Instrumental Conditioning

Instrumental Conditioning

Instrumental conditioning, also known as Operant Conditioning, is the process of reinforcing a behaviour by consistently giving positive or negative reinforcement – the goal being to increase the probability that the rewarded behaviour will occur more frequently. For example, if a child is always given a chocolate chip cookie after cleaning her room (desired behaviour), it’s likely that she will clean her room more frequently. In this case, the parent is using instrumental conditioning to teach the child to clean her room.

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