Reinforcement learning: the good, the bad and the ugly

Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2008 Apr;18(2):185-96. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2008.08.003. Epub 2008 Aug 22.


Reinforcement learning provides both qualitative and quantitative frameworks for understanding and modeling adaptive decision-making in the face of rewards and punishments. Here we review the latest dispatches from the forefront of this field, and map out some of the territories where lie monsters.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological / physiology
  • Competitive Behavior / physiology*
  • Decision Making / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Learning / physiology*
  • Nerve Net / anatomy & histology
  • Nerve Net / physiology
  • Punishment / psychology
  • Reinforcement, Psychology*
  • Reward*
  • Time Factors