Textbook Notes (363,137)
Canada (158,217)
Psychology (4,731)
Psychology 1000 (1,558)
Dr.Mike (659)
Chapter 7

Chapter 7 Psychology.docx

5 Pages
Unlock Document

Western University
Psychology 1000

Chapter 7: Learning and Adaptation  Learning – process by which experience produces a relatively enduring change in an organism’s behaviour or capabilities  “knowing how” vs. “doing”; experience provides us with knowledge, but in science, learning must be measured by actual changes in performance  Learning is a process of personal adaptation to the changing circumstances of our lives  Behaviourism focused on how organisms learn, examining how experience influences behaviour (tabula rasa – blank tablet)  Ethology focused on functions of behaviour; animal behaviour within an environment  Adaptive significance – how behaviour influences an organism’s chances of survival and reproduction in natural environment  Fixed action pattern – an unlearned response automatically triggered by a particular stimulus (i.e. herring gull “beg” for food)  As ethological research grew, 2 things were learned: -some fixed action patterns could be modified by experience -what appeared to be “instinctive” behaviour actually involved learning -i.e. indigo bunting bird navigates by flying “away from” the North Star  Personal adaptation occurs through the laws of learning, and it results from interactions with immediate and past environments  Learning does NOT modify an organism’s genes  The brain structure and function that allows learning is under genetic control  Common Adaptive Challenges: -which events are/aren’t important to survival and well-being -which stimuli signal that an important event is about to occur -whether an organism’s responses will produce positive/negative consequences  Habituation – decrease in strength in response to a repeated stimuli( i.e. rustling sound of leaves; however, if there is an unexpected noise, you become aware of other sounds that had shown habituation at first); simple form of learning that occurs within the Central Nervous System, not sensory neurons  Classical conditioning – organism learns to associate to 2 stimuli (i.e. song and pleasant event), such that one stimulus (the song) comes to produce a response (feeling happy) that originally was produced only by the other stimulus (the pleasurable event); involved learning an association between stimuli  “What is paramount is the underlying principle being demonstrated, not the specific findings.”  Acquisition – period during which a response is learned  Dog Example -dogs salivate to food; it is what is in their nature (food = UCS (unconditioned stimulus) and salivation = UCR (unconditioned response)) -next, a tone and food are associated together (learning trial) -after several learning trials, dog starts to salivate when tone is heard -tone becomes a CS (conditioned stimulus) and salivation becomes a CR (conditioned response) -when dog salivates to food, it is a natural, unlearned (unconditioned) reflex (UCR), while when the dog salivates to a tone, it is learned, conditioned response (CR)  During acquisition, a CS must be paired multiple times with a UCS to establish a strong CR  Using Emily’s Snake Phobia Example:  Unconditioned Stimulus – a stimulus that innately elicits a response (i.e. car accident)  Conditioned Stimulus – a stimulus that gains value through learning (i.e. seeing a snake)  Unconditioned Response – a reflexive, unlearned response to an innately important stimulus (i.e. fear)  Conditioned Response – a response elicited by a stimulus whose importance depends on past learning (i.e. fear when Emily saw a snake)  Dog Example  Forward-trace pairing – tone comes on and off, then the food; optimal for the CS to appear no more than 2 or 3 seconds before the UCS; has adaptive value because the CS signals the impending arrival of the UCS  Presenting the CS and UCS (simultaneous pairing) produces less rapid conditioning  Learning does not occur at all when the CS is presented after the UCS (backward pairing)  Extinction – weakening of a CR caused by the presentation of the CS without the UCS  Spontaneous Recovery – reappearance of a previously extinguished CR after a rest period, and without new learning trials  Stimulus Generalization – stimuli similar to the initial CS elicit a CR  Discrimination – demonstrated when a CR occurs to one stimulus, but not to others  Higher-Order Conditioning – neutral stimulus becomes a CS after it is paired with another CS (rather than original UCS)  Exposure Therapies – expose phobic patient to the feared stimulus (CS) without any UCS, allowing extinction to occur (Watson and Rayner)  Systematic Desensitization – patient learns muscular relaxation techniques and is gradually exposed to fear-provoking stimulus  Flooding – immediately exposes the person to the phobic stimulus  Aversion Therapy – attempt to condition an aversion (a repulsion) to a stimulus that triggers unwanted behaviour by pairing it with a noxious UCS  Law of Effect – a response followed by a “satisfying” consequence with become more likely to occur, and a response followed by an unsatisfying outcome will become less likely to occur  Operant Conditioning – behaviour is influenced by its consequences  Skinner Box – experimental chamber in which animals learned to elicit an operant response  Reinforcement – response is strengthened by an outcome that follows it (outcome that increases the frequency of a response is called a recorder)  Punishment – response is weakened by outcomes that follow it (i.e. consequence that weakens the behaviour is a punisher)  Operant Behaviour involves 3 kinds of events: 1. Antecedents, which are stimuli that are present before a behaviour occurs 2. Behaviours that the organism emits 3. Consequences that follows the behaviours  Key Differences between Classical and Operant Conditioning: 1. In classical conditioning, organism learns
More Less

Related notes for Psychology 1000

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.