Conditioning Essay

627 Words3 Pages
Classical and Instrumental Conditioning Classical conditioning happens quite often in everyday life in both small and significant ways, and sometimes without us noticing. One way it has affected me recently in a negative way happened since I have been living on or near campus at VCU. The fastest way to get to most of my classes from where I have lived the past two years is to cut through Monroe Park. However, there are usually many homeless people in the park during the day and I have to pass by them when I go through the park. Generally when I see homeless people, I get a feeling of guilt for being more fortunate, riding on my nice bike coming from my apartment, and yet unable to help them. After a while, I noticed that just being in or passing through Monroe Park causes me to feel slightly guilty, even when I do not see homeless people. In this case, the unconditioned stimulus would be homeless people, and the unconditioned response is feeling guilty or sad. As I began to associate Monroe Park with homeless people, the park itself became the conditioned stimulus and feeling guilty just by being in the park was the conditioned response, because I did not have that feeling before I associated it with the homeless. This conditioning has not generalized to other parks, however. Discrimination has taken place with Monroe Park as I have never really spent as much time in any other parks on as daily basis, and most others I have been in do not have such a noticeable permanent homeless population. As a result, the conditioned response only occurs in relation to Monroe Park specifically. The conditioning appears to be relatively long-term, because the conditioned response occurred immediately even when I went away for winter break, then returned for school a month later, and walked through the park when there were not many people. Growing up, I have experienced

More about Conditioning Essay

Open Document