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Bidirectional associations

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Abstract

Associations are usually assumed to have only a predictive directionality, from Event 1 (E1) to Event 2 (E2). However, this unidirectionality, if it really exists, could be specific to the use of conditioned responses as the index of learning (i.e., conditioned responses are ordinarily elicited only when a conditioned stimulus [CS] predicts an unconditioned stimulus [US]). The present research used neutral stimuli, devoid of CS-US directionality, in order to test whether the underlying associative mechanism was unidirectional in nature. We used colors and figures as E1s and E2s. In Experiment 1, human subjects saw the events in the E1→E2 direction during training. In theconsistent group, the same E1 was always followed by the same E2; in theinconsistent group, E1s and E2s were paired randomly. In a subsequent test phase, we presented an E2 and subjects had to judge whether a particular E1 was associated with it. The judgments of the consistent group were higher than those of the inconsistent group, thereby suggesting that the association that the consistent subjects had learned was bidirectional. Experiments 2 and 3 confirmed the results of Experiment 1 while controlling for some alternative interpretations based on the representation-mediated formation of associations.
... Evidence of bidirectional associations in humans has been reported before, albeit not with procedures like those deployed here (Arcediano et al., 2005;Asch & Ebenholtz, 1962;Gerolin & Matute, 1999). However, evidence of bidirectional associations in pigeons has proven to be elusive, not only for us, but for several other researchers as well (Hogan & Zentall, 1977;Lipkens, Kop, & Matthijs, 1988;Richards, 1988; but see Zentall, Sherburne, & Steirn, 1992). ...
... Our human participants showed clear evidence of bidirectional associations. In the current design, we tried to control for the typical confounds that have appeared when studying bidirectional associations with other experimental designs (Arcediano et al., 2005;Ekstrand, 1966;Gerolin & Matute, 1999). First, our instructions to human participants did not contain any information regarding the existence of forward and backward trials nor did they describe the structure of the associative networks that we used (see Appendix). ...
Article
The study of bidirectional conditioning began more than a century ago, yet it has failed to take strong root in psychology and neuroscience. We revisit this topic by exploiting E. A. Asratyan’s alternating procedure of stimulus presentation, in which both forward (e.g., A→B) and backward (e.g., B→A) training trials are concurrently given, in order to analyze their potential interaction. Specifically, using a two-alternative, forced-choice task, we trained humans and pigeons to learn associations between stimuli depending on whether they were presented as sample stimuli or choice stimuli. Trials were selected from an associative network in which forward and backward associations between sample and choice stimuli were synergistic (bidirectional network) or from an associative network in which these associations were not synergistic (unidirectional network). Humans were faster to learn associations from the bidirectional network than from the unidirectional network; additionally, they performed poorly on unidirectional trials that allowed for the expression of (incorrect) bidirectional associations. Unlike humans, pigeons showed no evidence of bidirectional associations. The reasons for this species difference as well as future directions for research deploying Asratyan’s two-way training technique are discussed.
... UR 2 can be generated both through direct activation of Stimulus Point II and through DCC by activation of Stimulus Point I, and UR 1 can be generated through activation of Stimulus Point 1 and by activation of Stimulus Point II through RCC. There is evidence to support the idea that reciprocal associations are formed during CS→US pairings (e.g., Asch and Ebenholtz, 1962;Heth, 1976;Tait and Saladin, 1986;Zentall et al., 1992;Gerolin and Matute, 1999;Arcediano et al., 2005). ...
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Pairing a neutral conditioned stimulus (CS) with a motivationally significant unconditioned stimulus (US) results in the CS coming to elicit conditioned responses (CRs). The widespread significance and translational value of Pavlovian conditioning are increased by the fact that pairing two neutral CSs (A and X) enables conditioning with X to affect behavior to A. There are two traditional informal accounts of such higher-order conditioning, which build on more formal associative analyses of Pavlovian conditioning. But, higher-order conditioning and Pavlovian conditioning have characteristics that are beyond these accounts: Notably, the two are influenced in different ways by the same experimental manipulations, and both generate conditioned responses that do not reflect the US per se. Here, we present a formal analysis that sought to address these characteristics.
... Wagner, 1981). There is evidence that such reciprocal associations are acquired during forward condi- Table 1 The Relative Validity Design tioning in a variety of preparations (e.g., Arcediano, Escobar, & Miller, 2005;Asch & Ebenholtz, 1962;Cohen-Hatton, Haddon, George, & Honey, 2013;Gerolin & Matute, 1999;Honey & Bolhuis, 1997;Honey & Ward-Robinson, 2002;Rescorla & Freberg, 1978;Zentall, Sherburne, & Steirn, 1992). There is also complementary research on the conditions under which US-CS pairings result in conditioned responding to the CS (e.g., Ayres, Haddad, & Albert, 1987;Barnet & Miller, 1996;Cole & Miller, 1999;Heth, 1976;Matzel, Held, & Miller, 1988;Tait & Saladin, 1986). ...
Article
The model elaborated here adapts the influential pooled error term, first described by Wagner and Rescorla (Rescorla & Wagner, 1972; Wagner & Rescorla, 1972), to govern the formation of reciprocal associations between any pair of stimuli that are presented on a given trial. In the context of Pavlovian conditioning, these stimuli include various conditioned and unconditioned stimuli. This elaboration enables the model to deal with cue competition phenomena, including the relative validity effect, and evidence implicating separate error terms and attentional processes in association formation. The model also includes a performance rule, which provides a natural basis for (individual) variation in the strength and nature of conditioned behaviors that are observed in Pavlovian conditioning procedures. The new model thereby begins to address theoretical and empirical issues that were apparent when the Rescorla-Wagner model was first described, together with research inspired by the model over the ensuing 50 years. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved).
... The formation of reciprocal associations between the CS and US creates a functional cell assembly and enables "resonance" between them: When the CS is presented activation propagates to the US, which is propagated back to the CS (e.g., Grossberg, 1980;Hebb, 1949). There is evidence that such reciprocal associations are acquired during forward conditioning in a variety of preparations (e.g., Arcediano, Escobar, & Miller, 2005;Asch & Ebenholtz, 1962;Cohen-Hatton, Haddon, George, & Honey, 2013;Gerolin & Matute, 1999;Honey & Bolhuis, 1997;Honey & Ward-Robinson, 2002;Rescorla & Freberg, 1978;Zentall, Sherburne, & Steirn, 1992); and a complementary literature on the conditions under which US-CS pairings result in . CC-BY 4.0 International license It is made available under a perpetuity. ...
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Associative treatments of how Pavlovian conditioning affects conditioned behavior are rudimentary: A simple ordinal mapping is held to exist between the strength of an association (V) between a conditioned stimulus (CS) and an unconditioned stimulus (US; i.e., VCS-US) and conditioned behavior in a given experimental preparation. The inadequacy of this simplification is highlighted by recent studies that have taken multiple measures of conditioned behavior: Different measures of conditioned behavior provide the basis for drawing opposite conclusions about VCS-US. Here, we develop a simple model involving reciprocal associations between the CS and US (VCS-US and VUS-CS) that simulates these qualitative individual differences in conditioned behavior. The new model, HeiDI (How excitation and inhibition Determine Ideo-motion), enables a broad range of phenomena to be accommodated, which are either beyond the scope of extant models or require them to appeal to additional (learning) processes. It also provides an impetus for new lines of inquiry and generates novel predictions.
... Consistent with this view, Ebbinghaus (1885) had Learning to infer the time of actions and decisions 18 also suggested that associations between mental representations of events were bidirectional, so that each event could activate the representation of the other one in either direction. Although early 20 th century research was not conclusive about the bidirectionality of associations and the idea was generally abandoned (see Asch & Ebenholtz, 1962;Ekstrand, 1966, for review), more recent research has shown that associations can indeed activate the mental representation of either event upon observation of the other one (Arcediano, Escobar, & Miller, 2003, 2005Dignath, Pfister, Eder, Kiesel, & Kunde, 2014;Gerolin & Matute, 1999). ...
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Research shows that people infer the time of their actions and decisions from their consequences. We asked how people know how much time to subtract from consequences in order to infer their actions and decisions. They could either subtract a fixed, default, time from consequences, or learn from experience how much time to subtract in each situation. In two experiments, participants' actions were followed by a tone, which was presented either immediately or after a delay. In Experiment 1, participants estimated the time of their actions; in Experiment 2, the time of their decisions to act. Both actions and decisions were judged to occur sooner or later as a function of whether consequences were immediate or delayed. Estimations tended to be shifted toward their consequences, but in some cases they were shifted away from them. Most importantly, in all cases participants learned progressively to adjust their estimations with experience.
... Evenmore, Lee (Lee, 2008) reported that a learning trial during reactivation not only labilizes a fear memory, but also strengthens it through reconsolidation (see below). Similarly, a US-alone presentation was found to trigger reconsolidation process suggesting bidirectional associations between cues (Díaz-Mataix et al., 2011;Gerolin and Matute, 1999;Liu et al., 2014;Zeng et al., 2014). Díaz-Mataix et al. (2011) using pharmacological interventions and electrophysiological recording, showed that a US-alone presentation of the same intensity as that used in training, followed by a MAPK inhibitor, disrupts fear memory resulting in a depotentiated CS neural response. ...
... Una aproximación teórica reciente, sugiere a la contigüidad temporal como una condición suficiente para la ocurrencia del aprendizaje asociativo sin importar si los elementos participantes guardan un orden específico de presentación. Recientemente se ha demostrado experimentalmente esta bidirecionalidad funcional en humanos (Gerolin y Matute, 1998). ...
... Further evidence for the acquisition of bilateral stimulus±stimulus associations without generalization comes fromGerolin and Matute (1999),Matzel, Held, andMiller (1988), andMurdock (1958).ACTION EFFECTS ...
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Three experiments studied the acquisition of action-contingent events (action effects). In a first, acquisition phase participants performed free-choice reactions with each keypress leading to the presentation of either a particular category word (e.g., animal or furniture) or an exemplar word (e.g., dog or chair). In the test phase, choice responses were made to category or exemplar words by using a word-key mapping that was either compatible or incompatible with the key-word mapping during acquisition. Compatible mapping produced better performance than incompatible mapping if the words in the practice and the test phase were the same (e.g., animal M animal), if they had a subordinate-superordinate relationship (e.g., dog M animal), belonged to the same category (e.g., dog M cat), or referred to visually related concepts (e.g., orange M circle). The findings support the assumption that action effects are acquired and integrated with the accompanying action automatically, so that perceiving the effect leads to the priming of the associated response. And, most importantly, they demonstrate that effect acquisition generalizes to other, feature-overlapping events.
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Two experiments are reported that demonstrate temporal integration of independently acquired temporal relationships, including backward associations, in both human (Experiment 1) and nonhuman (rats, Experiment 2) subjects. The experiments were designed and analyzed in the framework of the temporal coding hypothesis (e.g., Matzel, Held, & Miller, 1988; Savastano & Miller, 1998) as a strategy toward illuminating the use of temporal information and assessing the existence of temporal backward associations. Both experiments provided evidence of retrieval of associations to an event that was expected to occur prior to the moment in time at which a stimulus was presented (i.e., backward associations). In addition, Experiment 1 constitutes the first controlled demonstration of temporal integration by human subjects.
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Time has played only a limited role within the traditional theories of Pavlovian conditioning. Although temporal factors certainly contribute to whether conditioning occurs, the traditional assumption in the associative framework has been that associations lack temporal information. Recently, the temporal coding hypothesis has challenged that view, arguing that animals encode temporal relationships as part of associations. That is, proximal temporal relationships not only foster associative learning, but also are part of the content of learning. The present paper reviews for the nonspecialist the increasing empirical evidence that temporal coding is ubiquitous in Pavlovian paradigms, including simultaneous and backward conditioning, second-order conditioning, sensory preconditioning, cue competition, Hall–Pearce type CS-preexposure, and conditioned inhibition. The data support the temporal coding hypothesis’ view that contiguity is sufficient for associative learning to occur, but challenge the central assumption of the informational hypothesis that predictive relations are necessary for learning to occur (as opposed to predictive relationships only being necessary for the expression of knowledge).
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Review of the literature indicates that, according to theories of selective attention, learning about a stimulus depends on attending to that stimulus; this is represented in 2-stage models by saying that Ss switch in analyzers as well as learning stimulus-response associations. It is argued that this assumption, however, is equally well represented in a formal model by the incorporation of a stimulus-specific learning-rate parameter, a, into the equations describing changes in the associative strength of stimuli. Previous theories of selective attention have also assumed that (a) Ss learn to attend to and ignore relevant and irrelevant stimuli (i.e., that a may increase or decrease depending on the correlation of a stimulus with reinforcement); and (b) there is an inverse relationship between the probabilities of attending to different stimuli (i.e., that an increase in a to one stimulus is accompanied by a decrease in a to others). The first assumption has been used to explain the phenomena of acquired distinctiveness and dimensional transfer, the second to explain those of overshadowing and blocking. It is argued that although the first assumption is justified by the data, the second is not: Overshadowing and blocking are better explained by the choice of an appropriate rule for changing a, such that a decreases to stimuli that signal no change from the probability of reinforcement predicted by other stimuli. (65 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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In Experiments 1 and 2, rats received initial training in which two neutral events were presented as a serial compound (A → X). Subsequent training with A as a signal for shock was found to endow X with the ability to evoke the conditioned response of suppression. Experiment 2 also showed that responding to X was diminished if, prior to testing, Stimulus A underwent extinction. Two possible mechanisms for these findings are considered: (a) that X elicits responding through the associative chain X-A-shock, and (b) that A activates a representation of X that gains direct associative strength during conditioning with A and loses it during extinction of A. Experiment 3 demonstrated that an X-shock association established after initial A → X training can be extinguished by nonreinforced presentations of A. These results suggest that associatively evoked representations of stimuli can enter into associations. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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This article reports evidence that a verbal association is symmetrical if its units are equally available. An item's availability was increased by having S produce it from memory. By the PA method S learned pairs of disyllables, which together formed an associative structure. The stimuli of some pairs were responses in other pairs; these stimuli thus became available. S was then asked for 2 free associations to every disyllable. 4 conclusions were drawn from the response hierarchies: (a) Available items occurred more often as responses in all hierarchies. (b) A backward association occurred as readily as a learned forward association if the PA stimulus was available. (c) Associations occurred between items that had shared a common associate, even though these items had not coappeared. Such associations, however, only manifested themselves when their response was available. (d) The data did not support a simple principle of mediation as an explanatory concept. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Four experiments were conducted comparing A-B and B-A recall in short-term memory. In each experiment paired-associate lists of fixed length (A-B) were presented to Ss who were then tested for recall of one pair, either A given B or B given A. In Exp. I all lists were six pairs long and each serial position was tested equally often. In Exp. II the presentation rate was either 1 sec./pair or 3 sec./pair. In Exp. III an unfilled retention interval of 0, 2, 4, 7, or 10 sec. followed the last pair in the list. In Exp. IV each list was presented once, twice, or three times prior to the retention test.With one exception there were no significant differences between recall of A and recall of B. The exception occurred in Exp. II; at a presentation rate of 1 sec./pair recall of A was better than recall of B, but at the 3-sec. presentation rate the reverse was true. The results were discussed in relation to the principle of associative symmetry.
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Food aversions were established in rats by administering lithium chloride (LiCl) immediately after the presentation of an exteroceptive conditioned stimulus (CS) which previously had been paired with a food substance. In Experiment 1, rats which received first tone-food and then tone-LiCl pairings showed less food consumption in subsequent testing than rats which received only tone-food or tone-LiCl pairings. Experiments 2 and 3 demonstrated the stimulus specificity of aversions established in this manner. Rats which first received pairings of light and tone CSs with two different food substances and then received pairings of one of those CSs with LiCl showed greater aversion to the food previously associated with the LiCl-paired CS than to the other food substance. Experiment 3 also showed that specific aversions were not acquired if rats received CS-shock rather than CS-LiCl pairings. These results suggest that CS-evoked representations of events can substitute for those events themselves in the formation of new associations.