Schedules of Reinforcement

Schedules of reinforcement

A schedule of reinforcement is a rule that dictates how and when reinforcement is delivered during operant conditioning training. These schedules outline when to present or remove a reinforcer based on how much time has elapsed or how many responses have occurred. Each of these schedules of reinforcement produces distinct patterns of responding. The type … Read more

What Is Operant Conditioning?

Reward charts are an example of operant conditioning.

Operant conditioning is a learning process in which the consequences of an action determine the likelihood that the behavior will occur again in the future. This type of learning by association involves the use of reinforcement or punishment to either increase or decrease the chances that a behavior will occur again.  In this article, learn … Read more

What Is Classical Conditioning?

Classical conditioning.

Classical conditioning is a type of associative learning that takes place unconsciously. It works by associating one stimulus with something else that already leads to a response. After an association is formed, the new stimulus will start to produce the same response. The process was first described by a Russian physiologist named Ivan Pavlov. He … Read more

B. F. Skinner: Biography and Theories

B. F. Skinner was born on March 20, 1904. He went on to become an influential psychologist who first described the learning process known as operant conditioning. Skinner played a pivotal role in behaviorism, a school of thought that suggested that all behavior was learned through conditioning processes.  Skinner referred to himself as a radical … Read more

What Is Behaviorism?

Behaviorism is often used in educational and therapy settings.

Behaviorism is a theory of human psychology that suggests that all behaviors are acquired through conditioning. According to this approach to psychology, it is our interactions with our environments that shape what we learn, who we are, and how we act. Behaviorism rose to prominence early in the 20th century. During that time, psychologists strove … Read more

Differences Between Classical vs Operant Conditioning

Training with classical vs operant conditioning

Classical conditioning vs operant conditioning? What exactly are the differences between these two types of learning? Both classical conditioning and operant are central to behaviorism, but students often get confused about the differences between the two. Use this study guide to familiarize yourself with some of the major topics related to classical and operant conditioning … Read more

Stimulus Generalization: A Definition With Examples

Stimulus generalization with the sound of a bell

Stimulus generalization occurs when an organism responds to a stimulus in the same way that it responds to a similar stimulus. This occurs during the classical conditioning process. For example, imagine that a dog has been conditioned to run to its owner when it hears a whistle. The dog exhibits the same response when it … Read more

Acquisition In Psychology: Definition With Examples

Acquisition refers to an early stage of the learning process during which time a response is first established. At this point in learning, the subject will begin displaying the behavior when a stimulus is presented, so we can then say that the behavior has been acquired. In classical conditioning, acquisition refers to when the previously … Read more

Shaping: How Is It Used In Psychology?

Shaping behavior

Have you ever gone to a circus or other event and watched animals perform amazing tricks? Do you ever wonder exactly how the trainers managed to get these animals to do things that they would never do on their own? The key to getting these creatures to engage in these behaviors is a behavioral technique … Read more