Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


34th Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2008

Event Details

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Paper Session #380
International Paper Session - Contemporary Issues in Stimulus Control I
Monday, May 26, 2008
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Area: EAB
Chair: Jeremy A. Biesbrouck (University of Nevada, Reno)
Stereotyping as Transformation of Function: Does Public Compliance with Stereotypes Lead to Their Private Acceptance?
Domain: Basic Research
BRIAN WILLIAM SLATTERY (National University of Ireland, Galway), Ian Thomas Tyndall (AMCD/National University of Ireland, Galway)
Abstract: From a relational frame theory standpoint, stereotyping can be conceived of as verbal responding that transforms the functions of outgroup members such that the individual attributes certain properties to outgroup members prior to exposure. The current study established stereotyping of fictional cultures in 2 groups of Irish nationals. One group (11 participants) was exposed to a series of positive, negative or neutral statements about three fictional cultures, the other (12 participants) was exposed to these statements and then a match-to-sample procedure in which they were required to respond in accordance with the stereotypes. Participants’ stereotyping was then measured using an explicit (Likert questionnaire) measure and an implicit (Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure) measure. Both groups demonstrated stereotyping on the explicit measure (F = 34.43, p = .001; F = 80.075, p = .000), but only the reinforced group demonstrated stereotyping on the implicit measure (e.g. F = 7.444, p = .021). These findings highlight the active nature of stereotyping as a behaviour. The implications of these findings for reducing inter-group conflict and stigmatisation will be considered.
Effects of Conditioning History on Selective Stimulus Control by Elements of Compound Discriminative Stimuli.
Domain: Basic Research
CAROLYN S. RYAN (Institute for Children with Autism/Queens College, City University of New York), Nancy S. Hemmes (Queens College, City University of New York), Bruce L. Brown (Queens College, City University of New York)
Abstract: The extent of stimulus control exerted by each of the two stimulus dimensions (color and shape) of compound stimuli was studied in two experiments with undergraduate college students. The present study used the conflict-compound discrimination procedure (Ray, 1969; Huguenin & Touchette, 1980). The level of congruence of the training contingencies between training phases was manipulated. Single-stimulus discrimination training was conducted in Phase 1 and compound discrimination training was conducted in Phase 2. Stimulus compounds in Phase 2 were composed of the stimuli trained in Phase 1. For some stimulus compounds in Phase 2, conflict-compound training was conducted such that the response trained in Phase 1 for one element of the compound was also the correct response in Phase 2; however, for the other element, the previously trained response could be incorrect in Phase 2. In Phase 3, the stimulus elements presented in compound in Phase 2 were presented separately to assess the degree to which responding corresponded to the Phase 2 training contingency. Results of two experiments replicated the findings of the former authors, and extended them parametrically. In Experiment 2, degree of competition between elements of the compound stimulus, based on training history, also affected stimulus control.
The Relative Control of Component Dimensions of Compound Tactile Stimuli in Equivalence Relations.
Domain: Basic Research
JEREMY A. BIESBROUCK (University of Nevada, Reno), W. Larry Williams (University of Nevada, Reno), Marianne L. Jackson (University of Nevada, Reno), David Joseph Melarkey (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract: Normal functioning adult participants were exposed to a tactile matching-to-sample procedure where unseen sample stimuli were touched and subsequent also unseen indication of one of three comparison stimuli was reinforced. All stimuli were of a distinct shape and an associated surface texture. Once matching criterion was met participants were tested for separate shape and texture associations. The present study addresses two questions. First, can equivalence relations be established within the tactile modality, adding to the small body of literature investigating within tactile equivalence relations? And second, is either shape or texture contributing more to stimulus control? Results will be discussed in terms of differential responding with compound stimuli to derived relations for equivalence, and probes of shape and texture for transitivity, as well as the role of naming in the development of tactile relations.
Derived Relations and Electrophysiological Activity: Individual Alpha Frequencies during Training and Testing of Equivalence Classes.
Domain: Basic Research
JON GRETAR SIGURJONSSON (National University of Ireland, Galway), Geraldine Leader (National University of Ireland), Denis P. O'Hora (National University of Ireland, Galway), Ian T. Stewart (National University of Ireland, Galway)
Abstract: Alpha frequencies are the waveforms most often associated with higher cognitive functions. Individual Alpha Frequencies (IAFs) provide a more systematic and accurate means of measuring individuals cognitive functions than other electrophysiological measures typically utilized, for example spectral analysis. The current research program aims to identify changes in IAFs during stimulus class formation (pre- and post-acquisition) and whether different training methods (conditional discrimination or respondent-type training) result in different patterns of change in IAFs. Two groups were trained on 6 three-member classes, one using a traditional MTS training the other respondent-type training. Electrophysiological activity was measured during training and testing and this activity was analyzed to identify IAFs. The findings highlight the utility of this novel method of analyzing electrophysiological activity in contributing to greater understanding of stimulus equivalence class formation.



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