GCSE PSYCHOLOGY UNIT 2 LEARNING REVISION

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1 GCSE PSYCHOLOGY UNIT 2 LEARNING REVISION

2 GCSE PSYCHOLOGY UNIT 2 CLASSICAL CONDITIONING

3 LEARNING LEARNING= Is a relatively permanent change in behaviour due to experience Some behaviours are learnt, but others occur naturally For learning to take place, there has to be a change in behaviour

4 CLASSICAL CONDITIONING Pavlov (1927) proposed an explanation of how animals and humans learn He noticed that dogs would salivate when being brought their food (when they heard the food buckets) Salivation is something that is a reflex response (automatically occurs when food is in the mouth) Pavlov realised that the dogs had learnt to salivate to the sound of the food buckets

5 CLASSICAL CONDITIONING Pavlov set up a series of trials to test this Each time the dog was fed, a bell was rung for a few seconds The amount of saliva produced by the dog was measured The bell was then rung and no food was given The same amount of saliva was produced, even without food

6 CLASSICAL CONDITIONING Pavlov named parts of his procedures as follows: Unconditioned is the term used to show that something is unlearned Conditioned means that something has been learned Classical Conditioning demonstrates learning by association During the conditioning trials, two stimuli are associated together The procedure is called the CLASSICAL CONDITIONING SCHEDULE

7 CLASSICAL CONDITIONING SCHEDULE Below is the Classical Conditioning Schedule: BEFORE CONDITIONNING TRIALS BEGIN A REFLEX DURING CONDITIONNING TRIALS AFTER CONDITIONNING FOOD (UCS) Bell + Food (CS) (UCS) Bell (CS) SALIVATION (UCR) Salivation (UCR) Salivation (CR)

8 CLASSICAL CONDITIONING Pavlov then tried to see how long learning would last He found that if he continued to ring the bell without giving the dog any food, the dog would no longer salivate He called this EXTINCTION Then, after a short period during which no bell had been rung, Pavlov would suddenly ring the bell and the dog would immediately salivate again He called this response SPONTANEOUS RECOVERY

9 CLASSICAL CONDITIONING Pavlov found that if he changed the tone of the bell, the dog would still salivate He called this GENERALISATION, as the dog was widening its learned response (the CONDITIONED RESPONSE or CR) to a similar CONDITIONED STIMULUS (CS), a new bell sound

10 CLASSICAL CONDITIONING Pavlov found that he could stop generalisation He rang a number of bells of different tones, but only presented food when a particular bell was rung The dog stopped salivating at all the other bells and only salivated when the bell that had been reinforced with food was rung He said this was DISCRIMINATION, as the dog had learnt to narrow its response to a particular stimulus

11 KEY TERMS CLASSICAL CONDITIONING is a procedure during which an animal or person learns to associate a reflex response with a new stimulus CLASSICAL CONDITIONING SCHEDULE is the steps in the procedure to condition a new response UNCONDITIONED STIMULUS (UNS) is the stimulus that produces a reflex response, such as the food for Pavlov s dogs UNCONDITIONED RESPONSE (UCR) is the reflex response to an unconditioned stimulus, such as Pavlov s dog s salivation

12 KEY TERMS CONDITIONED STIMULUS (CS) is a new stimulus presented with the UCS, such as the bell in Pavlov s experiment CONDITIONED RESPONSE (CR) is the response that is learnt; it now occurs when the CS is presented, such as Pavlov s dog s salivation EXTINCTION is when a conditioned response dies out SPONTANEOUS RECOVERY is when a CR that has disappeared suddenly appears again GENERALISATION is when the CR is produced when a similar stimulus to the original CS is presented DISCRIMINATION (with reference to conditioning) is when the CR is only produced when a specific stimulus is presented

13 WATSON AND RAYNER (1920) AIM: To see if the emotional response of fear could be conditioned in a human being METHOD: Albert was 11 months old. He seemed to like white laboratory rats and had no fear of any white furry objects. In the conditioning trials the rat was shown to Albert and, as he reached for it, a metal bar was hit very hard with hammer and there was a loud noise. Albert also screamed when he was shown a Santa Clause mask and a fur coat

14 WATSON AND RAYNER (1920) RESULTS: After seven times, when the rat was presented again, Albert screamed and tried to get away. He did this even though the bar was not hit by the hammer and there was no loud noise. Albert also screamed when he was shown a Santa Clause mask and a fur coat CONCLUSIONS: Watson and Rayner showed that fear responses can be learnt and even very young children can learn in the way suggested by classical conditioning

15 EVALUATION OF WATSON AND RAYNER S STUDY It is not very ethical for the researchers to treat young children in the way they did (could cause distress) This study only involved one child and so the researchers may need more evidence that fear can be learnt in this way However, the study seems to fit with what you might already know about phobias you may have

16 PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS OF CLASSICAL CONDITIONING In everyday life, advertising agencies recognise that if they can get us to build up a favourable association between the advert and the product, then we might buy that product more often That is why companies use famous people to promote products in adverts

17 GCSE PSYCHOLOGY UNIT 2 OPERANT CONDITIONING

18 OPERANT CONDITIONING OPERANT CONDITIONING = This is learning due to the consequence of behaviour, through positive reinforcement or negative reinforcement

19 OPERANT CONDITIONING Thorndike (1911) investigated Operant Conditioning through studies of problem-solving abilities of animals He designed a puzzle box that a cat would have to escape from by pulling a loop of string attached to a latch that would open the door

20 OPERANT CONDITIONING Thorndike showed that a cat placed in a puzzle box would learn to pull the string to escape At first, this would happen by accident as the cat would be moving around the box This continued to happen After about 20 trials Thorndike noticed that the cat would escape quickly He suggested that the cat had learnt to escape the box by trial and error learning It was the pleasant consequence (escape) that encouraged the cat to pull the string rather than produce any other behaviours

21 OPERANT CONDITIONING Thorndike proposed a hypothesis: If a certain response has pleasant consequences, it is more likely than other responses to occur in the same circumstances This became known as the LAW OF EFFECT LAW OF EFFECT = Behaviours that are followed by rewards are usually repeated; those that are punished are not usually repeated

22 SKINNER (1939) Skinner (1939) introduced the idea of REINFORCEMENT to the Law of Effect He said that all behaviour is learnt from the consequences of that behaviour (Operant Conditioning) The consequence of the particular behaviour produced by the animal or human will either increase or decrease the likelihood of the behaviour being repeated

23 SKINNER (1939) Skinner used a box (Skinner Box) where he placed a hungry rat The rat would produce a number of actions like sniffing, exploring and grooming The rat would accidentally press a lever and a pellet of food would drop into the food tray Every time the lever was pressed the behaviour of lever pressing was positively reinforced by a food pellet

24 SKINNER - REINFORCEMENT When the rat received a food pellet for pressing the lever, this was POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT Sometimes there would be an electric shock through the floor of the skinner box and when the rat pressed the lever the shock would switch off This is an example of NEGATIVE REINFORCEMENT Both have the same effect = to INCREASE the likelihood of a particular behaviour being repeated

25 Punishment is different to reinforcement as it does not encourage the desired behaviour (it only stops one unwanted behaviour) Reinforcement can be used to teach complex behaviours in animals and humans This is called BEHAVIOUR SHAPING In this procedure the task is broken down into small steps E.g. Pigeon ping-pong REINFORCEMENT

26 OPERANT CONDITIONING PIGEON PING-PONG A pigeon was reinforced (by being given food) when they moved to the ball, then if they touched the ball, then if they hit the ball towards the other pigeon, and finally when they moved the ball passed the other pigeon Behaviour is therefore being shaped over the conditioning trials so that one whole sequence is produced for one reward in the end

27 KEY TERMS PUNISHMENT = this is a stimulus that weakens behaviour because it is unpleasant and we try to avoid it REINFORCEMENT = this is a consequence f behaviour that encourages or strengthens a behaviour. This might be seen as a reward POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT = this is a reward or pleasant consequence that increases the likelihood that a behaviour or action will be repeated NEGATIVE REINFORCEMENT = this is when an unpleasant experience is removed after a behaviour or action has been made. This increases the likelihood of that behaviour or action being repeated BEHAVIOUR SHAPING = this is changing behaviour in small steps

28 GCSE PSYCHOLOGY UNIT 2 APPLICATION OF CONDITIONING PROCEDURES

29 CONDITIONING PROCEDURES AND PHOBIAS In order to understand how we might treat phobias, it is important to recognise that a phobia is a fear response that has gone wrong The normal reflex is: DANGER = FEAR UCS = UCR When someone has a phobia, their fear response is to something that could cause danger or has little or no danger, like: KNEES = FEAR CS = CR

30 CONDITIONING PROCEDURES AND PHOBIAS For the person with a phobia, their fear response is no longer the automatic response to the danger or threat Instead it is to something that has little or no danger For example, in arachnophobia (fear of spiders): SPIDER = FEAR CS = CR In order for the connection between the spider and fear to be made, the spider must have been present during a scary moment

31 CONDITIONING PROCEDURES AND PHOBIAS One way to explain this is if a child s parent or older sibling (someone close to them) suddenly screams and runs away from a spider, then the following happens: Screaming scares child = spider + screaming scares child = spiders scare child Below is an example of how a child may get scared of balloons: 1. LOUD NOISE = FEAR USC = UCR 2. BALLOON + LOUD NOISE = FEAR CS + UCS UCR 3. BALLOON = FEAR CS CR

32 PHOBIAS PHOBIA = This is a persistent and irrational fear of an object, activity or situation. The typical symptoms are intense feelings of fear and anxiety to avoid the object, activity or situation FLOODING = This is a treatment for phobias that involves the immediate exposure of the person to the feared object, activity or event until there is no fear response

33 TREATMENT OF PHOBIAS FLOODING This is where the person is exposed repeatedly and rapidly to the thing they fear (they are flooded with thoughts and actual experiences) Someone with arachnophobia would therefore imagine a spider, maybe visualise it running across the room (thoughts) Then they would have a spider in their hand (actual experience)

34 TREATMENT OF PHOBIAS FLOODING The person has to unlearn the connection between the stimulus and the fear response (i.e. to break the CS-CR bond) Most people avoid or run away from a phobia Flooding prevents escape Flooding reduces anxiety levels the more times people are exposed to their fears Flooding removes the phobia when a person realises they are not in danger

35 TREATMENT OF PHOBIAS ETHICAL IMPLICATIONS OF FLOODING The person loses their right to withdraw (as they have to stay if flooding is to work) This can be very stressful (so the psychologist will stop the treatment if the person becomes too distressed) It is difficult to protect and avoid harming someone who is being flooded

36 KEY TERMS SYSTEMATIC DESENSITISATION (SD) = this is a treatment for phobias in which the person is taught to relax and then is gradually exposed to the feared object, activity or event HIERARCHY OF FEARS = this is a series of feared events ranked from least frightening to most frightening

37 SYSTEMATIC DESENSITISATION (SD) This is based on the idea that people cannot be anxious and relaxed at the same time Through SD, the fear response is replaced by feeling relaxed instead The treatment works in the following ways: 1. The person with the phobia is taught to relax (listening to music, relaxing their muscles) 2. The person and therapist construct a hierarchy of fears that contain the feared thing from least frightening to most frightening 3. The person then relaxes and gradually works through the hierarchy of fears, relaxing at each stage (they only move up the hierarchy if they have been relaxed in the previous stage)

38 SYSTEMATIC DESENSITISATION (SD) TASK Write down a hierarchy of fears for a phobia that you or someone else has. For example (for arachnophobia): 1. The word spider 2. A picture of a spider (not real) 3. A picture of a real spider 4. Imagine a spider across other side of the room 5. Imagine a spider crawling across the room 6. A spider in a jar in the room 7. A spider in a jar in front of the person 8. A spider on the table in front of them 9. Holding a spider on the hand (most frightening event)

39 Treating a fear of balloons involves the following: The person is taught to relax, breathing deeply and calmly The person constructs the hierarchy of fears in 5 stages: 1. The word balloon 2. The squeaky sound of balloons being touched 3. A picture of a balloon 4. A real balloon 5. Holding a balloon PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS The person is exposed to stage 1 and must be completely relaxed while the word balloon is repeated The therapist will then move gradually through the hierarchy of fears until stage 5 is achieved

40 ETHICAL IMPLICATIONS SD is used when the therapist believes that flooding would be too stressful Children are often treated with this method The therapist works with the person to decide how quickly they move through the hierarchy The person takes an active role in the therapy and can withdraw from any stage if they feel uncomfortable There is no deception as the person knows exactly what is happening (so this could be considered as an ethical treatment for phobias)

41 ETHICAL IMPLICATIONS SD takes longer than flooding to remove a phobia It can cost more as there are often more sessions of therapy SD is an effective treatment Most people and their therapist prefer this method of treatment It is much less anxiety-arousing and much less stressful for the person undergoing treatment

42 GCSE PSYCHOLOGY UNIT 2 OTHER APPLICATION OF CONDITIONING PROCEDURES

43 KEY TERMS AVERSION THERAPY = this is a treatment for addictions, such as drug or alcohol dependency, which makes the addict have an extremely negative reaction to the addictive substance

44 AVERSION THERAPY Classical conditioning has been useful in the treatment of behaviour problems Some therapist believe that behaviour problems result from faulty learning and so bad behaviour can be unlearnt Aversion therapy has been used to cure drug and alcohol dependency The aim of the therapy is to get the patient to develop an extremely negative reaction to the drug or alcohol using the vomiting reflex The procedure can be seen on the next slide

45 AVERSION THERAPY Aversion Therapy procedure can be seen below: Emetic (UCS) Vomiting (UCR) Alcohol + Emetic Vomiting (CS) (UCS) (UCR) Alcohol (CS) Vomiting (CR)

46 AVERSION THERAPY This works as the emetic is designed so that it only produces the vomiting reflex when the patient drinks the alcohol A simple everyday emetic could be very salty water (if you drink lots of it you will not be able to stop vomiting) Other emetics could be drugs that initiate vomiting or electric shocks The person s desire for alcohol decreases and the addiction can be overcome

47 AVERSION THERAPY Although this therapy is successful on its own, therapists believe that it is more effective to be used along with other support Helping the person to stay away from situations where they used to spend time drinking Aversion therapy can be a very unpleasant experience for the person and there are many ethical issues raised by this kind of treatment

48 EVALUATION Aversion therapy can be extremely unpleasant for the person being treated Therefore, the ethical issues of using this therapy have to be balanced against the possible benefits to the person Aversion therapy is not always successful over time Although people can find their addiction is reduced for a period, unless they have some additional support, they are likely to go back to their addictive behaviour after treatment stops (particularly in younger addicts)

49 KEY TERMS PRIMARY REINFORCER = this is a reward, such as food or water, that the animal or person needs in order to survive SECONDARY REINFORCER = this is a reward, such as money or a token, that the animal or person can exchange for a primary reinforces

50 TOKEN ECONOMY PROGRAMMES Food can encourage a rat to press a lever (this is a primary reinforcer as food is needed for survival) If a reinforcer can be exchanged for something then it is called a secondary reinforcer (e.g. money can be exchanged for food, clothes, housing, etc.)

51 TOKEN ECONOMY PROGRAMMES Token Economy Programmes have been set up in some hospitals (usually psychiatric wards) to reward socially acceptable behaviour in people who may have stopped looking after themselves properly Tokens are given for making the bed, brushing their teeth, etc Every time the person produces an appropriate behaviour, hospital staff immediately give the person a token Tokens can then be used to pay for activities like watching TV (some activities cost more tokens)

52 EVALUATION Token economies have produced improvements in the behaviour and self-care of patients who have been in hospital for a long time Some critics say they make the patients focus on the reward rather than on wanting to improve their own behaviour Even when the behaviour in hospitals improves, the change might not last in the outside world If the reward is not immediate, then the association between the reward and action is lost (so the behaviour is not being reinforced) There might be ethical issues involved if patients are not able to watch a favourite TV programme because they do not have enough tokens

53 EVALUATION Many people suggest that relying on tokens means that good behaviour is learnt only because we receive a reward. This does not mean that we will become social or kind We need to learn to reward ourselves by feeling good when we do good things We should not need other people to reward us all the time Praise can be an excellent reinforcer though

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