CLASSICALCONDITIONINGPavlov (1902) started from the ideathat there are some things that adog does not need to learn. Forexample, dogs don’t learn tosalivate whenever they see food.This reflex is ‘hard wired’ into thedog. In behaviorist terms, it is anunconditioned response (i.e. astimulus-response connection thatrequired no learning).
PAVLOV’S findings:• Stimulus Generation. Once the dog haslearned to salivate at the sound of the bell, itwill salivate at other similar sound.• Extinction. If you stop pairing the bell withfood, salivation will eventually cease inresponse to the bell.• Spontaneous Recovery. Extinguishedresponse can be recovered after an elapsedtime, but will soon extinguish again if the dogis not presented the food.
• Discrimination. The dog can learn to discriminatebetween familiar bells and discern which bell wouldresult in the presentation of food and which wouldnot.• Higher Order Conditioning. Once the dog has beenconditioned to associate the bell with food, anotherunconditioned stimulus, such as a light may beflashed at the same time that the bell is rung.Eventually the dog will salivate at the flash of the lightwithout the sound of the bell.
Pavlovs concept of Classical Conditioning wasutilized by John Watson to describe howhumans learn and how behavior can beinfluenced by controlling the stimulus in theenvironment. His famous experiment with"Little Abert" (YouTube) was a demonstrationof how human behavior can be conditioned.Watson viewed all behavior as learned, andurged parents to teach "correct" behavior totheir children. Scheduled feeding and theavoidance of bad habits (incorrect behavior)were some issues addressed in the pamphletsproduced to help parents raise their children.In 1920 he left John Hopkins and entered theadvertising industry. By 1924, he was vicepresident at J. Walter Thompson, one of thelargest ad agencies in the United States.Watson is recognized today as the "Father ofBehaviorism".
CONNECTIONISMTHEORYLearning is the result of associationsforming between stimuli and responses.Such associations or "habits" becomestrengthened or weakened by the natureand frequency of the S-R pairings. Theparadigm for S-R theory was trial anderror learning in which certain responsescome to dominate others due to rewards.The hallmark of connectionism (like allbehavioral theory) was that learningcould be adequately explained withoutreferring to any unobservable internalstates.
LAW OFEFFECTLAW OFEXCERCISELAW OFREADINESSStates that the connection between S-R isstrengthened when the consequence is positive andwhen the consequence is negative it weakensStates that the more an S-Rbond is practiced the strongerit will become.States that the more readiness thelearner has to respond to a stimulus ,the stronger the bond between them
Learning requires bothpractice and rewards (Lawof effect/exerciseA series of S-Rconnections can bechained together if theybelong to the same actionsequence. ( Law ofreadiness)Transfer of learning occurbecause of previouslyencountered situations.Intelligenceis a functionof the number ofconnection learned.PRINCIPLES DERIVEDFROM THORNDIKESCONNECTIONISM
OPERANTCONDITIONINGSkinner added his perspective on learning byintroducing his concept of OperantConditioning, with emphasis on the power ofreinforcement in learning. He continued tofocus on observable behavior and scientificstudy of how humans learn behavior.supported the premise that all behavior islearned and that behavior is goal directed.That goal is basically to seek pleasure and toavoid pain. In other words, a particularbehavior increases when the result ispleasurable; and the behavior will tend todecrease when the result is painful orunpleasant. A pleasant outcome refers to areinforcement, and a unpleasant outcomerefers to a punishment.
• Positive reinforcement: Strengthen response byproviding desirable rewardsEx: Token economy• Negative reinforcement: Strengthen response byremoving aversive stimuliEx: STUDENTS -early dismissal for good behavior• Punishment: Use aversive stimulus followingresponse to decrease likelihood of behavior in thefutureEx: student coming late will not be allowed tojoin a group work.TYPES OF REINFORCEMENT
• Extinction or Non reinforcement: responses thatare not reinforced are not likely repeated.Ex: ignoring student’s misbehavior mayextinguish that behavior.
Shaping BehaviorsBF Skinner used both positive and negative reinforcements (he was notreally into punishments) to change the behavior of both pigeons andrats. Now when Skinner tried to create a behavior in an animal it didnot happen at one time. He did it is small successive steps that hecalled shaping. For example, let’s say you want to teach your dog to gofetch your slippers from the closet and you wanted to use positivereinforcement to do so. You would first give your dog a treat when hegoes to your closet (that may take a couple of days). Then you wouldreinforce him again when he picks up your slippers. Then you give hima treat once again when he brings them to your feet. The idea is thatreinforcing all of these small actions is more effective than doing thewhole process at once; thus you are shaping the dogs behavior. Eachsuccessive action is called shaping the dog’s behavior, but linking eachaction to each other, in a particular order is calledChaining.
Schedule of reinforcementReinforcement can occur after every response, asituation called continuous reinforcement. It can alsooccur only after some responses, intermittentreinforcement. A response learned under the latterconditions is more resistant to extinction, aphenomenon called the partial reinforcement effect.
• fixed-ratio schedule: reinforcement after a setnumber of responses• variable-ratio schedule: reinforcement after avariable number of responses• fixed-interval schedule: reinforcement after thesame (fixed) interval of time has elapsed• variable-interval schedule: reinforcement after avariable interval of time has elapsed
By way of example, consider the implications of reinforcementtheory as applied to the development of programmedinstruction (Markle, 1969; Skinner, 1968) Practice should take the form of question (stimulus) - answer (response)frames which expose the student to the subject in gradual steps Require that the learner make a response for every frame and receiveimmediate feedback Try to arrange the difficulty of the questions so the response is alwayscorrect and hence a positive reinforcement Ensure that good performance in the lesson is paired with secondaryreinforcers such as verbal praise, prizes and good grades.
Principles Behavior that is positively reinforced will reoccur;intermittent reinforcement is particularly effective Information should be presented in small amounts so thatresponses can be reinforced ("shaping") Reinforcements will generalize across similar stimuli("stimulus generalization") producing secondaryconditioning
Strengths:1. It can be used to formulate behavioral contracts in the school aswell as at home.2. It is helpful in bringing about behavior modification (desiredoutcome) with the help of reinforcement, punishment andextinction.3. Cueing responses to behavior allows the learner to react in apredictable way under certain conditions.4. Success of outcomes is easily measurable.5. Guarantees specific learning.6. Ease of application.
Weaknesses:1. Some critics say that it is an extrapolation of animalbehavior to humans.2. Behaviorism fails to explain the development ofhuman languages.3. Effect of environment in shaping the behavior of ahuman, is not taken into account by the behaviorists.