discrimination

/di skrim'euh nay"sheuhn/, n.
1. an act or instance of discriminating.
2. treatment or consideration of, or making a distinction in favor of or against, a person or thing based on the group, class, or category to which that person or thing belongs rather than on individual merit: racial and religious intolerance and discrimination.
3. the power of making fine distinctions; discriminating judgment: She chose the colors with great discrimination.
4. Archaic. something that serves to differentiate.
[1640-50; < L discrimination- (s. of discriminatio) a distinguishing. See DISCRIMINATE, -ION]
Syn. 3. discernment, taste, acumen, perception.

* * *

      in psychology, the ability to perceive and respond to differences among stimuli. It is considered a more advanced form of learning than generalization (q.v.), the ability to perceive similarities, although animals can be trained to discriminate as well as to generalize.

      Application of discrimination procedures permits description of the sensory acuities of laboratory animals. For example, if a dog's salivation response was to be conditioned to a red light by pairing it with food, while a green light was intermittently presented always without food, the dog would salivate to red light but not to green. It then might be inferred that the dog discriminated between colours. If, however, the brightness of the green light was varied, a brightness would be discovered to which the dog salivated. No amount of additional discrimination training with red and green lights would lead to differential response. The conclusion would be that the dog is colour-blind (which, in reality, dogs are).

* * *


Universalium. 2010.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • discrimination — [ diskriminasjɔ̃ ] n. f. • 1870; lat. discriminatio « séparation » 1 ♦ Psychol. Action de distinguer l un de l autre (des objets de pensée concrets). ⇒ distinction. Littér. Action de discerner, de distinguer les choses les unes des autres avec… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • discrimination — I (bigotry) noun bias, blind zeal, class prejudice, favoritism, illiberality, intolerance, opinionativeness, preference, prejudice, race hatred, race prejudice, racialism, racism, unfairness, want of forbearance associated concepts: blacklist,… …   Law dictionary

  • discrimination — di‧scrim‧i‧na‧tion [dɪˌskrɪmˈneɪʆn] noun [uncountable] 1. ECONOMICS the process of treating one market, country, type of product etc differently from another: • the discrimination in favour of imported wine when it comes to excise duty ˈprice… …   Financial and business terms

  • DISCRIMINATION — DISCRIMINATION, distinguishing between people on the basis of the group to which the person belongs rather than individual characteristics. With rare exceptions, contemporary forms of discrimination against Jews were not based upon the type of… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Discrimination — Dis*crim i*na tion, n. [L. discriminatio the contrasting of opposite thoughts.] 1. The act of discriminating, distinguishing, or noting and marking differences. [1913 Webster] To make an anxious discrimination between the miracle absolute and… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • discrimination — 1640s, the making of distinctions, from L.L. discriminationem (nom. discriminatio), noun of action from pp. stem of discriminare (see DISCRIMINATE (Cf. discriminate)). Especially in a prejudicial way, based on race, 1866, Amer.Eng. Meaning… …   Etymology dictionary

  • discrimination — [n1] bias bigotry, favoritism, hatred, inequity, injustice, intolerance, partiality, prejudice, unfairness, wrong; concepts 29,689 Ant. fairness, tolerance discrimination [n2] particularity in taste acumen, acuteness, astucity, astuteness, bias,… …   New thesaurus

  • discrimination — penetration, insight, *discernment, perception, acumen Analogous words: wisdom, judgment, *sense: subtlety, logicalness or logic (see corresponding adjectives at LOGICAL) Contrasted words: crassness, density, dullness, slowness, stupidity (see… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • discrimination — ► NOUN 1) the action of discriminating against people. 2) recognition of the difference between one thing and another. 3) good judgement or taste …   English terms dictionary

  • discrimination — [di skrim΄i nā′shən] n. [L discriminatio] 1. the act of discriminating, or distinguishing differences 2. the ability to make or perceive distinctions; perception; discernment 3. a) partiality, or bias, in the treatment of a person or group, which …   English World dictionary

  • Discrimination — This article focuses on discrimination in sociology, not statistical discrimination. For other uses of the term, see the entry for discrimination at Wiktionary. Part of a series on …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.