Little Albert-Classical Conditioning Assignment

Little Albert-Classical Conditioning Assignment Words: 511

Explain the initial pairing of the banging bar and the rat in terms of learning through classical conditioning. What is unconditioned stimulus (US), conditioned stimulus (CS), and conditioned response (CR)? “Two months after pretesting, Albert was shown a white rat, and anytime Albert touched the rat, he was exposed to the sound of the hammer hitting a steel bar. After seven trials, Albert cried and demonstrated avoidance on presentation of the rat???the conditioned stimulus???in the absence of the loud noise. “(Watson J. B. , & Rayner, R. (1920).

Conditioned emotional reactions. Journal of Experimental Psychology, 3(1), 1???14. ) Apparently, the baby boy had associated the white rat (original neutral stimulus, now conditioned stimulus) with the loud noise (unconditioned stimulus) and was producing the fearful or emotional response of crying (originally the unconditioned response to the noise, now the conditioned response to the rat). This experiment led to the following progression of results: ???Introduction of a loud sound (unconditioned stimulus) resulted in fear (unconditioned response), a natural response. Introduction of a rat (neutral stimulus) paired with the loud sound (unconditioned stimulus) resulted in fear (unconditioned response). ???Successive introductions of a rat (conditioned stimulus) resulted in fear (conditioned response). Here, learning is demonstrated. How were Watson and Rayner able to condition Albert to react to different stimuli such as masks, other animals, and a fur coat? Explain the concept of generalization. “Watson again subjected Albert to noise and rat pairing, but the dog barked in the middle of the session, rendering the session particularly problematic. ( Watson J. B. , & Rayner, R. (1920). Conditioned emotional reactions. Journal of Experimental Psychology, 3(1), 1???14. ) After thirty-one days, Albert was said to show “fear” when touching a mask, a sealskin coat, the rat, a dog, and a rabbit. At the same time, however, he initiated contact with the coat and the rabbit. The experiment showed that Little Albert seemed to generalize his response to furry objects so that when Watson sent a non-white rabbit into the room seventeen days after the original experiment, Albert also became distressed.

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He showed similar reactions when presented with a furry dog, a seal-skin coat, and even when Watson appeared in front of him wearing a Santa Claus mask with white cotton balls as his beard, although Albert did not fear everything with hair. Why didn’t the conditioning last over time? Explain the concept of extinction. “This was repeated over and over again until Albert became scared of anything that was white and fuzzy including blankets and beards.

In case you were wondering Albert remained terrified of old Santa Claus-looking men for the whole duration of the experiment. Once the baby was terrified of the world around him, Watson returned him to the parents. He didn’t try to erase the results of the conditioning or monitor the child as he grew up. No one knows what happened to little Albert with several theories arguing that he ended up committing suicide. While this is probably an exaggeration, one thing is for sure: that child didn’t enjoy any Christmases for the rest of his life. ” (http:

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