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Learned helplessness and generalization


Lieder, F; Goodman, N D; Huys, Quentin (2013). Learned helplessness and generalization. In: 35th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society, Berlin, Germany, 31 July 2013 - 3 August 2013.

Abstract

In learned helplessness experiments, subjects first expe- rience a lack of control in one situation, and then show learning deficits when performing or learning another task in another situation. Generalization, thus, is at the core of the learned helplessness phenomenon. Substantial experimental and theoretical effort has been invested into establishing that a state- and task-independent belief about controllability is necessary. However, to what extent generalization is also sufficient to explain the transfer has not been examined. Here, we show qualitatively and quantitatively that Bayesian learning of action-outcome contingencies at three levels of abstraction is sufficient to account for the key features of learned helplessness, including escape deficits and impairment of appetitive learning after inescapable shocks.

In learned helplessness experiments, subjects first expe- rience a lack of control in one situation, and then show learning deficits when performing or learning another task in another situation. Generalization, thus, is at the core of the learned helplessness phenomenon. Substantial experimental and theoretical effort has been invested into establishing that a state- and task-independent belief about controllability is necessary. However, to what extent generalization is also sufficient to explain the transfer has not been examined. Here, we show qualitatively and quantitatively that Bayesian learning of action-outcome contingencies at three levels of abstraction is sufficient to account for the key features of learned helplessness, including escape deficits and impairment of appetitive learning after inescapable shocks.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper), refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Psychiatric University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Psychiatry, Psychotherapy, and Psychosomatics
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Event End Date:3 August 2013
Deposited On:17 Feb 2014 10:17
Last Modified:12 Oct 2016 14:04
Publisher:Austin, TX: Cognitive Science Society
ISBN:978-0-9768318-9-1
Official URL:http://mindmodeling.org/cogsci2013/papers/0181/index.html

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