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Ch. 6 Notes

by: Isabella Morles

Ch. 6 Notes PSY2012

Isabella Morles

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Notes for tomorrows test, good luck tomorrow:)
General Psychology
Professor Kimberly Smith
Class Notes
25 ?




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This 12 page Class Notes was uploaded by Isabella Morles on Wednesday February 17, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSY2012 at University of Florida taught by Professor Kimberly Smith in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 29 views. For similar materials see General Psychology in Psychlogy at University of Florida.


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Date Created: 02/17/16
General Psychology Chapter 6 Flashback: Why some people don't remember dreams? Scientist don't agree about why dreams are hard to remember Do some people remember their dreams better than others? Yes Tends to be light sleepers Is there something wrong with me if I can't remember my dreams? Nope Learning Much of what we learn can be viewed from an evolutionary perspective It pretty much means a change in an organism’s behavior or thought as a result of an experience. (hopefully what you are doing now). There are many distinct types of learning. Three key figures in the psychology of learning was: Ivan Pavlov, John B. Watson and B.F. Skinner. Habituation: responding less strongly to repeated exposure to a stimulus? Examples: moving from the country to the city and getting used to the cars, buzzing noises in the room We have also referred to this phenomenon as 'sensory adaptation'. Examples: same as habituation Scientist study habituation using sweat, since we perspire during anxious times. It’s important to know that we usually habituate to safe stimuli but we cannot ignore serious threats. What about an example for the opposite of habituation? In the context of learning and behavior, we call this... Sensitization: responding more strongly to repeated exposure to a stimulus Example: now being allergic to mangos, can't sleep with loud music We need to learn to connect stimulus like the appearance and taste of an apple. From an evolutionary perspective - Why are habituation and sensitization be important? How might these concepts be adaptive in terms of species survival? What might happen to a species which did not develop them? We just have to evolve and develop both so we do not become extinct. We won't know what to focus on and what to ignore. Classical conditioning (also called Pavlovian Conditioning) John B. Watson - most famous Learning as a result of the pairing of stimuli Believed that we acquired our knowledge this way. Important terms: Unconditioned stimulus- stimulus that elicits an automatic response. Unconditioned response- automatic response to a nonneutral stimulus that does not need to be learned. Neutral stimulus Conditioned stimulus- initially neutral stimulus that comes to elicit a response due to association with an unconditioned stimulus. Conditioned response- response previously associated with a nonneutral stimulus that is elicited by a neutral stimulus through condition. Example: Present: Unconditioned stimulus: stake Elicit: Unconditioned response: the dog drools • Innate • Automatic • Reflex • Involuntary Enter: Neutral stimulus: bell Present with: Unconditioned stimulus: stake Soon you won't need unconditioned stimulus just the neutral stimulus will make the dog salivate. Has become: Now it's called conditioned stimulus (bell) (not called neutral anymore) Conditioned response (now the dog salivates) The dog now sees the conditioned stimulus as signaling that the steak comes next, dog expects the steak. Drooling a has become a conditioned response. Classical Conditioning happens in 3 phases: acquisition, extinction and spontaneous recovery. It’s important to present the conditioned stimulus before the unconditioned one for conditioning to work. In Acquisition we gradually learn or acquire the conditioned response (example above: drooling) Longer delays usually decrease the speed and strength of the organism’s response. In Extinction the conditioned response decreases and eventually disappears when the conditioned stimulus is repeatedly presented alone (bell with no stake). After countless presentations of the bell with no stake the dogs will stop drooling. Extinction is an active, rather than passive process (its overwritten by new behavior). In Spontaneous Recovery a sudden reemergence of an extinct conditioned response after a delay in exposure to the conditioned stimulus. (present the bell, drooling might occur) Renewal effect- occurs when we extinguish a response in a setting different from the one in which the animal acquired it. Stimulus generalization is when the CSs are similar, but not identical to the original CS (bell) elicit a CR (drooling).. pretty much if a dog hears a different sound in relation to a bell it can start drooling. It occurs along a generalization gradient. (the more similar the sound is, the stronger the CR is) The opposite is Stimulus discrimination. It happens when we show a less pronounced CR to CSs that differ from the original CS. We pretty much are able to tell what is real and what is not so we know how to react to certain situations. Higher order conditioning: Now the conditioned stimulus (bell) paired with a different neutral stimulus (whistle). Don't need bell anymore, use whistle Pretty much you can pair the CS with something else then take away the bell and dogs will still salivate to the whistle. Continuing to try to condition the dogs with different stimulus th weakens the responses (by the 4 time it’s practically impossible) Classical conditioning happens in everyday life as well.  Advertising o Making posters and commercials of their product with a celebrity we like. It makes us have positive emotions and want to buy the product.  Latent inhibition- is the difficulty to establish classical conditioning to a conditioned stimulus we have repeatedly experienced alone, that is, without the unconditioned stimulus.  Fears and Phobias o Little Albert  Watson pretty much conditioned the baby to be afraid of sounds and animals  In reality over time with classical conditioning we can overcome our fears.  Fetishes (sexual attraction to nonliving things) o It’s quite weird, but some people can develop them by the repeated paring of neutral objects with sexual activity.  Disgust Reactions o These reactions are usually tied o stimuli that are biologically important to us.  Like we see a picture of rotten eggs and we are disgusted because we can remember such a taste and smell. Operant Conditioning (instrumental conditioning) is when learning is controlled by the consequences of the organism’s behavior. Usually the behavior is followed by a reward. (training dolphins to do tricks then giving them treats). In the end the organism gets something out of it. Operants are the behaviors produced by the animal (dolphins’ tricks) Important differences between classical and operant conditioning: 1. Target behavior… a. In Classical Conditioning its elicited automatically (pulled out by the UCS and then the CS) (stake then the bell) (the UCR does not require training) b. In Operant Conditioning its emitted voluntarily 2. Reward is… a. CC – Provided unconditionally (dogs will get stake anyway) b. OC- Contingent on behavior (if the animal does not do the tricks, no treats) 3. Behavior depends primarily on… a. CC- autonomic nervous system (changes heart rate, breathing and other bodily systems) b. OC- Skeletal Muscles (motor behavior) The Law of Effect is a principle that asserts that if a stimulus followed by behavior results in a reward, the stimulus is more likely to give rise to the behavior in the future. Almost everything we do is believed to be derived from this effect. It’s the buildup of Stimulus and Response bonds due to the law of effect. (delicious hamburger makes us want to eat it, kissing our significant other makes us happy so we keep doing it)  Thorndike studied how a cat would respond to being placed in a box with a piece of fish outside. The only way to get out was pressing a lever or pulling a string in the box. Over time the cat did it faster but he thought it was more trial and error of C and R. o Cats learn by insight, which is when they grasp the underlying nature of the problem.  Skinner tried to do what Thorndike did but more complicated and evolved. He created the Skinner box, which was a small animal chamber that allowed sustained periods of conditioning to be administered and behaviors to be recorded unsupervised. o It electronically records the animal’s responses and prints out a graph. The box contained a bar that delivered food when pressed, a food dispenser and a light that signaled when a reward would come.  Reinforcement, Punishment and Discriminative Stimulus Reinforcement Any outcome that strengthens the probability of a response (REWARD) Positive reinforcement – administer a stimulus (giving a kid chocolate for picking up his toys) Negative reinforcement – take away a stimulus (ending a child’s time out when they stop whining) In BOTH there is usually an increase of the response. Punishment This is not negative reinforcement. Punishment is any outcome that weakens the probability of a response. Can be positive or negative Positive punishment is spanking, someone laughing at others, or physical shock (administers a stimulus) Negative punishment is the removal of a toy or article of clothing (taking away stimulus) Discipline is only punishment when it decreases the probability of a behavior. A kid is kicking the wall, the mother comes in and yells to stop. If he keeps going after she reinforced the behavior but if he stops then it’s really a punishment cause it stopped the behavior. Punishment usually works in the long run but Skinner believes that just with reinforcement we can change behavior. The disadvantages to punishments are:  Tells the organism what NOT to do, instead of what to do  Creates anxiety which can interfere with future learning  May encourage subversive behavior, lets people become sneakier in certain situations  From parents – can provide an example for children’s aggressive behavior o Physical punishment from parents leads to aggressive behavior in kids (at times, it’s not always definite) In the end punishment should not always be used, it should be used when necessary and right after the event. Parents that spank their kids in countries where it’s unacceptable and it doesn’t happen, those k ids develop more problems than kids in countries where spanking is more part accepted or at least done more often. Discriminative Stimulus Any stimulus that signals the presence of reinforcement (not stimulus discrimination) When we snap our fingers at a dog he will come to be pet. When a friend waves from across campus, we wave back. (It reinforces us) Acquisition, Extinction, Spontaneous Recovery, Stimulus Generalization and Stimulus Discrimination also have to do with operant conditioning. (look for definitions above)  In OP, Extinction happens when we stop giving reinforcers following a previously reinforced behavior. (when a kid cries if the parents give him the toy to quiet him he will learn that if he cries he will get the toy. If parents ignore his screams he will eventually quiet down.)  Stimulus Discrimination- example when pigeons were trained to discriminate between paintings of Monet and Picasso. They learn the difference of 2 different stimuli  Stimulus Generalization- the pigeons were able to tell impressionists artists whose styles were like Monet’s like Renoir over paintings from cubist artists similar to Picasso like Braque. Animals behavior differ depending on the schedule of reinforcement. That is the pattern of delivering reinforcement. Continuous reinforcement- we reinforce behavior every time it occurs (faster learning but faster extinction that only occasional reinforcement) Partial reinforcement- we reinforce responses only some of the time So if we want to train a dog to catch a Frisbee we should use partial reinforcement in hopes he will always catch it in hope to get a treat. 4 Major Reinforcement Schedules:  Consistency of administering reinforcement o Reinforcement occurs regularly or an irregular basis  Basis of administering reinforcement o Operate on ratio or interval schedules  Ratio- animal is reinforced on the basis of the number of responses it emits. (yield higher responses)  Fixed ratio schedule- we provide reinforcement after a regular number of responses (give dog a treat after rolling over 5 times) (or pay bonus for 5 touchdowns for a football player)  Variable ratio schedule- provide reinforcement after a specific number of responses on average, but the exact number of responses required during any given time is random (give the dog a treat every 20 min even if he only rolls once) (yields highest rate) (casino… slot machines and roulette wheels, etc.)  Interval- reinforced on the basis of the amount of time elapsed since the last reinforcement.  Fixed interval schedule- we provide reinforcement for producing the response at least once after a specific amount of time (pay a worker in a clock factory every Friday for the work she has don’t as long as she made one clock in that week.  Variable interval schedule- we provide reinforcement for producing the response after an average time interval, with the actual interval varying randomly. (dog has to do a trick with an average interval schedule of 8 min so he has to perform a trick in 6 min, then 2 min then 20 min… The average interval for all of these have to be 8 min) Applications of OC Shaping- conditioning a target behavior by progressively reinforcing behaviors that come closer and closer to the target. People train animals by Shaping their behavior. We gradually fade the reinforcing of close behaviors. Skinner’s principles are used to train service animals. How to overcome procrastination? (admit it we all need this) Instead of putting off stuff, think about fun things you can reward yourself after with… watching tv, hanging with friends, eating ice cream Superstitious behavior- actions linked to reinforcement by sheer coincidence. (pigeons feed in city parks) Over time we become dependent on superstitions. Lucky objects boost our self-confidence and help us do better. Human superstitions are not due entirely to OC but can be due to word of mouth. Therapeutic Applications of OC Can be applied in clinical settings as well. Secondary Reinforcers- neutral objects that become associated with a primary reinforcer Primary reinforcer- item or outcome that naturally increases the target behavior (like a food or drink) Token economy- system used for reinforcing appropriate behaviors and eliminating bas ones, teachers use this a lot (point chart) (can help a lot in hospitals, group homes and juvenile detention units) However they are controversial. Even though CC and OC are a bit similar, the forms of learning are associated with different brain regions. However, we use both to explain the persistency of anxiety disorders. Cognitive Psychology Skinner did not believe that thinking was different than behavior. However, now a day’s scientists do think learning is incomplete without the role of thinking. Instead of S-R (stimulus response) it’s now SOR (with the O being the organism interpreting the stimulus before responding). So in SOR the response is not automatic but it’s what the organism means to do. Edward Chase Tolman- suspected that reinforcement was not the be all and end all of learning. Latent learning- learning that is not directly observable Reinforcement is not necessary for learning. Once you have something to gain, you show what you have learned. Cognitive maps- mental representation of how a physical space is organized. (like college students on campus who have been here a while) Observational learning- learning by watching others. We learn by watching models (parents, teachers) (type of latent learning) Learning of aggression- study with a group of kids in a room watching an adult punch and scream at a Bobo doll and another group watches him ignore the doll. Then the kids are given toys to play with then asked to move to another room to frustrate them. The kids with the aggressive model started to copy him, the others did not. Mirror neuron- cells in the prefrontal cortex that become activated when an animal performs an action or observes it being performed (like when you see someone use an ATM machine that’s different than the one you use) (They only become activated with the action) Biological Influences on Learning  Conditioned taste aversions- if you get very ill after eating something you like; you won’t want to eat it again (develop after one trial)  Preparedness and phobias – usually phobias are from situations we have never experienced like heights, snakes and deep waters but very few people are scared of knives, ovens and electrical outlets even though many of us have been cut, burned or hurt by them. o We explain phobias with preparedness, an evolutionary predisposition to learn some pairings of feared stimuli over others owing to their survival value. (like steep cliffs or poisonous animals) (it’s like these things possessed a threat to our early ancestors but the others didn’t)  Instinctive draft- the tendency for animals to return to innate behaviors following repeated reinforcement. Learning Fads:  Sleep-Assisted Learning: learning new material while asleep (like brave new world) (does not work very well, no proof)  Accelerated Learning: supposedly allow people to pick up new information faster. (kind of an extraordinary claim)  Discovery Learning: giving students experimental materials and asking them to figure out the scientific principles on their own. o Direct instruction- when we tell the students how to solve the problems, more effective and efficient.  Learning Styles: an individuals preferred or optimal method of acquiring new information. o Reliability is a hard to assess. Most of us are a blend of multiple styles of learning (holistic, verbal, special, and analytical) Premack principle - preferred behaviors, or behaviors with a higher level of intrinsic (internal) reinforcement value. Used by ourselves on ourselves to modify behavior, by parents, teachers and researchers to modify the behavior of others, ... And can be used by you on others as well The key: whether applied to self or others is knowing what will motivate that individual or group First: What is the target behavior? Focus on just the behavior Then will you give something or take something to alter the behavior Did the behavior increase or decrease? Increase - reinforce decrease - punish Not about fun/not fun; happy/sad; good/bad


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