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.


10th International Conference; Stockholm, Sweden; 2019

Event Details

Previous Page


Paper Session #23
Conditioned Reinforcement in Applied Animal Literature
Sunday, September 29, 2019
11:30 AM–11:50 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C4
Area: AAB
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Chair: Nicole Pfaller-Sadovsky (Queen's University Belfast)
Conditioned Reinforcement in Applied Animal Literature
Domain: Theory
NICOLE PFALLER-SADOVSKY (Queen's University Belfast), Susan G. Friedman (Utah State University), Camilo Hurtado Parrado (Troy University & Konrad Lorenz Fundación Universitaria)
Abstract: Conditioned reinforcement occurs when a behavior is strengthened by postcedent events that have acquired reinforcing properties by prior pairing with other reinforcers (Cooper et al., 2007; Pierce & Cheney, 2017). This phenomenon was first described by Skinner (1938), and became popular among animal trainers during the 1980s, and its prominence continues today. Although the use of a conditioned reinforcer (e.g., clicker or whistle) is said to be highly effective in companion animal training, only a few studies support this statement. The current meta-analysis aimed at identifying variables that contribute to conditioned reinforcement’s effectiveness (or lack thereof), identifying variables that explain the variability in authors’ outcomes, and provide quantitative efficacy estimates (i.e., effect sizes). After conducting a systematic search of various databases (e.g., Web of Science), retrieved records were selected by using Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA; Moher et al., 2009). Information about publication types, methods and species were extracted from 31 eligible studies. First results show that only 20% (n=6) of all records reported single-case research designs. This indicates a lack of, and great need for, behavior-analytic research of conditioned reinforcement in applied animal settings.



Back to Top
Modifed by Eddie Soh