Cookies Policy
X

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here

Vocal Learning Induced With Operant Techniques: an Overview

No metrics data to plot.
The attempt to load metrics for this article has failed.
The attempt to plot a graph for these metrics has failed.
The full text of this article is not currently available.

Brill’s MyBook program is exclusively available on BrillOnline Books and Journals. Students and scholars affiliated with an institution that has purchased a Brill E-Book on the BrillOnline platform automatically have access to the MyBook option for the title(s) acquired by the Library. Brill MyBook is a print-on-demand paperback copy which is sold at a favorably uniform low price.

Access this article

+ Tax (if applicable)
Add to Favorites
You must be logged in to use this functionality

image of Netherlands Journal of Zoology
For more content, see Archives Néerlandaises de Zoologie (Vol 1-17) and Animal Biology (Vol 53 and onwards).

Operant-conditioning techniques originally developed by B. F. SKINNER (1938) have had a strong impact on our understanding of learning mechanisms. Recent interest in the extent to which non-human animal vocalizations, like any other motor response, can be shaped by such procedures has generated a number of studies which are reviewed in this article. The modification of vocal behaviour by instrumental learning requires two conditions which have been fulfilled in various species of birds and mammals: (1) the physical parameters of calls such as the rate, pitch, duration and amplitude can be altered by conditioning and extinction; (2) these acoustic features as well as the form of the vocalization can be brought under the control of stimuli. These findings provide some support for the hypothesis that a precursor of human speech, namely the ability to control vocal utterances, can be found in higher vertebrates. Beside this, a new line of research undertaken by the author shows that Skinnerian techniques can be used to induce imitative learning in a songbird species for which tape-tutoring had been found inadequate. When song presentation was made contingent upon key pressing, young male zebra finches copied to a greater extent than controls receiving the same stimulation in a passive way. In this species, the effectiveness of the contingency for initiating song imitation is greater when key pressing rather than hopping on a reinforcing perch provides the reward.

Affiliations: 1: (School of Biological & Medical Sciences, University of St. Andrews, St. Andrews, Fife, KY 16 9TS, U.K

10.1163/156854293X00250
/content/journals/10.1163/156854293x00250
dcterms_title,pub_keyword,dcterms_description,pub_author
6
3
Loading
Loading

Full text loading...

/content/journals/10.1163/156854293x00250
Loading

Data & Media loading...

http://brill.metastore.ingenta.com/content/journals/10.1163/156854293x00250
Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.1163/156854293x00250
1992-01-01
2016-12-03

Sign-in

Can't access your account?
  • Tools

  • Add to Favorites
  • Printable version
  • Email this page
  • Subscribe to ToC alert
  • Get permissions
  • Recommend to your library

    You must fill out fields marked with: *

    Librarian details
    Your details
    Why are you recommending this title?
    Select reason:
     
    Netherlands Journal of Zoology — Recommend this title to your library
  • Export citations
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation