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.


32nd Annual Convention; Atlanta, GA; 2006

Event Details

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Symposium #26
Feeding the Word Machine: Factors that Influence Relational Responding
Saturday, May 27, 2006
1:00 PM–2:20 PM
Area: CBM; Domain: Basic Research
Chair: Amanda C. Adcock (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee)
Abstract: Facilitated acquisition of novel members into equivalence classes is an understudied area in the field of relational conditioning. It is assumed that salience of the stimuli affect the formation of classes of stimuli. Four studies designed to directly study this phenomenon will be discussed. Data will be presented from these four studies demonstrating various factors that influence the formation of equivalence classes.
Reptiles & Relations: The Influence of Aversive Functions.
CHAD DRAKE (University of Mississippi), Kelly G. Wilson (University of Mississippi)
Abstract: Some previous research (Plaud, 1993; Plaud, et. al, 1998) has indicated that participants demonstrate inhibited acquisition of derived relations among fear-relevant stimuli. Such findings conflict with other studies (Wilson, unpublished; Merwin & Wilson, 2005), which found facilitated acquisition among self-relevant and distress-relevant stimuli. The current study examined this apparent contradiction in findings. The results suggest that both outcomes can be accounted for by differences in the pre-existing functions of the class members. These findings can be integrated by referring to the psychological flexibility of fear-relevant stimuli.
Academic Cues Run Rampant: The Role of Relational Responding in Academic Distress.
BRITTANY A. HAMMER (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee), Amanda C. Adcock (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee), Jaime M. Owens (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee), Leslie Anne Kuhn (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee), Douglas W. Woods (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee), Kelly G. Wilson (University of Mississippi), Chad Drake (University of Mississippi)
Abstract: The problem of attrition on college campuses is rampant; almost half of students enrolling in college courses will not complete a degree. It has been reported that college students that report higher distress are generally those performing poorly academically. This study examines the relationship between academic performance and distress, as well as examines the ability of students to derive relations among academic distress relevant stimuli as compared to controls. Data will be presented from a college sample that completed a matching-to-sample procedure designed to train conditional discriminations among stimuli A and B, and A and C, and subsequently test for bi-directional derived relations between B and C, where A and C are arbitrary line drawings and B is either academically relevant words, color words or shape words.
Personal Content: Friend or Foe?
AMANDA C. ADCOCK (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee), Douglas W. Woods (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee)
Abstract: An idiographic assessment of the effects of personal and emotional content on relational responding was conducted. Data will be presented from a matching-to-sample procedure designed to evaluate the acquisition of novel arbitrary members to personally relevant stimulus classes as compared to emotional stimulus classes and a neutral control class. Participants reporting high and low levels of distress as measured by the Outcome Questionnaire participated in an interview to determine the personally relevant stimulus used in the procedure.
Jumping into Joy or Diving into Depression: The Role of Emotion in Relational Responding.
CHRISTINE A. CONELEA (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee), Amanda C. Adcock (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee), Douglas W. Woods (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee), Katie Gilbart (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee), Laura Biwer (University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee)
Abstract: No research in the area of derived relational responding has compared the acquisition of novel members to stimulus classes containing positive or negative emotion words. The purpose of the present study was to determine if there are different acquisition rates for arbitrary members to emotion word equivalence classes. The matching-to-sample procedure trained conditional discriminations between A and B and A and C, and subsequently tested for bidirectional relations between B and C, where A and C are arbitrary stimuli and B is either a positive, negative, or neutral emotion word. Participant responses in the testing phases of the matching-to-sample procedure will be presented.



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