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UCF PSY 2012 - LEARNING

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LEARNINGLearning – a systematic, relatively permanent change in behavior that occurs through experienceBehaviorism – a theory of learning that focuses solely on observable behaviors, discounting the importance of such mental activity as thinking, wishing, and hopingEmphasizes the general laws that guide behavior change and make sense of human lifeLearning is the same as humans and animalsTerm coined by John B. WatsonAssociative learning – learning that occurs when we make a connection, or an association, between two eventsConditioning – process of learning these associationsTwo Types:1. Classical Conditioning – organisms learn the association between two stimuli; learn to anticipate events2. Operant Conditioning – organisms learn the association between a behavior and a consequence, such as a reward; organisms learn to increase behaviors that are followed by rewards and to decrease behaviors that are followed by punishmentobservational learning – learning that takes place when a person observes and imitates another’s behaviorrelies on mental processespay attention, remember, and reproduceClassical conditioning – learning process in which a neural stimulus becomes associated with a meaningful stimulus and acquires the capacity to elicit a similar responseEx – baby stung by bee reaching for flower, afraid of flowersPavlov – classical conditioning with dog experimentReflexes – automatic stimulus-response connectionsUnconditioned stimulus (UCS) - a stimulus that produces a response without prior learning (food in Pavlov’s experiment)Unconditioned response (UCR) – an unlearned reaction that is automatically elicited by the unconditioned stimulus; involuntary; in Pavlov’s experiment it was the salivating to the food; baby crying from the bee stingConditioned stimulus (CS) – a previously neutral stimulus that eventually elicits a conditioned response after being paired with the unconditioned stimulus. (bell in Pavlov’s experiment) (flower for baby)Conditioned response (CR) – the learned response to the conditioned stimulus that occurs after conditioned stimulus – unconditioned stimulus pairingSimilar to unconditioned responses but not as strong(baby crying) (salivating)(((PAGE 158)))acquisition – the initial learning of the connection between the unconditioned stimulus and the conditioned stimulus when these two stimuli are pairedCS is repeatedly presented followed by the UCSEventually CS will produce a responseContiguity and contingency must both be presentContiguity – means that the CS and UCS are presented very close together in time – even a mere fraction of a secondBell must ring right before food to make the connectionContingency – means that the CS must not only precede the UCS closely in time, it must also serve as a reliable indicator that the UCS is on its wayDog couldn’t randomly hear a bell throughout the dayGeneralization (classical conditioning) – the tendency of a new stimulus that is similar to the original conditioned stimulus to elicit a response that is similar to the conditioned responsePrevents learning from being tied to specific stimuliDiscrimination (classical conditioning) – the process of learning to respond to certain stimuli and not othersOnly gave the dog food after ringing the bell, not after any other soundsExtinction (classical conditioning) – the weakening of the conditioned response when the unconditioned stimulus is absent; without the continued association with the UCS, the CS loses its power to produce the CRSpontaneous recovery – the process in classical conditioning by which a conditioned response can recur after a time delay, without further conditioningRemembering something you thought you forgot, thinking of an ex when youre somewhere you two used to goRenewal – the recovery of the conditioned response when the orgranism is placed in a novel contexCan be powerful to overcomeDrug addictionCounterconditioning – a classical conditioning procedure for changing the relationship between a conditioned stimulus and its conditioned responseOne types is systematic desensitizationSystematic desensitization – a method of therapy that treats anxiety by teaching the client to associate deep relaxation with increasingly intense anxiety producing situationsUses classical conditioning by pairing a stimulus with a state of relaxationAversive conditioning – a form of treatment that consists of repeated pairings of a stimulus with a very unpleasant stimulusEx – electric shock and nausea inducing substancesImmunosuppression – a decrease in the production of antibodies, which can lower a person’s ability to fight diseaseRobert Ader and Nicholas Cohen revealed that classical conditioning can reveal thisFound out using lab ratsTaste aversion – a special kind of classical conditioning involving the learned association between a particular taste and nauseaRequires the pairing of a neural stimulus (a taste) with the unconditioned response of nausea to seal that connection, often for a long timeRespondent behavior – form of classical conditioning; behavior that occurs in automatic response to a stimulus such as a nausea-producing drug, and later to a conditioned stimulus such as a nausea-producing drug, and later to a conditioned stimulus such as sweet water that was paired with the drug/Classical conditioning explains how neutral stimuli become associated with unlearned, involuntary responses.Not as effective in explaining voluntary behaviorsOperant conditioning (instrumental conditioning) – a form of associative learning in which the consequences of a behavior change the probability of the behavior’s occurrenceDeveloped by B.F. SkinnerChose term operant to describe the behavior of the organismContingency plays a key roleSkinner’s Operant Conditioning – action followed by a reinforce is more likely to be repeatedA reinforce is defined as any outcome that increases rate of responding- Action followed by a punisher is less likely to be repeated- A punisher is any outcome that decreases the rate of respondingLaw of effect – Thorndike’s law stating that behaviors followed by positive outcomes are strengthened and the behaviors followed by negative outcomes are weakenedPresents the basic idea that the consequences of a behavior influence the likelihood of that behaviors of that behavior’s recurrenceBehavior can be followed by something good or something badSkinner believed that mechanisms


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