Both Pavlov and Skinner have proven that animals can be trained to expect a result coming from a type of condition due to past experiences. However, it may not be the same for human beings, as they have much more complex minds than any other species on Earth. Classical and Operant conditioning may work only on some humans but it may not work on some other humans.
Operant conditioning is when a living being experiences punishment or any consequences when committing a particular act, it will often stop doing the same thing next time, as it doesn’t want to experience the consequence again. However, some human beings are an exception to the laws of Operant conditioning. For instance, a teenager may continue stealing even though he/she has been caught and punished. The reason behind it is because it might be the only way to survive, or it could be a habit the teenager cannot get rid of, similar to smoking. In some more scarce occasions, the teenager might feel that it is right to steal, as if the world owes him/her, which motivates the teenager to continue committing his/her crime.
Nonetheless, there are under some circumstances that fit into the criteria, such as if a person almost got crushed by a car when crossing a road, he/she would be much more careful in the future, as the person doesn’t want to die.
Classical conditioning is training a living being to respond to a specific stimulus, such as a dog salivating if a ringing bell is heard. This type of condition may work on more people than on Operant condition. The reason is because Classical conditioning is more on the person’s advantage whereas Operant conditioning is mostly on consequences. Human beings tend to commit acts that at least benefit themselves before benefiting others; therefore Operant conditioning will sometimes not work because it might affect the person’s benefit. It is only on some situations that Operant conditioning will work as it helps prevent consequences happening to the person again.
Human nature is a very complex system that enables human beings to be different from the theories of response and stimulus. They will not just think if one thing happens, another result will follow. Some people will think of other possibilities, which makes the whole situation extremely complex. Classical and Operant conditioning may work on toddlers as they still have very simple thinking, but as humans grow older their minds will also become more advanced as well as complicated, making their thinking not as straightforward as the theories suggest.
Classical and Operant conditioning may not be 100% efficient on analysing human behaviour, but if it is used on other animals or on human toddlers, it will be quite effective.