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Psych 1000 - Chapter 7 Notes.docx

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Western University
Psychology 1000
Terry Biggs

Chapter 7 Notes - Pavlov – learning by association - BF Skinner – people are always motivated to do something and that motivation is a consequence of what follows behavior (reinforcement) - Learning – a relatively permanent change in behavior which is independent of the effects of maturation and temporary factors such as fatigue or sensory adaptation (not just because you’re growing) - Classes of theories o Theories will differ in terms of language used to describe them o Some will be very connectionist while others will be more cognatavistic o However, all will tend towards abstraction in order to gain generality - There are two major classes of theories o Single Factor Theories  Assertion is that one type of learning is predominant  One basic process or principle underlies all forms of learning such as  Principle of Contiguity – response in the presence of particular stimuli leads to learning through the formation of association. It is strongly linked to Classical or Pavlovian condition. However it is not entirely absent from the Operant paradigm which may also be interpreted via contiguity  Principle of Reinforcement – Clark Hull’s Original Operant learning paradigm. Contention is that drive reduction is the motivating factor in learning. However an inconditional stimulus may also be interpreted as setting up a drive reduction stimulation o Two Factor Theories  The most notable theorists who have utilized the combination of contiguity and reinforcement in their theories are E.L. Thorndike and B.F. Skinner  Law of Effect – States that a behavior followed by a satisfying consequence will become more likely to occur while a behavior followed by an unsatisfying outcome will become less likely to occur  Basis of Thorndike’s instrumental learning  Also became foundation of Behaviorism - Theoretical Language o Connectionist vs. Gestalt vs. Cognitivist o Connectionist – In connectionist terms the hypothetical unit “learned” is either an “association” or a “habit” or “stimulus-response bond”  The view of association varies across theories. Some see it as gradual while others see it as a single trial of all not none event o Another term common to learning theories is extinction (in some theories it is viewed as the gradual weakening of an association o Other theories view an association as a permanent formation (in these theories extinction can’t occur) o However people still tend to refer to the cessation of a behavior in terms of the behavior having become extinguished o What is different is the process involved o Rather than a process of gradual weakening some theories postulate that what appears to be extinction is actually a consequence of “counter-conditioning” o Counter-conditioning is a process through which an existing association is replaced by a newly formed association which produces a behavior which is antagonistic or incompatible with the behavior produced by the original association - Gestalt Theories o Edward Chase Tolman is the father of this approach to learning o Contrary to the Association as the basic unit of learning Tolman postulated the theory of Purposive Behavior o A Molar concept where behavior (muscle movement) is organized around a specific goal o Consequently the behavior is controlled by cognitive processes o The single most important contribution of this approach is Latent learning o Latent learning refers to the possibility that learning may occur unobserved  Under certain changes in conditions the unobserved learning may manifest itself as a sudden increased efficiency in performance  This view challenges or qualifies all view which rely on drive reduction as the basis of learning  It sets the stage for cognitive views - Cognitive Theories o Cognitive approaches focus upon thoughts, ideas, and images o Direct opposition to the view of a permanent association o It also calls into question views of extinction as a weakening of Habit of Association strength o Suggests importance of cognitive re-organization (perhaps what happens in Tolman’s Latent Learning) - Two major learning theories of the last century o Classical (Pavlovian) Conditioning**** o Operant (Skinnerian) Conditioning *** o The primary function of these approaches is to understand and modify behavior - Classical Condition o The process whereby the repeated pairing of stimuli, one of which is associated with a specific response and one which is not, eventually leads to the association of the response to the stimulus not ordinarily paired with the response o Note: It is possible when the initial response is highly emotionally laden for this type of learning to occur on a single pairing of the two stimulus types- - Classical Conditioning Terminology o Acquisition – the period during which a response is being learned o Neutral Stimulus – a stimulus that does not trigger the response o UCR (Unconditioned Response) – a response that is unlearned o UCS (Unconditioned Stimulus) – a stimulus that elicits a UCR o CS (Conditioned Stimulus) – an initially neutral stimulus, which, as a result of being paired with the UCS and UCR comes to elicit the same response o CR (Conditioned Response) – a response that is elicited by a CS (usually identical to the UCR) o Each pairing is called a learning trial o Conditioning may take a shorter amount of time when the UCS is intense and aversive (ex. shock or traumatic event) o The sequence and timing of the CS-UCS pairing affect condition  Forward short-delay pairing – the CS appears first and is still present when the UCs appears  Forward trace pairing – the CS would go on and off and then the UCS would be presented  Has an adaptive value because the CS signals the impending arrival of the UCS. This is simultaneous pairing and produces the slowest conditioning/learning  Backward pairing – UCS followed by CS o Extinction – When the CS is presented and there is no UCS, after, no longer elicits the CR o Spontaneous Recovery – when an extinguished CS suddenly begins to elicit the CR after a period in which it has consistently failed to do so (basis of belief that an association is permanent) o Counter- Conditioning – When the CS is paired with another (new/different) UCS which leads to a UCR (eventually become a CR) incompatible with the originally elicited CR o 2 Order (Higher Order) Conditioning – When a neutral stimulus is paired with a CS and becomes conditioned to elicit the same CR as the CS it was paired with o Discrimination – the ability to detect small differences between a CS and other stimuli o Stimulus Generalization – When other stimuli sharing characteristics with a CS come to elicit the same CR as the CS without pairing of the CR and those other stimuli - Classical Conditioning is usually the strongest when there are repeated CS- UCS pairings, the UCS is more intense, the sequence involves for word pairing, and the time interval between the CS and UCS is short - Classical conditioning challenges Freud’s psychoanalytic theory, instead proposing that there is a fear-triggering CS because of pairing with an aversive UCS and stimulus generalization - Classical conditioning principles are among the most effective psychotherapies for phobias o Exposure therapies – their basic goal is to expose the phobic patient to the feared stimulus (CS) without any UCS, allowing extinction to occur o Systematic desensitization – the patient learns muscular relaxation techniques and then is gradually exposed to the fear-provoking stimulus o Flooding – immediately exposes the person to the phobic stimulus - Aversion therapy – attempts to condition an aversion (repulsion) to a stimulus that triggers unwanted behavior by pairing it with
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