Learning, Expectancy, and Behavioral Control: Implications for Drug Abuse

Muriel Vogel-Sprott, Mark T. Fillmore

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

5 Scopus citations


This chapter reviews research demonstrating that learned expectancies mediate behavior. A drug-taking situation illustrates how associative learning develops drugrelated expectancies. Experiments are described to show that manipulating individual expectancies can reveal their causal influence on the intensity of the drug effect and the type of behavioral response to the drug. These results are also related to other evidence that implicates behavioral disinhibition and impulsivity in the risk for drug abuse. Evidence is presented to show how a drug userusers{comma below}ss expectancy about the disinhibiting effects of a drug can alter the response to the drug. Taken together, the findings provide new information on how drug-related expectancies affect basic mechanisms of behavioral control, and they offer new insights into how expectancies can mediate the well-known association between disinhibition and risk for drug abuse.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAssociative Learning and Conditioning Theory
Subtitle of host publicationHuman and Non-Human Applications
ISBN (Electronic)9780199894529
StatePublished - May 1 2011


  • Alcohol
  • Disinhibition
  • Expectancy
  • Impulsivity
  • Learning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology (all)


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