The effect of a discrete signal on context conditioning: Assessment by preference and freezing tests
Academic press inc jnl-comp subscriptions
SourceLearning and Motivation, 27, 4, (1996), pp. 428-450
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ DCC BI
Learning and Motivation
Four experiments with rats assessed conditioning to contextual cues after the delivery of footshocks that were either signaled by a discrete stimulus or unsignaled. Two different tests were used. The first was a context preference test in which subjects were allowed to move freely in a brightly lit, unconditionally aversive context and the former shock context. The second test consisted of scoring freezing behavior while the animals were confined to the former conditioning context. During context preference tests, signaled-shock animals spent more time in the conditioning context and/or entered that context more frequently than did unsignaled-shock subjects. However, freezing tests largely failed to detect a difference between groups. These results were discussed in terms of possible interactions between the formation of context-shock, signal-shock, and context-signal associations and their effect on performance in each of the two types of tests.
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