Rats received Pavlovian conditioning in which food was signalled by a visual stimulus, A+, an auditory stimulus, B+, and a compound composed of different visual and auditory stimuli, CD+. Test trials were then given with the compound AB. Experiments 1 and 2A revealed stronger responding during AB than during CD. In Experiment 2B, there was no evidence of a summation of responding during AB when A+ B+ training was conducted in the absence of CD+ trials. A further failure to observe abnormally strong responding during AB was found in Experiment 3 for which the training trials with A+ B+ CD+ were accompanied by trials in which C and D were separately paired with food. The results are explained in terms of a configural theory of conditioning, which assumes that responding during a compound is determined by generalization from its components, as well as from other compounds to which it is similar.