little albert study

little albert study

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  • Watson and Rayner created an experiment about classical conditioning. Watson wanted to show that emotional reactions could be classically conditioned.
  • Watson exposed range of different stimuli to Little Albert. these included: white rat, rabbit, monkey, masks (NS) and the baby showed no fear (NR)
  • Little Albert was exposed to a white rat (NS) again but this time a loud noise was made behind him with a metal pole and hammer (USC) causing Little Albert to cry (UCR).
  • this was repeated several times so that Little Albert had now associated the white rat with fear (CR).
  • after repetition, whenever the baby saw the white rat it would start to cry. therefore the NS became the CS and the NR became the CR.
  • although the study had many ethical issues, the classical conditioning was a success. Little Albert kept his fear of white rats along with a fear of other furry objects.
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