Reinforcement is the crucial factor in the learning process. This is also known as the method of shaping employees' behaviour. Perception becomes learning only through reinforcement.
Perception = Stimuli Attention Recognition Translation Behaviour
Learning = Stimuli Attention Recognition Translation Reinforcement
Reinforcement is the repeated use of the translated stimuli to induce new behaviour. It increases the strength of response and induces repetitions of the response, which is the outcome of the translated and evaluated stimuli. When reward is attached to behaviour, it becomes a habit. Reinforcement increases the possibility of specific responses occurring in future as a result of evaluated stimulior uses.
Learning = Input Process Output
= Stimuli Reinforcement Behaviour
Reinforcement is (he instrument or process of learning in all the models discussed already. No stimuli can take the shape of behaviour unless reinforcement or repetition takes place during the learning process. A learner of car driving learns until such time
it becomes a part of the total habits of the learner. The behaviour i.e. learning car driving becomes a habit because the learner gets rewarded for his behaviour in the form of the satisfaction of car driving. Reinforcement is the repeated exposure of knowledge for translation into practice and habit. New behaviour or change in behaviour is the output of learning, which is the outcome of stimuli input through reinforcement. Classical, operant and social learning models lay emphasis on reinforcement. Reinforcement is another term for conditioning. The stimuli, response and social activities are conditioned to arrive at a new behaviour or change in behaviour. Behaviourists have proposed conditioning of employees for proper behaviour. Repetition, adherence, stimulus, generalisation or discrimination, converting theory into practice is various forms of reinforcement. A habit is formed through repeated rewards attached to behaviour. While conditioning explains how employees learn from cues or stimuli, operant (instrumental) conditioning refers to response or goal directed activities. Social conditioning is concerned with social recognition and acceptability. Employees learn in this case through modeling various observation or self-understanding. Reinforcement is a cognitive process. The stimuli are translated into habit through an effective, cognitive and behaviour process.
Reinforcement, being cognitive in nature, is environmentally based. The law of effect is used in reinforcement for getting the reward. Goal-oriented reinforcement is long lasting and increases the strength of response.