Location, but not cue, changes help to reduce interference between competing responses

Tomlin, Julian (2012) Location, but not cue, changes help to reduce interference between competing responses. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Abstract

Although response reversal learning is subject to interference, providing contextual changes between reversals can reduce this interference and facilitate response reversal learning. The contextual changes that facilitate response reversal learning (i.e., room and direction changes) also cause global remapping in hippocampal place cells. This hippocampal remapping may allow rats to differentially encode memories thus enabling them to learn a response reversal task since the learning in one context will not interfere with the learning that took place in another context. In the present experiment rats were presented with contextual changes including changing rooms, maze orientation, and the color and shape of the room. The only rats that showed improved performance across reversals were rats that received changes in maze orientation or rooms between reversals. Changes in color and shape of the experimental enclosure did not facilitate response reversal learning. Since changes to color and shape have been linked to hippocampal rate remapping we speculate that global remapping, but not rate remapping, allows rats to differentially encode memories.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/6199
Item ID: 6199
Additional Information: Includes bibliographical references (leaves 34-38).
Department(s): Science, Faculty of > Cognitive and Behavioural Ecology
Date: 2012
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Learning, Psychology of; Conditioned response; Rats--Behavior;Sensory discrimination;

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