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.


Fourth International Conference; Australia, 2007

Event Details

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Paper Session #87
International Paper Session - Issues in Health-Related Behavioural Research
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
3:00 PM–3:50 PM
L2 Room 2
Area: EAB
Chair: Lewis A. Bizo (Southern Illinois University)
The Effect of Parkinson's Disease on Time Estimation as a Function of Stimulus Duration Range and Modality.
Domain: Experimental Analysis
DAVID N. HARPER (Victoria University of Wellington)
Abstract: The present research examined the effect of Parkinson’s Disease (PD) on the ability to discriminate temporal durations in the range of sub- and supra-second intervals. Eighteen non-demented medicated patients with PD were compared with 14 matched controls on a duration-bisection task in which participants were required to discriminate auditory and visual signal durations within each time range. Results showed that patients with PD exhibited more variable duration judgments across both signal modality and duration range than controls, although closer analyses confirmed a timing deficit in the longer duration range only. The findings presented here suggest the bisection procedure may be a useful tool in identifying timing impairments in PD and, more generally, reaffirm the hypothesised role of the basal ganglia in temporal perception at the level of the attentionally mediated internal clock as well as memory retrieval and/or decision-making processes.
Health Behaviour and Delay Discounting.
Domain: Experimental Analysis
LEWIS A. BIZO (Southern Cross University), Julie Bennett (Southern Cross University), Belinda Lambert (Southern Cross University), Sarah Kenny (Southern Cross University), Stephen Provost (Southern Cross University)
Abstract: In three separate studies the ability of a delay discounting procedure and several questionnaire based measures to differentiate between individual differences variables that included alcohol consumption, sun tanning behaviour, and levels of exercise was assessed. Hypothetical monetary amounts were discounted more steeply by participants that reported higher levels of alcohol consumption, more sun tanning, and lower levels of exercise, than individuals that drank less, sun tanned less, or exercised more, respectively. Scores on several of the questionnaire based measures, such as Zimbardo’s Time Perspective Inventory, Consideration of Future Consequences Scale (CFCS), and a sun tanning attitudes scale correlated with levels of delay discounting. The measure of discounting, estimates of the parameter k, derived from fits of mathematical models to discounted monetary amounts proved to be problematic as the fits were often ill defined or the variance accounted for was very low. A new weighted discounting score was constructed that allowed all data to be included in analysis even when participants did not discount. Steep discounting of future rewards was correlated with unhealthy behaviour. A better understanding of how to manipulate the value of delayed health rewards will have implications for public health campaigns and the treatment of problem health behaviour.



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