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.


40th Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2014

Event Details

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Paper Session #508
Translational Research
Tuesday, May 27, 2014
11:00 AM–11:50 AM
W176c (McCormick Place Convention Center)
Area: EAB
Chair: Iver H. Iversen (University of North Florida)

A Closer Look at Stimulus Control in Backward and Forward Chaining Procedures in Rats

Domain: Basic Research
IVER H. IVERSEN (University of North Florida), Nicholas Musselwhite (University of North Florida)

Chains of stimuli and responses are components of daily interactions with the environment and with other people. Two training procedures, backward and forward chaining, are common in the literature. The presentation will compare the two methods of training and examine what types of stimulus control of behavior result from the training. Experiments with rats illustrate that even though the two methods result in the same overall behavior chains, the two methods nevertheless generate different training progressions and different types of stimulus control of behavior, as revealed when certain tests are made--such as reversing the chains. Comparisons are made of homogeneous chains (same topography of stimuli and responses but different locations) and heterogeneous chains (different topography of stimuli and responses and different locations); heterogeneous chains amplify the difference in stimulus control between backward and forward training procedures. A within-session, trial-by-trial level of analysis reveals systematic differences in stimulus control that are not apparent in an overall, averaged analysis. The results may have implications for how chaining procedures are implemented in applied settings.

Development and Mofication of a Response Class Via Positive Reinforcement and Noncontingent Reinforcement: A Translational Study
Domain: Basic Research
YORS A. GARCIA (Fundacion Universitaria Konrad Lorenz), Julie Canon (Fundacion Universitaria Konrad Lorenz), Julio Torres (Fundacion Universitaria Konrad Lorenz)
Abstract: Recent new translational studies on response-class hierarchy have proven to be effective model to evaluate intervention procedures in laboratory conditions. The objective of these two studies was to evaluate a translational model proposed by Shabani, Carr, and Petursdottir (2009) with sixteen children with ages between 9 and 13. The first study replicated the Mendres and Borrero (2010, study 1) experiment with children using a computer program. A withdrawal design with concurrent schedules was used to evaluate the class development, demonstration and modification in 27 3-min blocks. Preliminary data show similar results found in previous studies using this type of procedures. The second study model two different procedures to decrease class-responses. Same sixteen participants participated in this study. One condition modeled extinction of response-classes using non-contingent reinforcement, while the other condition used extinction-only procedure. In the final phase for both conditions schedules were thinned in order to evaluate the effectiveness of both procedures. Preliminary results show that non-contingent procedure was more effective in decreasing number of responses.



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