Classical conditioning manifests itself in the response of an organism to external or internal stimuli. This reaction occurs due to the presence of special sensitive formations (receptors) and is controlled by the nervous system. The experiment was primarily held by the Russian scholar Ivan Pavlov to demonstrate that a response can be learned within real-life conditions. Numerous TV series and movies offer examples of this phenomenon.
Unlike unconditional reflexes, conditioned reflexes are not inherited. They are developed in the process of development as new skills are acquired; that is, they are the product of life experience. Classical conditioning is purely individual and is formed under certain conditions. At the same time, the formation of unconditional reflexes occurs on the basis of conditional ones with the participation of the higher parts of the brain (the cerebral cortex). The neutral stimulus occurs irrespectively of the response, even though it seems like they are connected.
In Office the unconditioned stimulus is represented by the mint, while the unconditioned response is Dwight’s reaction to its taste. The episode provides an example of how Jim teaches Dwight to say yes to his questions by putting his hand out. This move is supposed to teach him to respond naturally to requests. In the meantime, the conditioner stimulus can be the computer’s sound, whereas the conditioned response is Dwight’s non-acceptance sign he shows white refusing to take the mint. Rebooting his computer, Jim makes Dwight answer affirmatively. When Dwight hears a beeping sound, he reaches Jim’s hand despite the fact that he is not handing him any mint. Hence, the classical conditioning presented in the scene shows that a reaction occurs because of a stimulus.