Principles of Reinforcement

Principles of Reinforcement - a good thing - not a bad...

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Principles of Reinforcement a) Skinner identified two types of reinforcing events - those in which a reward is given; and those in which something bad is removed. In either case, the point of reinforcement is to increase the frequency or probability of a response occurring again . 1) positive reinforcement - give an organism a pleasant stimulus when the operant response is made. For example, a rat presses the lever (operant response) and it receives a treat (positive reinforcement) 2) negative reinforcement - take away an unpleasant stimulus when the operant response is made. For example, stop shocking a rat when it presses the lever (yikes!) ** I can't tell you how often people use the term "negative reinforcement" incorrectly. It is NOT a method of increasing the chances an organism will behave in a bad way. It is a method of rewarding the behavior you want to increase. It is
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Unformatted text preview: a good thing - not a bad thing! b) Skinner also identified two types of reinforcers 1) primary reinforcer- stimulus that naturally strengthens any response that precedes it (e.g., food, water, sex) without the need for any learning on the part of the organism. These reinforcers are naturally reinforcing. 2) secondary/conditioned reinforcer- a previously neutral stimulus that acquires the ability to strengthen responses because the stimulus has been paired with a primary reinforcer. For example, an organism may become conditioned to the sound of food dispenser, which occurs after the operant response is made. Thus, the sound of the food dispenser becomes reinforcing. Notice the similarity to Classical Conditioning, with the exception that the behavior is voluntary and occurs before the presentation of a reinforcer....
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