Pavlov Theory - Conditioned Response Essay

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Pavlov Theory - Conditioned Response

A commonly heard word within psychology is “conditioning”, where does it come from and what does it mean? Conditioning is simply a form of learning, specifically learning through association. Conditioning is used in many experiments as I will discuss later. Classical conditioning was stumbled upon by accident by Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov. After he earned his medical degree in 1882 he spent many years studying the digestive system of many animals. By the year 1904 Pavlov had won the Nobel Prize for all of his research in that field.

While studying the digestive system he had a dog strapped down with a harness, and fed it different types of food. While doing this he had a tube that was
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There are a few principles of learning which can take place, they are acquisition, extinction, generalization, and discrimination. Acquisition is the term used for learning. This means that the animal does not learn within seconds, it takes a couple of pairings for it to learn to associate them as a singe event. To achieve acquisition to the maximum potential the food should come within one second of the bell or other stimulus.

Another principle of conditioning is extinction. This is when the stimulus is not followed by a response, would the dog continue to salivate if a bell is rung but no food was put in front of him? The answer is no it would not, because it would have now re-learned to have no response simply because no response is known to that stimulus. One understanding within extinction is that it is not gone forever, meaning that if at a later time the dog was returned to the harness and had the bell rung with food given immediately after, it would then relearn to respond to only the bell within much less time than the first session. This bounce back effect is known as spontaneous recovery.
The third principle of conditioning is generalization. Generalization is when the dog responded to a different bell with a similar tone yet not identical. The most well known example of generalization is the boy known as little Albert. Little Albert was condition to fear a harmless rat by psychologist John
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