Group C: Team C
Identify the main theorists and their contributions.
Compare and contrast the different reinforcements of operant learning.
Distinguish between continuous and intermittent schedules of reinforcement.
Be able to answer: What are the benefits of using reinforcement and punishment in altering the behaviors of children?
What is Operant Conditioning?
Operant conditioning is “learning in which a voluntary response is strengthened or weakened, depending on its favorable or unfavorable consequences.” (Robert S. Feldman; Pg. 173)
The Law of Effect
Operant Conditioning and the Law of Effect: * The principles of the operant conditioning theory began with Edward L. Thorndike’s theory of the Stimulus-Response theory (the Law of Effect). * Theory states that stimuli that are followed by the satisfaction or discomfort of a respondent makes it more likely for the situation to either increase or decrease behavior (Thorndike 1914). * Thorndike used “puzzle boxes” to observe how cats used their environments to leave the box and obtain food. (Robert S. Feldman; Pg. 174)
Operant Conditioning and Skinner: * B.F Skinner expanded on Thorndike’s theory of behavior being based on consequences. * Skinner used similar methods as Thorndike when he created what is now known as “The Skinner Box”: 1. “A highly controlled environment that was used to study operant conditioning processes.” (Robert S. Feldman; Pg. 174) 2. Differed from Thorndike’s puzzle box by having animal subjects obtain food by using the environment within the box instead of trying to get out. * Skinner introduced reinforcement into the theory of the Law of Effect and later created the newer theory of Operant Conditioning (1948).
What is Reinforcement and Punishment?
Reinforcement is a process in which behavior is strengthened and increased.
References: Casey, Cooper-Brown, & Wacher (2006); Gottlieb (2004); Reed (2007); Staddon & Cerutti (2003) Feldman, Robert S. (Robert Stephen); Essentials of Understanding Psychology; ninth ed. New York: McGraw-Hill Kerr, M.M., & Nelson, C.M. (1989). Strategies for managing behavior problems in the classroom. 2nd Ed. New York: Macmillan Publishing. McLeod, S. A. (2007). B.F. Skinner | Operant Conditioning. Retrieved from http://www.simplypsychology.org/operant-conditioning.html Skinner, B. F. (1938). The behavior of Organisms: An Experimental Analysis. New York: Appleton-Century Zirpoli, T.J., & Melloy, K.J. (1993). Behavior management: Applications for teachers and parents. New York: Macmillan Publishing. Retrieved from http://www.cehd.umn.edu/ceed/publications/tipsheets/preschoolbehavior/schedule.pdf