This essay has been submitted by a student. This is not an example of the work written by our professional essay writers.
Learning is how someone gain new skills and knowledge. It allows an individual to engage more through their behavior or knowledge in activities. When an individual learns it may allow them to adapt better to a situation they are already aware of. Learning occurs in people of all ages, and in all different settings. Children setting in classrooms are not the only ones that learn, adults learn new aspects to life each day as well. Learning has been studied by psychologist through observing animals in laboratories. The general principles of learning are very similar with animals and humans. The way learning is tied together with our environment is by conditioning, throughout the chapter we learn more about two different types of conditioning, and the different situations they are used within. Classical conditioning, reasons how certain things trigger individuals to have a first response about something. Operant conditioning, allows us to understand our voluntary actions and how they relate to our environment. We also see learning through observing, by watching what is happening with others or our surroundings.
2.Classical conditioning was discovered by Ivan Pavlov, who first saw the process being used, by observing dogs. A behavior occurs automatically when the right stimuli is noticed by one. Classical conditioning is used when something or someone is paired with an unlearned stimulus. An unconditioned stimulus is when a stimuli is presented without learning anything prior to the natural stimulus is seen. The response to the stimuli, which hasn't been learned prior to the process either is called the unconditioned response. When the conditioned stimulus comes into play, a neutral stimuli is associated with the process. Something that would not usually generate a unconditioned stimulus. After the two stimulus's are paired together and the objective has been learned, it becomes a conditioned stimulus. Pavlov found that many different factors would change the way things turned out. Stimulus generalization explains how when a similar stimuli to the original stimuli is generated the same outcome is observed. Higher order conditioning allows a conditioned stimuli in one procedure to become an unconditioned stimuli in another experience. On one hand, a conditioned response can eventually become extinct if not paired with an unconditional response. On the other hand, a spontaneous recovery can happen, where a conditioned stimulus that hasn't been generated in a while can be seen sometimes after time. Watson, who found the study of behaviorism, believed that behavior went hand in hand with conditioning while learning. Watson thought that fear, rage, and love was natural unconditioned reflexes that individual's are borned with. Later one other things such as scent and taste was found to cause classical conditioning responses. While training my puppy I used classical conditioning, to get him to play. with a certain toy. Naturally he would play, but when I began to add in a squeaky duck, once I would squeak the duck he would know it was time to play. Another example for myself, is I'm scared to death of the dentist; I hate the sound of the drills. So now any sign of me having to go to the dentist scares me.
3. Edward L. Thorndike studied voluntary behaviors, and setup the background for B.F. Skinner who developed operant conditioning. Operant gives insight on any behavior that is generated as consequences due to the environment. Which leads to operant conditioning, being the process of learning through behaviors shaped by consequences. The reinforcement in the procedure is the outcome you get from the operant. There are two types of reinforcement, positive and negative reinforcement, that I will later explain. Two kinds of reinforcers are a primary reinforcer, which naturally reinforces the individual...such as food, or something to drink. Conditioning reinforcer has to be linked with the primary reinforcer, it allows the outcome of the primary reinforcer to be more powerful. Punishment is used with operant conditioning to decrease the behavior from happening over and over. A discriminative stimulus allows one to choose the best response that will affect the future. Edward C. Tolman allowed insight of the cognitive aspect within operant conditioning, things that are uncontrollable that happen can cause different behaviors. Operant behavior happens by organisms, which allows for a response with consequences that play a role in the environment due to the behavior. The behavior can be influenced positively or negatively by reinforcement or punishment. The behaviors that are instinctive can be controlled more easily than others. As a child, loving to be right by my mother's side, I spent a lot of time in the kitchen. While helping her cook I experienced operant conditioning by touching the hot eye, very quickly I removed my hand. At that moment I learned that you can get burned by touching things that are hot. Recently, I was waiting till the last minute to do complete my school work, once someone said " don't wait till the last minute, you won't be so stressed" I tried completing my work in a timely manner resulting in better grades and me not being so stressed. We use operant conditioning all the time, and most of the time we don't even notice it. Operant conditioning plays a significant role in our day to day life.
4. Positive and negative reinforcement are both affective, just used in different manners. They are not opposite to one another, one just adds more to the plate whereas the other one takes a little away. When a positive reinforcement is used the response is stronger because something is added to the situation allowing the response to happen more than once. Negative behavior is where the removal of a stimulus takes place after a specific behavior has occurred. The response is positive because something has been removed to make one's behavior change. As a child if I made all A's and B's in school I would get money, that would be a positive reinforcement. A example of a negative reinforcement is to keep my parents from yelling at me after dinner, I automatically do the dishes and clean up the kitchen.
5. Punishment is where a behavior occurs and then there are consequences presented to keep the behavior from occurring again. Negative reinforcement can be tied into punishment to decrease the chance of the action occurring over and over. Negative reinforcement is where an individual does something to keep themselves from getting in a sticky situation in the future. Punishment and negative reinforcements are both ways to correct a behavior, but negative reinforcement plays more in the role of keeping the behavior from even happening.
Text, 202, 204-206.
6. Punishment can lead to several disadvantages within an individual's life. Children may feel once they have been punished that they have to be sneaky when doing things, or lie to cover what they have done not to be punished. They may gain anxiety, fear, etc, which can lead to problems with them learning. As the child gets older they may see pain as being okay and encounter hitting, spanking, etc. those around them. Children may tend to be more force through their actions and voice when in disagreements with friend or family. Verbal and physical punishment are both seen when trying to correct one's behavior, Research has shown though that physical punishment such as spanking has caused more trouble than most would imagine. Parents that use verbal punishment may oftentimes scream and yell, resulting in things being said that shouldn't have been voiced out of anger.
7. A fixed ratio schedule is where after a certain number of responses the reinforcement occurs. When a variable-ratio takes place there is a average number of responses but never anything exact before the reinforcement will occur, this changes depending on the trial. On the schedule of a fixed interval, is where once the response occurs it keeps occurring after the same reinforcer and time has went by. With a variable- interval schedule after the first response the reinforcer is applied, which keep occurring but it can occur at different times, nothing is set in stone. I believe the fixed-interval schedule, would be fastest because it would be known when the reinforcer would occur to the response.
8. Observational learning, is where an individual learns by watching what others are doing. Learning by observation starts at early age, you see babies waving bye to people after their parents have waived because of observational learning. Albert Bandura is the psychologist who explains observational learning. An individual must pay attention, remember, put what they have seen into actions, and be motivated to learn by observing. This learning style is also present in animals. Observational learning can be seen in all sorts of settings, on television, at work, in school, etc.
9. I personally believe that genetics and learning both play an important role in an individual's life. With both combined, they make up one's behavior. Genetics allow for the needs of behavior to be carried along, but the learning environment allows for adjustment to take place depending on the time and situation. Genetics affect our behavior unknowingly , we can't control what we've always known. Genetics is found throughout family, as humans, etc. behavior that several people takes role in. Environmental learning allows us to observe others and learn from them, we may often change a behavior to better suite others depending on how they may act. Learning is an important part of life, dealing with variation of our surroundings.
10. I found it very interesting to learn more about punishment, I have always wondered if punishment was good or bad. After reading this week's assignment I learned that punishment can be both positive and negative depending on how it was used. Punishment as positive and negative are not opposite of one another they both enhance the outcome of the situation, just by using different techniques. As a child I was spanked as punishment, not all the time just in some situations. I personally don't think spanking a child should be completely cut out, but other reinforcements should be used along with spanking. When researching the disadvantages and working on our discussion board for the week, it was an eye opener to me to see what all spanking can cause to happen. As I hope to be a parent one day I don't want my children to fear being in trouble, it's something we all experience. It's just the lesson we walk away with, and knowing the mistake we have made was wrong that matters. The point that stood out to me the most, was really obvious I just had never thought of punishment leading to forcefulness later on in life, but now I can see it. I hope to carry along the knowledge I have obtained by learning about punishment into my future as I become a parent, In hopes that I can use positive and negative punishment as a reinforcer in different way to change my child's behavior, so they can have a brighter future.