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Classical conditioning and retention of the infant's eyelid response: effects of age and interstimulus interval



Classical conditioning and retention of the infant's eyelid response: effects of age and interstimulus interval



Journal of Experimental Child Psychology 37(3): 512-524



Independent groups of 10-,20-, and 30-day-old infants were subjected to a classical eyelid conditioning procedure involving either a 500- or a 1500-msec interstimulus interval (ISI). Ten days later, all received a second conditioning session. A reliable increase in conditioned responding was observed at all ages but only by infants receiving the 1500-msec ISI. Although age was not a significant factor in any conditioning measure except final performance level, which was greater for the oldest than for the youngest group, it did influence long-term retention. A reliable memory component was observed in the Session 2 performance of infants initially trained at 20 and 30 days but not at 10 days. These data demonstrate the importance of temporal parameters in the formation of conditioned associations very early in infancy and provide evidence for the long-term behavioral consequences of those associations.

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Accession: 042548105

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 6747546

DOI: 10.1016/0022-0965(84)90074-2


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