Intro to Psych Chapter 7- LEARNING

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associative learning
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learning that certain events occur together. the events may be two stimuli (as in classical psychology) or a response and its consequences (as in operant conditioning)
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classical conditioning
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Conditioning process in which an originally neutral stimulus, by repeated pairing with a stimulus that normally elicits a response, comes to elicit a similar or even identical response; aka Pavlovian conditioning
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behaviorism
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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 (2)
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unconditional response (UR)
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In classical conditioning, the unlearned, naturally occurring response to the unconditioned stimulus (US), such as salvation when food is in the mouth
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unconditioned stimulus (US)
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in classical conditioning, a stimulus that unconditionally- naturally and automatically- triggers a response.
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conditioned response (CS)
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In classical conditioning, a learned response to a previously neutral (but now conditioned) stimulus (CS).
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conditioned stimulus
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In classical conditioning, an originally irrelevant stimulus that, after association with an unconditioned stimulus, comes to trigger a conditioned response
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Pavlov’s experiment
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pavlov presented a neutral stimulus (a tone) just before an unconditioned stimulus (food in mouth). The neutral stimulus then became a conditioned stimulus, producing a conditioned response.
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acquisition
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In classical conditioning, the initial stage, when one links a neutral stimulus and an unconditioned stimulus so that the neutral stimulus begins triggering the conditioned response. In operant conditioning, the strengthening of a reinforced response.
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extinction
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the diminishing of a conditioned response; occurs in classical conditioning when an unconditioned stimulus (US) does not follow a conditioned stimulus (CS); occurs in operant conditioning when a response is no longer reinforced.
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spontaneous recovery
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the reappearance, after a pause, of an extinguished conditioned response
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generalization
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the tendency, once a response has been conditioned, for stimuli similar to the conditioned stimulus to elicit similar responses. Pavlov demonstrated generalization by attaching miniature vibrators to various parts of the dogs body. After conditioning salivation to stimulation of the thigh, he stimulated other areas. The closer a stimulated spot was to the thigh, the stronger the conditioned response.
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discrimination
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In classical conditioning, the learned ability to distinguish between a conditioned stimulus and stimuli that do not signal an unconditioned stimulus.
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Describe the timing requirements for the initial learning of a stimulus- response relationship.
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Classical conditioning occurs most readily when a CS is presented just before (ideally, about a half-second before) a US, preparing the organism for the upcoming event. This finding supports the view that classical conditioning is biologically adaptive.
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What is the survival value of generalization and discrimination?
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Generalization (our tendency to respond to stimuli similar to a CS) has survival value because it lets us extend a learned response to other stimuli in a given category- as in fleeing from all dangerous animals. Discrimination (our learned ability to distinguish between a CS and other irrelevant stimuli) also has survival value because it lets us limit our learned responses to appropriate stimuli- as in fleeing from a rampaging lion but not from a playful kitten.
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operant conditioning
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A type of learning in which behavior is strengthened if followed by a reinforcer or diminished if followed by a punisher.
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respondent behavior
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Behavior that occurs as an automatic response to some stimulus; Skinner’s term for behavior learned through classical conditioning
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operant behavior
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behavior that operates on the environment, producing consequences
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law of effect
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By Thorndike; used in an experiment with cats and a puzzle box; principle of reinforcement; behavior consistently rewarded will be ‘stamped in’ as learned behavior, and behavior that brings about discomfort will be ‘stamped out’; satisfying effect (reinforcement) is likely to be performed again, whereas behavior that brings about negative effect (punishment) is likely to be suppressed
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operant chamber
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A chamber also known as a Skinner 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. Inside the box, the rat presses a bar for a food reward. Outside, a measuring device records the animal’s accumulated response.
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shaping
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an operant conditioning procedure in which reinforcers guide behavior toward closer and closer approximations of the desired behavior.
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reinforcer
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in operant conditioning, any event that strengthens the behavior it follows.
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positive reinforcment
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increasing behaviors by presenting positive stimuli, such as food. A positive reinforcer is any stimulus that, when presented after a response, strengthens the response.
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negative reinforment
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increasing behaviors by stopping or reducing negative stimuli, such as shock. Is not punishment
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primary reinforcer
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an innately reinforcing stimulus, such as one that satisfies, An innately reinforcing stimulus, such as one that satisfies a biological need.
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conditioned reinforcer
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A stimulus that gains its reinforcing power through its association with a primary reinforcer; also known as secondary reinforcer.
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continuous reinforcement
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Reinforcing the desired response every time it occurs.
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partial (intermittent) reinforcement
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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
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fixed-ratio schedule
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In operant conditioning, a reinforcement schedule that reinforces a response only after a specified number of responses
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variable-ratio schedule
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In operant conditioning, a reinforcement schedule that reinforces a response after an unpredictable number of responses
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fixed-interval schedule
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In operant conditioning, a reinforcement schedule that reinforces a response only after a specified time has elapsed
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variable-interval schedule
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In operant conditioning, a reinforcement schedule that reinforces a response at unpredictable time intervals
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punishment
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An event that decreases the behavior that it follows.
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cognitive map
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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.
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latent learning
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Learning that occurs but is not apparent until there is an incentive to demonstrate it
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intrinsic motivation
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A desire to perform a behavior for its own sake
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extrinsic motivation
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A desire to perform a behavior due to promised rewards or threats of punishment
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Two major characteristics that distinguish classical conditioning from operant conditioning
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in classical conditioning, the organism forms associations between behaviors it does not control; this form of conditioning involves respondent behavior (automatic responses to some stimulus). In operant conditioning, the organism learns associations between its own behavior and resulting events; this form of conditioning involves operant behavior (behavior that operates on the environment, producing consequences)
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State thorndikes law of effect, and explain its connection to skinner’s research on operant conditioning.
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Thorndike’s law of effect asserts that rewarded behavior is likely to recur. Using this as his starting point, skinner devoted his life to exploring the principles and conditions of learning through operant conditioning.
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compare positive and negative reinforcment, and give one example each of a primary reinforcer, a conditioned reinforcer, an immediate reinforcer, and a delayed reinforcer
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Positive reinforcement adds something desirable to increase the frequency of a behavior. Negative reinforcment removes something undesirable to increase the frequency of behavior. Primary reinforcers (such as recieving food when hungry or having nausea during an illness) are innately satisfying- no learning is required. Conditioned (or secondary) reinforcers (such as cash) are satisfying because we have learned to associate them with more basic rewards (such as the food or medicine we buy with them). Immediate reinforcers (such as the nicotine addict’s cigarette) offer immediate payback; delayed reinforcers (such as a weekly paycheck) require the ability to delay gratification.
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how do negative punishment, positive punishment, and negative reinforcement differ, list some draw backs of punishment as a behavior control technique.
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Both positive punishment (administering an undersirable consequence,such as spanking) and negative punishment (withdrawing something desirable, such as taking away a favorite toy) attempt to decrease the frequency of behavior (a childs disobedience). Negative reinforcement (such as taking aspirin) removes something undersirable (such as a headache) to increase the frequency of behavior. Punishment’s undesirable side effects may include suppressing rather than changing unwanted behaviors, teaching aggression, creating fear, and encouraging discrimination (so that the undesirable behavior appears when the punisher is not present), and fostering depression and feelings of helplessness.
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What is a major difference between classical conditioning and operant conditioning?
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In classical conditioning, an organism associates different stimuli that it does not control and responds automatically (respondent behaviors). In operant conditioning, an organism associates its own behaviors with their consequences.
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observational learning
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Learning by observing others
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modeling
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the process of observing and imitating a specific behavior
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mirror neurons
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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.
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prosocial behavior
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positive, constructive, helpful behavior. The opposite of antisocial behavior
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Describe the process of observational learning, and explain the importance of the discovery of mirror neurons.
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In observational learning, we observe and imitate others. Mirror neurons, located in the brain’s frontal lobes, demonstrate a nueral basis for observational learning. They fire when we perform certain actions (such as responding to pain or moving our mouth to form words), or when we observe someone else performing those actions.
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Describe Bandura’s findings on what determines whether we will imitate a model
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Bandura demonstrated that we are likely to imitate actions that go unpunished. And we tend to imitate models we perceive as similar to us, successful, or admirable.
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What is the impact of prosocial behavior
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research shows that children tend to imitate what a model does and says, whether the behavior is prosocial (positive, constructive, and helpful) or antisocial. If a model’s actions and words are inconsistent, children may imitate the hypocrisy they observe.
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Explain why correlations cannot prove that watching TV causes violent behavior, and cite some experimental evidence that helps demonstrate a cause-effect link.
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Correlational studies show that violence viewing and violent behavior are linked, but they do not prove that watching violent TV causes children to become more violent. Children who behave violently may enjoy watching violence on TV, or some third factor may cause children to behave both violently and to prefer watching violent programs. To prove cause and effect, researchers have designed experiments in which some participants view violence and others do not. Later, given an oppurtunity to express violence ( in rough play or verbal responses to videos), the people who viewed violence tend to be more aggressive and less sympathetic. Two factors- imitation and desensitization- seem to contribute to the violence effect.

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