Postreinforcement signal processing.


Journal Article

Postreinforcement signal processing by rats was demonstrated in six experiments that used a discrete-trials choice procedure. Experiment 1 assessed the extent to which rats are able to transfer knowledge about associations between postreinforcement signal durations and choice responses to conditions where a particular signal duration preceded the opportunity to make a choice response. In Experiment 2 the generality of the transfer effect was demonstrated by using both signal duration and signal modality as relevant stimulus attributes for the postreinforcement signals. The role of the relative durations of the reinforcement-signal gap and the intertrial interval was investigated in Experiment 3. In order to assess the effects of within-trial and between-trial signal relations on the acquisition of a temporal discrimination, both pre-and postreinforcement signals were presented on each trial in Experiments 4 and 5. The effects of pre- and postreinforcement signal relations on the steady-state performance of a temporal bisection task across three different signal ranges were studied in Experiment 6. The conclusion is that rats readily process various stimulus attributes of postreinforcement signals and that relations between postreinforcement signals, choice responses, and prereinforcement signals are major determinants of choice behavior.

Full Text

Cited Authors

  • Meck, WH

Published Date

  • January 1, 1985

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 11 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 52 - 70

PubMed ID

  • 3989476

Pubmed Central ID

  • 3989476

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1939-2184

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0097-7403

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1037//0097-7403.11.1.52


  • eng