Consider the following two similar but different scenarios:

When Brian was on the way to work, he noticed someone crying on the sidewalk. Because during his childhood he saw his parents help in situations like this, he went over and helped that crying person.


When Brian was on the way to work, he noticed someone crying on the sidewalk. Because other people are rushing over to help, he copied the others and went over to help as well.

Would one be modelling and the other be mimicry? Or are they interchangable?

  • $\begingroup$ It would help if you grounded your question in some psychological theory of modeling or mimicry/imitation: where are these terms coming from? They are not likely to be used universally or to mean the same thing to different people in psychology, so what is the basis of knowledge that you are working from and trying to understand the similarities or differences between the concepts? $\endgroup$
    – Bryan Krause
    Commented Sep 15, 2023 at 20:59
  • $\begingroup$ I'm using modelling same as how AP Psychology uses it. I found this article tonyrobbins.com/stories/unleash-the-power/…. $\endgroup$
    – No Name
    Commented Sep 15, 2023 at 22:52
  • $\begingroup$ These sorts of self-help/life coaching/etc sources are not usually very good sources for psychology. As far as AP psychology... most people in the world have no idea what AP psychology is. $\endgroup$
    – Bryan Krause
    Commented Sep 15, 2023 at 22:55
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I disagree with @BryanKrause - I think within the context of Psych 101 (like an AP exam), the terms have default standard meanings (as used in behaviour or development psychology). If I had to choose in a multiple choice exam, then the 1st scenario is more likely to be interpreted as modelling than the 2nd, yes, though imitation assumes Brian is copying "blindly" (without understanding the meaning of the behaviour), which isn't clear. $\endgroup$
    – Arnon Weinberg
    Commented Sep 16, 2023 at 17:59


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