Classical And Operant Conditioning (Skinner)
Classical conditioning is a type of learning that occurs when an animal or human learns to associate a particular stimulus with a certain response. This was first described by Ivan Pavlov, a Russian psychologist, who found that when he rang a bell before feeding his dogs, the dogs would begin to salivate upon hearing the bell alone. The ringing of the bell had become a conditioned stimulus, and the salivating response was the conditioned response.
An example of classical conditioning in humans might be a child who becomes afraid of dogs after having been bitten by one. The sight or sound of a dog (stimulus) may cause the child to feel fear (response).
Operant conditioning, on the other hand, is a type of learning in which an animal or human learns to associate a particular behavior with a consequence. This was first described by B.F. Skinner, an American psychologist, who found that animals could be trained to perform certain behaviors in order to receive a reward or avoid punishment.
n example of operant conditioning in humans might be a child who learns to clean up their toys when they are told they will receive a sticker as a reward. The child learns to perform the desired behavior (cleaning up their toys) in order to receive the reward (sticker).
Both classical and operant conditioning involve the use of reinforcement to increase the likelihood that a particular behavior will occur again in the future. Reinforcement can be either positive (the addition of a desirable stimulus) or negative (the removal of an undesirable stimulus). Positive reinforcement is used to increase a behavior, while negative reinforcement is used to decrease a behavior.
For example, a student may receive positive reinforcement for getting a good grade on a test (such as praise or a reward), which may increase the likelihood that they will study hard for future tests. On the other hand, a student may receive negative reinforcement for completing their homework on time (such as the removal of a punishment or the avoidance of a negative consequence), which may increase the likelihood that they will complete their homework on time in the future.
It’s important to note that punishment, which is the presentation of an unpleasant stimulus or the removal of a pleasant stimulus in order to decrease a behavior, is not the same as negative reinforcement. Punishment is meant to decrease a behavior, while negative reinforcement is meant to increase a behavior by removing an unpleasant stimulus.
In summary, classical conditioning involves learning to associate a stimulus with a response, while operant conditioning involves learning to associate a behavior with a consequence. Both types of learning involve the use of reinforcement to increase or decrease the likelihood of a particular behavior occurring in the future.