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Example Answer for Question 3 Paper 2: AS Psychology, June 2017 (AQA)

AS, A-Level

Last updated 22 May 2017

Section A - Approaches in Psychology

Question 3: Outline [3 Marks] - Skinner's Research

examine operant conditioning in rats and pigeons. The animal would move around the Skinner box, and when it pressed the lever (by accident), it would be rewarded with a food pellet. The animal would learn, through positive reinforcement, that each time it pressed the lever, it would be rewarded with food. Consequently, because the animal was rewarded for its behaviour, it would continue to press the lever and demonstrate the new behaviour. However, Skinner also found that if the rewarded was stopped and the animal pressed the lever and was not rewarded with food, it’s behaviour would quickly stop and this is known as extinction.

Please Note: These answers have been produced without the knowledge of the mark scheme and merely reflect my attempt at producing a model answer on the day of the exam. These answers are not endorsed or approved by AQA.

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