The Huron University College Journal of Learning and Motivation

Article Title

Descrimination Learning in Rats


Corrine Keshen


Previous research has indicated that rats use various conceptual classes to select the correct stimulus when presented with a discrimination task. Four male hood rats were required to discriminate between pairs of triangles or circles that varied in size. The rats were tested in a T-maze where they underwent three phases. The training phase involved presentations of either circles or triangles that required the rats to select the correct stimulus for a reinforcer. The testing phase involved the presentation of a random probe trial where the pair of untrained shapes was presented. A post-testing phase assessed the rats' capability to select the correct stimulus when presented with the pair of untrained shapes. A one-way within subjects ANOVA found that the rats selected the correct stimulus above chance level, F(19,57) = 2.85, p < 0.05, and two Chi Square Goodness of Fit Tests found that the rats' performance on probe trials was above chance, (1, N=4) = 22.5, p< 0.05, and that the rats performance in the post-testing phase was above chance, x² = (1, N=4) =4.5, p< 0.05.

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