Learning & Behavior (Learn Behav )

Publisher: Psychonomic Society, Psychonomic Society

Journal description

Learning & Behavior publishes experimental and theoretical contributions and critical reviews that cover the broad categories of animal learning, cognition, motivation, emotion, and comparative animal behavior. Specific topics include classical and operant conditioning, discrete-trial instrumental learning, habituation, exploratory behavior, early experience, social and sexual behavior, imprinting, and territoriality. Formerly Animal Learning & Behavior.

Current impact factor: 1.48

Impact Factor Rankings

2015 Impact Factor Available summer 2015
2013 / 2014 Impact Factor 1.481
2012 Impact Factor 1.882
2011 Impact Factor 2
2010 Impact Factor 1.603
2009 Impact Factor 1.517
2008 Impact Factor 0.815

Impact factor over time

Impact factor

Additional details

5-year impact 1.89
Cited half-life 6.10
Immediacy index 0.42
Eigenfactor 0.00
Article influence 0.71
Website Learning & Behavior website
Other titles Learning & behavior (Online), Learning and behavior
ISSN 1543-4508
OCLC 51588188
Material type Document, Periodical, Internet resource
Document type Internet Resource, Computer File, Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

Publisher details

Psychonomic Society

  • Pre-print
    • Author can archive a pre-print version
  • Post-print
    • Author can archive a post-print version
  • Conditions
    • On author's personal website or institutional repository
    • Published source must be acknowledged
    • Must link to publisher version
    • Set statement to accompany deposit
    • Funder's designated repository after 12 months or as a result of legal obligation
    • Publisher's version/PDF cannot be used
  • Classification
    ​ green

Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: When retrospective revaluation phenomena (e.g., unovershadowing: AB+, then A-, then test B) were discovered, simple elemental models were at a disadvantage because they could not explain such phenomena. Extensions of these models and novel models appealed to within-compound associations to accommodate these new data. Here, we present an elemental, neural network model of conditioning that explains retrospective revaluation apart from within-compound associations. In the model, previously paired stimuli (say, A and B, after AB+) come to activate similar ensembles of neurons, so that revaluation of one stimulus (A-) has the opposite effect on the other stimulus (B) through changes (decreases) in the strength of the inhibitory connections between neurons activated by B. The ventral striatum is discussed as a possible home for the structure and function of the present model.
    Learning & Behavior 06/2013;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Nonreinforced exposure to a cue tends to attenuate subsequent conditioning with that cue-an effect referred to as latent inhibition (LI). In the two experiments reported here, we examined LI effects in the context of conditioned taste aversion by examining both the amount of consumption and the microstructure of the consummatory behavior (in terms of the mean size of lick clusters). The latter measure can be taken to reflect affective responses to, or the palatability of, the solution being consumed. In both experiments, exposure to a to-be-conditioned flavor prior to pairing the flavor with nausea produced by lithium chloride attenuated both the reduction in consumption and the reduction in lick cluster sizes typically produced by taste aversion learning. In addition, we observed a tendency (especially in the lick cluster measure) for nonreinforced exposure to reduce neophobic responses to the test flavors. Taken together, these results reinforce the suggestion from previous experiments using taste reactivity methods that LI attenuates the effects of taste aversion on both consumption and cue palatability. The present results also support the suggestion that the failure in previous studies to see concurrent LI effects on consumption and palatability was due to a context specificity produced by the oral taste infusion methods required for taste reactivity analyses. Finally, the fact that the pattern of extinction of conditioned changes in consumption and in lick cluster sizes was not affected by preexposure to the cue flavors suggests that LI influenced the quantity but not the quality of conditioned taste aversion.
    Learning & Behavior 06/2013;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Spatial learning and navigation have frequently been investigated using a reorientation task paradigm (Cheng, Cognition, 23(2), 149-78, 1986). However, implementing this task typically involves making tacit assumptions about the nature of spatial information. This has important theoretical consequences: Theories of reorientation typically focus on angles at corners as geometric cues and ignore information present at noncorner locations. We present a neural network model of reorientation that challenges these assumptions and use this model to generate predictions in a novel variant of the reorientation task. We test these predictions against human behavior in a virtual environment. Networks and humans alike exhibit reorientation behavior even when goal locations are not present at corners. Our simulated and our experimental results suggest that angles are processed in a manner more similar to features, acting as a focal point for reorientation, and that the mechanisms governing reorientation behavior may be inhibitory rather than excitatory.
    Learning & Behavior 05/2013;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: An animal's appetitive behavior is not a fixed response to current stimulation but can be affected by the anticipation of future events. For example, rats regularly given access to a moderately valued solution followed by a higher value solution (e.g., 4 % sucrose → 32 % sucrose) consume less of the initial solution than in control conditions where the initial solution is not followed by a higher value solution (e.g., 4 % sucrose → 4 % sucrose). Previous analyses have suggested that this negative anticipatory contrast effect does not depend on the "expectation" of a valuable stimulus producing a functional devaluation of a currently available stimulus of lesser value. In a within-subjects anticipatory contrast procedure, this study revealed that both consumption and the mean size of licking clusters were smaller for a 4 % sucrose solution on days when it preceded 32 % sucrose than on days when 4 % preceded 4 %. Since lick cluster size typically bears a positive monotonic relationship with the concentration of palatable solutions, this reduction is indicative of a decrease in the palatability/hedonic value of the solution subject to contrast. As such, we provide direct evidence that negative anticipatory contrast does produce a functional devaluation of the solution, thus challenging prevailing theoretical assumptions.
    Learning & Behavior 05/2013;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In two predictive-learning experiments, we investigated the role of the informational value of contexts for the formation of context-dependent behavior. During Phase 1 of each experiment, participants received either a conditional discrimination in which contexts were relevant (Group Relevant) or a simple discrimination in which contexts were irrelevant (Group Irrelevant). Each experiment also included an ABA renewal procedure. Participants received Z+ in context A during Phase 1, extinction of Z in context B during Phase 2, and were tested with Z in context A during a test phase. In each experiment, extinction of Z proceeded faster and was followed by stronger response recovery in Group Relevant than in Group Irrelevant. In Experiment 2, which included recording of eye-gaze behavior, dwell times on contexts were longer in Group Relevant than in Group Irrelevant. Our results support the idea that relevant contexts receive more attention, leading to stronger context specificity of learning.
    Learning & Behavior 02/2013;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Previous studies have identified potential sources of competing stimulus control in tests for stimulus equivalence. The present experiment employed the Nintendo Wii remote (Wiimote®) to investigate whether such competition would affect suboperant action dynamics (e.g., topographies of equivalence responses). Following one-to-many training on conditional discriminations sufficient to establish three 3-member equivalence classes, participants were presented with a test for equivalence responding that included five different trial types. These included "traditional" equivalence trials, on which the incorrect stimulus had previously been presented as a correct comparison stimulus during training, trials on which a novel unrelated word was provided as the incorrect comparison, and trials on which the incorrect stimulus varied in orthographical and phonological similarity to the sample stimulus. The presence of phonological and orthographic distractor stimuli significantly reduced the probability of equivalence-consistent responding, relative to neutral distractors, but this effect was almost exclusively seen in participants who failed to demonstrate equivalence on traditional equivalence trials. Analyses of correct response trajectories suggested that the prior history of reinforcement for choosing the incorrect stimulus on the traditional equivalence trial gave rise to greater competition than did phonological or orthographic similarity between the sample and incorrect comparisons.
    Learning & Behavior 02/2013;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Analogical reasoning is a cornerstone of human cognition, but the extent and limits of analogical reasoning in animals remains unclear. Recent studies have demonstrated that apes and monkeys can match relations with relations, suggesting that these species have the basic abilities for analogical reasoning. However, analogical reasoning in humans entails two additional cognitive processes that remain unexplored in animals. These include the ability to (1) flexibly reencode the relations instantiated by the source domain as a function of the relational properties of the target domain, and (2) to match relations across different stimulus dimensions. Using a two-dimensional relational matching-to-sample task, the present study demonstrates that these two abilities are in the scope of baboons, given appropriate training. These findings unveil the richness of the cognitive processes implicated during analogical reasoning in nonhuman primates and further reduce the apparent gap between animal and human cognition.
    Learning & Behavior 01/2013;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Pigeons learned a series of reversals of a simultaneous red-green discrimination with a 6-s delay of reinforcement. The signal properties during the 6-s reinforcement delay were varied across blocks of reversals, such that the delay was either unsignaled (intertrial interval conditions during the delay) or signaled by illumination of the center key. Four different signal conditions were presented: (1) signals only after S+ responses, (2) signals only after S- responses, (3) differential signals after S+ versus S- responding, and (4) the same nondifferential signals after S+ and S- responses. (A zero-delay control condition was also included.) Learning was at a high level in the S+ -only and differential-signal conditions, and learning was at a low level during the unsignaled, nondifferentially signaled, and S- signal conditions. Thus, a differential stimulus contingent on correct choices was necessary for proficient learning-to-learn, even though within-reversal learning occurred in all conditions. During the S+ and differential-signal conditions, improvement in learning continued to occur even after more than 240 reversals (more than 38,000 trials).
    Learning & Behavior 01/2013;