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J Exp Anal Behav. 1969 Jan;12(1):119-25.

Conditional discrimination learning in the pigeon.


Four pigeons received conditional discrimination training in which reinforcement contingencies were related to specific combinations of color and form, but were unrelated to either color or form considered separately. During discrete-trial training, each response in the presence of two of four color-form displays produced reinforcement and terminated the trial; responding to the other two displays was never reinforced, and each such response prolonged the particular trial on which it occurred. Subsequently, the subjects received multiple-schedule training in which responding to either of the displays previously associated with reinforcement was now reinforced on a variable-interval schedule, and extinction was the schedule again correlated with the other two displays. After differential responding to the stimuli was clearly evident, intensity of the combination displays was changed in subsequent training sessions. Complex stimulus control was generally maintained across variation in intensity, although there were temporary disruptions in performance associated with onset of some of the intensity changes. Finally, a component-stimulus test revealed considerably more responding to the forms than to the colors.


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