Aversive Conditioning and Learning by Robert Brush

By Robert Brush

"very little fabric of this type was once released"

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The former suggest that mediation occurs; the latter indicate that its occurrence is unlikely and that if it does occur, it is very 1. Autonomie Aversive Conditioning 43 complex. It must be admitted, however, that whatever the outcome of this research, correlational data can never be completely convincing. Even if a relationship between the central movement processes and autonomie responses is found, it may be coincidental. Also, one may not find a relation among autonomie responses, because one does not measure the appropriate response properties in enough detail.

Furthermore, DiCara and Miller employed a shaping procedure and Black did not. This difference in procedure may have led to the use of mediational strategy in the one case, and none in the other. In short, a given autonomie change may be involved in several different complexly interacting feedback control systems, each of which may be activated by different conditions, involve different central processes, and have a different function in the economy of the organism. Cardiovascular changes are involved in the relatively limited system regulating the movement of the skeletal musculature, and may also be involved in the more extensive system which we label "emotional arousal," to mention only two examples.

There was no significant correlation between overall changes in baseline levels of heart rate and blood pressure from the beginning to the end of the experiment. Similar results have been obtained in research employing positive electrical brain stimulation as the opérant reinforcement. Miller and Banuazizi (1968) operantly conditioned heart rate increases and decreases and observed changes in intestinal contractions. They also conditioned intestinal contractions and relaxation and observed concomitant changes in heart rate but found no clear-cut correlation between the two responses when groups were compared.

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