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The Classical Conditioning Theory of Learning

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No one can deny that learning is a very deep concept, and each person have a different overview about it, because it is related to how did every person learned. In simple words the way or the methods that they learned from. Furthermore, we can say that learning theories are an organized set of principles that explain how people acquire knowledge, retain it and recall it. Also, how the environment and contexts plays an important role on shaping the learning process.

The Classical conditioning theory is one of the famous learning theories that was proposed and discovered during the early 1900s by the Russian Physiologist who called Ivan Pavlov. The Classical conditioning theory is based on the idea of gaining or learning a new behavior through a process called association. Moving forward, Ivan Pavlov sees that the environment plays an important role influencing the learning process. In addition, the theory emphasized that our behaviors are shaped and formed by the environment. The Classical conditioning theory includes three stages which are before conditioning, during conditioning and after conditioning. Before conditioning stage includes: Unconditioned Stimulus and Unconditioned Response. During conditioning stage includes: Unconditioned Stimulus, Conditioned Stimulus and Unconditioned Response. Finally, after conditioning stage includes: Conditioned Stimulus and Conditioned Response.

Moving forward to the classical studies, one of the most important and significant studies was the little Albert experiment. The experiment comes after the first experiment that Ivan Pavlov applied it on animals. Even though, that the experiment has a kind of ethical problems but it approved the classical conditioning theory. The experiment was done by Watson and Rayner during the 1920s. The experiment started by testing little Albert reactions to various or different stimuli like, a white rat, a monkey, a rabbit, and various masks when he was 9 months old. Little Albert, did not showed any kind of fear on those different stimuli. Moreover, they have struck a hammer on a steel bar behind his head which caused a sudden, very loud noise that let him started to cry and feel afraid. After three months, when he reached 11 months of age, they brought or present for him a small white rat and they have struck a hammer on a steel bar behind his head at the same time, for seven times over the next seven weeks. During all these seven weeks when they applied the same thing little Albert was crying extremely. However, after those seven weeks, if little Albert saw a rat or any objects which have same characteristics with the rat; he starts to cry even without the hammer noise. So they approved that they can create a phobia through the classical conditioning. In addition, Little Albert was observed over the next few weeks and months, and they found that little Albert fear of the rat becomes much less marked. They describe it as if it a dying out of a learned response and they called it extinction. But, even after this period of time it was still evident, and if they repeat the association.

There are many examples that happen for us or even surround us in real life. One of the examples that might many people faced in the school is the dislike or the hate of a specific subject, because they have got punished by the teacher in the class in front of their. In addition, most of people have one or two specific songs that when they listen to, they remember a specific event or a specific person. Also, many kids when they see a parrot for the first time they seems to have a good impressions about it but if the parrot started to scream they feel fear and start to cry, and even if they see the a parrot after few days, weeks or months, they start to cry even if the parrot did not scream.

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