December 3, 2012
Chelsea Hansen, M.A.
Classical Conditioning Classical conditioning or if you will “Pavlovian conditioning” was produced by Ivan Pavlov. He was a Russian physician most familiar with the digestive system, but made a breakthrough in psychology for his theory on instinct based learning. There are three basic parts to classical conditioning. The first part is the unconditioned stimulus or “UCS” which creates an unconditioned response “UCR” in the person. This basically means the environment is creating a new response to a stimulus and a behavior isn’t actually learned yet. There is a neutral stimulus “NS” in this stage that is basically an object, person, or even a place and it does not produce a response till it brought together with an unconditioned stimulus. The second stage takes place when the neutral stimulus finally becomes paired with an unconditioned stimulus, thus making it a conditioned stimulus “CS”. In most cases this stage will be repeated multiple times before learning will take effect. Stage three we see that the conditioned stimulus is then paired with the unconditioned stimulus and a conditioned response “CR” is created (Hall, 1998). In my scenario to get my fiancé to clean more the unconditioned stimulus would be me asking her nicely to help me clean. The unconditioned response would be for her to help me clean because she wants to help out and feels compelled to. Now in order to get her to clean more often I would take the unconditioned stimulus and pair it with a conditioned stimulus such as weekly cleaning list. It would no longer be necessary to ask and if this fails turn to operant conditioning and reward her for cleaning more ("Classical Conditioning", n.d.). Unconditioned Response | USC | Asking her to clean nicely. | Conditioned Stimulus | CS | A weekly cleaning list. | Unconditioned Response | UR | Positive feelings. | Conditioned Response | CR | Positive feelings. |
Classical conditioning can help in our daily lives and even more so in problems varying from drug dependence, addiction, and even stress at work. When people take drugs the body natural wants to compensate for those chemicals inside them. In doing so the person will actually need to require more drugs in order to get the effects that they want to achieve and this is also known as tolerance. With tolerance we come across other variables in the environment which as considered to be conditional and is called situational specificity of tolerance. Drinking alcohol is usually consumed in the same way all the time and because of that our body knows it is coming and reacts by trying to counter the effects from it. If the alcohol was consumed in a different way such as mixing up with an upper (alcohol being a downer) such Red Bull a person can easily over dose since the body isn’t used to that sort…