Compound conditioned emotional response conditioning with differentially salient elements in rats

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R. Rescorla and A. R. Wagner's model of conditioning (1972) implies that, if 2 conditioned-stimulus (CS) elements are independently conditioned to asymptote and then compounded, reinforcement of the compound should reduce the conditioned strength of each element. Further, the more salient element should lose more strength and should ultimately show less conditioned strength than the less salient element. 4 groups of 8 male Holtzman albino rats each, in a conditioned emotional response procedure, provided 2 independent tests of this deduction at different levels of CS salience. Data in each case appear consistent with the model's prediction, significantly so in 1 case. Data in other aspects confirm deductions drawn from the model. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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