What's The Difference Between Classical And Operant Conditioning?

Excited for the August 21 eclipse? Visit our Eclipse 2017 page to explore the science, history, and myths of the event. The Curiosity team will be viewing the eclipse alongside NASA in Carbondale, Illinois. Follow us on Facebook for live videos, trivia, and interviews on the big day.

Pavlov and his famous dogs are most commonly associated with classical conditioning, whereas Skinner's "Skinner box"—a chamber wherein an animal can be trained to commit certain actions—is a symbol for operant conditioning. Both types of conditioning are important in the school of behaviorism, which emphasizes the study of observable behaviors rather than "invisible" mental processes.

Share the knowledge!

Key Facts In This Video

  1. Ivan Pavlov discovered that animals are capable of associative learning, which is the linking of events, behaviors, or stimuli via conditioning. 01:59

  2. In one famous conditioning experiment, John B. Watson conditioned a small child ("Little Albert") to fear a white rat. 04:46

  3. Negative reinforcement is not the same as punishment. 08:33

If you liked this you'll love our podcast! Check it out on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play Music, SoundCloud, search 'curiosity' on your favorite podcast app or add the RSS Feed URL.

Advertisement