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Associative change in Pavlovian conditioning: a re-appraisal

Honey, Robert C. ORCID:, Dwyer, Dominic M. ORCID: and Iliescu, Adela F. ORCID: 2022. Associative change in Pavlovian conditioning: a re-appraisal. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Learning and Cognition 48 (4) , pp. 281-294. 10.1037/xan0000318

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Robert A. Rescorla changed how Pavlovian conditioning was studied and interpreted. His empirical contributions were fundamental and theoretically driven. One involved testing a central tenet of the model that he developed with Allan R. Wagner. The Rescorla-Wagner learning rule uses a pooled error term to determine changes in a directional association between the representations of the conditioned stimulus (CS) and unconditioned stimulus (US). This learning rule predicts that 2 equally salient CSs (A and B) will undergo equivalent associative change when they are conditioned in compound (i.e., AB→US). Rescorla’s results suggested that this was not the case (e.g., Rescorla, 2000). Here, we show that these results can be reconciled with a model that uses a learning rule with a pooled error term once that rule is applied equivalently to all of the stimuli presented on a given trial, and the resulting reciprocal associations (directly and indirectly) contribute to performance. This model, called HeiDI, integrates several features of Rescorla’s research and theorizing while addressing an issue that he recognized required further analysis: how learning is translated into performance.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Publisher: American Psychological Association
ISSN: 2329-8456
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 25 January 2022
Date of Acceptance: 22 January 2022
Last Modified: 30 May 2024 05:40

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