Topic: Updating Skinner's Understanding
Posted by: Rachel
|Summary: Evidence of cognitive processes came from studying rats in mazes. Rats without a reward are not motivated. However, they create a cognitive map, which is a representation mentally of the maze, and they perform just as well as those who don't have a reward or punishment. The rats experience latent learning which is the 'learning that becomes apparent only when there is some motivation to show action.'|
The cognitive experiment shows that there is more to learning than connecting a response with a consequence. This experiment proved that learning can occur without reinforcement or punishment. Furthermore, rewards and punishment may backfire, causing an overjustification because an action that is justifiable is 'overjustified. This undermines 'intrinsic motivation' which is the 'desire to perfrom a behavior for its own sake and to be effective,' and 'extrinsic motivation' which is a desire to perform a behavior due to promised rewards or threats of punishment.
A person's interest can survive when a reward is not used to bribe or to control. But rewards liek "the most improved player" award would say that a job was well done and keep the person's interest.
Animals are able to learn quickly and retain it because of biological predispositions. For exampe, a cat's inborn tendency to leap very high and come back down on their feet.
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