Ivan Pavlov

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(1849 - 1936)Essentially, only one thing in life is of real interest to us - our psychical experience. Its mechanism, however, was and still is shrouded in profound obscurity - I. P. Pavlov

Overview: Ivan Pavlov was a Russian physiologist whose research on the physiology of digestion led to the development of the first experimental model of learning, Classical Conditioning. Most of his research was gathered studying salivating dogs.

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Video on Pavlov and Classical Conditioning:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hhqumfpxuzI


Time Line Highlights
1894
Born in Ryazan, Russia on September 14, 1894
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1883
Discovered dynamic nerves of the heart and submitted thesis for the degree of Doctor of Medicine
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1891-1900
Did most of his research on physiology of digestion at the Institute of Experimental Medicine
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1904
Received Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine for work on the physiology of the digestive glands
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1915
Awarded the Order of the legion of Honour (Medical Academy of Paris recommendation)
January 24, 1921
Awarded a special government decree signed by Lenin
1935
Government built a laboratory for Pavlov with his chief work on conditioned reflexes
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1936
On February 27, 1936 Pavlov died in Leningrad


Pavlov's accomplishments from study of digestive organs included: serie5.gif
  • discovery of enterokinase, an enzyme in the duodenum that activates trypsin
  • description of the neural control of the pancreas and pancreatic control as a response to different foods
  • demonstration that chewing and swallowing alone would cause gastric secretion
  • conclusion that the secretory nerve that controls the gastric glands is the vagus nerve
  • demonstration of variance in types and amounts of secretions of the stomach is a response to different foods
  • observation that the mere sight of food stimulates salivary and gastric secretion





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Definitions: Classical Conditioning: "A type of learning in which an organism comes to associate stimuli. A neutral stimulus that signals an unconditioned stimulus (UCS) begins to produce a response that anticipates and prepares for the unconditioned stimulus." Unconditioned Response (UCR): "In classical conditioning, the unlearned, naturally occuring response to the unconditioned stimulus (UCS), such as salvation when food is in the mouth."Unconditioned Stimulus (UCS): "In classical conditioning, a stimulus that unconditionally - naturally and automatically - triggers a response." Conditioned Response (CR): "In classical conditioning, the learned response to a previously neutral conditioned stimulus (CS)."Conditioned Stimulus (CS): "In classical conditioning, an originally irrelvant stimulus that, after association with an unconditioned stimulus (UCS), comes to trigger a conditioned response (CR)." (Myers, 2004, pp. 312-314)


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References:


  • Myers, D. (2004). Psychology. Seventh Edition. Worth Publishers: New York, NY.