AP Psychology: Chapter 8 – Learning

a relatively permanent change in an organism’s behavior due to experience.

Associative learning
learning that certain events occur together. The events may br two stimuli (as in classical conditioning) or response and its consequences (as in operant conditioning).

Classical Conditioning
A type of learning in which an organism comes to associate stimuli. A neutral stimulus that signals an unconditioned stimulus (US) beging to produce response that anticipates and prepares for the unconditional stimulus. Also called Povlovian or respondent conditioning.

The view that psychology (1) should be an objective science that (2) studies behavior without reference to mental processes. Most research psychologists today agree with (1) but not with (2).

Unconditioned Response (UR)
In classical conditioning, the unlearned, naturally occuring response to the unconditioned stimuli (US), such as salivation when food is in the mouth.

Unconditioned Stimulus (US)
In classical conditioning, a stimulus that unconditionally – naturally and automatically – triggers a response.

Conditioned Response (CR)
In classical conditioning, the learned response to a previously neutral (but now conditioned) stimulus (CS).

Conditioned Stimulus (CS)
In classical conditioning, an originally irrelevant stimulus that, after association with an unconditioned stimulus (US), comes to trigger a conditioned response.

Ivan Pavlov
Researched the causes and effects of classical conditioning. Identified 5 major conditioning processes: acquisition, extinction, spontaneous recovery, generalization, and discrimination.

The initial stage of classical conditioning; the phase associating a neutral stimulus with an unconditioned stimulus so that the neutral stimulus comes to elicit a conditioned response. In operant conditioning, the strengthening of a reinforced response.

The deminishing of a conditioned response; occurs in classical conditioning when an unconditioned stimulus does not follow a conditioned stimulus; occurs in operant conditioning when a response is no longer reinforced.

Spontaneous Recovery
The reapearance, after a pause, of a extinguished conditioned response.

The tendency, once a response has been conditioned, for stimuli similar to the conditioned stimulus to elicit similar responses.

In classical conditioning, the learned ability to distinguish between a conditioned stimulus and stimuli that do not signal an unconditioned stimulus.

John Garcia
With Robert Koelling, researched conditioning and learning and found that rats avoided taste (but not sound or sight) stimuli when getting sick, even when that taste (CS) was not followed immediately by the vomiting (UR).

John Watson
Suggested that human emotions and behavior, though biologically influenced, are mainly a bundle of conditioned responses. With Rosalie Rayner, showed how specific fears might be conditioned.

Operant Conditioning
A type of learning in which behavior is srengthened if followed by a reinforcer or diminished if followed by a punisher.

Respondent Behavior
Behavior that occurs as an automatic response to some stimulus; Skinner’s term for behavior learned through classical conditioning.

Operant Behavior
Behavior that operates on the environment, producing consequences.

Law of Effect
Thorndike’s principle that behaviors followed by favorable consequences become more likely, and that behaviors followed by unfavorable consequences become less likely.

Operant Chamber
A chamber also known as Skinner’s box, containing a bar or key that an animal can manipulate to obtain a food or water reinforcer, with attached devices to record the animal’s rate of bar pressing or key pecking. Used in operant conditioning research.

B. F. Skinner
Modern behaviorism’s most influential thinker; developed “behavioral technology” that revealed principles of behavior control through operant condioning.

An operant conditioning procedure in which reinforcers guide behavior toward closer and closer approximations of the desired behavior.

In operant conditioning, any event that strengthens behavior it follows.

Positive Reinforcement
Increasing behaviors by presenting positive stimuli, such as food. A positive reinforcer is any stimulus that, when presented after a response, strengthens the response.

Negative Reinforcement
Increasing behavior by stopping or reducing aversive stimuli, such as shock. A negative reinforcer is any stimulus that, when removed after a response, strengthens the response (negative reinforcement is not punishment).

Primary Reinforcer
An innately reinforcing stimulus, such as one that satisfies a biological need.

Conditioned reinforcer
A stimulus that gains its reinforcing power through its association with a primary reinforcer; also known as secondary reinforcer.

Continuous Reinforcement
Reinforcing the desired response every time it occurs.

Partial (intermittent) reinforcement
Reinforcing a response only part of the time; results in slower acquisition of a response but much greater resistance to extinction than does continuous reinforcement.

Fixed-ration schedule
In operant conditioning, a reinforcement schedule that reinforces a response only after a specified number of responces.

Variable-ratio schedule
In operant conditioning, a reinforcement schedule that reinforces a response after an unpredictable number of responses.

Fixed-interval schedule
In operant conditioning, a reinforcement schedule that reinforces a response only after a specified time has elapsed.

Variable-interval schedule
In operant conditioning, a reinforcement schedule that reinforces a response after at unpredictable time intervals.

An event that decreases the behavior that follows.

Cognitive map
A mental representation of the layout of one’s environment. For example, after exploring a maze, rats act as if they have learned a cognitive map of it.

Latent learning
learning that occurs but is not apparent until there is an incentive to demonstrate it.

Intrinsic motivation
A desire to perform a behavior for its own sake.

Extrinsic motivation
A desire to perform a behavior due to promise of rewards or threat of punishment.

Observational learning
Learning by observing others.

The process of observing and imitating apecific behavior.

Mirror neurons
Frontal lobe neurons that fire when performing certain actions or when observing another doing so. The brain’s mirroring of another’s action may enable imitation, language learning, and empathy.

Albert Bandura
A pioneer researcher of observational learning. (Bobo Doll Study)

Prosocial behavior
Positive, constructive, helpful behavior. The opposite of antisocial behavior.

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