Operant Conditioning And The Second Method Essay

Operant Conditioning And The Second Method Essay

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In every day life, people and animals alike are always being conditioned to learn. Weather we are learning to enhance bad behaviors, pesky habits, or things we aren’t necessarily conscious of doing. The methods used to be conditioned can be quite broad, but lets narrow them down to two main topics. The first is Classical conditioning, and the second method is Operant Conditioning. During the course of this paper, I will compare and contrast both methods while showing you their similarities and differences as well. I will first compare Operant Conditioning, specifically regarding the experiment I conducted on my dog trying to get her to eat her breakfast, as well as providing another example of how my parents conditioned me to get better grades in school as a child. Lastly, I will contrast my two examples of operant conditioning against one example of Classical conditioning by explaining how I conditioned my cats not to go near the birdcage.
According to my Discovering Psychology textbook (2014), operant conditioning was first discovered by Burrhus Frederick Skinner. Skinner found using “active behaviors that operate upon their environment to generate consequences”. This focused on using reinforcement or punishment to increase or decrease the learned behavior, and Negative punishment. There are two main types of reinforcement; Positive reinforcement which would increase the probability of the behavior continuing after something unpleasant occurs, and Negative Reinforcement which decreases the probability of the behavior occurring by taking something unpleasant out of the environment for the acceptable behavior. Negative punishment also decreases the behavior from reoccurring, however, it is based on removing something unpleasant a...


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... cat cannot control its natural tendency to be attracted to the bird so an involuntary behavior is learned. Furthermore, the cat is a passive learner. The cat pairs the two stimuli together and notices that if he hears the clicker, he also thinks he will be shocked.
In conclusion, Classical Conditioning and Operant Conditioning can all have similar types of associations, behaviors, and types of learners. However, there are comparisons between the two. Classical conditioning associates two pairs stimuli together, have involuntary behaviors, and have and active or passive learner. In contrast, Operant Conditioning is paired with a response and stimulus, also known as behavior in the learner paired with a consequence. OC may also an involuntary behavior and active learning. In order to keep the two separate, just ask yourself, is the behavior involuntary or voluntary?

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