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.


31st Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2005

Event Details

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Symposium #444
Human Operant Research and Concurrent Schedules in the Lab and the Classroom
Tuesday, May 31, 2005
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Boulevard A (2nd floor)
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
Chair: Ami L. Miller (University of North Texas)
Discussant: Stephanie M. Peterson (Idaho State University)
Abstract: Beginning in 1957 with Ferster and Skinner’s volume Schedules of Reinforcement, schedules have been shown to be fundamental determinants of behavior. More recently, schedules of reinforcement have been used as baselines for observing choice behavior, correspondence between verbal reports and human performances, and the interaction of various reinforcer dimensions. This symposium will explore research bound by the common thread of concurrent schedules. Presenters will show data from a human operant laboratory and a classroom laboratory. The first presentation will show a study on the correspondence between verbal reporting of events as preferred or nonpreferred reinforcers and their maintenance of behavior. The second presentation will examine impulsivity and the interaction of reinforcer rate, quality, and response effort with children with or without ADHD. The third presentation will explore the frontier of concurrent Fixed Interval-Fixed Ratio schedules of reinforcement with humans.
Correspondence Between Verbal Behavior About Reinforcers and Performance Under Schedules of Reinforcement
RUTHIE L. BEKKER-PACE (University of North Texas), Jesus Rosales-Ruiz (University of North Texas), Camille Parsons (University of North Texas), Richard L. Anderson (University of North Texas), Yuka Koremura (University of North Texas), Ami L. Miller (University of North Texas)
Abstract: Important advancements have been made in the identification of reinforcers in the past decade. The use of preference assessments has become a systematic way to identify preferred events that may function as reinforcers for an individual’s behavior. Typically, preference assessments require participants to select stimuli through verbal surveys or engagement with the stimuli. Few studies then go on to test the effects of the preferred stimuli and almost none test the effects of stimuli selected as “non-preferred”. The present study systematically identified preferred and non-preferred stimuli in adult human subjects by verbal report and then proceeded to test the effects of the preferred and nonpreferred events on single and concurrent schedules of reinforcement. The results are discussed in terms of contemporary concerns regarding preference and reinforcer assessments.
Behavioral Assessment of Impulsivity: A Comparison of Children With and Without a Diagnosis of ADHD
NANCY A. NEEF (The Ohio State University), Julie Marckel (The Ohio State University), Summer Ferreri (The Ohio State University), David Bicard (The Ohio State University), Sayaka Endo (The Ohio State University), Michael Aman (The Ohio State University), Kelly Miller (The Ohio State University), Sunhwa Jung (The Ohio State University)
Abstract: We conducted a brief computer-based assessment involving choices of concurrently presented arithmetic problems associated with competing reinforcer dimensions to assess impulsivity (choices controlled primarily by reinforcer immediacy) as well as the relative influence of other dimensions (reinforcer rate, quality, and response effort), with 58 children. Results were compared for children with ADHD who were and were not receiving medication, and with typically developing children without a diagnosis of ADHD. Within-subject and between-group analyses of the ordinal influence of each of the reinforcer dimensions were conducted using both time and response allocation measures. In general, the choices of children with ADHD were influenced principally by reinforcer immediacy and quality, and least by rate and effort, suggesting impulsivity. The choices of children in the non-ADHD group were influenced principally by reinforcer quality, and the influence of immediacy relative to the other dimensions was not statistically significant. Results are discussed with respect to the implications for assessment and treatment of ADHD.
The Effects of Concurrent Fixed Interval-Fixed Ratio Schedules of Reinforcement on Human Performances
CAMILLE PARSONS (University of North Texas), Jesus Rosales-Ruiz (University of North Texas), Ruthie L. Bekker-Pace (University of North Texas), Richard L. Anderson (University of North Texas), Yuka Koremura (University of North Texas), Ami L. Miller (University of North Texas)
Abstract: This research explored the effects of concurrent Fixed Interval-Fixed Ratio experimental arrangements on the control of human behavior. Subjects were normal adults with some college education. The first phase of the experiment demonstrated computer techniques to shape two target behaviors with minimal instructions about the operandum and no instructions about the target behaviors. The second phase showed the effects of concurrent fixed interval-fixed ratio schedules of reinforcement on the performance of humans. The third phase explored the effects of extinction on performances previously maintained by concurrent fixed interval-fixed ratio schedules. Results are discussed in terms of schedule sensitivity and focus on schedules as determinants of human behavior.



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