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PSYCH 261 (91)


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Deltcho Valtchanov

Learning and Memory Chapter 10 Conditioning *Classical Conditioning – learning procedure. *Unconditional Stimulus (US) – stimulus that produces a defensive or appetitive response. *Unconditional Response (UR) – response to the US. *Conditional Stimulus (CS) – stimulus, which when paired with the US during training, comes to elicit a learned response. *Conditional Response (CR) – response to the presentation of the CS. Classical Conditioning *Constant pairing of the CS and UCS eventually elicits the conditioned response (CR) in the absence of the unconditioned stimulus Little Albert John B Watson and fear conditioning Fear Conditioning (Little Albert) *Involves the circuitry of the amygdala Operant (instrumental) Conditioning *Stimulus-Response pairings (as opposed to stimulu-stimulus pairings) B.F. Skinner and Reinforcement Schedules Operant (instrumental) Conditioning *Reinforcing Stimulus – stimulus that follows a particular behavior and alters its frequency. *Positive reinforcement – administration of desired stimulus (e.g. food) *Negative reinforcement – removal of aversive stimulus (e.g. pain) *Punishing Stimulus – aversive stimulus that follows a particular behavior and thus makes the behavior become less frequent. *Basal Ganglia *Lesions of the basal ganglia disrupt instrumental conditioning without affecting other forms of learning. *BG important for feedback-based learning that involves integration of multiple experiences *Reinforcement *Ventral Tegmental Area (VTA) – dopaminergic projections to the mesolimbic and mesocortical systems are important for reinforcement. *Nucleus Accumbens – receives dopamine from VTA neurons and is involved in reinforcement and attention. *Functions of the Reinforcement System *Detect reinforcing stimuli. *Strengthen connections between neurons that detect the discriminative stimulus and neurons that produce instrumental response. Classical v.s. Operant conditioning *Classical conditioning *First described by Ivan Pavlov *Involves co-presentation of a neutral stimulus (e.g. Teddy bear) with a non-neutral stimulus (e.g., loud noise) *Focuses on automatic responses (e.g. fear, salivation) *Operant conditioning *First described by B.F. Skinner *Involves administration of a reinforcement or punishment after a behaviour *Can strengthen or weaken voluntary behaviours (e.g. turning left) *Can even if there’s a delay between behaviour and reward/punishment Hebbian Learning *Hebb Rule – cellular basis of learning involves strengthening of a synapse that is repeatedly active when the postsynaptic neuron fires. Synaptic Plasticity and Learning *LTP – long –term potentiation *Long-term increase in excitability of a neuron to a particular synaptic input (caused by repeated high-frequency activity of that input). *Population EPSP – evoked potential that represents EPSPs of a population of neurons. Synaptic Plasticity and Learning *Changes at the level of the synapse Synaptic Plasticity and Learning *Long-Term Depression (LTD) *LTD – long-term decrease in the excitability of a neuron to a particular synaptic input caused by stimulation of the terminal button while the postsynaptic membrane is hyperpolarized or only slightly depolarized. *May allow for reversal of learned patterns in response to changes in the environment Hippocampal Formation *Hippocampal Formation *Hippocampus, dentate gyrus, and subiculum. *Two pathways: *Perforant pathway A *Dentate gyrus (granule cells), CA3 via mossy fibers, CA1 via Schaffer collaterals *CA3 maintains recurrent collateral connections (feedback loop) *Perforant pathway B *Entorhinal cortex, CA1 Perceptual Learning *Pr
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