Preliminary Evidence For Two Independent Learning Mechanisms Via Electrodermal Responses To Visual Stimuli

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Andrew J. Graves (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site:
Kenneth Steele

Abstract: There is debate among learning theorists regarding the mechanisms underlying human associative learning. Some researchers argue a single-process drives human associative learning, a propositional model guided by higher-order reasoning. Other researchers argue for a dual-process model, in which two independent processes drive human associative learning, one propositional and sensitive to stimulus prediction, the other automatic and sensitive to stimulus pairing. The current study intended to collect evidence supporting either the single-process model or dual-process model. We tested if the single-process model made either correct or incorrect predictions in the Perruchet paradigm. The Perruchet paradigm induces a state of uncertainty regarding stimulus prediction, dissociating participants’ expectancy of an unconditioned stimulus (US) and physiological/ behavioral response to a conditioned stimulus (CS), which results in unexplainable predictions in the context of the single-process model. The adapted Perruchet paradigm for the current study predicted an opposite linear pattern between expectancy of the US and skin conductance response (SCR) to the CS as a function of sequential stimulus pairing. The results generally supported this hypothesis, expanding the Perruchet effect to a visual stimulus paradigm and to a phasic SCR analytic procedure previously unexamined in this experimental context.

Additional Information

Graves, A. (2017). "Preliminary Evidence For Two Independent Learning Mechanisms Via Electrodermal Responses To Visual Stimuli." Unpublished Master’s Thesis. Appalachian State University, Boone, NC.
Language: English
Date: 2017
Perruchet effect, Associative learning models, Classical conditioning, Expectancy, Skin conductance response

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