Operant Conditioning a.k.a. instrumental conditioning - conditioning in which an operant response is brought under stimulus control by virtue of presenting reinforcement contingent upon the occurrence of the operant response. Operant conditioning pairs a response with a reinforcement in discrete trials; reinforcement occurs only after the response is given.
Thorndike's law of effect - Of several responses made to the same situation, those which are accompanied or closely followed by satisfaction to the animal will, other things being equal, be more firmly connected with the situation, so that, when it recurs, they will be more likely to recur; those which are accompanied or closely followed by discomfort to the animal will, other things being equal, have their connections with that situation weakened, so that, when it recurs, they will be less likely to occur. The greater the satisfaction or discomfort, the greater the strengthening or weakening of the bond.
Skinner developed the theory of "operant conditioning," the idea that we behave the way we do because this kind of behavior has had certain consequences in the past.
Shaping is a term used in animal psychology to describe a process in which an animal is trained to perform a complex behavior in stages. In shaping the importance of immediate reinforcement is obvious.
Superstitious behavior occurs when behavior is reinforced by accident.
Operant versus classical conditioning:
| ||CLASSICAL ||OPERANT|
|Behavior ||Involuntary, reflex behavior ||Voluntary behavior|
|Response ||Response is ELICITED ||Response is EMITTED|
|What is learned ||An association between ONE STIMULUS (the UCS) & ANOTHER STIMULUS (the CS) ||An association between an ANTECEDENT STIMULUS, a BEHAVIOR & a CONSEQUENCE|
|Paradigm ||UCS----------------------->UCR |
CS + UCS---------------->UCR
|A -----------> B -------->C|
Robert C. Gates