Contemporary Learning Theories: Pavlovian Conditioning and the Status of Traditional Learning Theory

Contemporary Learning Theories: Pavlovian Conditioning and the Status of Traditional Learning Theory

Contemporary Learning Theories: Pavlovian Conditioning and the Status of Traditional Learning Theory

Contemporary Learning Theories: Pavlovian Conditioning and the Status of Traditional Learning Theory

Synopsis

This unique two-volume set provides detailed coverage of contemporary learning theory. Uniting leading experts in modern behavioral theory, these texts give students a complete view of the field. Volume I details the complexities of Pavlovian conditioning and describes the current status of traditional learning theories. Volume II discusses several important facets of instrumental conditioning and presents comprehensive coverage of the role of inheritance on learning.

A strong and complete base of knowledge concerning learning theories, these volumes are ideal reference sources for advanced students and professionals in experimental psychology, learning and learning theory, and comparative physiology.

Excerpt

Theoretical interpretations of the learning process have concerned experimental psychologists for well over 100 years and have been a dominant force in psychology in general. Many of the initial theories, such as those of Hull and Tolman, attempted to capture the entire essence of learned behavior--the age of global theories of learning. In the past 10 to 15 years, theoretical concepts of the way in which human and non-human organisms learn or acquire information have undergone a dramatic metamorphosis. This change has involved moving from the broad, all-encompassing theories of Hull, Tolman, Guthrie and Thorndike to more specific, focused theories.

Most learning texts available to upper level students reviewing various theories of learning cover the traditional theories in detail, while only casually addressing more contemporary theories. Detailed treatment of these modern theories is available but can be found only by searching through a variety of sources (i.e., book chapters, review articles or a series of research articles). Feeling that there is a definite need to put all of these ideas into a single easily accessible medium, we contacted many noted modern learning theorists who graciously agreed to provide a discussion of their most recent research and theorizing. The result is a two-volume text dealing with the most up-to-date conceptualizations of the learning process. This first volume describes the ideas of sixteen psychologists on Pavlovian conditioning and modifications of traditional learning theory. The companion second volume presents the views of seventeen psychologists on instrumental conditioning and biological constraints on learning.

The material in this two volume text is appropriate for several different audiences. It could be used in an upper division learning theories course, a graduate learning theories class, or as reference text for researchers. We hope that the ideas of these noted psychologists will be as enlightening and stimulating to you as it has been to us.

Stephen B. Klein
Robert R. Mowrer
. . .

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