can operant conditioning lead to superstitions?

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Question Description

research the development of operant conditioning and its basic principles. Then, address the following

  • Describe the historical antecedents of operant conditioning. What factors led to the rise of operant conditioning?
  • Describe the principles/concepts which can be applied to explain the process by which operant conditioning can lead to the development and maintenance of superstitions.
  • Brainstorm to come up with a number of superstitions you may have heard or read about. Using your knowledge and vocabulary of operant conditioning, choose one of these superstitions. Then, describe in detail, the thinking processes involved that resulted in the acquisition and perpetuation of this irrational belief.
  • Describe a specific aspect of the operant conditioning process that leads to these beliefs becoming so deeply ingrained and long standing in nature.
  • Explain whether a person can ever be rid of superstitions. What methods can be used to help such a person?
  • Interview a family member or friend to discover a superstition that he or she believes in. Explain the nature of the event that led to the formation of this superstition. Does this information fit with your understanding of how the operant conditioning process results in the development of superstitions? Why or why not?

Write a 3–4-page paper in Word format. The paper should be double-spaced and in 12 point, Times New Roman font with regular one-inch margins and free of typographical and grammatical errors. Apply APA standards to citation of sources. Be sure to include a title page and a reference page. Use the following file naming convention: LastnameFirstInitial_M3_A2.doc

Many people believe that superstitions are absolutely true. This often causes them to believe and act in ways that are out of the norm either to avoid a negative outcome or to bring about a positive outcome. However, the origins of all superstitions lie in operant conditioning (for example, wearing the same shirt worn during a victory game to all future games in order to ensure victory).

In this assignment, you will examine the process by which operant conditioning can lead to the formation of a superstition.

Tutor Answer

School: University of Virginia

Hello, attached is the complete paper, and its outline. In case of any issue, kindly let me know


Operant Conditioning
Institutional Affiliation




Historical Antecedents of Operant Conditioning
Classical conditioning
In the early 20th century, behaviorism reigned within the field of psychology. Before the
concept of operant conditioning was coined and studied, most people believed in classical
conditioning. Ivan Pavlov is regarded as the father of Classical conditioning, as he was the one
who coined and experimented with this concept. Pavlov believed that animals and even human
beings could be conditioned to behave in a certain manner or to act differently, during certain
occasions. For a long time, Classical conditioning was the dominant belief, until later when
scholars proposed and experimented the concept of operant conditioning. One of the first
proponents of classical conditioning was John B. Watson whose focus was classical
conditioning. He majored on associative learning, claiming that he could take any individual,
background notwithstanding, and train them to be what he would choose (Marques, &
Benvenuti, 2017). Alongside Pavlov, Watson argued that when it came to learning, stimulus
came before response.
The birth of Operant conditioning
Operant conditioning was discovered in the 20th century, by B. F Skinner, an American
scholar, psychologist, and social philosopher. His discovery made a great impact in psychology,
as it ushered in an era, in which people started approaching the issue of conditioning differently
B. F. Skinner came up with the concept of operant conditioning based on his research into how
the consequen...

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Tutor went the extra mile to help me with this essay. Citations were a bit shaky but I appreciated how well he handled APA styles and how ok he was to change them even though I didnt specify. Got a B+ which is believable and acceptable.

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