Phobias and Addiction Paper

Topics: Classical conditioning, Operant conditioning, Extinction Pages: 3 (1234 words) Published: October 24, 2011
Individual Assignment: Phobias and Addiction Paper

Classical conditioning and operant conditioning both involve the learning process. Through classical conditioning a subject will learn to respond to a stimulus such as a light or bell before food is given. In operant conditioning a subject will learn by a response given off from its environment such as hitting a button or lever accidentally resulting in a positive reinforcement, food given, and a higher chance that the action will happen again. Classical conditioning is a learned form of a condition. As in Pavlov’s study of the dog, salivation is a natural response or an unconditioned reflex. It occurs automatically. Pavlov introduced food as an unconditioned stimulus (UCS) to cause the unconditioned reflex (salivating) in the dog. This reaction did not require any learning on the dog’s part; it was an unconditioned response (UCR). Pavlov in his experiment introduced a neutral stimulus (a ringing bell) before introducing the food (UCS). After a number of tries the dog associated the food with the bell, a conditioned response (CR), and began to salivate when the bell rang, a conditioned stimulus (CS) or learned response. Classical conditioning works in every day in humans and animals as conditioned responses. Becoming ill after eating a certain food may cause a person to stay away from this food, a conditioned aversion. The person may become ill again from the smell or sight of the food. For health reasons food was tested in trial and error by humans and animals through evolution to know what is safe to eat by adaptation, and conditioning (learning). Kowalsi and Westen (2009) stated, “One of the most important ways classical conditioning affects behavior is in the conditioning of emotional responses.” When a person sees or hears something he or she finds stimulating, a familiar face, a song, this person may become happy and smile. This is a conditioned emotional response. When a person becomes nervous...
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