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Lecture 3

Principles of Learning Lecture 3.doc

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PSYC 2330

Principles of Learning – Lecture 3 * Study lecture notes, & use textbook only to expand upon what is learned in lecture (e.g. graphs, studies, etc.) Goal-Directed Behaviours - Behaviour refers to a set of responses of organism, usually in relation to environmental stimuli (goals) - Two “sides”: Instinctual: genetically programmed bits of behaviour that occur when circumstances are appropriate, rigid, require no learning, may be species specific Learned: behaviours adapted to the environment, relatively flexible & open to modifications  Generally blends of the two (e.g. eating food is instinctual, but preference for food may be learned) Instinct Theories - Psychological (William James)  Instincts are motivators of behaviour. They are impulses coming from within the organism that lead to the initiation of behaviour (modesty, jealousy, shyness, & curiousity) - Fuel for your actions. - Ethology (Konrad Lorenz, Niko Tinbergen)  Instincts are behaviours. They exist because they have, or had, survival value. They are controlled by genes, & therefore not learned. However, instinctive behaviours differ in terms of degree of sensitivity to changes in the environment. - Appetitive: searching behaviours that are flexible, adapted to the environment, & subject to modification through learning (e.g. dog will do anything to get you to give it food). - Consummatory: least flexible – fixed patterns of responding to specific stimuli. These behaviours are rigid, insensitive to the environment, highly stereotyped & independent from learning. These behaviours are known as Fixed Action Patterns. (e.g. sneezing, crying)  All behaviours need a stimulus & some energy. Stimulus - Sign (key) stimuli: a kind of stimulus that will cause a stereotyped response, a clear object that activates the fixed action pattern.  EX. dog preying on deer (video) - Social releasers: when the object causing the stimulus is the same stimulus (LOOK UP IN TEXT)  EX. blind boy smiles, cries, frowns, etc. even though he has never seen those facial expressions.  EX. Yawning is a social releaser – someone yawns & it makes you yawn, because a yawn is a st
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