if a child saw one of his peers steal something they then would be more likely to do the same. In this theory if the juvenile commits more deviant acts it would be as a result of themselves furthering their learning as to where in the labeling theory it is enforced by …show more content…

How this would apply if a child stole would consist of the child receiving only a strict punishment for the act and that is all. Then as to where the social learning theory would focus more on what one could do to see how the juvenile became a criminal. This would apply if after the child stole someone talked to them and found out why they did it rather than punish them right away. This information could then be used to help the child stop doing the deviant acts that got them in trouble. The labeling theory would work to punish the juvenile for the criminal act instead of trying to find out as to why the individual did the crime. When looking at both these theories a certain similarity sticks out. Both the labeling theory and the social learning theory strive to give information on why deviant acts are committed by certain juveniles. They both also explain what the causes are of people and juveniles being labeled as criminals and how this can cause them to perform the same deviant acts. In conclusion, both the labeling theory along with the social learning theory can be used to provide an explanation for not only juveniles but all deviant behavior done by a person or

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