Chapter 7 Learning And Adaptation.docx

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Anatomy and Cell Biology
Anatomy and Cell Biology 2221
Doug Hazlewood

Chapter 7 Learning And Adaptation: The Role Of Experience Aviphobia- fear of flying Learning- is a process by which experience produces a relatively enduring change in organisms behavior or capabilities. Capabilities- highlights a distinction made by many theorists: knowing how, or learning versus doing, or performance. In science we must measure learning by actual changes in performance Habituation and sensation- involves a change in behavior that results from repeated exposure to a single stimulus Classical conditioning- occurs when 2 stimuli become associated with each other. Operant conditioning- we learn to associate our responses with specific consequences Observational learning- we learn watching others Adapting To The Environment We can view learning as a process of personal adaptation to the ever changing circumstances to our lives How Do We Learn? The Search For Mechanisms Behaviorists focused on how organisms learn, examining the processes by which experience influences behavior Behaviorists treated the organisms as a tabula rasa or blank tablet upon which learning experiences were inscribed The concept of learning calls attention to the importance of adapting to the environment Evolution focuses on species adaption across many generations, learning represents a process of personal adaptation Not all learned behavior is adaptive The emergence of the cognitive perspective an interest in biological factors and the emergence of cross-cultural psychology also have expanded our understanding of learning. Habituation And Sensation Habituation- is a decrease in the strength of response to a repeated stimulus. Habituation plays a key role in adaptive function Sensory adaptation refers to a decreased sensory response to a continuously present stimuli Habitual occurs in the central nervous system Sensitization= is an increase in the strength of response to a repeated stimulus Classical Conditioning: Associating Classical Conditioning- an organism learns to associate 2 stimuli such that one stimulus comes to produce a response that originally was produced only by the other stimulus Classical conditioning involves learning an association between stimuli Pavlovs Pioneering Research Classical or Pvlovian conditioning Alerts organisms to stimuli that signal the impending arrival of an important event Is saliva can be conditioned so can other body parts Basic Principles: Acquisition Refers to period during which a response is being learned Neutral Stimulus- does not trigger the response Reflexive- doing by nature Unconditional Stimulus (UCS)- no learning required Unconditional response (UCR)- learning Learning trial- each paring is called this Forward short delay pairing- learning occurs faster Typically, presenting the CS and UCS at the same time (simultaneous pairing) produces less rapid conditioning and learning is slowest or does not occur at all. When the CS is presented after the UCS (backward pairing) Classical conditioning is strongest when there are repeated CS-UCS pairings, the UCS is more intense, the sequence involves forward pairing and the time interval between the CS and UCS is short Extinction and Spontaneous Recovery If the CS is presented repeatedly in absence of the UCS, the CR weakens and eventually disappears. This process is called EXTINCTION and each presentation of the CS without the UCS is called an extinction trial Occasional repairing of the CS and the UCS usually are required to maintain a CR Spontaneous Recovery- reappearance of a previously extinguished CR after a rest period and without new learning trials. The spontaneously recovered CR usually is weaker than the initial CR and extinguishes more rapidly in the absence of the UCS. Generalization And Discrimination The greater the stimulus similarity the greater the chance that a CR will occur Stimulus Generalization- stimulus similar to the initial CS elicit a CR Stimulus generalization serves critical adaptive functions To prevent stimulus generalization from running amok, organisms must be able to discriminate differences between stimuli Discrimination is demonstrated when a CR occurs to one stimulus but not to the others Organisms can be taught through conditioning to behaviorally discriminate 2 stimuli that were initially treated the same way. Pairing the CS with the UCS combined with pairing similar stimuli with no consequences leads to a narrowing of response to specific CS and loss of generalized responses to other similar stimuli Higher Order Conditioning Higher order conditioning- A neutral stimulus becomes a CS after being paired with an already established CS. Acquiring and Overcoming Fear Lab experimen
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