August 1, 2011
Classical Conditioning Paper
Although classical conditioning is something that most people experience in a daily basis, it may also be the first thing someone remembers in a day. According to Olson and Hergenhahn (2009) classical conditioning is defined as a type of learning in which a neutral stimulus comes to elicit a response after being paired with a stimulus that naturally brings about that response. In this paper the subject is to describe the theory of classical conditioning as well as describing a scenario in which one could apply classical conditioning theory to, and bring forth the scenario by showing illustrations of how this could be used and applied toward conditioning the subject. The Theory of Classical Conditioning
Classical conditioning came to life through the work of Ivan Pavlov who was a Russian psychologist. Born in Russia, Pavlov first tried to follow in his father’s footsteps by becoming a priest. However, he changed his decision and began to study physiology. It proved to be a wise choice, as later, the work on the physiology of digestion earned him the noble Prize. Pavlov was conducting research on the canine digestive system using information from dog’s salivation and during these experiments he accidentally discovered that certain behaviors can be conditioned (Riskind, & Manos, 2005) Previously, it was just assumed that one’s reaction was due to complicated subjective processes. Pavlov discovered that many of one’s responses were happening because of prior learning, just as the dogs did in his experiment. He was able to obtain this important knowledge by presenting meat to the dogs that would salivate even before they would sense the meat. It seemed to Pavlov that the dogs were conditioned and learned from the appearance of the lab assistant, who was usually the one who brought the meat. Pavlov began to experiment further and see if,...