Generalization and Peak Shift


  • Discrimination
    • Stimulus generalization is when an animal learns to make the same response to similar stimuli
    • A discrimination is when an animal learns to make a differential response to two or more stimuli
    • In the case below, two generalization gradients are shown. The solid line indicates responses to a single stimulus and to other similar stimuli
    • Note that the training stimulus is where the highest level of response takes place
    • As one goes in either direction away from the training stimulus response level is less
  • Peak Shift
    • In the peak shift example (see dotted line), two stimuli are used.
    • One stimulus is associated with reward (the SD)the other (the SD) with no reward
    • Notice how the point of maximum response is now shifted AWAY from the SD
    • Also notice how the generalization gradient is steeper in this case


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