Published Online: 30 JAN 2010
Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.
Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology
How to Cite
Peterson, C. 2010. Learned Helplessness. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–2.
- Published Online: 30 JAN 2010
Learned helplessness was discovered when researchers immobilized a dog and exposed it to electric shocks that could neither be avoided nor escaped. Twenty-four hours later, the dog was placed in a situation in which electric shock could be terminated by a simple response. The dog did not make this response; instead, it just sat passively. This behavior was in marked contrast to dogs in a control group that reacted vigorously to the shock and learned to turn it off.
Keywords: depression; helplessness; learned helplessness; learning