AGGRESSION - Ethological Explanation

How does the Ethological Explanation explain aggression?
Environmental stimulus perceived by the brain - Triggers innate releasing mechanisms (network of neurons) - Initiates an aggressive behaviour pattern - Called a fixed action pattern
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Describe the fixed action pattern - Stereotyped
Relatively unchanging pattern of behaviour
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Describe the fixed action pattern - Universal
The same behaviour is found in every individual of a species
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Describe the fixed action pattern - Unaffected By Learning
It is the same for every individual of a species regardless of experience
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Describe the fixed action pattern - Ballistic
Once the behaviour is triggered it follows an inevitable course and cannot be altered
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Describe the fixed action pattern - Single Purpose
The behaviour only occurs in a specific situation and not in any other
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Describe the fixed action pattern - Specific
A response to an identifiable sign stimulus
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The Ethological Explanations believes that the main function of aggression is what?
Adaptive - Behaviour that increases an animals chance of survival and reproductive success
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How is aggression beneficial to survival?
A defeated animal will not be killed. Instead it moves elsewhere and the species spreads out reducing competition for resources
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How is aggression beneficial to survival?
It establishes dominance hierarchies, giving special status, increasing reproductive success
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What is a ritual? and what is ritualistic aggression?
Ritual - Series of behaviours carried out in a set order. In aggression it is the bit before the fight.
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What research supports ritualistic aggression?
Lorenz - Most aggressive encounters consist of ritualistic signalling (eg. displaying claws and teeth) and are rarely physical. Aggressive confrontations also end with ritual appeasement, which is adaptive because it ends the fight
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

Describe the fixed action pattern - Stereotyped

Back

Relatively unchanging pattern of behaviour

Card 3

Front

Describe the fixed action pattern - Universal

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

Describe the fixed action pattern - Unaffected By Learning

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

Describe the fixed action pattern - Ballistic

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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