The 2007 Everett M. Rogers Award was awarded to Stanford psychologist Dr. Albert Bandura.
At the presentation on September 19, 2007, Bandura discussed his pioneering work in the area of social learning and social cognitive theory, including its direct influence on the design of the original entertainment-education telenovelas in Mexico, produced by Miguel Sabido, winner of the 2006 award.
Bandura, a professor and a psychologist, has become arguably best known for his work on social cognitive theory and on self-efficacy. Of the hundreds of studies that he conducted, his Bobo doll experiments of the early 1960s, were seminal in their influence on the field of entertainment-education.
Bandura introduced a large number of variations on the Bobo doll study that allowed him to establish that there were certain steps involved in the modeling – or observational learning – process. Importantly, Bandura’s experiments showed that audience members learn models of behavior as effectively from televised models as from ones in real-life. These principles of role modeling, derived from the Bobo doll experiments and articulated in Bandura’s social learning cognitive theory, were creatively employed at Televisa, the Mexican national television network, to produce seven entertainment-education telenovelas between 1975 and 1982. Data gathered by Mexico’s Adult Education System showed that between November 1975 and December 1976 (the period during which Ven Conmigo, the telenovela promoting adult literacy was broadcast), 839,943 illiterates enrolled in adult literacy classes in Mexico.