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Cyber Rat: Application of Classical Conditioning

  • Describe the examples given in class of classical conditioning of the autonomic nervous system (smooth muscles and glands) as well as the examples given in class of classical conditioning of the somatic nervous system (striated muscles).

  • Describe conditioned suppression and how you calculate a suppression ratio.

  • What is contingency in a classical conditioning experiment?  What measures determine whether you have strong contingency or not?  What is a random control group?

  • What evidence is there that level of hunger/satiation can be conditioned?

  • Be able to describe the Garcia and Koellingexperiment demonstrating biological preparedness to associate certain CS and US's.   Which laws of the British Associationists did Pavlov provide empirical support for?
  • What do the symbols in the Rescorla-Wagner model (RWMOD) represent?  Which is the strength of the association, change in strength of association, asymptote, and salience of the CS and US?

  • Changes in what symbol would affect speed or rate of learning?  What determines the value of Vmax?

  • Be able to make simple calculations (as in your homework assignment) using the RWMOD.  What is Vmax on an extinction trial?

  • When there are compound stimuli presented on a trial, how is Vn calculated?  How do you calculate delta V on a compound trial for each stimuli’s association?  Does the compound presentation of stimuli affect either Vmax or c? What happens if the sum of associative strength of two stimuli presented on a compound trial exceeds Vmax?

  • Why does RWMOD suggest conditioning not occur to a secondary stimuli during a blocking experiment? (Be able to identify this not only from a verbal description but also by looking at calculations – ie what will Va+Vb equal in a blocking experiment that prevents learning from occurring.)

  • Why explanation does RWMOD provide for why there is no (or little) conditioning of the CS when CS and US presentations occur at random (how does it explain an organisms sensitivity to contingency)?  

  • What brain structure seems to be responsible for the acquisition of a conditioned response?  Which brain structure is responsible for the expression only of that learned response?
  • Who was Romanes and what was his contribution to the study of learning?

  • Describe Thorndike’s theory (including the law(s) of learning described in class).  What method did he devise for studying acquisition of learning?  Why did he argue that anecdotal evidence should be distrusted?

  • What Thorndike argue was learned?  What role did the gradual nature of the acquisition of the response play in his conclusion about what was learned?  

  • What was Watson’s major contribution to the field of Psychology?

  • Who was Skinner?  

  • What is positive reinforcement, negative reinforcement, positive punishment and negative punishment?

  • Describe operant conditioning. What does acquisition look like?  What does extinction look like?  What does spontaneous recovery look like?  Be able to graph.

  • What is an extinction burst?  
  • What is the consequence of delay of reinforcement?
  • What is a conditioned reinforcer?
  • What is shaping?
  • What does a cumulative response curve look like and how does it differ from an traditionally graphed acquisition curve?
  • What is meant by schedules of reinforcement?  Describe the 4 main schedules discussed in class and be able to describe or graph what their cumulative response curves would look like.
  • What is the partial reinforcement extinction effect (PREE)?

Cyber Rat

  • Describe the procedures used in the experiments 1-4.  
  • What is meant by habituation?  
  • What is the purpose of establishing baseline behaviors?  How can you use those baseline behaviors to direct your shaping of the rat?  
  • What is magazine training?  How did magazine training change the way your rat behaved between experiments 1 and 2?
  • What steps did you use in shaping your rat to bar press? 

Application of Classical Conditioning

  • Describe systematic desensitization, immersion therapy and aversion therapy.

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