Module 20: Classical Conditioning

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associative learning

learning that certain events (two stimuli in classical conditioning) occur together.

classical conditioning

a type of learning in which an organism comes to associate stimuli. A neutral stimulus that signals an unconditioned stimulus (UCS) begins to produce a response that anticipates and prepares for the unconditioned stimulus.

learning

a relatively permanent change in an organism's behavior due to experience.

behaviorism

the view that psychology (1) should be an objective science that (2) studies behavior without reference to mental processes.Most research psychologists today agree with (1) but not with (2).

unconditioned response (UCR)

in classical conditioning, the unlearned, naturally occurring response to the unconditioned stimulus (UCS), such as salivation when food is in the mouth.

unconditioned stimulus (UCS)

in classical conditioning, a stimulus that unconditionally - naturally and automatically - triggers a response.

conditioned response (CR)

in classical conditioning, the learned response to a previously neutral conditioned stimulus (CS).

conditioned stimulus (CS)

in classical conditioning, an originally irrelevant stimulus that, after association with an unconditioned stimulus (UCS), comes to trigger a conditioned response.

acquisition

the initial stage in classical conditioning; the phase associating a neutral stimulus with an unconditioned stimulus so that the neutral stimulus comes to elicit a conditioned response.

extinction

the diminishing of a conditioned response; occurs in classical conditioning when an unconditioned stimulus (UCS) does not follow a conditioned stimulus (CS).

spontaneous recovery

the reappearance, after a rest period, of an extinguished conditioned response.

generalization

the tendency, once a response has been conditioned, for stimuli similar to the conditioned stimulus to elicit similar responses.

discrimination

in classical conditioning, the learned ability to distinguish between a conditioned stimulus and other stimuli that do not signal an unconditioned stimulus.

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