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Psychology of Learning Flashcards

Psychology of Learning Flashcards
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Complex behaviors
Difficult or unnatural actions that can be brought about through shaping, such as a dolphin learning how to open a box
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Shaping
A behavioral training process that uses simple, incremental steps to build up to a more complex behavior, such as learning the shapes and sounds of individual letters before learning how to read
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Positive reinforcement
A consequence that reinforces a behavior through the reciept of a reward or some other kind of desirable outcome
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Negative reinforcement
A type of reinforcement that focuses on removing an unwanted outcome; this differs from punishment because it focuses on increasing a desirable behavior rather than decreasing an undesirable one
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Punishment
A facet of operant conditioning that uses a negative consequence to decrease the frequency of a certain response or behavior
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Operant conditioning
A behavioral psychology theory that states that behaviors are more likely to be repeated if they are rewarded, such as a dog receiving a treat for sitting on command
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Classical conditioning
A type of behavioral training that uses two simultaneous stimuli, such as the sound of a bell and the smell of food, to produce an involuntary reaction, such as salivating
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John Watson
A behaviorist who conducted an ethically questionable classical conditioning experiment in which an infant was trained to fear rats through exposure to loud noises
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Ivan Pavlov
A behaviorist who used classical conditioning to trigger salivation in laboratory dogs through the combination of the sound of a ringing bell and the presentation of food
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Flashcard Content Overview

Thanks to the efforts of psychologists like Ivan Pavlov, humans have a pretty good scientific understanding of how learning occurs and how certain processes, such as classical conditioning and operant conditioning, can affect behavior. If these words sound like gibberish to you now, this flashcard set will help you gain some clarity. When you get done studying these cards, you'll understand important concepts like negative and positive reinforcement, as well as shaping and scheduling reinforcement.

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Ivan Pavlov
A behaviorist who used classical conditioning to trigger salivation in laboratory dogs through the combination of the sound of a ringing bell and the presentation of food
John Watson
A behaviorist who conducted an ethically questionable classical conditioning experiment in which an infant was trained to fear rats through exposure to loud noises
Classical conditioning
A type of behavioral training that uses two simultaneous stimuli, such as the sound of a bell and the smell of food, to produce an involuntary reaction, such as salivating
Operant conditioning
A behavioral psychology theory that states that behaviors are more likely to be repeated if they are rewarded, such as a dog receiving a treat for sitting on command
Punishment
A facet of operant conditioning that uses a negative consequence to decrease the frequency of a certain response or behavior
Negative reinforcement
A type of reinforcement that focuses on removing an unwanted outcome; this differs from punishment because it focuses on increasing a desirable behavior rather than decreasing an undesirable one
Positive reinforcement
A consequence that reinforces a behavior through the reciept of a reward or some other kind of desirable outcome
Shaping
A behavioral training process that uses simple, incremental steps to build up to a more complex behavior, such as learning the shapes and sounds of individual letters before learning how to read
Complex behaviors
Difficult or unnatural actions that can be brought about through shaping, such as a dolphin learning how to open a box
Terminal behavior
The desired end result of the shaping process; this result is reached through a series of small steps that are rewarded when done properly
Reinforcement

A controlled, desirable consequence that is used to cause a person or animal to repeat a certain behavior or response.

Fixed ratio schedule
A type of partial reinforcement schedule that uses reinforcement only when a certain threshold of behavior repetition is reached, such as giving a dog a treat after it sits on command 3 times
Variable ratio schedule
A partial reinforcement schedule where reinforcement is granted randomly and unpredictably, such as a teacher occasionally giving stickers for good grades on tests when the mood strikes
Fixed interval schedule
A partial reinforcement schedule that grants reinforcement at specific points in time, such as an end-of-quarter bonus payment that corporate executives receive for increasing profits
Variable interval schedule
A partial reinforcement schedule in which rewards are given at random points in time, such as a video game offering bonus points to players on an unpredictable date each month
Taste aversion
Also known as the Garcia Effect, this is a biological response to a food or flavor that was formerly desirable but suddenly became undesirable after an illness or other unpleasant experience
Observational learning
A type of social behavioral modeling in which a person repeats behaviors they observe others doing; also known as 'monkey see, monkey do'
Insight learning
A form of problem-solving in which a person or animal experiences a sudden sense of clarity that had previously escaped them; this can also be called an 'aha moment'
Frontal lobe
The part of the brain that allows for planning, speech and coordinated movement

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