Chapter 5 Terms and Definitions

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Section 1

Question Answer
LearningA relatively enduring change in behavior or thinking that results from experiences
HabituationA basic form of learning evident when an organism does not respond as strongly or as often to an event following multiple exposures to it
StimulusAn event or occurrence that generally leads to a response
Neutral StimulusA stimulus that does not cause a relevant automatic reflexive response
Classical ConditioningLearning process in which two stimuli become associated with each other; when an originally neutral stimulus is conditioned to elicit an involuntary resposne
Unconditioned Stimulus A stimulus that automatically triggers an involuntary response without any learning needed
Unconditioned ResponseA reflexive involuntary response to an unconditioned stimulus
Conditioned StimulusA previously neutral stimulus that an organism learns to associate with an unconditioned stimulus
Conditioned ResponseA learned response to a conditioned stimulus
Acquisition The initial learning phase in both classical and operant conditioning
Stimulus GeneralizationThe tendency for stimuli similar to the conditioned stimulus to elicit the conditioned response
Stimulus DiscriminationThe ability to differentiate between a conditioned stimulus and other stimuli sufficiently different from it
Extinction In classical conditioning the process by which the CR decreases after repeated exposure to the CS in the absence of the US; in operant conditioning, the disappearance of a learned behavior through the removal of its reinforcer
Spontaneous RecoveryIn classical conditioning, the reappearance of the conditioned response following its extinction; occurs in response to the conditioned stimulus after a period of rest
Higher Order ConditioningWith repeated pairings of a conditioned stimulus and a neutral stimulus, the second neutral stimulus becomes a conditioned stimulus as well

Section 2

Question Answer
Conditioned Taste Aversion A form of classical conditioning that occurs when an organism learns to associate the taste of a particular food or drink with illness
Adaptive ValueThe degree to which a trait or behavior helps an organism survive
Biological PrepardnessThe tendency for animals to be predisposed or inclined to form associations
Conditioned Emotional ResponseAn emotional reaction acquired through classical conditioning; process by which an emotional reaction becomes associated with a previously neutral stimulus
Operant ConditioningLearning that occurs when voluntary actions become associated with their consequences
Law of EffectThorndikes Principle stating that behaviors are more likely to be repeated when followed by pleasurrable outcomes, and those followed by unpleasant outcomes are less likely to be repeated
Reinforcers Consequences, such as events or objects, that increase the likelihood of a behavior reoccuring
ReinforcementProcess by which an organism learns to associate a voluntary behavior with its consequences
Behaviorism The scientific study of observable behavior
ShapingThe use of reinforcers to guide behavior to the acquisition of a desired complex behavior
Successive ApproximationA method of shaping that uses reinforcers to condition a series of small steps that gradually approach the target behavior
Instinctive DriftThe tendency for animals to revert to instinctual behaviors after a behavior pattern has been learned
Positive ReinforcementThe process in which pleasant reinforcers are added or presented following the targeted behavior, increasing the likelihood of it occurring again
Negative ReinforcementThe removal of an unpleasant stimulus following a target behavior, which increases the likelihood of it occurring again

Section 3

Question Answer
Primary ReinforcerA reinforcer that satisfies a biological need such as food, water, physical contact; innate reinforcer
Secondary ReinforcerReinforcers that do not satisfy biological needs but often gain their power through their association with primary reinforcers
Continuous ReinforcementA schedule of reinforcement in which every target behavior in reinforced
Partial ReinforcementA schedule of reinforcement in which target behaviors are reinforced intermittently, not continuously
Partial Reinforcement EffectThe tendency for behaviors acquired through intermittent reinforcement to be more resistant to extinction than those acquired through continuous reinforcement
Fixed Ratio Schedule A schedule in which the subject must exhibit a predetermined number of desired behaviors before a reinforcer is given
Variable Ratio Schedule A schedule in which the number of desired responses or behaviors that must occur before a reinforcer is given changes across trials and is based on an average number of responses reinforced
Fixed Interval ScheduleA schedule in which the reinforcer comes after a preestablished interval of time goes by; the response or behavior is only reinforced after the given interval is over
Variable Interval Schedule A schedule in which the reinforcer comes after an interval of time goes by, but the length of the interval changes from trial to trial
PunishmentThe application of a consequence that decreases the likelihood of a behavior recurring
Positive PunishmentThe addition of something unpleasant following an unwanted behavior, with the intention of decreasing that behavior
Negative PunishmentThe removal of something desirable following ab unwanted behavior, with the intention of decreasing the behavior
ModelThe individual or character whose behavior is being imitated
Observational LearningLearning that occurs as a result of watching the behavior of others
Prosocial BehaviorsActions that are kind, generous and benefit others
Cognitive MapThe mental image of the layout of physical space
Latent LearningLearning that occurs without awareness and regardless of reinforcement, and is not evident until needed

Section 4