Psychology Essay

782 Words Apr 19th, 2016 4 Pages
Psychology Notes: March 17, 2014
Chapter 7: Learning

What is Learning?
• Learning is the process of acquiring new information or behaviors
• How does learning happen without language or words? o Through experience o Through association
Types of Learning
• Associative Learning o Classical Conditioning: learning to link two stimuli in a way that helps us anticipate an event o Operant Conditioning: changing behavior choices in response to consequences
• Cognitive Learning: acquiring new behaviors and information through observation and information, not by direct experience
Associative Learning: Classical Conditioning
• How it Works:
1. Repeated exposure to tow stimuli occurring in sequence
2. We associate these stimuli with
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How does extinction occur?
1. Extinction involves “unlearning” the association between the US and the CS, eliminating it
2. Extinction involves new learning of a different association that suppresses the original US-CS association
Spontaneous Recovery
• Occurs only after a CR has been conditioned and then become extinct
• After a rest period, presenting the CS alone may lead to the reappearance of the CR

Generalization vs. Discrimination
• Generalization: the tendency to have conditioned responses triggered by related stimuli
• Discrimination: the learned ability to only respond to a specific stimuli, preventing generalization
Applications of Classical Conditioning
• Substance abuse
• Advertising
• Food poisoning
• Phobias
• Wolves and Sheep
Operant Conditioning How it works:
• A behavior is followed by a reward or punitive feedback from the environment
• Reinforced behavior is more likely to be tried again
• Punished behavior is less likely to be tried again
Operant Conditioning Example
1. Response: being polite
2. Consequence: Getting a treat
3. Behavior: strengthened
Thorndike’s Law of Effect Behaviors followed by favorable consequences become more likely, and behaviors followed by unfavorable consequences become less likely Example: Cats in box
B.F. Skinner B.F. Skinner wondered:
• How can we more carefully measure the effect of consequences on chosen behavior?
• What else can creatures be

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