Classical and Operant Conditioning

Topics: Classical conditioning, Reinforcement, Operant conditioning Pages: 4 (1291 words) Published: April 30, 2013
Classical and Operant Conditioning
In 1889, a psychologist by the name of Ivan Pavlov began experimenting with dogs to study digestion by measuring their saliva. He discovered that the dogs “predicted” the arrival of food, leading to salivation. Although he is famous for his work on digestive psychology, he is known for his early impact on behavioral psychology. He described that there were things such as a neutral stimulus, unconditioned stimulus and an unconditioned response. A neutral stimulus is a stimulus that, before conditioning, does not naturally bring about the response of interest. An unconditioned stimulus is a stimulus that brings about a response without having been learned. An unconditioned response is a natural, innate, response that is not associated with learning. After conditioning it becomes a conditioned stimulus and a conditioned response. A conditioned stimulus is a natural stimulus that has been paired with an unconditioned stimulus to bring about a response formerly caused only by an unconditioned stimulus. A conditioned response is a response that, after conditioning, follows a previously natural stimulus. This is called classical conditioning. Below are a few examples. Classical Conditioning 1:

On one media source a father decides to condition his four daughters with the sound of a cow saying “Moo.” In the video his daughters are sitting at the couch watching TV while the father is sitting at the computer. As soon as the sound “Moo” goes off, the father gets up and turns of the TV. The daughters look at him bewildered. After the first few attempts, the young girls are just getting mad at their dad for turning off the TV. At attempt 7 the girls do get up to stop their dad once they see him get up. The father repeats the process 7 times before the four girls are conditioned. The father plays the sound “Moo” and just sits there to watch the girls jump up and protect the TV. The father does this one last time and as soon as the four...
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