Last class, we discussed how psychology is the study of human behaviour, and how our environment, as well as our genetic makeup affect the ways we act. Today, we will discuss way to alter people’s behaviour.

Part 1: Conditioning

Have you heard of Pavlov’s dogs? Discuss

Little Albert, one of the earliest studies of human behaviour modification.

What conclusions can you make from the Little Albert experiment?

Are there any flaws in the experiment?

Part 2: Positive vs. Negative reinforcement

In your groups, research and come up with the definitions, in your own words, of positive and negative reinforcement.

For each one think of a specific example that affect your own behaviour.


Part 3:

In your groups, create a short (no more than 5 minutes) experiment that will successfully demonstrate how both positive and negative reinforcement affect a person or a group’s behaviour. You will then attempt this experiment on your classmates.

First, let’s discuss some ground rules when performing psychological experiments on others.