Write a story for negative reinforcement.

Key Points 2 for chapters 4, 7, 8

The book I am currently using is Psychology 12th edition: by David G. Myers


Put all three stories in one post. No reply to another student is required. All three points have many very common stories on the internet (a new phone number or street address for proactive interference). It’s ok to use any of them except the two I listed here as long as you include your reference. I don’t care if you use the internet and I’m very familiar with most of the sites. I do care if you don’t include a reference since that’s plagiarizing. Not including the reference will net you 0 points. Save yourself the grief and include a reference if you use the internet.

1. Write a story for proactive interference
2. Write a story for classical conditioning. Please identify the CS, CR, US, and UR in your story. Remember Classical and Operant Conditioning are not the same. HINT: The CR and UR are always exactly the same.
3. Write a story for negative reinforcement. Make sure you say why your story describes negative reinforcement and please identify the behavior being reinforced and the reinforcer. HINT: The removal of the negative stimulus is always the reinforcer.

If you need a content refresher, use the links below.

How to write your story
Scoring rubric
The checklist
To get you started, I’ve written examples for each. I’ve included the definitions to help you understand the point. Do not include definitions in your posts.

Definition. Proactive interference happens when previous learning interferes with new learning.

Example. The key point is proactive interference. When Maria first learned how to use a computer, she was taught to use an Apple Macintosh. Apple has a Command key on the keyboard (⌘) which is used to enter commands in various applications. She just started a new job and there are no Macs in her office. All the computers are PCs that use Windows. To enter commands on a PC, you have to use the Control key. She constantly finds herself looking for the Command key symbol (⌘) on her keyboard when she wants to enter an application command instead of the control key. This is happening because she first learned to use a computer on a Macintosh and that learning is interfering with her ability to learn how to use a PC. This is a story about proactive interference because her previous learning on a Mac (how to use the Command key) is interfering with her ability to learn the new key (Control) on a PC.

Definition. Classical conditioning is a way to train a response to a neutral stimulus. You start with the neutral stimulus (a stimulus not connected to a response), pair it with a stimulus (called the US) that already produces a response (called the UR). You make this pairing several times and then present the previously neutral stimulus by itself (now called a CS) and it will produce the same response (called the CR) as the US.

Example. The key point is classical conditioning. We took our son to our pediatrician for his first flu shot. He likes the doctor and her nurse and never cried at an appointment. As soon as he saw the needle the nurse was going to use to give him the shot. he started crying. The next time we took him in for an appointment, he started crying as soon as he saw the nurse even though we told him he was not going to get a shot. Now every time he sees the nurse, he starts crying. The sight of the needle is the US and crying is the UR. The nurse is the CS and crying is the CR. (Note that the CR and UR are both crying.) This is a story about classical conditioning because it describes how our son learned to cry at the sight of the pediatrician’s nurse by associating the nurse with a needle she used to give him a flu shot.

Definition. Negative reinforcement increases behavior because it’s a reinforcement and all reinforcements increase behavior. Negative reinforcement increases behavior because the behavior removes an unpleasant stimulus.

Example. The key point is negative reinforcement. Alex took his first psychology class during the winter quarter. In the beginning, he thought the professor was a reasonable person and he started to like him. But shortly into the quarter, he discovered the professor didn’t explain the topics in his lectures very well. Whenever someone in the class asked a question about the lecture, the professor would respond in a very condescending manner. This gave the impression that the question and/or the person asking it was stupid. This happened a few times to Alex and finally, he’d had enough. He went to the registrar’s office and dropped the class. Now he doesn’t have to deal with the unpleasant psychology professor. The behavior is dropping the class and the reinforcer is the removal of the unpleasant professor. This a story about negative reinforcement because the behavior of dropping the class is being reinforced by the removal of the unpleasant professor.

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Write a story for negative reinforcement.


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