Compose a 750 words assignment on classical vs. operants conditioning. Needs to be plagiarism free! Ivan Pavlov was the pioneer of classical conditioning. Classical conditioning refers to a process where a stimulus that brings out a reaction is learned to be related to another stimulus that does not initially bring out a reaction. In an experiment, Pavlov gives a signal whenever food is given to a starving dog. Pavlov rings a bell as a signal. Every time the dog recognized he would be fed, he drooled. After giving the signal several times each time food was given to the dog, Pavlov discovered that the dog drooled upon receiving the signal although no food was given. Thus, the dog has been conditioned into drooling every time when he heard the signal. Before the conditioning occurred, the dog had drooled whenever it received food, and Pavlov referred to the food as an ‘unconditioned stimulus’ and the reaction of the dog to the food as an ‘unconditioned response’. Pavlov referred to the bell or the signal as a ‘conditioned stimulus’ and ‘conditioned response’ when the dog drooled upon receiving the signal (Nicholas, 2009, pp. 117-119). On the other hand, B.F. Skinner pioneered the idea of operant conditioning. The term ‘operant’ suggests a behavior that has a certain degree of influence on the world. Depending on the result of the person’s behaviors, the likelihood may diminish or rise that he/she will repeat these behaviors. As expected, positive results are preferred over negative outcomes. individuals learn to take part in actions that elicit positive reactions and to keep away from those that could lead to negative results. Operant conditioning occurs through reward and punishment (Chan, 2004, p. 140). There are positive (reward) and negative (punishment) reinforcements, and both enhance the probability of the operant behavior. Classical and operant conditioning have strengths and weaknesses. The behaviorists apply these two approaches to understand a broad array of psychological trends or occurrences, from the learning processes to their outcomes like language learning and irrational fear. Furthermore, numerous practical uses of the two approaches were created, from animal instruction to human learning and the management of problematic or pathological behavior. In numerous instances these methods have been proven to be successful in generating behavioral change. However, classical and operant conditioning failed to consider the influence of cognitive and genetic variables in learning, and are hence imperfect or deficient descriptions of the animal and human learning mechanisms (Coon & Mitterer, 2008, pp. 233-234). By putting emphasis on only a small number of organisms like pigeons or guinea pigs and oversimplifying the findings, the behaviors not only disregarded the unique cognitive impacts on learning that various organisms display, such as the capacity of individuals to learn through imitation and observation (Coon & Mitterer, 2008, p. 235) but also notably disregarded the natural learning capacities that all organisms develop to adapt more successfully to their changing environment. However, even though classical and operant conditionings have their weaknesses, they are still relevant to counseling theory and practice.
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