Thursday, August 25, 2011

Teaching Gorillas, Gently, How To Be Perfect Patients

Students of psychology are well aware of the effectiveness of reinforcement (both positive and negative) as a tool to modify the behavior of both people and animals.  This New York Times article demonstrates that the effective application of this operant conditioning technique is being used in zoos across the country to improve the living conditions of a variety of species ranging from gorillas, komodo dragons, poison dart frogs, and spade fish.  Those students that have taken our PSYC 324 course (Theories and Principles of Learning) may find this article especially interesting.