Topics in Learning Unit Defining Learning Classical Conditioning Operant Conditioning Cognitive Learning
Learning Learning is commonly defined as a long-lasting change in behavior resulting from experience Learning must result from experience as opposed to to an innate biological change Differences in behavior due to puberty, disease, or menopause are not considered learning
Classical Conditioning We can learn to associate neutral stimuli with stimuli that produces reflexive, involuntary responses. Eventually we will learn to respond to the neutral stimulus in the same way we responded to the original stimulus Example: Pavlov’s dogs.
Classical Conditioning The original stimulus that elicits a response is called the Unconditioned Stimulus (US) The response that the US elicits is called the Unconditioned Response (UR) The UR is a natural, involuntary response or reflex Example from Pavlov’s experiment for US and UR?
Classical Conditioning Over time a neutral stimulus can be paired with the US, natural association begins to take place Eventually if the neutral stimulus is paired with the US, the UR will begin to take place with only the neutral stimulus. The US is not even needed. If this takes place the Unconditioned response now becomes a Conditioned Response (CR) and the neutral stimulus become a Conditioned Stimulus (CS)
Classical Conditioning Once we begin to respond to a CS and a CR occurs, learning has happened. We have conditioned ourselves, or learned to respond to a CS This is called acquisition. A new behavior has been acquired
Classical Conditioning Learned behaviors can be unlearned. If a CR no longer elicits a CS the behavior is unlearned. This is called extinction Spontaneous recovery is when a learned behavior briefly reoccurs even though no further training or conditioning has taken place. Higher order, or Second level conditioning occurs when A neutral stimulus is paired with a CS and eventually elicits a CR
Classical Conditioning When similar CS elicit the same CR, it is known as generalization. If subjects can tell the difference between specific stimuli it is called discrimination Aversive conditioning is when a US is paired with a negative CS. Pain or other unpleasant feelings. We may acting a certain way to avoid an unpleasant stimulus
Operant Conditioning Operant Conditioning is a kind of learning based on the association of consequences with one’s behaviors. The Law of effect states that if the consequence of a behavior is pleasant, the stimulus-response connection will strengthen. If it is unpleasant, the opposite will happen.
Operant Conditioning As with classical conditioning, many animals were used in testing these ideas. B.F. Skinner created Skinner’s Box. He placed rats inside and there was a lever that when pushed, food would be dispensed. The behavior of awarding food for pressing the lever is a reinforcement for behavior. Food is the reinforcer.
Reinforcement Positive and Negative Positive Reinforcement is the addition of something pleasant. Negative reinforcement is the removal of something unpleasant. Food for pushing lever is positive reinforcement. Stopping a loud noise everytime lever is pushed in Negative reinforcement
Types of Reinforcers Primary and Secondary Primary Reinforcers are innately rewarding. Food, water, rest, etc are natural positive things. Secondary Reinforcers are learned pleasant objects of our desires. Money has no inherent value, but we as a society have given it value.
Punishment If behavior is affected by an unpleasant consequence, it is called Punishment. Positive Punishment is the addition of something unpleasant. (Spanking or extra chores) Negative Punishment is the removal of something pleasant (Taking away Phone or video games)
Reward and Reinforcement Frequency When initially teaching a new behavior, Continuous Reinforcement is most effective. However, to continue the behavior, using Partial Reinforcement is valuable. It keeps subjects guessing on when they will or will not get a reward. Awards and when they come can be scheduled in different ways.
Schedules If the number of responses (such as how many times a rat presses a lever) determines when a reward is given it is on a Ratio Schedule. If the passage of time between rewards determines when reward is given it is on an Interval Schedule. These patterns can either be on Fixed schedules or Variable Schedules.
Schedules A Fixed Ratio schedule provides reinforcement after set number of responses. FR-5 (Food dispensed after 5 presses) A Variable Ratio schedule changes on what press food is dispensed. If VR-5 it can happen at anytime but average # of presses will be 5. Also Fixed Interval and Variable Interval schedules
Cognitive Learning Classical conditioning => Learning by association Operant conditioning => Learning through reward reinforcements and punishments Researchers of Classical and Operant conditioning that learning is something that can happen without thought. (Learning without being aware you are learning)
Cognitive Learning Cognitive learning asserts that in classical and operant conditioning models there is a certain Cognitive element to learning. We are able to know, understand and anticipate while learning. We don’t learn unknowingly, according to cognitive theorists, but we may have certain expectations that shape our learning
Cognitive Learning Cognitive learning models suggest that classical conditioning happens because subjects respond to CS because they expect it to be followed by the US. Operant conditioning happens because of subjects awareness of positive/negative consequences and act in an according manner.(Better behavior for more rewards)
Observational Learning Observational Learning, or Modeling, is learning through observing others. Example: I watch Michael Jordan videos. I go out and try to mimic his actions on a basketball court. I was only able to mimic his on court behaviors because I first created a mental representation of what to do, then I attempted it.
Latent Learning Latent Learning is learning that only becomes obvious once a reinforcement is offered. Studied with rats in mazes. Rats would learn a maze. They were not offered a reward. This was repeated. Only when a reward was offered, would their time improve. This suggests the rats knew all along how to get through the maze faster but only completed maze quickly when they KNEW a reward was coming. Cognitive Maps of the maze were created (evidenced upon offer of reward)
Abstract Learning Abstract Learning was studied in a series of tests with pigeons. Pigeons would be shown a shape and then rewarded when they would peck the same shape when offered two choices. Pigeons could understand to pick shapes that would lead to a rewards. They were cognitively working through a problem.