Autoshaping, also known as sign tracking, refers to a set of complex behavioral actions and/or experimental procedures regarding Pavlov’s classical conditioning. Unlike Skinner’s operant conditioning, the pairing of the stimuli is regardless of the learner’s actions. For instance, in Pavlov’s experiment, the ringing of a bell preceded the presentation of food which naturally elicited a salivation reaction. After several repetitions, the dog was “autoshaped” to salivate in response to the bell. This is different from the “shaping” concept of Skinner which depended on reinforcement to achieve learning.

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