Psychsim 5: Operant Conditioning

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Classical Versus Operant Conditioning:

Classical and Operant differ in when an event takes place. Classical conditioning involves an event, and then a conditioned response, while Operant relies on a decision, knowing what the following event may be.

Reinforcement and Punishment:

Reinforcement increases the likelyhood of the behaviour repeating.

Giving a dog a treat for coming in after going to the bathroom outside.

Removing chores when a teenager obeys their curfew.

Punishment decreased the likelyhood of the behaviour repeating.

Giving a child time-out for hitting a kid in class.

Continuous Versus Partial Reinforcement

The behaviour could likely stop as well.

Schedules of Reinforcement

Giving reinforcement after a constant number of responses.
Paying a teenager after they complete 5 chores.

Giving reinforcement after a response, after a constant amount of time has elapsed.
Letting a child take a 15 minute break for every hour of homework they do.

Giving reinforcement after a changing number of responses.
Gamblers at a slot machine don't know how often they'll be reinforced.

Giving reinforcement after a response, after a changing amount of time has elapsed.
Fishermen don't have a constent reinforcement after casting their line.

Simulated Experiment:
Variable ratio is the most resistant to extinction long term. In any constant situation, the subject may notice a pattern in the number of responses they must provide, or how long they must wait for a reinforcement. In a variable interval senario, it's true they will respond more because they don't know how short the interval may be, but they won't be constantly responding. In a variable ratio schedule, the subject would have to keep responding, and after a changing amount of responses finally be reinforced. This would keep the subject responding at a higher rate.
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