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Lecture 17

PSYA01H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 17: Drools, Behaviorism, Habituation

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Steve Joordens

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Lecture 17: Learning: Habituation and Classical Conditioning
- A theory is we are born a blank state, how do experiences change us and allow us to learn and
-the focus is on process of learning, personal evolution
-another reaction to Freud, many were horrified with how Freud brought psychology to the pop
clinical world, and many psychologists turned their attention to another side of psychology (eg.
Gesult psychology in Europe); in North America, behaviorism emerged
-before, subjective topics like consciousness, perception, etc. were not studied in psychology
-what was really focused is the presentation of a stimuli and the response of an organism to it
(S-R (stimulus- response) psychology)
-1940s/50s/60s focused on behaviorism
-our system has some hard-wired responses to certain stimuli
-however, much of our behaviour goes beyond what is hard-wired into us
-unconditioned response: unlearned response
-unconditioned stimulus: unlearned stimulus
-what is really unlearned is the connection between the stimulus and response
-e.g. digestive processes are initiated once you put something in the mouth, it is a automatic
response (unconditioned stimulus is the food, the bodily response is the unconditioned
-e.g. when something flies towards our face, we fall into a defensive stance and the
sympathetic system will take control
-e.g. if there are unusual sounds that are unfamiliar, we get into the fight and flight mode
-if we have some existing unconditioned stimulus and unconditioned response, and the
unconditioned response is always unwarranted/up to the point in which there is no payoff for
the response, then it goes away (habituation)
-e.g. if some animal gets exposed to their reflection long enough, they will stop reacting to it
-habituation: when a stimulus yields a response repeatedly until the organism realize there is
no good/bad result from it
-a link that we were born with may become useless over time with habituation
-the weakening of a stimulus response mapping
-Ivan Palov is experimenter whose original experiment with dogs did not work out, but he
realized the reaso they ere’t orkig is ore iterestig
-he origially ished to collected the dog’s salia to easure the actiity of the digestie
system, while he changes the amount of food given to the dogs
-the problem with his original experiment is that as soon as the experimenter started to
prepare the food, the dog started to drool
-Palov realized that the dogs are responded in advance and is learning the cues
-Palov had prepared a experimental procedure, learning, where the dogs will be faced with a
stimulus (food) it may response with drooling, and the researcher gets the food when the bell is
-eventually, the dog drools when the bell is rung
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