LEARNING Chapter 5 Introduction Learning: process by which expertise or practice result in relatively permanent change in behavior or potential behavior Encompasses classroom learning and studying, but also covers other forms of learning like turning off the lights when you leave a room, locking the door when you leave the house and learning how to dance Conditioning: acquisition of specific patterns of behavior in the presence of well-defined stimuli Basic form of learning EX: a dog getting their leash when their owner puts on their shoes Dog knows that they are going for a walk because of past experiences CLASSICAL CONDITIONING Section 1 Pavlov’s Conditioning Experiments Classical conditioning was discovered on accident by Ivan Pavlov (1849-1936) Russian physiologist who was studying digestive processes Wanted to measure how much a dog would salivate when food was paced in their mouths so he placed tubes into the salivary glands Noticed that the dogs would salivate when they heard the feeders footsteps and before they were even fed Changed experiment and set out to teach dogs to salivate when a bell was sounded before they were fed Learned to salivate at the sounds of the bell Elements of Classical Conditioning Classical conditioning involves pairing a response that is usually triggered from one stimuli with a different neutral stimuli Pavlov’s experiment illustrated the 4 basic elements of Classical Conditioning Unconditional Stimulus (US): stimulus that causes an organism to respond a specific way EX: Food Unconditional Response (UR): a response that takes place in an organism whenever an unconditional stimulus occurs EX: salivation Classical Conditioning is also know as Pavlovian Conditioning Reflexive behaviors happen because of a neutral stimuli EX: when you get anxious during a scary movie because you have heard the same eerie music in other scary movies Classical conditioning is contrasted with Operant Conditioning or Instrumental Conditioning Selected behaviors are practiced to gain a reward or avoid punishment EX: teaching a dog to sit and then rewarding them with a treat Will sit again to receive another reward Conditioned Stimulus (CS): originally neutral stimulus that is paired with an unconditional stimulus and eventually produces desired response in an organism when presented alone EX: ringing bell Conditioned Response (CR): after conditioning, the response an organism produces when only a conditioned stimulus presented EX: hearing the bell and then salivating Classical Conditioning in Humans Human beings learn behaviors through classical conditioning Irrational fears and anxieties are learned or conditioned Cats, spiders, snakes, heights, closed spaces Wolpe discovered that they could be unlearned or conditioned Desensitization Therapy: conditioning technique designed to gradually reduce anxiety about a particular object or situation Step 1: teaches patient deep muscle relaxation techniques Step 2: Construct a list of situations that cause a variety of levels of fear and anxiety Rate them form 1-100 Step 3: enter into deep relaxation and imagine the least stressful situation and work their way up Classical Conditioning is Selective Humans must be prepared to develop fear responses and phobias for survival Likely to be scared of heights and falling and dying them about a flower Preparedness also underlies conditioned Food (or Taste) Aversion Conditioned avoidance of certain foods id there is only one pairing of conditioned and unconditioned stimuli Only need to get sick from food poisoning to not eat that food again OPERANT CONDITIONING Elements of Operant Conditioning Operant Behavior: behavior designed to operate on the environment in a way that will gain some kind of desired or avoid something unpleasant Edward Lee Thorndike (1874-1949) American psychologist and educator Cat and Puzzle Box Experiment Put hungry cats in a box where they could see and smell their food Each time the cat would be placed in the box it would take less and less time to get out of the box to eat Reinforcer: stimulus that follows a behavior and increases the likelihood that the behavior would be repeated Punishers: stimulus that follows a behavior and decreases the likelihood that the behavior will be repeated Law of Effect: Thorndike’s theory that behavior consistently rewarded will be “stamped in” as a learned behavior, and behavior that brings about discomfort will be “stamped out” Also, known as principle of reinforcement Types of Reinforcement Positive and Negative Reinforcement Positive Reinforcements: any event whose presence increases the likelihood that an ongoing behavior will occur Adds something EX: food, pleasant music, anything rewarding Negative Reinforcements: any event whose reduction or termination increases the likelihood that ongoing behavior will recur Subtract something unpleasant EX: Animal learning to press a button to open a cage door to escape loud noises Punishment Punishment: any event whose presence decreases the likelihood that ongoing behavior will recur EX: fine for speeding or littering Punishments should be… Effective, it must be imposed properly Swift—be punished right away Sufficient—make sure punishment sis proportionate to action Consistent—punish each and every time they misbehave Significant drawbacks to punishments Punishments only suppress behavior—doesn’t teach more desirable behavior Punishments often stir up unpleasant emotions that can impede learning the behavior we want to be substituted EX: when children are scolded fro mispronouncing a word child may become frightened and confused and then they may mispronounce more words because they are distracted Punishments may convey the notion that inflicting pain on other is justified As a method for controlling behavior, punishment is one of the least pleasant options because it is ineffective and can have negative side effects Avoidance Training: learning a desirable behavior to prevent the occurrence of something unpleasant such as punishment Operant Conditioning is Selective Some behaviors are easier to train than others Leaning was most successful in situation that would occur in natural training sessions EX: eating with silverware v. hands Superstitious Behavior Humans learn superstitions through Operant Conditioning EX: If we are wearing a pair of shoes and win a basketball game you might want to wear those shoes to every game Learned Helplessness Learned Helplessness: failure to take steps to avoid or escape from an unpleasant or averse stimulus that occurs as a result of previous exposure to unavoidable painful stimuli EX: children raised in abusive homes where punishment is unrelated to child’s behavior often developed a sense of powerlessness Even when child is removed from environment and in a relatively normal environment the child still remains listless, passive and indifferent Little attempt to seek reward or avoid discomfort COMPARING OPERANT AND CLASSICAL CONDITIONING Section 3 Response Acquisition Classical Conditioning Requires repeated pairings of Conditioned Stimulus and Unconditioned stimulus Each pairing builds on the learners pervious experience Response Acquisition: the “building phase” of conditioning during which the likelihood or strength of the desired response increases Each pairing of Conditioned Stimulus and Unconditioned Stimulus is called a trial For the best learning trials should occur and a consistent interval of time...not too many to close together or far apart Operant Conditioning Most difficult but the behavior taught is usually a voluntary trail such as not talking while someone else is talking Need to wait until the subject lands on the correct response on their own Can be a slow process There are ways to speed up the process and make it more likely that the desired response will happen Increase motivation Reduce or eliminate the opportunities for making the wrong choice Shaping: reinforcing successive approximations to a desired behavior Rewarding each step in learning a behavior and setting the expectations a little higher each time EX: reward for being to class on time, then a reward for being to class on time and in uniform, finally a reward for being to class on time, in uniform and working on the Do Now Extinction and Spontaneous Recovery How long does a learned behavior last, and once lost can it be recovered? Classical Conditioning Extinction: a decrease in the strength or frequency of a learned response because of failure to continue pairing the Unconditioned Stimulus and Conditioned Stimulus (Classical Conditioning) or withholding of reinforcement (operant conditioning) Eventually you are desensitized, or no longer sensitize to certain things after experiencing them so much Spontaneous Recovery: the reappearance of an extinguished response after the passage of time, without further training Extinction does not erase conditioned responses, extinction occurs because new learning interferes with pervious learned response We overcome this interference with renewal effect Operant Conditioning Extinction happens when the reinforcement is being withheld Does not result in immediate decrease in frequency Extinction does not erase the response forever Spontaneous recovery may occur Will advert back to pervious behaviors but is capable of still demonstrating learned behavior The stronger the original learning the longer it takes to stop action from being preformed The greater the variety of settings in which learning takes place the harder to extinguish Behaviors learned through punishment rather than reinforcement are especially harder to distinguish Generalization and Discrimination Classical Conditioning Remember the Little Albert and white rat experiment? Later tried to show him a white RABBIT and he was still frightened, cried and tried to crawl away Stimulus Generalization: the transfer of a learned response to a different but similar stimuli Albert was afraid of the rabbit because it looked like the white rat Stimulus Discrimination: learning to respond to only one stimulus and to inhabit the response to all other stimuli If they would have given Albert the white rat, rabbit, cotton balls and other white fluffy things and only made the loud sound when he touched the rat he would be able to discriminate the only “scary” item as the rat Operant Conditioning Stimulus Generalization EX: the skills you learn in ping pong you may generalize when playing badminton or tennis Response Generalization: giving a response that is somewhat different from the response originally learned form the stimulus EX: a baby who called everyone “mama” might start using word like “gaga” and “baba” because they should similar—generalized as the same thing Discrimination Only reinforcing a very specific response and only in the presence of a specific stimulus EX: only showing praise to a baby that says “mama” will stop saying gaga and baba New Learning Based on Original Learning Higher-Order Conditioning in Classical Conditioning Conditioning based on pervious learning; the conditioned stimulus serves as an unconditioned stimulus for further training EX: Pavlov was able to get his dogs to salivate at the sight of a black square Originally they would salivate when they heard bell but now he would show them a black square and then ring the bell The black square became the object that made them salivate not the bell Difficult to achieve because it races against extinction Secondary Reinforces in Operant Conditioning Primary Reinforcer: a reinforcer that is rewarding in itself, such as food and water Secondary Reinforcer: a reinforcer whose value is acquired through association with other primary or secondary reinforcer EX: money Just holding the paper doesn’t do much for you, but being able to buy things is what you want money for Contingencies Classical Conditioning Contingency: reliable “if- then” relationship between 2 events such as Conditioned Stimulus and Unconditioned Stimulus EX: If I hear a loud sound and get shocked but sometimes when I hear the sound I don’t get shocked, then I will be startled every time I hear a loud sound Blocking: a process whereby conditioning prevents conditioning to a second stimulus even when the two stimuli are presented simultaneously EX: if you add a flash of light to the above example they only showed fear when the heard the sound…they had be conditioned to be scare of the sound not the later added light Operant Conditioning Schedule of Reinforcement Schedule of Reinforcement: in operant conditioning, the rule for determining when and how often reinforcers will be delivered A fixed-Interval Correct response is reinforced after a fixed length of time since the last reinforcement EX: Midterms and final exams—student stress peak right before them and hten drop dramatically when they are over Variable-Interval Schedule Reinforced after varying lengths of time following the last reinforcement EX: giving students candy at different time periods with no pattern in mind Fixed-Ratio Schedule Reinforced after a fixed number of correct response EX: getting paid only for working 4 hr shifts. Work less then 4 hrs don’t get paid and if you work 6hrs you only get paid for one 4 hr shift Variable-Ratio Schedule Varying number of correct responses must occur before reinforcement is presented EX: Casino slot machine You will win but you have no idea of when There is always a chance of hitting a jackpot so the temptation to play is high COGNITIVE LEARNING Section 4 Latent Learning and Cognitive Maps Cognitive Learning: learning that depends on mental processes that are not directly observable How we learn our way around building or neighborhood, we learn what to expect from a given situation, abstract concepts, etc Latent Learning: learning that is not immediately reflected in a behavior change Learn something but don’t use it right away…use it later on when it makes sense to use it Cognitive Map: learned mental image of a spatial environment that may be called on to solve problems when stimuli is the environment change Insight and Learning Sets Insight: learning that occurs rapidly as a result of understanding all the element of a problem The sudden coming together of elements of a situation “oohhhh that makes sense now” moments Pervious learning can also be used to speed up new learning Learning sets: ability to become increasingly more effective in solving problems as more problems are solved With practice and experience problem solving becomes easier and easier Learning by Observing Many psychologists believe that leaning comes form conditioning Others believe that is stems from social learning theories Social Learning Theory: emphasizes that ability to learn by observing a model or receiving instructions, without firsthand experience by the learner We cam learn a behavior without ever doing it Observational Learning: learning by observing other peoples behavior By watching someone else do something we can do it to Vicarious Reinforcement and Vicarious Punishment Reinforcement or punishment experiences by model that affects the willingness of other to perform behaviors they learn by observing those models Will or will no do something because of the consequences that are experienced by others Bandura’s Experiment in Learned Aggressive Behavior Watch video answer following questions 1. 2. 3.