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Jul 22, 2019

Hey there Dog's Way fans, today it's time to get "geeky" and talk about Skinner's Four Quadrants.

I get asked a lot about the references I make to B.F. Skinner and Skinner's Four Quadrants so it makes sense to go a bit further into what the concepts are behind positive and negative reinforcements, how trainers adapt to those concepts and in this and episode 74 I go into depth on my methods as well and how to apply it to your own pet.

It's a fascinating understanding of behavior, conditioning, and training. There was so much information to digest that I decided to split it into two podcast episodes. Skinner's four quadrants were broken up like this;

  • Positive Punishment
  • Negative Punishment
  • Positive Reinforcement
  • Negative Reinforcement

The idea stemmed from a few important predecessors to Skinner, and I talk briefly about their history and the evolution to the concept as applied by Skinner and how it is used for training today.

Russian research physiologist Ivan Pavlov, who helped bridge the gap with classical conditioning - the idea that pairing an otherwise neutral occurrence paired with another thing that does have some meaning to a subject.

Operant conditioning, as an alternative is a learning behavior. I'll get into that as well.

John Watson, behavioral researcher was next in the evolution of conditioning about 15 years or so after Pavlov. Systematic desensitization was the goal.

Edward Thorndike was next in the process and with a cat in a box" type experiment that would demonstrate

Three laws of learning

  • The law of readiness;
  • the law of exercise;
  • and the law of effect.

His experiments led to B.F. Skinner, the subject of today's podcast. He expanded several of the concepts of behavioral theory. I go into that

I want to extend thanks to our sponsor P.U.P. Dog Rescue! They have an adorable dog available for rescue named "Sadie", who is kind of a "wire haired" Daschund mix. She's 5 years old, is very playful, and is about 18 pounds. [Click here to see Sadie and inquire](), or go to [PUP Dog] for more information about them.

I also want to thank Brian DuBose at OnWeb Productions - they have made some great changes and improvements to the podcast, and I kind of view Brian as kind of a podcast "magician". They've improved some things and made the podcast more accessible, including on Alexa and Google Home Devices. Just say "Hey Alexa, play The Dog's Way Podcast"

Thanks again for listening, and remember that both parts of the episode are out, so listen to episode 74 as well for a continuation.