acquisition- in classical conditioning, the initial stage when the neutral stimulus and unconditional stimulus are linked, causing the neutral stimulus to trigger the same response as the unconditional stimulus. In operant conditioning, the strengthening of a reinforced response.


Unconditioned Response/ Unconditioned Stimulus

unconditioned response- in classical conditioning, a natural, unlearned response to an unconditioned stimulus.

unconditioned stimulus- in classical conditioning, a stimulus that unconditionally triggers a response.

cb-6-0007-unconditioned response

The deformed monstrosity to the left is my attempt at drawing the kind of water bottle used by domesticated rodents. I recently got a guinea pig for a pet and I have discovered that the reason for this strange design is to keep the rodent in question from urinating or defecating in its water, something it would be capable of if the water was instead presented in a bowl. If a guinea pig can poop on something, it will as a matter of principle.


Associative Learning

associative learning- learning that certain events always occur together. The events may be multiple stimuli (classical conditioning) or a behavior and a consequence (operant conditioning).

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I can imagine someone living like this.
*Touches hot stove*
“OW! How did that happen? Whatever, I’ll just continue investigating this stove.”
*Touches stove again*
“OW! Again? This is getting weird.”
*And again*


Vestibular Sense

vestibular sense- sense of body movement and position, including balance.

cb-5-0040-vestibular sense

Superheroes seem to really like standing on skyscrapers. Whether their base is above ground, over ground or nonexistent, they always pick the same hangout.



kinesthesis- system for sensing the movement and position of body parts.


Today’s discussion question: A person’s, say, arm is detached and moved to a location several miles away. If the owner of the limb could still receive sensory data from the arm, could he home in on the location of his arm using his sense of kinesthesis? How cool would that be?


Sensory Interaction

sensory interaction- the senses are capable of influencing each other’s interpretation of the environment.

cb-5-0037-sensory interaction

Though NyQuil may burn your throat with minty fury, take comfort in the fact that the fire is fulled by pathogens, screaming in pain as they are slowly disintegrated.



audition- the sense of hearing.


What if you wanted to try out for a show about hearing? You’d be auditioning for a play about audition.


Sensory Adaptation

sensory adaptation- reduced sensitivity in response to constant stimulation.

cb-5-0009-sensory adaptation

When I was in elementary school, I could see the same movies, read the same books, and watch the same TV episodes over and over. This helped me cope with the fact that the only channel I watched on weekdays (PBS Kids, my family didn’t have cable at the time) rarely produced new episodes due to limited funding.



priming- activating, often unconsciously, associations in the mind, thus setting us up to remember or perceive objects or events in certain ways.