How do we learn?


Chapter six of the book focused on learning. It mentions various forms of learning however the one I found to be most interesting was one called classical conditioning.

Classical Conditioning is a way of learning in which a stimulus that previously provided a neutral response, later provides an automatic response when combined with another stimulus. The person who discovered this process was a Russian scientist named Ivan Pavlov. An example talked about in the book that explains this type of learning is shown in the picture below:

As you can see before the conditioning starts the dog does not react at all to to the sound of the tuning fork this is the neutral stimulus. An unconditioned stimulus (UCS), a stimulus that provides an automatic response or unconditioned response (UCR), in this case the food is paired up with the initial neutral stimulus multiple times. After this is done, the next time the tuning fork rings, the dog will automatically salivate even if there is no food involved, this is called a conditioned response (CR).


The picture is very interesting and very helpful in not only training an animal but also in our reaction training as peoople.

This chapter, and conditioning, seem fascinating. It's understandable that an animal or person who has been accustomed to two things occurring with one another would assume or feel that it is inevitable that both will happen when one part is displayed before them.

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This page contains a single entry by garci494 published on January 23, 2012 11:07 PM.

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