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Learning in the News

Page history last edited by Jeremy Houska 11 years, 5 months ago

Main -> In the News: Learning


Soda: A Sin We Sip Instead of Smoke? (NY Times, 2/12/2010)

          The U.S. government is considering a tax on soda as one way to help curb obesity, particularly childhood obesity.

Discussion question: Explain the proposed soda tax in terms of operant conditioning.


Turning Scents into Dollars (NPR Weekend Edition, 11/7/2004)

This story describes how certain scents, such as lavender, cause relaxation through classical conditioning.

Discussion questions: In this story, identify the classical conditioning. Label the UCS, UCR, CS, and CR.


Experimental Campaigns Pay Drivers to Avoid Rush-Hour Traffic (NY Times, 6/11/2012)

          This story discusses an initiative at Stanford University in which people can enter a daily lottery if they shift their commute to off-peak hours.

          Discussion questions: What are some of the benefits of using parking and congestion relief incentives rather than congestion charges for driving during peak hours? How can

          these initiatives be explained in the context of punishment and reinforcement? 


The Perfected Self (The Atlantic, 6/2012)

          This article discusses the application of Skinner's behavior modification techniques to weight loss, shopping and other "temptations." The author also discusses how

          smartphone apps can successfully utilize learning theories (Q&A session here). Great piece to use in the learning unit emphasizing the relevance and application of operant

          conditioning (Thanks to Kay Banister Schaffer via the AP- Psychology Listserv) 


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