Conditioned reflex activity in the dog in relation to the strength of the conditioned stimulus and the amount of reinforcement
Fiziologicheskii Zhurnal Sssr Journal of Physiology Ussr 30(4): 459-464
1. There is no direct relation between the strength of the conditioned stimulus and the magnitude of the conditioned response. Upon elaboration of a conditioned reflex to a weak stimulus, subsequent application of a strong stimulus results in a considerably lessened response. Strong conditioned stimuli have the advantage of higher stability, owing to which they give a larger summary effect. 2. Reflexes elaborated to weak or strong stimuli exhibit no significant difference with regard either to magnitude or to duration of latent period. 3. In expts. with combined application of weak and strong stimuli, differentiation remains unaltered. This indicates the absence of phasic phenomena depending on a pathological condition of the cerebral cortex. 4. The magnitude of the conditioned reflex exhibits direct relation to the magnitude or strength of non-conditioned reinforcement. This holds true for both alimentary and defensive reflexes.