George Stanley Reynolds's A primer of operant conditioning PDF

By George Stanley Reynolds

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Auditory and visual stimuli can be presented immediately following any response we select, while food, for example, cannot follow the response immediately because the organism must emit additional responses to approach and ingest the food. In order to establish a discriminative stimulus as a conditioned reinforcer, we reinforce a response with food in the presence of a stimulus. For a pigeon, grain is a good reinforcer (provided that the bird has been deprived of grain), and the sound of the grain-delivery mechanism and a decrease of illumination in the bird's chamber have proved to be effective discriminative stimuli.

Usually, extinction virtually eliminates responding or brings it back to (or near) its level before reinforcement. We have also seen that extinction does not usually produce an immediate decrease in the frequency of the response. Rather, there is often a brief increase in responding immediately following the onset of extinction. The topography of the . response also changes at the start extinction, and the response becomes more forceful and variable for a short time. The course of extinction varies a great deal, depending on the I 32 A Primer of Operant Conditioning Reinforcement Extinction 40 400 responses ~ 20 Responses/min.

Shape new OHerqnt bebayj or.. Before beginning to shape behavior, we must ~ ~~ke sure that the reinforcer to be used will be effective. This is accomplished by depriving the organism of the reinforcer for some r--') time before shaping begins. Next, we must analyze the exact behavior to be produced: Precisely what sequence of responses is required? Once we have decided on the final behavior, we are in a position to reinforce closer and closer approximations to it. The general procedure used in shaping begins by raising the deprived organism's general level of activity.

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A primer of operant conditioning by George Stanley Reynolds


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