Classical vs. Operant ConditioningSince the beginning of time people have been studying behavioral patterns and what causes certain reactions. Learning can be described as a permanent alteration in behavior resulting from experience. These behavioral changes are divided into two separate areas of conditioning, (Classical and Operant). In the early 1890’s a Russian physiologist, psychologist, and physician named Ivan Pavlov performed many experiments by means of Classical conditioning. This type of conditioning is known as learning by association. Although Pavlov’s tests were conducted with a canine as the “learner” much information was gained explaining what causes different behavioral traits. In the case of Classical conditioning the learner responds by reflex. The behavior is caused by stimulation and the resposes seen are involuntary. These behaviors are caused by a stimulus, either conditioned or unconditioned, preceding the response. Classical conditioning does not consist of rewards or punishment.
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