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Chapter 7

Chapter 7 Textbook Notes

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Western University
Psychology 1000

Learning and Adaptation The Role of ExperienceChapter Seven Reading NotesPages 235242 other than skills learning affects our emotional rxns perceptions and physiological responsesthrough experience we learn to think act and feel in ways that add to our identitylearning process by which experience produces a relatively enduring change in an organisms behavior or capabilitiesBasic learning processes Habituation and sensitization involve a change in behavior that results form repeated exposure to a single stimulus Forms of conditioning involving learning associations bw events classical conditioningwhen 2 stimuli become associated with each otherOperant conditioningassociating responses with specific consequences learning associative and observational learningrole of cognition in conditioning ADAPTING TO THE ENVIRONMENTlearning makes it possible to adapt to the changing environments with unique challenges that we encounter learning can be viewed as a process of personal adaptation to the everchanging circumstances of our livesHOW DO WE LEARN THE SEARCH FOR MECHANISMSbehaviorists focus on how organisms learn examining processes by which experience influences behavior behaviorists assumed that there are laws of learning that apply to virtually all organisms and many species studied respond in predictable ways to patterns of rewardpunishment behaviorists treat organisms as a tabula rasa blank tablet where learning experiences were inscribed behaviorists explain learning solely in terms of directly observable events and look at personal adaptation to environment personal adaptation occurs through the laws of learning that behaviorists examined and it results from our interactions with immediate and past enviros note not all behavior is adaptive what else has expanded our understanding of learningCognitive perspectiveBiological factorsCrosscultural psych social norms and beliefs as well as perception of the world and ourselves HABITUATION AND SENSITIZATIONlearning can be a change in behavior because of repeated presentation of a single stimulus a clock ticking or a tree rustling with simple forms of learning learner does not learn a new stimulusresponse system instead one of the learners existing systems changes in strength habituation a decrease in the strength of a response to a repeated stimulus key adaptive functionif an organism responded to every stimulus in its enviro it would rapidly become overwhelmed and exhausted ex if u never got used to the feeling of clothing against your skin learning not to respond to uneventful familiar stimuli organisms conserve nrgcan focus on important stimuli also plays a role in enabling scientists to study behavior diff from sensory adaptation decreased sensory response to a continuously present stimulus ex smell of bakery BC habituation occurs in CNS not sensory neuronssensitization an increase in the strength of response to a repeated stimulusnd ex hear a loud sound hear another one the 2 one startles u more than the first onefound in many species occurs to strong or noxious stimlipurpose to increase responses to a potentially dangerous stimulusCLASSICAL CONDITIONING ASSOCIATING ONE STIMULUS WITH ANOTHER 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 stimulusex one stimulusa song produces a responsea happy feeling that was originally only produced by the other stimulusa pleasurable event basic form of learning in many speciesinvolves learning an association bw stimuli PAVLOVS PIONEERING RESEARCHPavlov became a renowned physiologist conducting research on digestion in dogsWon Nobel PrizeHe presented various types of food to dogs and measured their natural salivary responseNoticed with repeated testing dogs began to salivate before food was presented They heard footsteps of approaching experimenter Dogs have a natural reflex to salitvate to food but not to tonesLearning to salivate to tones this type of learning came to be called classical or pavlovian conditioning Classical conditioning alerts organisms to stimuli that signal the impending arrival of an important event Key adaptive function
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