Understanding Operant Conditioning: Rewards and Punishments

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Definition of operant conditioning Operant conditioning, which is called instrumental conditioning; similar to ontogenetic selection (B.F. Skinner), is a type of learning to obtain an achieved behavior as goal-oriented; strengthens behavior through rewards or punishments. These rewards and punishments that control behaviors are antecedents (discriminative stimuli) signaling those consequences. All life forms strive for goal-oriented conditioning The bacterium finds its way, somewhat inefficiently, up a chemical gradient; the dog begs for a bone; the politician reads the polls to guide his campaign (Wikipedia). The examples given are known as ontogenetic selection that is guided by consequences through a lifeform 's life. Positive/negative …show more content…

Reinforcements (antecedents) affect one’s behavior by enhancing or suppressing it. Positive reinforcements (Rewards) such as a prized or fulfillment of joy may be given the occurrence of a wanted stimulus, following a response, that acts to increase the frequency of that response (Milhollan & Forisha, 1972); a kindness award given to a student for displaying kindness to other students. A negative reinforce - The termination of an aversive stimulus, following a response, that acts to increase the frequency of that response (Milhollan & Forisha, 1972). Negative reinforcement can best be seen through a child and a messy room, the child suffers being nagged until the specified behavior has been achieved (cleaning his/her room); the nagging decreases as the child increasingly continues to clean his room more. Through the prior example, a significant term has risen, learning; continued praise will result in a learned behavior from operant conditioning. Negative reinforcement may be considered a learned behavior. The negativity from a wrong doing will push a learned behavior that the continued behavior away from a specified behavior equals to more unnecessary …show more content…

In general, a consequence is called a reinforce if it strengthens the behavior that led to it, and it is a punisher if it weakens that behavior. The use of punishment has several negative side effects including the risk of causing serious physical harm, inducing fear or hostility (the child might develop a fear of all dogs after being bitten), and the failure to learn the correct response in the particular situation (Carlson & Buskist, 1997). A form of punishment to consider is removal of an important stimulus such as the removal of social media. Removing a teen from interactive activity is considered the punishment. Behavior Shaping Shaping is reinforcing successive action of a desired behavior. Chaining is one response to the continuous of another response. Most behaviors occur in chains. Saying the letters of the alphabet is an example. The letter A acts as the discriminative stimulus to produce the next response, saying the letter B, and so on (Milhollan & Forisha, 1972). Token

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that instrumental conditioning, similar to ontogenetic selection, is a type of learning to obtain an achieved behavior as goal-oriented.
  • Explains positive and negative reinforcements affect one's behavior by enhancing or suppressing it. negative reinforcement can be seen through a messy room, where the child suffers being nagged.
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