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PS102 Study Guide - Midterm Guide: Forgetting Curve, Operant Conditioning, Sketchpad

Course Code
Carolyn Ensley
Study Guide

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Psych Midterm 1 Study Notes
Chapter 6 Learning
Learning: process by which experience produces an enduring change in behaviour (or capabilities)
Conditioning: learning associations between events that occur
Behaviourism and Learning
-explained learning only in observable events (nothing mental)
-2 kinds of conditioning
-Classical/Pavlovian/ Respondent (CPR)
-Operant/ Skinnerian/ Instrumental (OSI)
Classical Conditioning
-based on internal responses to naturally occurring stimuli
-but a stimulus gets the capacity to evoke a response that was originally evoked by another stimulus
UCS: elicits a UCR without prior learning
UCR: reflexive response elicited by UCS w/o prior learning
CS: stimulus that, through association w/ UCS, comes to elicit a CR similar to the original UCR
CR: response elicited by a CS
**UCR and CR are the same!
-but what elicits them is different**
Types of CS-UCS Pairing
-Forward Short Delay: CS (tone) still present when UCS (food) presented
**optimal for learning
-Forward Trace: CS (tone) appears, then goes off, then UCS (food) presented
-best if delay is less than 2-3 seconds
-Simultaneous: presented at same time
-learning is slower
-Backward: CS presented after UCS (food)
-almost NO learning
-the initial stage of learning
-factors that enhance acquisition:
-forward (short delay) pairing
-time between CS and UCS is short
-intense, aversive UCS can produce 1-trial learning
-process in which CS is presented in absence of UCS
-eventually causes CR to weaken and disappear
Spontaneous Recovery
-the reappearance of an extinguished response after a period of non-exposure to the CS
-usually weaker than initial CR, extinguishes quicker
-stimuli similar to initial CS elicits a CR
-the more similar, the greater the generalization
-adaptive b/c aids in survival
-CR occurs for one stimulus, but not another
-opposite of generalization
-the less similar, the easier it is to discriminate
Higher-Order Conditioning
-a CS functions as if it’s a UCS
-new CRs are built on already established CRs
Response Dominance: relative strengths of responses elicited by the CS and UCS before they’re paired
-best results when UCS is stronger
Extinction of Phobias
-gradual systematic desensitization
-non-gradual flooding, real events, implosion, imagined events
Classical Conditioning Influences:
-attraction to other people
-positive, negative attitudes
-conditioned aversions
-dislike certain food b/c you were sick
-anticipatory nausea and vomiting (ANV)
-common in cancer patients
Operant Conditioning (OSI)
-learning through consequences
-assumes that behaviours are voluntary (under our control)
Thorndike’s Law of Effect
-response following satisfying consequence becomes MORE likely to occur
-response following unsatisfying consequence becomes LESS likely to occur
Reinforcers and Punishers
Reinforcers: increase likelihood of a behaviour
Punishers: decrease likelihood of a behaviour
Primary Reinforcer: stimuli that reinforce by satisfying a biological need
Secondary Reinforcer: acquire reinforcement through association with primary reinforcer (ex. money,
Positive: adding something to enviro
Negative: removing something from enviro
-increase behaviour
-add to enviro
Ex. candy
-decrease behaviour
-add to enviro
Ex. slap
-increase behaviour
-remove from enviro
Ex. pain
-decrease behaviour
-remove from enviro
Ex. no TV
Developmental Implications
-have to be able to naturally produce a behaviour, OR…..
Shaping: reinforce successive approximations towards a final response
-positive reinforcement is best
-reinforce each response w/ opportunity to perform next response
-develops a sequence of behaviours
-between when behaviour is done and when you get reward
-fixed or variable
Frequency/ Scheduling
-continuous reinforcement
-every response is reinforced
-partial reinforcement
-only some responses are reinforced
Partial Reinforcement Schedules (RIFV)
Ratio: certain % of responses are reinforced
Interval: certain amount of time must elapse between reinforcements
Fixed: reinforcement occurs after a fixed # of responses or time interval
Variable: reinforcement occurs after an average # of responses of time
Continuous vs. Partial
-more rapid learning
-consequences easier to perceive
-extinction more rapid
-slower learning
-more resistant to extinction especially on VR schedule
-ex. gambling reinforced on VR schedule