Classical Conditioning of Emotional Responses: Little Albert Experiment

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Kandace Brown Little Emotional Albert Watson, J.B., & Rayner, R. (1920). Conditioned emotional responses. Journal of Experimental Psychology, 3, 1-14. In 1920 J. B. Watson and R. Rayner studied the classical conditioning of emotional responses. Albert or Little Albert was allowed to play with a white rat and he seemed like he was having a lot of fun while playing with that white rat. Later during the study, whenever Little Albert touched the white rat the scientist made a scary noise that scared Albert. Little Albert learned to associate the big scary noise with the white rat. After doing that a couple of times whenever he would touch the rat, Little Albert is becomes afraid of the rat and gets upset whenever the rat is close to him. The importance of this study is that it showed us that classical conditioning not only controls behaviors but also shows the emotions that we have inside. I could not say that I was too surprised that Little Albert ended up being afraid of the white rat overtime. After hearing a loud noise when trying to play with the rat would probably scare the heck out of me too and I would not want to play with the rat anymore either. I did not find this a good study to do. For one, the kid was really young and before the study was even over, Little Albert was afraid of everything that was white. I would not be able to make someone afraid of everything white; there are too many white things in the world for someone to go through that at a young age, but I will have to say that it was very impressive that they were able to succeed with this study. I would have just went a different way, maybe somebody older than Little Albert
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