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916 - Dr Susan Friedman 3 day seminar 2/15/2020 - 2/17/2020

Spots Available: 47

Behavior Buzz: Special Topics in Learning and Behavior

DAY ONE: Saturday Feb 15, 9am-5pm
The Learning Planet: Of all the many wonders of planet Earth, perhaps the most wondrous of all is the flexibility of all its life forms. The focus of this presentation is the extent to which earth’s inhabitants change their behavior based on experience, specifically consequences. This makes the blue planet truly the Learning Planet, a label that applies not only to animal behavior, but also genes, neurons, and even plant species.
The Rat is Never Wrong: Getting It Right Without Getting It Wrong:  We all know the saying, “We learn from our mistakes.” But too many mistakes can be punishing for animals and their trainers. And low rates of reinforcement can quickly produce frustration and aggression. Practicing errors can make correct responding even less likely. This presentation will provide strategies for arranging training sessions up front to reduce learner error and pave the way to positive reinforcement

DAY TWO: Sunday February 16, 9am-5pm
Control: The Other Primary Reinforcer: 
Behavior analysis (BA) is the study of the processes by which animals learn, i.e. change their behavior as a result of interacting with the environment. From a behavior analysis perspective, the ability to learn is an evolved tool, part of our biological endowment. Simply, it is our nature to behave for effect – to be effective. Learning and welfare are compromised to the extent that effective behavior is blocked. We can enhance learning and welfare by increasing animals’ control over their valued outcomes. The focus of this talk is an overview of the science-based principles and practices relevant to improving learners’ effectiveness by providing more control, safely and practically.   Ideas that Should Die: Outdated, Outmoded and Misunderstood Behavior Science: The inertia that results from so-called conventional wisdom about how behavior works is a big obstacle to the widespread adoption of positive reinforcement-based training. Discussions quickly devolve into rancorous debates resulting from the many myths and misunderstandings, learners fail to benefit from the wellspring of information that is the result of decades of application of the technology of behavior change known as applied behavior analysis (ABA). At the center of this problem is the deeply rooted belief that behavior exists inside individuals, independent of the conditions in which they behave. In this presentation, common myths and misunderstandings will be discussed so that participants are better able to address them.

DAY Three: Monday February 17, 9am-5pm
Blazing Clickers: Trainers in the Karen Pryor tradition have learned that when a clicker is used correctly it precisely marks the animal’s behavior that controls reinforcer. Further, behavior is strengthened when the clicks become a reliable predictor of backup reinforcement. This is accomplished by ensuring that every click is followed by a well-established reinforcer. Some trainers however repeatedly mark behavior without backing up the marker, a practice we call blazing clickers. Blazing clickers weaken the predictive value of the marker, resulting in slower learning, increased aggression and giving up. In this presentation the science-based rationale for following every click with a backup reinforcer will be reviewed, and we will explore the faulty reasoning often used to support the practice of blazing clickers. With this information, you will be better able to teach others why and how to avoid getting burned by blazing clickers.  Emotions Inside Out:   What does joy feel like to you? Is it the same for the person sitting next to you? Is it the same for the animals in your care? Are emotions pre-wired in the brain or are they learned? Is the topic of emotions even relevant to training animals? These are just a few of the interesting and important questions that surround the topic of emotions. In this session, we will focus on contemporary approaches to understanding emotions with action potential.

General Public 3-Day Package - $500
Marin Humane Employee 3-Day Package - $225 
Active Marin Humane Volunteer 3-Day Package - $225
Single Days for MH Employees & Active Volunteers - $75

This event is eligible for 21 CEUs with IAABC, CPDT

Seminar cancellations must be emailed to by 1/31/20 for refunds.

Class Trainer(s) General Public
Price: $500.00
Location: Auditorium Marin Humane 171 Bel Marin Keys Blvd Novato, CA 94949

Event Dates:

  • Saturday, February 15, 2020
  • Sunday, February 16, 2020
  • Monday, February 17, 2020

Time: 9:00 AM
Duration: 8hr(s)