Written by Pam MS, NCSP | Fact checked by Psychology Dictionary staff 

refers to a procedure whereby an unconditioned stimulus is consistently presented before a neutral stimulus. This arrangement does not produce a change in the effect of a neutral stimulus. Occasionally, however, the neutral stimulus may take on inhibitory functions, because it consistently predicts the absence of the unconditioned stimulus. It may also take on excitatory functions as a result of pseudo conditioning, or false conditioning. Also known as backward pairing. Compare with forward conditioning.

BACKWARD CONDITIONING: "The person who was engaging in backward conditioning techniques was administered the dinner bell prior to a basket of laundry many times."

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