Classical Conditioning vs. Operant Conditioning: Differences and Examples


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A conditioned response to a stimulus that is similar to the conditioned stimulus, but not exactly the same, is called _____.

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1. A pigeon receives a seed each time it pecks an electronic button on a device. If the button were to be turned off, the pigeon will peck at the button again and again, although no food comes out of the device. This is an example of _____.

2. Your young daughter had never feared spiders. But after seeing you screech and react in fear a few times when a spider appeared in the house, she now cries whenever she sees a spider. This is an example of _____.

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About this Quiz & Worksheet

Check your comprehension of the fundamental terms associated with classical and operant conditioning with this worksheet/quiz combo. Several questions will ask you to read an example and select the correct term that describes that instance.

Quiz & Worksheet Goals

With these assessments, students will need to understand examples of the following terms:

  • Positive and negative reinforcement
  • Classical conditioning
  • Extinction burst
  • Stimulus generalization
  • Operant conditioning
  • Spontaneous recovery

Skills Practiced

This quiz and worksheet will test these skills:

  • Defining key concepts - make certain that you can correctly define the key terms related to conditioning
  • Distinguishing differences - Look at examples and distinguish between the types of stimuli and reinforcement
  • Knowledge application - use your knowledge to answer questions about examples of different types of conditioning

Additional Learning

To find out more about classical and operant conditioning, watch the complementary video lesson called Classical Conditioning vs. Operant Conditioning: Differences and Examples. You will gain a deeper understanding about:

  • When classical conditioning occurs
  • What operant conditioning involves
  • Types of reinforcement and punishment
  • The term extinction
  • Differences between extinction burst, spontaneous recovery, and stimulus generalization