A lasting change in behavior or mental processes that results from experience.
Learning not to respond to the repeated presentation of a stimulus.
Mere exposure effect
A learned preference for stimuli to which we have been previously exposed - whether we were aware of the stimulus or not.
Forms of learning, such as classical conditioning and operant conditioning, that can be described in terms of stimuli and responses.
A form of behavioral learning in which a previously neutral stimulus acquires the power to elicit the same innate reflex produced by another stimulus.
Any stimulus that produces no conditioned response prior to learning. When it is brought into a conditioning experiment, the researcher will call it a conditioned stimulus (CS).
Unconditioned stimulus (UCS)
In classical conditioning, the stimulus that elicits and unconditioned response.
Unconditioned response (UCR)
In classical conditioning, the response elicited by an unconditioned stimulus without prior learning.
The initial learning stage in classical conditioning, during which the conditioned response comes to be elicited by the conditioned stimulus.
Conditioned stimulus (CS)
In classical conditioning, a previously neutral stimulus that comes to elicit the conditioned response. Customarily, in a conditioning experiment, the neutral stimulus is called a conditioned stimulus when it is first paired with an unconditioned stimulus (UCS).
Conditioned response (CR)
In classical conditioning, a response elicited by a previously neutral stimulus that has become associated with the unconditioned stimulus.
Extinction (in classical conditioning)
The weakening of a conditioned response in the absence of an unconditioned stimulus.
The reappearance of an extinguished conditioned response after a time delay.
The extension of a learned response to stimuli that are similar to the conditioned stimulus.
A change in responses to one stimulus but not to stimuli that are similar.
A pattern of erratic behavior resulting from a demanding discrimination task, particularly one that involves aversive stimuli.
A biological tendency in which an organism learns, after a single experience, to avoid a food with a certain taste, if eating it is followed by illness.
An observable, voluntary behavior that an organism emits to "operate" on, or have an effect on, the environment.
A form of behavioral learning in which the probability of a response is changed by its consequences - that is, by the stimuli that follow the response.
Law of effect
The idea that responses that produced desirable results would be learned, or "stamped" into the organism.
A condition (involving either the presentation or removal of a stimulus) that occurs after a response and strengthens that response.
A stimulus presented after a response and increasing the probability of that response happening again.
The removal of an unpleasant or aversive stimulus, contingent on a particular behavior.
A boxlike apparatus that can be programmed to deliver reinforcers and punishers contingent on an animal's behavior; often called a "Skinner box."
Relationships between a response and the changes in stimulation that follow the response.
A type of reinforcement schedule by which all correct responses are reinforced; the best strategy for teaching and learning new behaviors.
An operant learning technique in which a new behavior is produced by reinforcing responses that are similar to the desired response.
A type of reinforcement schedule by which some, but not all, correct responses are reinforced; the most efficient way to maintain behaviors that have already been learned.
Extinction (in operant conditioning)
A process by which a response that has been learned is weakened by the absence or removal of reinforcement.
Schedules of reinforcement
Programs specifying the frequency and timing of reinforcements.
A program by which reinforcement depends on the number of correct responses.
A program by which reinforcement depends on the time interval elapsed since the last reinforcement.
Fixed ratio (FR) schedule
Programs by which reinforcement is contingent on a certain, unvarying number of responses.
Variable ratio (VR) schedules
Reinforcement programs by which the number of responses required for a reinforcement varies from trial to trial.
Fixed interval (FI) schedule
Programs by which reinforcement is contingent on a certain, fixed time period.
Variable interval (VI) schedules
Programs by which the time period between reinforcements varies from trial to trial.
Reinforcers, such as food and water, that have an innate basis because of their biological value to an organism.
Stimuli, such as money or tokens, that acquire their reinforcing power by a learned association with primary reinforcers.
A therapeutic method, based on operant conditioning, by which individuals are rewarded with tokens, which act as secondary reinforcers. The tokens can be redeemed for a variety of rewards and privileges.
The concept, developed by David Premack, that a more-preferred activity can be used to reinforce a less-preferred activity.
An aversive stimulus which, occurring after a response, diminishes the strength of that response.
The application of an aversive stimulus after a response.
Omission training/negative punishment
The removal of an appetitive stimulus after a response, leading to a decrease in behavior.
A form of cognitive learning, originally described by the Gestalt psychologists, in which problem solving occurs by means of a sudden reorganization of perceptions.
A mental representation of physical space.
A form of cognitive learning in which new responses are acquired after watching others' behavior and the consequence of their behavior.
A biological process, involving physical changes that strengthen the synapses in groups of nerve cells, which is believed to be the neural basis of learning.