Antecedent (behavioral psychology)

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An antecedent is a stimulus that cues an organism to perform a learned behavior. When an organism perceives an antecedent stimulus, it behaves in a way that maximizes reinforcing consequences and minimizes punishing consequences.

Antecedent stimuli that have been paired with reinforcing consequences activate centers of the brain involved in motivation,[1] while antecedents that have been paired with punishing consequences activate brain centers involved in fear.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Yin, Henry H., Sean B. Ostlund, and Bernard W. Balleine. "Reward-guided learning beyond dopamine in the nucleus accumbens: the integrative functions of cortico-basal ganglia networks." European Journal of Neuroscience 28.8 (2008): 1437–1448.
  2. ^ Killcross, S., Robbins, T. W., & Everitt, B. J. (1997). Different types of fear-conditioned behaviour mediated by separate nuclei within amygdala. Nature, 388(6640), 377-380.