Classical and Operant Conditioning

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Classical and Operant Conditioning QUESTION ONE Classical conditioning is a technique of learning that occurs when an unconditional stimulus is paired with a conditional stimulus. The unconditional stimulus is biologically potent, the conditional stimulus is neutral (Kalat, 2011). Example of each is taste of food and sound of tuning fork respectively. After repeated pairing, the organism exhibits a conditional response to the conditional stimulus. The conditional response is similar to the unconditioned response though it is relatively impermanent and is acquired through experience (Kalat, 2011). Operant conditioning is a system of learning that transpires through punishment and rewards for behaviors (Kalat, 2011). Through this, a connection linking a behavior and a consequence is made. For instance a kid could be told that she will not get recess privileges if she talks in class. This possibility of being punished leads to decrease in disruptive behaviors from her. The major components of operant condition are punishment and reinforcement (Kalat, 2011). Contrasting the two, operant was first described by an American psychologist while classical conditioning was described by a Russian psychologist. Another key dissimilarity involves the kinds of behaviors that are conditional (Weseley, McEntarffer, & McEntarffer, 2010). Whilst classical conditioning is based on automatic and involuntary behaviors, operant conditioning focuses on intentional behaviors. Operant conditioning focuses on strengthening or weakening voluntary behaviors while classical conditioning specializes on involuntary and automatic behaviors. Classical conditioning involves placing a conditional stimulus which is a impartial signal prior to a reflex whi... ... middle of paper ... ...ional in controlling visceral responses like heartbeat, intestinal contractions and dilation of blood vessels. This can be helpful in treating people with high blood pressure. References Coon, D., Mitterer, J. O., Talbot, S., & Vanchella, C. M. (2010). Introduction to psychology: Gateways to mind and behavior. Belmont, Calif: Wadsworth Cengage Learning. Kalat, J. W. (2011). Introduction to psychology. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning. Nevid, J. S. (2012). Essentials of psychology: Concepts and applications. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning. Nevid, J. S. (2013). Psychology: Concepts and applications. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning. Weiten, W. (2012). Psychology: Themes and variations. Belmont, Calif: Cengage/Wadsworth. Weseley, A., McEntarffer, R., & McEntarffer, R. (2010). AP® psychology. Hauppauge, N.Y: Barron's Educational Series.

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