IVAN PAVLOV Biography - Famous Medicine & health care related men and women


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The Russian physicist Ivan Petrovitsj Pavlov was born in 1849. He studied                   
pharmacology and physiology in Sint Petersburg. Later he became a teacher on               
this academy. Besides teaching, he was involved in medical research. Pavlov was             
interested in the behaviour of both humans and animals, and he was especially               
interested in reflexes. His biggest contribution to the field of psychology is             
classical conditioning, a theory about how behaviour is learned. He recieved a             
Nobel price for his important contribution to science. Pavlov died in 1936 in               
Pavlov was a behaviourist. This means that his theories focussed on observable             
behaviour, because behaviour can be measured and thought can not. The human mind           
should be interpreted as a black box that can not be opened. Only was goes in               
the box and what comes out can be known. Scientific evidence is the keyword in             
his theory. Pavlov studied reflexes, automatic behaviour that is caused by a               
stimulus from the enironment. Some reflexes, such as blinking your eyes when a             
puff of air comes in it, or the sucking of a baby when something is put in his/her         
mouth. This automatic behaviour can be manipulated. This is called conditioning.           
In this conditioning process, a unconditional stimulus is given to a person.               
This stimulus causes a reflex on its own. When the unconditional stimulus is now           
given to the person together with a stimulus that does not cause a reflex on its           
own. Thus, a unconditional stimulus is given together with a conditional                   
stimulus. Because the presence of the unconditional stimulus, the reflex is                 
caused. This process of stimulus-response is repeated for a number of times.               
After a while, the unconditional stimulus is not offered any more. Only the                 
conditional stimulus is offered. Because of the repeated association of the                 
unconditional and the conditional stimulus, the conditional stimulus will now               
cause the reflex on its own. Classical conditioning is succeeded.                           
Pavlov's theories where very influential, in particular in the field of child               
The theory of Pavlov could be tested in experiments that where conducted in a               
laboratory. He often used animals in his experiments. His most famous experiment           
is the one, in which he used dogs to demostrate classical conditioning. The dogs           
he used showed a salivation response when they where offered food (unconditional           
stimulus). The food was offered a number of time with the sound of a buzzer (conditional   
stimulus). After this, the sound of the buzzer alone could produce the                     
salivation response.