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Cue competition in the absence of compound training: Its relation to paradigms of interference between outcomes

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... When acquisition and counterconditioning were conducted in two different imaginary hospitals (context) the return to the acquisition context at testing led subjects to judge the medicine as causing the first outcome again. Moreover, Matute and Pineño (1998) report a renewal like effect in a situation where training a cue with an outcome interferes with performance to a different cue that was previously paired with the same outcome. ...
... If that were the case, CR renewal with the return to the original context at testing would reflect performance to a non extinguished CS. Thus, presenting the final performance at the end of each phase leaves room for alternative explanations questioning whether what has been found can be interpreted as a renewal effect (v.g., Matute & Pineño, 1998;Rosas et al., 1999; but see Baker et al. 1996). ...
... These results replicate the acquisition and extinction effects found in Experiment 1. Most importantly, they replicate the renewal effect previously reported by Rosas et al. (1999;see also Baker et al., 1996;Matute & Pineño, 1998) in a situation where the change in the context during acquisition does not affect retrieval of the information. ...
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this paper was to test whether renewal can be found in human beings in a situation where the context change does not affect acquisition. We used a predictive judgments preparation where fictitious medicines are presented, and the subject has to predict whether they are related to an imaginary illness. Experiment 1 was conducted with the aim of testing our acquisition and extinction procedure. Experiment 2 looked for within subjects renewal, testing whether the return to the acquisition context after receiving extinction in a different but equally familiar context would renew the predicted probability of the medicine causing the illness
... In previous experiments, the basic interference effect was observed in groups that were analogous to group SO as compared to groups that were analogous to group DO (see Matute & Pineño, 1998b, for a review), except that those groups were not exposed to a retention interval between the two training phases. However, the basic interference effect should still be replicated in group SO in this experiment if, according to our hypothesis, it is the proximity between the interfering trials and the test trial that produces interference. ...
... As Matute and Pineño (1998b) noted, there is a notable parallelism between these experiments and those on retroactive interference between outcomes (i.e., experiments on extinction and counterconditioning, in which a single cue is paired to two different outcomes in different phases; see e.g., Bouton, 1993, Rescorla, 1996a. Our effect of interference between elementally trained cues can be regarded as a related type of retroactive interference, except that in this case two cues are paired to the same outcome in different phases, rather than vice versa. ...
... Interestingly, these similarities could allow us to integrate the literature on interference between cues (e.g., blocking, relative validity) and on interference between outcomes (e.g., extinction, counterconditioning), which are generally presented as independent fields of study. Traditional associative models which explain cue interference, such as Rescorla and Wagner's (1972), fail to explain interference between outcomes (see e.g., Bouton, 1993;Rescorla, 1996aRescorla, , 1996b), nor can they explain the results that we have presented here and elsewhere on interference between elementally trained cues (Matute & Pineño, 1998a, 1998b). On the other hand, theories that explain interference between outcomes (e.g., Bouton, 1993) do not attempt to explain interference between cues but could, in principle, be extended to explain both our results and other cases of cue interference. ...
Article
Matute and Pineño (1998a) showed evidence of interference between elementally trained cues and suggested that this effect occurs when the interfering association is more strongly activated than the target association at the time of testing. The present experiments tested directly the role of the relative activation of the associations in the effect of interference between elementally trained cues. In three human experiments we manipulated the relative activation of the interfering and target associations in three different ways: (a) introducing a retention interval between training of the interfering association and the test trial (Experiment 1); (b) training the target and the interfering associations in a single phase, instead of training them in separate phases (Experiment 2); and (c) introducing, just before testing, a novel cue which, like the retention interval used in Experiment 1, had the purpose of separating the interfering trials from the test trial (Experiment 3). All three manipulations led to an enhancement of responding to the target association at testing, suggesting that they were effective in preventing the interfering association from being the most strongly activated one at the time of testing. Taken together, these results add further evidence on how the relative activation of associations modulates interference between elementally trained cues.
... The f inding that interference can also occur in predictive learning, regardless of whether or not within-compound associations are established, suggests the possibility of integrating the literature on elemental cues (called retroactive interference in the paired associate tradition) with the studies on compound cues (called retrospective revaluation in the associative learning tradition). Our results are also consistent with recent reports of interaction between elementally trained cues (e.g., Escobar, Arcediano, & Miller, 2001; Escobar, Matute, & Miller, 2001; Matute & Pineño, 1998a, 1998b ), as well as with several reports that show interaction between cues that have received differential (i.e., elemental) inhibition training (e.g., Lipp et al., 1993; Packer & Siddle, 1989; Siddle, 1985; Siddle et al., 1990 ). Moreover, some of the comparisons of the elemental and compound inhibition procedures that have been reported in the literature are also consistent with the results of Experiment 1. ...
... Dickinson and colleagues used a causal judgment task in which participants were requested to give their subjective rating of the degree to which they believed that the cue (i.e., a particular food) was the cause of the outcome (i.e., an allergic reaction). Despite our failure to obtain interference in causal judgment tasks (see Matute & Pineño, 1998a, for a review), some reports in the literature have suggested that interaction between elementally trained cues could be observed even in causal judgments tasks if the right parameters were used. Wasserman and Berglan (1998) reported a study in which participants received AW–O1, BX–O1, and CY–O1 trials in Phase 1, followed by A–O1 and C–no-O trials in Phase 2. ...
... Although the purpose of the present paper was not to explore the mechanisms that might produce retrospective revaluation between cues trained together and between cues trained apart, the results of these experiments , together with other data on cue competition and interference, suggest that the two effects can be explained by a common mechanism. Retrospective revaluation between both elementally trained and compoundtrained cues can be explained by Dickinson and Burke's (1996) revised SOP model if it is assumed that the absent cue, X, can become associatively activated not only by cues that have a within-compound association with X, but also by the outcome itself (see Escobar, Matute, & Matute and Pineño, 1998a). According to this view, X and O1 would form inhibitory associations during Phase 2 because X is absent during trials in which the outcome is present. ...
Article
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Associative learning theories assume that cue interaction and, specifically, retrospective revaluation occur only when the target cue is previously trained in compound with the to-be-revalued cue. However, there are recent demonstrations of retrospective revaluation in the absence of compound training (e.g., Matute & Pineño, 1998a, 1998b). Nevertheless, it seems reasonable to assume that cue interaction should be stronger when the cues are trained together than when they are trained apart. In two experiments with humans, we directly compared compound and elemental training of cues. The results showed that retrospective revaluation in the elemental condition can be as strong as and, sometimes, stronger than that in the compound condition. This suggests that within-compound associations are not necessary for retrospective revaluation to occur and that these effects can possibly be best understood in the framework of general interference theory.
... Thus, training an interpolated association has a more deleterious effect on responding to the target (A-B) association than does partially degrading the A-B contingency. Matute and Pineño (1998a) suggested that retroactive interference between antecedent events and between subsequent events could be integrated into one theoretical framework by hypothesizing that retroactive interference will occur whenever the interpolated association is better primed by the test context than is the target association. Escobar et al. (2001) extended Matute and Pineño's (1998a) assumptions to incorporate proactive interference effects and found that responding to one association was attenuated whenever the other association was better primed by the test context. ...
... Matute and Pineño (1998a) suggested that retroactive interference between antecedent events and between subsequent events could be integrated into one theoretical framework by hypothesizing that retroactive interference will occur whenever the interpolated association is better primed by the test context than is the target association. Escobar et al. (2001) extended Matute and Pineño's (1998a) assumptions to incorporate proactive interference effects and found that responding to one association was attenuated whenever the other association was better primed by the test context. The present results further extend these findings and suggest that greatest interference occurs between associations that have a common element in a common temporal location. ...
... This series also demonstrates equivalent retroactive interference between antecedent events and between subsequent events, using highly similar situations, and hence supports the notion that a single mechanism underlies both types of interference. The priming notion suggested by Bouton (1993) and extended by Matute and Pineño (1998a) and Escobar et al. currently provides a plausible mechanism to account for these interference effects. ...
Article
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Retrieval of a target association (A-B) is often impaired if training of a similar association is interpolated between target training and testing; this is known as retroactive interference. Two experiments, in which rats were used as subjects in a sensory preconditioning preparation, studied the associative nature of retroactive interference between antecedent events (i.e., A and C in the A-B, C-B paradigm) and between subsequent events (i.e., B and C in the A-B, A-C paradigm). With the present preparation, retroactive interference was equally strong between antecedent events and between subsequent events. Moreover, interference occurred only if (1) an association was trained in the interpolated phase and (2) the target and interpolated associations had a common element in a common temporal location.
... When acquisition and counterconditioning were conducted in two different imaginary hospitals (context) the return to the acquisition context at testing led subjects to judge the medicine as causing the first outcome again. Moreover, Matute and Pineño (1998) report a renewal like effect in a situation where training a cue with an outcome interferes with performance to a different cue that was previously paired with the same outcome. ...
... If that were the case, CR renewal with the return to the original context at testing would reflect performance to a non extinguished CS. Thus, presenting the final performance at the end of each phase leaves room for alternative explanations questioning whether what has been found can be interpreted as a renewal effect (v.g., Matute & Pineño, 1998;Rosas et al., 1999; but see Baker et al. 1996). ...
... These results replicate the acquisition and extinction effects found in Experiment 1. Most importantly, they replicate the renewal effect previously reported by Rosas et al. (1999;see also Baker et al., 1996;Matute & Pineño, 1998) in a situation where the change in the context during acquisition does not affect retrieval of the information. ...
... When acquisition and counterconditioning were conducted in two different imaginary hospitals (context) the return to the acquisition context at testing led subjects to judge the medicine as causing the first outcome again. Moreover, Matute and Pineño (1998) report a renewal like effect in a situation where training a cue with an outcome interferes with performance to a different cue that was previously paired with the same outcome. ...
... If that were the case, CR renewal with the return to the original context at testing would reflect performance to a non extinguished CS. Thus, presenting the final performance at the end of each phase leaves room for alternative explanations questioning whether what has been found can be interpreted as a renewal effect (v.g., Matute & Pineño, 1998;Rosas et al., 1999; but see Baker et al. 1996). ...
... These results replicate the acquisition and extinction effects found in Experiment 1. Most importantly, they replicate the renewal effect previously reported by Rosas et al. (1999;see also Baker et al., 1996;Matute & Pineño, 1998) in a situation where the change in the context during acquisition does not affect retrieval of the information. ...
Article
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Se realizaron dos experimentos con el objetivo de explorar la extinción y renovación en seres humanos utilizando una tarea de juicios predictivos. El Experimento 1 encontró que los emparejamientos de una medicina ficticia con una enfermedad inventada llevaba a los sujetos a predecir la enfermedad en presencia de la medicina. Cuando posteriormente se presentó la medicina sin consecuencias los sujetos aprendieron a predecir que la medicina no iba seguida por enfermedad, aunque continuaron prediciendo enfermedad en presencia de otra medicina que no había sido extinguida. En el Experimento 2, después de presentar emparejamientos de la medicina y la enfermedad en un hospital imaginario determinado (contexto X), se presentó la medicina sola en un hospital imaginario distinto pero igualmente familiar (contexto Y). Durante la prueba posterior se encontró que los sujetos predecían la enfermedad en presencia de la medicina cuando ésta se presentaba en el contexto X (el contexto de adquisición), mientras predecían ausencia de enfermedad cuando la medicina se presentaba en el contexto Y (el contexto de extinción). Estos resultados replican otros previamente encontrados con animales y extienden aquellos encontrados usando juicios de contingencia con seres humanos. Se barajan distintas teorías asociativas para la explicación de estos resultados, particularmente el modelo de recuperación de la información de Bouton (1993).
... The purpose of this experiment was to study whether the miscuing effect obtained by Siddle and his colleagues with just one interfering trial (e.g., Lipp et al., 1993 ) can generalize across different tasks and dependent variables . To these ends, we used the same procedure that had been used in the experiments described by Arcediano et al. (1996) and Matute and Pineño (1998a Pineño ( , 1998b). ...
... However, Matute and Pineño (1998b) suggested that, given certain assumptions, the modified Wagner's (1981) SOP model (Dickinson & Burke, 1996; Larkin et al., 1998) could account for those results. More specifically, if we assume that an inhibitory association is formed between X and the outcome during the interfering A-O trials of Phase 2 in which X is absent (as long as X and A are trained in the same context; Dickinson & Burke, 1996), and if we also assume that inhibitory associations generalize less readily across contexts than excitatory associations (Bouton, 1993 ), then we could explain both the impaired responding to X during testing that occurs when X and A are trained in the same context as well as the absence of impairment observed when X is tested in a context that is different from that in which A was trained (see Matute & Pineño, 1998a, 1998b). In order to test this view, we used only one interfering trial during Phase 2 in the present experiments. ...
... As noted in the introduction, it is not yet clear whether the more traditional forms of interference between cues (i.e., compound training) are better explained as retrieval (e.g., Miller & Matzel, 1988 ) or as acquisition effects (e.g., Dickinson & Burke, 1996; Rescorla & Wagner, 1972; Van Hamme & Wasserman, 1994; Wagner, 1981). The present and other related findings (e.g., Lipp, Siddle, & Dall, 1993; Matute & Pineño, 1998a, 1998b Packer & Siddle, 1989; Siddle, Broekhuizen, & Packer, 1990) could seem to suggest that similar results should also be observed in animal research as well if one tested it carefully. However , it has been shown that other forms of retrospective revaluation using compound training (e.g., backward blocking) are hard to obtain in rats because , among other reasons, the stimuli that are used as outcomes in animal research are generally stimuli of high biological significance (i.e., unconditioned stimuli or USs) rather than the neutral stimuli used as outcomes in human research (Denniston et al., 1996;). ...
Article
Recent research has shown that the acquisition of a second cue–outcome association can interfere with responding appropriate to a previously acquired association between another cue and the same outcome, even if the two cues had never received compound training (Matute & Pineño, 1998a). This is similar to other results in the paired-associate literature but it is problematic for associative theories of learning because all of them assume that compound training is necessary for cues to interfere with each other. However, given several assumptions, a recent revision of Wagner's (1981) SOP model proposed by Dickinson and Burke (1996) could account for most of the data available on interference between elementally trained cues. According to the modified SOP model, the target cue that is paired with the outcome during Phase 1 could acquire an inhibitory association with the outcome during the Phase 2 trials in which the interfering cue is trained and the target cue is absent. This inhibitory association could be responsible for the weak responding observed to the target cue during testing because it could interfere with the excitatory association acquired during Phase 1. If this is true, interference should be weaker as the number of Phase 2 interfering trials is reduced. However, the three experiments reported here show that interference can occur even when only one interfering trial is given during Phase 2. The results of these experiments, along with other results in the literature, add support to the idea that interference between elementally trained cues occurs during retrieval and that it is not due to the formation of inhibitory associations between an absent cue and the outcome.
... Recientemente, han propuesto una modificación al supuesto anterior, en la que a los efectos de recuperación estudiados en situaciones de interferencia entre consecuencias, como la extinción, el contracondicionamiento o la discriminación inversa (Bouton, 2004;Rosas y col., 2001;Rosas y col., 2003;, se han agregado los de la interferencia entre claves (Escobar Matute y Miller, 2001;Matute y Pineño, 1998, 2000. En la interferencia entre consecuencias, en una primera fase una clave A produce la consecuencia x, y en la segunda fase la misma clave produce una consecuencia distinta y. ...
... Así, se ha llegado a suponer que las tareas con humanos son no verbales aun y cuando se reconoce el uso de instrucciones en ellas (Miller y Escobar, 2002, pp. 168-169), que el efecto de las instrucciones de prueba es equiparable en humanos al de los contextos físicos de prueba empleados en ratas Pineño y col, 2003), que los contextos físicos y la frecuencia con la que se solicita el juicio a los participantes en una tarea causal (frecuencia del juicio o demandas de la tarea) son equivalentes ) y el empleo de etiquetas de texto como análogo a los contextos físicos o temporales empleados en animales (García-Gutiérrez y Matute y Pineño, 1998;Pineño y Miller, 2004b;Rosas y col. 2001). ...
... Sin embargo, no deja de ser difícil pensar en cómo una instrucción que hace alusión a un espacio tiempo-concreto (estás en el país ... en el año...) es análoga funcionalmente a un contexto o al paso del tiempo, sin pensar en sus propiedades funcionales como comportamiento verbal. Esta generalización de variables ha producido un incremento de la variedad de las tareas empleadas con humanos y se ha preocupado poco por la validez de las mismas, lo que en ocasiones provoca que se obtengan resultados contradictorios al manipular variables similares , o dificultades en la replicación de algunos efectos con tareas de aprendizaje causal (Matute y Pineño, 1998). ...
... and humans (e.g., Matute & Pineño, 1998a, 1998bPineño, Ortega, & Matute, 2000) has shown that interference effects can occur between elementally-trained cues, that is, between cues that have never received compound training. The original finding comes from Matute and Pineño's (1998b) studies of predictive learning with humans. ...
... In sum, this all suggests that interference occurs when the two associations share a common element and the interfering association is more strongly activated than the target association at the time of testing (e.g., because of recency or contextual manipulations). Apparently, if the interfering cue is strongly predicting the outcome when the target cue is presented at testing, retrieval of the outcome representation by the target cue is impaired (see Matute & Pineño, 1998a;Pineño et al., 2000, for further discussion). ...
... With the exception of the preliminary results with rats observed by Escobar, Matute, and Miller (2001), and the latent inhibition effect in interference between outcomes, we are not aware of this effect being previously reported in the predictive learning literature, although proactive interference in other paradigms with humans (e.g., Bennett, 1975;Brosgole, 1976) as well as with animals (e.g., Grant, 1975) is a quite well established effect (but see Crowder, 1967;Kehoe, 1963). This is important in that, if proactive interference between elementally trained cues were observed to occur in predictive learning, it would add to the growing body of literature that suggests that interference between cues (e.g., Matute & Pineño, 1998a) and between outcomes (e.g., Bouton, 1993) in predictive learning can probably be integrated into a common framework along with interference effects from other areas. ...
Article
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The impairment in responding to a secondly trained association because of the prior training of another (i.e., proactive interference) is a well-established effect in human and animal research, and it has been demonstrated in many paradigms. However, learning theories have been concerned with proactive interference only when the competing stimuli have been presented in compound at some moment of the training phase. In this experiment we investigated the possibility of proactive interference between elementally-trained stimuli at the acquisition and at the retrieval stages in a behav-ioral task with humans. After training a cue-outcome association we observed retardation in the acquisition of an association between another cue and the same outcome. Moreover, after asymptotic acquisition of the secondly trained association, impairment of retrieval of this secondly trained association was also observed. This finding of proactive interference between elementally-trained cues suggests that interference in predictive learning and other traditional interference effects could be integrated into a common framework.
... Recientemente, han propuesto una modificación al supuesto anterior, en la que a los efectos de recuperación estudiados en situaciones de interferencia entre consecuencias, como la extinción, el contracondicionamiento o la discriminación inversa (Bouton, 2004;Rosas y col., 2001;Rosas y col., 2003;, se han agregado los de la interferencia entre claves (Escobar Matute y Miller, 2001;Matute y Pineño, 1998, 2000. En la interferencia entre consecuencias, en una primera fase una clave A produce la consecuencia x, y en la segunda fase la misma clave produce una consecuencia distinta y. ...
... Así, se ha llegado a suponer que las tareas con humanos son no verbales aun y cuando se reconoce el uso de instrucciones en ellas (Miller y Escobar, 2002, pp. 168-169), que el efecto de las instrucciones de prueba es equiparable en humanos al de los contextos físicos de prueba empleados en ratas Pineño y col, 2003), que los contextos físicos y la frecuencia con la que se solicita el juicio a los participantes en una tarea causal (frecuencia del juicio o demandas de la tarea) son equivalentes ) y el empleo de etiquetas de texto como análogo a los contextos físicos o temporales empleados en animales (García-Gutiérrez y Matute y Pineño, 1998;Pineño y Miller, 2004b;Rosas y col. 2001). ...
... Sin embargo, no deja de ser difícil pensar en cómo una instrucción que hace alusión a un espacio tiempo-concreto (estás en el país ... en el año...) es análoga funcionalmente a un contexto o al paso del tiempo, sin pensar en sus propiedades funcionales como comportamiento verbal. Esta generalización de variables ha producido un incremento de la variedad de las tareas empleadas con humanos y se ha preocupado poco por la validez de las mismas, lo que en ocasiones provoca que se obtengan resultados contradictorios al manipular variables similares , o dificultades en la replicación de algunos efectos con tareas de aprendizaje causal (Matute y Pineño, 1998). ...
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Este libro nace a partir de un symposium titulado "Extinción y recuperación de la información en aprendizaje causal: perspectivas teóricas" organizado en el marco del XV Congreso de la Sociedad Española de Psicología Comparada, celebrado en Barcelona en septiembre del año 2003 y en el que la mayoría de los grupos hispanos dedicados a este tema presentaron los últimos avances de sus investigaciones y reflexiones teóricas.
... En los últimos años se ha venido acumulando una evidencia empírica importante a favor de que determinadas teorías asociativas, surgidas originariamente en el campo del condicionamiento animal para explicar estos fenómenos de interferencia, ofrecen una buena explicación de fenómenos de interferencia equivalentes en el aprendizaje causal humano (e.g., la teoría de la recuperación de Bouton, 1993). En particular, la evidencia se ha venido acumulando en el terreno de los fenómenos tanto de interferencia entre diferentes resultados de una misma señal, como de interferencia entre diferentes señales de un mismo resultado (Castro, Ortega y Matute, 2002;Matute y Pineño, 1998a, 1998bPineño, Ortega y Matute, 2000;Vila y Rosas, 2001a, b). ...
... Los modelos planteados para explicar ambos tipos de fenómenos suponen que la interferencia se da cuando se expone al sujeto a una nueva relación que comparte un elemento (ya sea éste la señal o el resultado) con una relación señal-resultado previamente aprendida. Posteriormente, en la recuperación de la información, el contexto en el que se da la recuperación actuaría de clave que primaría la expresión de la asociación adquirida en ese contexto (Matute y Pineño, 1998b;. Esta explicación, deudora en gran parte del modelo de recuperación de , surgido originariamente para explicar los efectos contextuales únicamente en la interferencia entre resultados (véanse en este volumen Rosas, García, Abad y Callejas; Vadillo y Matute; Vila y Alvarado), extiende este modelo para que pueda dar cuenta de los resultados de interferencia entre señales (podemos ver un diseño de interferencia entre señales en la Tabla 1). ...
Conference Paper
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Trabajos en extenso presentados en el Symposium titulado "Extinción y recuperación de la información en aprendizaje causal: perspectivas teóricas" organizado en el marco del XV Congreso de la Sociedad Española de Psicología Comparada, celebrado en Barcelona en septiembre del año 2003 y en el que la mayoría de los grupos hispanos dedicados a este tema presentaron los últimos avances de sus investigaciones y reflexiones teóricas.
... Los resultados de los experimentos expuestos en el apartado anterior muestran que las diferentes manipulaciones contextuales modulan la respuesta tras la ocurrencia de un efecto de interferencia entre claves, de manera muy similar a como ocurre en el caso de la interferencia entre consecuencias (v.g., extinción y contracondicionamiento). Esta observación nos llevó a proponer la posibilidad de la existencia de una analogía entre ambos tipos de efectos: ambos efectos tienen lugar cuando dos asociaciones diferentes comparten un elemento común (Escobar, Matute y Miller, 2001;Matute y Pineño, 1998a). Mientras que en la interferencia entre consecuencias el elemento compartido es la clave, en el efecto de interferencia entre claves entrenadas elementalmente el elemento compartido es la consecuencia. ...
... Simétricamente, en la interferencia entre consecuencias (panel B), una misma clave se asocia con dos consecuencias diferentes. Figura 3. Simetría formal entre el efecto de competición entre claves entrenadas elementalmente y la interferencia entre consecuencias (véase Matute y Pineño, 1998a). El Panel A representa las asociaciones correspondientes a los diseños de competición entre claves entrenadas elementalmente, donde dos claves diferentes se hallan asociadas con una misma consecuencia. ...
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El libro presenta 14 capitulos escritos por estudiosos de los tópicos del aprendizaje asocaitivo mas relevanes en ese momento en España y Mexico.
... The interference effect, on the other hand, seems to generalise across different procedures less readily and requires that specific conditions be met. Matute and Pineno (1998b), for instance, report that the interference effect was observed in a task that assessed predictive judgements on a trial by trial basis, but not in a task in which causal judgements were required at the end of the stimulus series. On the other hand, and reported interference effects in a new Spy-radio task that is said to be more sensitive to subtle cue competition effects than is the Martian task used previously. ...
... This conclusion is based on the assumption that the acquisition of an inhibitory relationship between stimulus A and the US will require more than one trial of training (Wagner, 1981). Alternatively Matute and Pineno (1998b) suggested that interference and miscuing, like phenomena reflecting the interference between outcomes (Bouton, 1993), reflect retrieval processes in that behaviour at a particular time reflects the association that is strongest at this particular point. Whether this account is best suited to account for cue competition between stimuli trained as elements, however, continues to be a question for future research. ...
Article
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The present series of experiments was designed to assess whether rule-based accounts of Pavlovian learning can account for cue competition effects observed after elemental training. All experiments involved initial differential conditioning training with A-US and B alone presentations. Miscuing refers to the fact that responding to A is impaired after one B-US presentation whereas interference is the impairment of responding to A after presentation of C-US pairings. Omission refers to the effects on B of A alone presentations. Experiments 1-2a provided clear evidence for miscuing whereas interference was not found after 1, 5 or 10 C-US pairings. Moreover, Experiments 3 and 3a found only weak evidence for interference in an A-US, B I C-US, D I A design used previously to show the effect. Experiments 4 and 5 failed to find any effect of US omission after one or five omission trials. The present results indicate that miscuing is more robust than is the interference effect. Moreover, the asymmetrical effects of US miscuing and US omission are difficult to accommodate within rule-based accounts of Pavlovian conditioning. (C) 2002 Elsevier Science (USA). All rights reserved.
... We used a [spatial] context-shift design to manipulate a mechanism that presumably operates exclusively in interference phenomena, and we contrasted its renewal-like effect, on a backward blocked cue and a cue that was subject to retroactive interference in Experiment 1 (embedded in a sensory preconditioning design), and on a forward blocked cue and a cue that was subject to proactive interference in Experiment 2 (conducted in first-order conditioning). If forward blocking and backward blocking rely solely on mechanisms that depend on compound training, these blocking effects should not be influenced by context shifts between training and testing, in contrast to the effects of context shifts between Phase 1 and Phase 2 that have been observed in proactive cue interference (e.g., Amundson et al., 2003) and retroactive cue interference (e.g., Matute & Pineño, 1998a;Miguez et al., 2012). Thus, modulation of blocking by the relative similarity of the test context to the contexts of Phase 1 and Phase 2 of blocking treatment would suggest that cue interference contributes to the phenomenon of blocking; that is, blocking would be recognized as a hybrid of cue competition and cue interference. ...
... Matute & Pineño, 1998a;Miller & Escobar, 2002). This facilitated generalization of the first-learned experience (training of the target X-O association) to Context C. Thus, the results of Experiment 1 suggest that backward blocking at least in part was affected by the same mechanism that is assumed to underlie cue interference phenomena. ...
Article
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Blocking (i.e., reduced responding to cue X following YX-outcome pairings in Phase 2 as a consequence of cue Y having been paired with the outcome in Phase 1) is one of the signature phenomena in Pavlovian conditioning. Its discovery promoted the development of multiple associative models, most of which viewed blocking as an instance of pure cue competition (i.e., a decrease in responding attributable to training two conditioned stimuli in compound). Two experiments are reported in which rats were examined in a fear conditioning paradigm (i.e., lick suppression), and context dependency of retrieval at test was used as an index of associative cue interference (i.e., a decrease in responding to a target cue as a result of training a second cue with the same outcome but without concurrent presentation of the two cues). Specifically, we observed renewal of forward-blocking which parallels renewal of proactive interference, and renewal of backward-blocking which parallels renewal of retroactive interference. Thus, both backward-blocking (Experiment 1, embedded in a sensory preconditioning design) and forward-blocking (Experiment 2, conducted in first-order conditioning) appear to be influenced by retroactive and proactive interference, respectively, as well as cue competition. Consequently, blocking, long regarded as a benchmark example of pure cue competition, is sometimes a hybrid of cue competition and associative interference. Finally, the Discussion considers whether stimulus competition and associative interference are two independent phenomena or products of a single underlying process. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2022 APA, all rights reserved).
... Los resultados de los experimentos expuestos en el apartado anterior muestran que las diferentes manipulaciones contextuales modulan la respuesta tras la ocurrencia de un efecto de interferencia entre claves, de manera muy similar a como ocurre en el caso de la interferencia entre consecuencias (v.g., extinción y contracondicionamiento). Esta observación nos llevó a proponer la posibilidad de la existencia de una analogía entre ambos tipos de efectos: ambos efectos tienen lugar cuando dos asociaciones diferentes comparten un elemento común (Escobar, Matute y Miller, 2001;Matute y Pineño, 1998a). Mientras que en la interferencia entre consecuencias el elemento compartido es la clave, en el efecto de interferencia entre claves entrenadas elementalmente el elemento compartido es la consecuencia. ...
... Simétricamente, en la interferencia entre consecuencias (panel B), una misma clave se asocia con dos consecuencias diferentes. Figura 3. Simetría formal entre el efecto de competición entre claves entrenadas elementalmente y la interferencia entre consecuencias (véase Matute y Pineño, 1998a). El Panel A representa las asociaciones correspondientes a los diseños de competición entre claves entrenadas elementalmente, donde dos claves diferentes se hallan asociadas con una misma consecuencia. ...
... En los últimos años se ha venido acumulando una evidencia empírica importante a favor de que determinadas teorías asociativas, surgidas originariamente en el campo del condicionamiento animal para explicar estos fenómenos de interferencia, ofrecen una buena explicación de fenómenos de interferencia equivalentes en el aprendizaje causal humano (e.g., la teoría de la recuperación de Bouton, 1993). En particular, la evidencia se ha venido acumulando en el terreno de los fenómenos tanto de interferencia entre diferentes resultados de una misma señal, como de interferencia entre diferentes señales de un mismo resultado (Castro, Ortega y Matute, 2002;Matute y Pineño, 1998a, 1998bPineño, Ortega y Matute, 2000;Vila y Rosas, 2001a, b). ...
... Los modelos planteados para explicar ambos tipos de fenómenos suponen que la interferencia se da cuando se expone al sujeto a una nueva relación que comparte un elemento (ya sea éste la señal o el resultado) con una relación señal-resultado previamente aprendida. Posteriormente, en la recuperación de la información, el contexto en el que se da la recuperación actuaría de clave que primaría la expresión de la asociación adquirida en ese contexto (Matute y Pineño, 1998b;. Esta explicación, deudora en gran parte del modelo de recuperación de , surgido originariamente para explicar los efectos contextuales únicamente en la interferencia entre resultados (véanse en este volumen Rosas, García, Abad y Callejas; Vadillo y Matute; Vila y Alvarado), extiende este modelo para que pueda dar cuenta de los resultados de interferencia entre señales (podemos ver un diseño de interferencia entre señales en la Tabla 1). ...
... To this end, the current study compared the level of differential control exerted by the stimuli following compound training (AB+), compared to when the stimuli were trained separately (A+ B+). It was thought important to investigate this possibility, as such a control has previously been lacking in explorations of overselectivity, which have always implicitly assumed that some within-compound effects are implicated in generating the phenomenon itself (e.g., some form of cue competition, pre or post training), whereas it may result from some form of interference effect (e.g., Matute & Pineño, 1998), which could also supply an explanation for some retrospective revaluation effects. ...
Article
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Stimulus overselectivity occurs when only one of potentially many aspects of the environment controls behaviour. In four experiments, human participants were trained and tested on a trial-and-error simultaneous discrimination task involving two two-element compound stimuli. Overselectivity emerged in all experiments (i.e., one element from the reinforced compound controlled behaviour at the expense of the other). Following revaluation (extinction) of the previously overselected stimulus, behavioural control by the underselected stimulus element emerged without any direct training of that stimulus element. However, while a series of extinction manipulations targeting the revaluation of the overselected stimulus produced differential extinction of that stimulus, they did not result in differential emergence of the previously underselected stimuli. The results are discussed with respect to the theoretical implications for attention-based accounts of overselectivity.
... Although this decrement did not occur in the present uninformed group, it did occur in Wasserman and Berglan (1998), which also involved an uninformed group. Another explanation might be that training of other cues (Cue A in our case) with the same outcome as previously trained cues (Cue X in our case) can produce an interference effect that results in a decrement in the value of a cue even when neither that cue nor any associated cue is further trained (see Matute & Pineño, 1998a, 1998b , for an extended explanation of this effect). Causal ratings of Cue Y did not seem to increase from the end of Phase 1 to the end of Phase 2 in any of the groups; such a rise would be expected from recovery from overshadowing. ...
Article
It is said that "absence makes the heart grow fonder." But, when and why does an absent event become salient to the heart or to the brain? An absent event may become salient when its nonoccurrence is surprising. Van Hamme and Wasserman (1994) found that a nonpresented but expected stimulus can actually change its associative status-and in the opposite direction from a presented stimulus. Associative models like that of Rescorla and Wagner (1972) focus only on presented cues; so, they cannot explain this result. However, absent cues can be permitted to change their value by assigning different learning parameters to present and absent cues. Van Hamme and Wasserman revised the Rescorla-Wagner model so that the a parameter is positive for present cues, but negative for absent cues; now, changes in the associative strength of absent cues move in the opposite direction as presented ones. This revised Rescorla-Wagner model can thus explain such otherwise vexing empirical findings as backward blocking, recovery from overshadowing, and backward conditioned inhibition. Moreover, the revised model predicts new effects. For example, explicit information about the absence of nonpresented cues should increase their salience (that is, their negative a value should be larger), leading to stronger associative changes than when no explicit mention is made of cue absence. Support for this prediction is detailed in a new causal judgment experiment in which participants rated the effectiveness of different foods' triggering a patient's allergic reaction. Overall, these and other findings encourage us to view human causal learning from an associative perspective.
... Then, another cue (A) was followed by the same outcome during the interference treatment. There have been some reports in the literature showing that interference can also be found when two different cues are sequentially paired with the same outcome, as it was the case here (Matute & Pineño, 1998a;Pineño, Vegas, & Matute, 2003). It is possible that A* pairings would have decrease judgments about the B* relationship. ...
Article
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Two experiments explored retroactive interference in human predictive learning. The name of a food was paired first with a gastric illness (A+), and then paired with a different gastric illness that was incompatible with the first one (A*). Experiment 1 presented three additional cues. C was followed by no outcome (C-). B was followed by * during the first phase, and then it was not presented during the second phase. Finally, D was presented only during the second phase, and it was followed by +. Under these conditions, retroactive interference was found as participants judging that A was followed by the second outcome, rather than by the first one. However, this treatment was generalized to B. This generalization was eliminated in the second experiment when the number of cues was increased, so that participants had the opportunity to learn that some cues may have not changed their meaning across phases. These results suggest that to find a clear effect of retroactive interference is needed to give participants the opportunity to learn that the meaning of different cues is independent of one another
... Retention interval and context change had similar effects on retroactive interference, as has been found previously using extinction (e.g., Vila & Rosas, in press;Vila et al., in press;Paredes-Olay & Rosas, 1999); cue competition (Matute & Pineno, 1998) in human beings; and extinction, counterconditioning, reversal discrimination training, and so on in animals (see Bouton, 1993, for a review). In the task at hand, both context change and retention interval decreased retroactive interference, leading participants to consider that the medicine causes both outcomes with a probability of around 50%. ...
Article
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Four experiments studied the effects of context change and retention interval on retroactive interference in human causal learning. Experiment 1 found evidence of retroactive interference. Experiment 2 found that either a 48-hr retention interval or a change in the context after the interference treatment decreased retroactive interference. An interaction between context change and retention interval effects was also found, eclipsing the context change effect after the 48-hr retention interval. Experiments 3 and 4 found additivity between context change and retention interval effects when participants were remained of the difference between physical contexts before the test, independently of whether the context change involved a return to the original acquisition context. These results add to the evidence suggesting that spontaneous forgetting is caused by a change in either the physical or the temporal contexts where information is acquired.
... The effects of the omission of expected US presentations on elementary and compound trained stimuli has received attention in prior research with humans (e.g., Lipp & Dal Santo, 2002;Matute & Pineño, 1998;Ortega & Matute, 2000;Pineño & Matute, 2000). Indeed, Lipp and Dal Santo (2002, Experiment 4) used the same conditioned suppression task as used in the present research and presented acquisition trials of CS+ and US pairings and CS-alone presentations. ...
Article
Three experiments examined the effects of physical context changes and multiple extinction contexts on the renewal of conditioned suppression in humans. A conditioned suppression task used an undesirable event as the unconditional stimulus (US). One conditional stimulus (CS+) predicted the occurrence of the US and another (CS−) predicted US absence. In Experiment 1 (N = 32), conditioned suppression was acquired to the CS+ in one context and extinguished in a different context. An increase in suppression was found for the CS+ and not for the CS− when subsequent test trials were conducted in the acquisition context (ABA renewal). Experiment 2 (N = 32) tested for ABC Renewal and showed increased suppression to both the CS+ and CS− when test was conducted in a novel context. Experiment 3 (N = 80) showed that these two effects were abolished when extinction was conducted in multiple contexts. The experiments extend the ABA renewal of conditioned suppression found with non-human animal subjects and the reduction of renewal by extinction in multiple contexts. Context changes may also facilitate cue competition effects after training with elementary stimuli, as shown by the effects of US omission in the ABA and ABC renewal groups.
... Esto quiere decir que para que tenga lugar la interferencia la fase de prueba debe tener lugar en el mismo contexto temporal o físico en el que la asociación de la segunda fase fue aprendida. Si cambiamos el contexto, la interferencia entre claves disminuye (Matute y Pineño, 1998; Pineño y Matute, 2000; Escobar y cols., 2001). Esto es similar a lo que ocurre en la extinción: si se realizan manipulaciones contextuales ABA, AAB o ABC en un experimento de interferencia entre resultados, la interferencia se debilita (Bouton, 1993; Escobar y cols., 2001; Rosas y Bouton, 1997). ...
Article
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Retroactive interference between cues trained apart was long ago studied in the psychology of memory, within the paired associate tradition. Current theories of learning, however, predict that interference between cues should not occur if they are trained elementally. Here we review the available evidence on retroactive interference between cues trained apart and show that this effect is very similar to other, classical effects, in the area of learning, such as interference between outcomes and competition between cues. We suggest that a stronger connection between these research areas is important, as common mechanisms are quite possibly responsible for all these effects. Finally, we discuss whether associative or the causal inference mechanisms currently studied in the area of learning could provide a satisfactory explanation for these effects. La interferencia retroactiva entre claves entrenadas elementalmente fue en su día un fenómeno muy estudiado en la psicología de la memoria, dentro de la tradición de los pares asociados. Sin embargo, las teorías actuales del aprendizaje predicen que no debería ocurrir interferencia entre claves si estas se entrenan por separado. En este trabajo revisamos la evidencia disponible y mostramos que la interferencia entre claves tiene enormes similitudes con otros efectos clásicos del aprendizaje, especialmente con los efectos de interferencia entre resultados y de competición entre claves. Postulamos, por tanto, que tiene sentido establecer una mayor conexión entre todas estas áreas de investigación y plantear que es muy posible que todos estos efectos sean debidos a mecanismos comunes. Finalmente discutimos si los procesos asociativos o los procesos de inferencia causal que se estudian actualmente en la psicología del aprendizaje podrían dar cuenta de estos efectos.
... This series of experiments further demonstrates that different cues trained in sequential phases with the same outcome can interfere with behavioral control by each cue (e.g., Amundson et al., 2003;Escobar, Matute, et al., 2001;Matute & Pineño, 1998a, 1998bMiguez, Cham, et al., 2012). Here we saw that the nontarget A-O association learned during Phase 2 retroactively interfered with behavioral expression of the target X-O association acquired during Phase 1. ...
Article
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Two fear-conditioning experiments with rats assessed whether retrospective revaluation, which has been observed in cue competition (i.e., when compounded cues are followed with an outcome), can also be observed in retroactive cue interference (i.e., when different cues are reinforced in separate phases with the same outcome). Experiment 1 found that after inducing retroactive cue interference (i.e., X-outcome followed by A-outcome), nonreinforced presentations of the interfering cue (A) decreases interference with responding to the target cue (X), just as has been observed in retrospective revaluation experiments in cue competition. Using the opposite manipulation (i.e., adding reinforced presentations of A), Experiment 2 demonstrated that after inducing retroactive cue interference, additional reinforced presentations of the interfering cue (A) increases interference with responding to the target cue (X); alternatively stated, the amount of interference increases with the amount of training with the interfering cue. Thus, both types of retrospective revaluation occur in retroactive cue competition. The results are discussed in terms of the possibility that similar associative mechanisms underlie cue competition and cue interference.
... Esto quiere decir que para que tenga lugar la interferencia la fase de prueba debe tener lugar en el mismo contexto temporal o físico en el que la asociación de la segunda fase fue aprendida. Si cambiamos el contexto, la interferencia entre claves disminuye (Matute y Pineño, 1998; Pineño y Matute, 2000; Escobar y cols., 2001). Esto es similar a lo que ocurre en la extinción: si se realizan manipulaciones contextuales ABA, AAB o ABC en un experimento de interferencia entre resultados, la interferencia se debilita (Bouton, 1993; Escobar y cols., 2001; Rosas y Bouton, 1997). ...
... In that framework, spontaneous recovery is viewed as an instance of renewal by considering time as a temporal component of the context (Bouton, 1993). Although Bouton´s account of spatial and temporal renewal was developed to explain outcome interference produced by extinction of prior excitatory learning, Miller and Escobar (see also Matute & Pineño, 1998a,b) suggested that this mechanism could also be applied to interference between two cues that share a common outcome but are trained in different sequential phases. In both cases (i.e., spontaneous recovery from retroactive cue interference and renewal from retroactive cue interference), the context of the second-learned association formed in Phase 2 modulates the expression of this association. ...
Article
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Two conditioned suppression experiments with rats were conducted to determine whether the spontaneous recovery and renewal that are commonly observed in retroactive outcome interference (e.g., extinction) also occur in retroactive cue interference. Experiment 1 showed that a long delay between Phase 2 (the interfering phase) and testing produces a recovery from the cue interference (i.e., the delay enhanced responding to the target cue trained in Phase 1), which is analogous to the spontaneous recovery effect observed in extinction and other retroactive outcome interference procedures. Experiment 2 showed that, when target and interfering cues are trained in separate contexts and testing occurs in a different but familiar context, a recovery from the cue interference is also observed (i.e., the context shift enhanced responding to the target), which is analogous to ABC renewal from extinction. The results are discussed in terms of the possibility that similar associative mechanisms underlie cue and outcome interference.
... This indicates that earlier causes can be discounted by subsequently presented alternative causes. Matute and Pineño (1998aPineño ( , 1998b) recently documented such backward discounting. Another interesting question for future research is how verbal instruction, motivation and experience may interact with retrospective revaluation (e.g. ...
Article
This research investigates how the relation between two causes (i.e. whether they co-occur or not) affects the likelihood to discount one of them. In two experiments, two causes were either systematically paired together (positive relation), were paired with many other causes (independent relation), or were never paired together (negative relation). The results indicate that discounting of one of the causes (target cause) depends on the relation with the other cause (alternative cause) and the order in which the alternative cause was presented and produced the outcome alone. If information on the independent outcome of the alternative cause came prior to the joint outcome of the alternative and target cause (forward order), then discounting of the target cause occurred regardless of the relation between the two causes. If, however, information on the independent outcome of the alternative cause came after the joint outcome of the alternative and target cause (backward order), then discounting of the target cause occurred mainly when there was a positive or negative relation between the causes, but not when there was an independent relation. The degree of backward discounting given a positive or negative relation was largely identical. These results are consistent with the retrospective revaluation hypothesis of Dickinson and Burke (1996) and shed new light on the role of the relation between causes on discounting. Copyright © 2004 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
... For instance , retroactive interference studies show that after X-outcome pairings, training of a novel cue, Y, with the same outcome can reduce the retrievability of the X-outcome association. Recent studies have shown that this retroactive interference effect can also take place in human contingency learning (Cobos, López, & Luque, 2007; Matute & Pineño, 1998a, 1998b) and animal conditioning (Escobar, Matute, & Miller, 2001). ...
Article
The present series of experiments explores the interaction between retroactive interference and cue competition in human contingency learning. The results of two experiments show that a cue that has been exposed to a cue competition treatment (overshadowing) loses part of its ability to retroactively interfere with responding to a different cue that was paired with the same outcome. These results pose problems for associative models of contingency learning and are also difficult to explain in terms of current theories of causal reasoning. Additionally, it is proposed that in light of the interaction between interference and cue competition, interference could be used as an indirect measure for the study of cue competition effects.
... Baker et al., 1996;Paredes-Olay and Rosas, 1999), and spontaneous recovery (e.g. Vila and Rosas, in press) showing that extinction did not erase the cueoutcome positive relationship originally learned (for related phenomena see Matute and Pineñ o, 1998;O'Boyle and Bouton, 1996;Rosas et al., 2001). ...
Article
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Two experiments were conducted with the aim of exploring reinstatement after extinction using a causality judgment task in human beings. In Experiment 1, participants learned first that a fictitious medicine produced a side-effect. The medicine was then presented in extinction. Re-exposure to the side-effect by itself before the test reinstated acquisition performance. Reinstatement was greater when exposure took place in the test context than when it took place in a different context. Experiment 2 replicated reinstatement in a situation that ensured equivalent extinction for the different groups before the test.
... Esto quiere decir que para que tenga lugar la interferencia la fase de prueba debe tener lugar en el mismo contexto temporal o físico en el que la asociación de la segunda fase fue aprendida. Si cambiamos el contexto, la interferencia entre claves disminuye (Matute y Pineño, 1998;; Escobar y cols., 2001). Esto es similar a lo que ocurre en la extinción: si se realizan manipulaciones contextuales ABA, AAB o ABC en un experimento de interferencia entre resultados, la interferencia se debilita (Bouton, 1993;Escobar y cols., 2001; Rosas y Bouton, 1997). ...
Article
Retroactive interference between cues trainedapart was long ago studied in the psychology ofmemory, within the paired associate tradition. Currenttheories of learning, however, predict that interferencebetween cues should not occur if they are trained elementally.Here we review the available evidence onretroactive interference between cues trained apart andshow that this effect is very similar to other, classicaleffects, in the area of learning, such as interference betweenoutcomes and competition between cues. We suggestthat a stronger connection between these researchareas is important, as common mechanisms are quitepossibly responsible for all these effects. Finally, we discusswhether associative or the causal inference mechanismscurrently studied in the area of learning couldprovide a satisfactory explanation for these effects.
Article
In the present study, we examined the differential effect on backward blocking (BB) and on interference between cues (IbC) of including a delay right before the test phase vs. between training phases 1 and 2 in humans. While models of IbC predict a spontaneous recovery (SR) of responding if the delay is placed immediately before the test instead of between phases 1 and 2, BB models predict that no difference should be observed due to the position of the delay. In our experiment, we obtained the SR from IbC but not from BB. These results suggest that backward blocking and interference between cues are likely to be the result of different processes.
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La semejanza de las consecuencias modula la interferencia retroactiva entre claves entrenadas separadamente. La interferencia retroactiva entre claves entrenadas separadamente ha sido considerada como un efecto que ocurre debido a que las asociaciones “diana” e interfiriente comparten una consecuencia común. Aunque este punto de vista es consistente con la evidencia en la tradición del aprendizaje verbal (Underwood, 1966) y, más recientemente, en el aprendizaje predictivo con humanos (Pineño y Matute, 2000), se ha llevado a cabo escasa investigación para averiguar si la ocurrencia de este efecto depende críticamente de que las asociaciones “diana” e interfiriente compartan una consecuencia idéntica. El presente experimento estudió, en aprendizaje predictivo con humanos, la interferencia retroactiva entre claves entrenadas separadamente en función de la semejanza de las consecuencias emparejadas con las claves. Se encontró una interferencia más fuerte cuando las claves fueron emparejadas con la misma consecuencia que cuando fueron emparejadas con consecuencias similares o diferentes.
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Resultados recientes en la literatura ponen en cuestión si la atenuación de la interferencia retroactiva que se produce como consecuencia del cambio de contexto tras la fase de interferencia se deben al abandono de este contexto de interferencia (Bouton, 1993) o al regreso al contexto de adquisición. Se realizaron dos experimentos para comprobar si era posible obtener renovación en un paradigma de aprendizaje causal. Se utilizó una tarea de interferencia retroactiva que consistía en emparejar una clave y una consecuencia (A+) y posteriormente esa misma clave con una consecuencia incompatible (A*). El cambio de contexto tras la fase de interferencia produjo una atenuación de la interferencia retroactiva independientemente de si este cambio supuso un regreso al contexto de adquisición (Experimento 1) o simplemente el abandono del contexto de interferencia (Experimento 2). Los resultados obtenidos se ajustan a lo predicho desde la teoría de la recuperación de Bouton (1993).
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Retroactive interference between cues of the same outcome (i.e., IbC) occurs when the behavioral expression of an association between a cue and an outcome (e.g., A-->O1) is reduced due to the later acquisition of an association between a different cue and the same outcome (e.g., B-->O1). Though this interference effect has been traditionally explained within an associative framework, there is recent evidence showing that IbC effect may be better understood in terms of the operation of higher order causal reasoning processes. The results from Experiments 1 and 2 showed an IbC effect in a learning task within a game scenario suggesting non-causal relationships between events. Thus, these results showed that IbC may have a diverse origin, one of them being of an associative nature.
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The effect of retroactive interference between cues predicting the same outcome (RIBC) occurs when the behavioral expression of a cue–outcome association (e.g., A→O1) is reduced due to the later acquisition of an association between a different cue and the same outcome (e.g., B→O1). In the present experimental series, we show that this effect can be modulated by knowledge concerning the structure of these cue–outcome relationships. In Experiments 1A and 1B, a pretraining phase was included to promote the expectation of either a one-to-one (OtO) or a many-to-one (MtO) cue–outcome structure during the subsequent RIBC training phases. We hypothesized that the adoption of an OtO expectation would make participants infer that the previously learned A→O1 relationship would not hold any longer after the exposure to B→O1 trials. Alternatively, the adoption of an MtO expectation would prevent participants from making such an inference. Experiment 1B included an additional condition without pretraining, to assess whether the OtO structure was expected by default. Experiment 2 included control conditions to assess the RIBC effect and induced the expectation of an OtO or MtO structure without the addition of a pretraining phase. Overall, the results suggest that participants effectively induced structural expectations regarding the cue–outcome contingencies. In turn, these expectations may have potentiated (OtO expectation) or alleviated (MtO expectation) the RIBC effect, depending on how well these expectations could accommodate the target A→O1 test association. This pattern of results poses difficulties for current explanations of the RIBC effect, since these explanations do not consider the incidence of cue–outcome structural expectations.
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Over the past 20 years, human contingency learning has resurfaced as an important topic within experimental psychology. This renewed interest was sparked mainly by the proposal that associative models of Pavlovian conditioning might also apply to human contingency learning--a proposal that has led to many new empirical findings and theoretical developments. We provide a brief review of these recent developments and try to point to issues that need to be addressed in future research.
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Several studies have shown that predictive and causal judgments vary depending on whether the question used to assess the relationship between events is presented after each piece of information or only after all the available information has been observed. This effect could be understood by assuming that in the two cases people perceive that the test question requires that different sets of evidence be taken into account. This hypothesis is tested in the present experiments through contextual manipulations that take place at the time of training and at the time of test. Our results show that people use this contextual information to infer which set of events should be considered when making their subjective assessments. The results are at odds with current theoretical approaches, but it is possible to develop mechanisms that would allow these models to account for the observed evidence.
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Differences in processing representations of conditioned and unconditioned stimuli (CSs and USs) may result from either their temporal order in training (i.e., CSs precede USs) or the greater biological significance of USs. The CS- and US-preexposure effects were used to probe this question. These effects are similar except that context extinction between preexposure and training more readily attenuates the US- than the CS-preexposure effect. In Experiments 1, 2, and 5, context extinction following preexposure to the stimulus that later served as Event 1 in Event 1-->Event 2 pairings alleviated the response deficit due to Event 1 preexposure if Event 1 was biologically significant. In Experiments 3 and 4, context extinction alleviated the response deficit due to Event 2 preexposure if Event 2 was biologically significant. Thus, biological significance and not temporal order determines how a representation will be processed.
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Stimulus competition (e.g., blocking) has been observed between antecedent events (i.e., conditioned stimuli or potential causes), but recent evidence within the human causal learning literature suggests that it could also be obtained between subsequent events (i.e., unconditioned stimuli or potential effects). The present research tested this hypothesis with rat subjects. To avoid confounding the antecedent versus subsequent variable with the affective value of the events involved (i.e., unconditioned stimuli are ordinarily of greater affective value than conditioned stimuli), a preparation was used in which antecedent and subsequent events all lacked affective value during the blocking phases of the study. This was achieved through the use of sensory preconditioning. Blocking of subsequent events as well as antecedent events was observed. The challenge to most associative theories that is provided by blocking of subsequent events is discussed.