Effect of posttrial episodes on conditioning in compound conditioned stimuli

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The effect of signaled and nonsignaled posttrial episodes (PTEs) on conditioning to the target CS of a preceding compound CS-UCS trial was examined in 2 conditioned emotional response experiments with 108 male albino rats. Exp I revealed that a nonsignaled PTE and 2nd shock UCS interfered with conditioning to the preceding target CS and that the interference effect of the PTE was greater when it occurred 5 sec as opposed to 1,800 sec after the preceding compound CS-UCS trial. Exp II revealed that if the shock PTE was signaled by a CS, its ability to interfere with conditioning was reduced and that omission of an “expected” UCS interfered with conditioning to the target CS. The implications of these data for information processing models of Pavlovian conditioning are discussed. (23 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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