PS102 Chapter Notes - Chapter 6: B. F. Skinner, Operant Conditioning Chamber, Reward System

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3 Feb 2016
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Chapter 6: Learning
Learning: is any relatively durable change in behaviour or knowledge
that is due to experience
Superstitions are linked to gaining a reward after a certain
beahviour.
Phobias: irrational fears of specic objects or situations
oResulted from classical conditioning
Conditioning: involves learning connections between events that
occur in an organism’s environment
*Novel stimuli have the greatest potential to become conditioned
stimuli. These stimuli are more likely to be noticed by an individual and
stand out from other stimuli
Classical Conditioning
Classical Conditioning: a stimulus acquires the capacity to evoke
a response that was originally evoked by another response.
oEx. Pavlov
Pavlov
oMade introspection more rigorous
oWork shows how stimuli in the external world controlled our
actions and behaviours
Psychic re$exes
oPresenting meat for the dogs with di%erent auditory tones
oTo the sound the dogs would automatically start salivating
without seeing the meat
o
Neutral
stimulus: this did not originally produce the response
of salivation
oFrom the experiment he demonstrated that learned
associations were formed by events in an organism’s
environment
His work is seen as a “functional perspective”
Terminology and Procedures
Unconditioned stimulus (UCS): is a stimulus that evokes an
unconditioned response without previous conditioning
Unconditioned Response (UCR): is an unlearned reaction to an
unconditioned stimulus that occurs without previous
conditioning.
Ex. Bond between Meat Powder and Salvation is natural
W/o
conditioning
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Chapter 6: Learning
Conditioned Stimulus: is a previously neutral stimulus that has,
through conditioning, acquired the capacity to evoke a
conditioned response.
Conditioned Response: a learned response to a conditioned stimulus
that occurs of conditioned learning.
Ex. Pavlov ringing the bell; provoked conditioned response.
*Conditioned responses and unconditioned response are the same
beahviour, sometimes just subtle di%erences b/w them.
Trial in classical conditioning: consists of any presentation of a
stimulus or pair of stimuli.
oPsychologists are interested in how many trials are
required to establish a particular conditioned bond
Conditioned Fear and Anxiety
Classical conditioning often plays a key role in shaping emotional
responses such as fear
Phobias are a good example of this response
Ex. Cringing at the sound of a dentist drill; pain is paired
with the sound of the drill
Evaluative Conditioning of Attitudes
Evaluative Conditioning: refers to changes in the liking of a stimulus
that result from pairing that stimulus with other positive or
negative stimulus.
Advertisers often pair their products with USs that elicit pleasant
emptions.
oEx. Pleasant music paired with two unknown brands of root
beer had an e%ect on the participants liking the drink
Conditioning and Physiological Responses (View +gure 6.5)
Classical conditioning e%ects not just behavioural, but physiological
processes as well
Classical Conditioning can lead to
immunosuppression
Immunosuppression: a decrease in the production of antibodies
Classical conditioning also elicits:
oAllergic reactions
oDrug tolerance
Continued use of drugs, may lead to the use of more
drugs= needing more drugs to get the same e%ect
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Chapter 6: Learning
oSexual Arousal
oIncreased sperm release
oDevelopment of fetishes for inanimate objects
Humans can be conditioned to be aroused by objects
that are paired with events electing sexual arousal
Conditioning and Drug E/ects
Shepard Siegel demonstrated that classical conditioning
contributes to drug tolerance
The opponent responses, which have been a result of
conditioning wit narcotics are called
compensatory CRs
oThey partially compensate for some drug e%ects
If drugs are taken in a di%erent setting or way the usual
compensatory CRs may not occur.
oE%ect may be stronger and that’s when there is an
overdose
Ex. Heroine addicts who shoot up in an unfamiliar
place are prone to overdose
Basic Process in Classical Conditioning
Acquisition: Forming New Responses
Acquisition: refers to the initial stage of learning something.
oPavlov theorized acquisition of a conditioned response
depends on
stimulus contiguity.
Are contiguous if they occur together in time and
space
oStimuli’s that are unusual have potential to be CSs,
than routine stimuli; because they are more likely to
stand out
Extinction: Weakening Conditioned Responses
Extinction: the gradual weakening and disappearance of a
conditioned response tendency
Happens when the conditioned stimuli is presented alone, it
tends to stop working after a while
oEx. Pavlov used only the tone, and it eventually stopped
the e%ect of salivation
Spontaneous Recovery: Resurrecting Responses
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