Ability and Learning

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Ability And Learning

Ability refers to an individuals capacity to perform the various tasks in a job. It is a current assessment of what one can do. An individuals overall abilities are essentially made up of two sets of factors:1. Intellectual abilities 2. Physical abilities

Dimensions of Intellectual AbilityNumber aptitude Number aptitude Verbal comprehension Verbal comprehension Perceptual speed Perceptual speed Inductive reasoning Inductive reasoning Deductive reasoning Deductive reasoning Spatial visualization Spatial visualization Memory Memory

Intellectual abilitiesDimensionsNumber Aptitude Verbal comprehension Perceptual speed

DescriptionsAbility to do seedy and accurate arithmetic Ability to understand what is read or heard Ability to identify visual similarities & differences quickly. Ability to identify logical sequence in a problem Ability to use logic Ability to imagine hoe an object would look if its position in space were changed Ability to retain and recall

Job exampleAccountant Manager Fire investigator

Inductive reasoning Deductive reasoning Spatial visualization

Market researcher Supervisor Interior decorator



Physical AbilitiesIt is the capacity to do tasks demanding stamina, dexterity, strength, and similar characteristics. Strength factor Dynamic strength Trunk strength Static strength Explosive

Nine Physical AbilitiesStrength Factors1. Dynamic strength 2. Trunk strength 3. Static strength 4. Explosive strength

Flexibility Factors5. Extent flexibility 6. Dynamic flexibility

Other Factors7. Body coordination 8. Balance 9. Stamina

E X H I B I T 22

The Ability-Job FitThe main concern of OB is with explaining and predicting the behaviour of people at work. we all know that jobs make different demands on people and that people differ in the abilities they possess. Therefore, employee performance is enhanced when there is a high ability-job fit.

The Ability-Job Fit

Employees Abilities

Ability-Job Fit

Jobs Ability Requirements

The specific intellectual or physical abilities required for adequate job performance depend on the ability requirements of the job. For example airline pilot needs strong spatial-visualization abilities; beach lifeguards need spatialvisualization and body co-ordination. Directing attention to only the employees abilities or only the ability requirements of the job ignores the fact that employee performance depends on the interaction of the two.

What predictions can we make when the fit is poor? If the employees lack the abilities, they are likely to fail. If you are hired as a word processor and you cannot meet the jobs basic keyboard typing requirements, your performance is going to be poor irrespective of your positive attitude or your high level of motivation. When the ability-job fit is because the employee has abilities that far exceed the requirements of the job, the predictions would be totally different.

In this situation the job performance is likely to be adequate, but there will be organizational inefficiencies and possible decline in the job satisfaction. Given that pay tends to reflect the highest skill level that employees possess, if an employees ability far exceed those necessary to do the job, management will be paying more than it needs to. Abilities significant above those required can also reduce the employees job satisfaction when the employees desire to use his or her abilities is particularly strong and is frustrated by the limitations of the job.

LearningLearning is any relatively permanent change in behaviour that occurs as a result of experience. The various components that deserve clarification are:1. It involves change. 2. Change can be good or bad for the organization. 3. Change must be relatively permanent. 4. Learning takes place when there is a change in actions i.e. behaviour. 5. Some form of experience is necessary for learning.

The Learning ProcessShaping Shaping


Law of Effect Law of Effect


Modeling Modeling

Theories Of Learning Classical Conditioning Operant Conditioning Social Learning Cognitive Learning

Classical Conditioning Given by Ivan Pavlov who was a physiologist. He conducted an experiment on dog to measure the relation between the amount of food presented and the amount of salivation. According to this theory a cause-andeffect relationship is established between one stimulus and a response. It tells us that we tend form a relation between various stimulus's.

UCS (Meat)

UCR (salivation)

CS (Bell)


UCS (Meat)

UCR (Salivation)

CS (Bell)

CR (Salivation)

Factors Influencing Classical Conditioning The number of paring of the conditioned stimulus and the unconditional stimulus. Greater the number of paring stronger is the response. Intensity of the UCS. The time gap between CS and UCS. Conditioning will take place only when CS is followed by UCS.

Limitations Humans are more complex than dogs Behavioral environment in the organizational is complex in nature Human decision making being complex in nature makes it possible to override simple conditioning.

Operant Conditioning This theory was given by B.F.Skinner after conducting exp on a cat, pigeon etc It argues that behaviour is a function of its consequences. People learn to behave to get some thing they want or some thing they dont want. Operant behaviour means voluntary or learned behaviour. The tendency to repeat such behaviour is influenced by the reinforcement or lack of it. Therefore it is also known as reinforcement theory.

It is also called instrumental conditioning because the subject is instrumental in bringing abut the consequence. The behaviour that results in positive rewards tends to be repeated and that with negative result not to be repeated. Thus behaviour can be controlled by manipulating its consequences.

Cognitive Learning Theory Cognition refers to individuals ideas, thoughts, knowledge, interpretation and understanding about the individuals and environment. Cognition focuses on an unobservable change in mental knowledge. Cognitive learning is learning achieved by thinking about the perceived relationship between events and individual goals and expectations.

Assumptions Of Cognitive Theory Some learning processes may be unique to human beings. Cognitive processes are the focus of study. Individuals are actively involved in the learning process. Learning involves the formation of mental associations that are not necessarily reflected in overt behaviour changes. Learning is a process of relating new information to previously learned information. Knowledge is organized.

Social Learning Theory It focuses on the learning that occurs within a social context. It considers how people learn from one another, involving such concepts as observational learning. Imitation and modeling. According to Bandura, modeling is done by observing others behaviour through reinforcement, environment and the interactions with the world and society.

Principles Of Social Learning Theory People can learn by observing the behaviors of others and the outcomes of those behaviors. Learning can occur without a change in behavior. The consequences of behavior play a role in learning. Cognition plays a role in learning.

Four Process While Modeling1. Attention process (recognize and pay attention) 2. Retention process (how well he remembers the model) 3. Motor reproduction process (watching must be converted to doing) 4. Reinforcement process (positive incentives)





Motor Reproduction Reinforcement


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