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Behaviour and Modification - Chapter 25.doc

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Amanda Uliaszek

BEHAVIOUR AND MODIFICATION Chapter 25: Token Economies Token Economy  token economy: method that uses a complex system of consequences and is applied with groups of ppl for a wide rang of target behs  diff from other token systems by... - try to change the beh of groups of individuals rather than just one - attempt to change relatively wide ranges of target beh - use relatively complex systems of consequences for those beh Usual Settings for Token Economies  prison  organizational or institutional settings  classrooms  institutions with developmental disabled ppl  hospitals for psychiatric ppl and drug abusers Whats Needed to Start a Token Economy  decide on the target beh that the intervention will try to change - depends on problems observed , the specific needs of the ppl and the needs of the organization  having similar target ppl in group is fairly common  once target behs are identified – must define them and in detail  then four tasks should be initiated - functional assessments should be done to determine the antecedents and consequences - ppl must be brought to help the token economy - staff must receive extensive training in identifying the target beh, using methods to reduce antecedents and consequences that have promoted inappropriate beh in the past, recording data and administering the token reinforcers - staff must collect baseline data Setting Up and Implementing a Token Economy  material and stuff can be set up while baseline data is being collected (this is after functional assessment) Choosing the Tokens and Backup Consequences  tokens can take many diff forms  tokens should be durable, convenient to store and handle, easy to carry and dispense and difficult to steal or counterfeit  can identify potentially strong backup reinforcers by observing target persons preference in naturalistic or structured tests and by interviewing them or having them fill out a survey  ex of punishment for token economy = response cost = target person pays fines in tokens Managing the Consequences  issue in managing consequences well – keep a large supply of tokens and backup reinforcers available and devise a system to administer the rewards and punishers  guidelines for administering tokens: everyone involved should know beh criteria for earning tokens and exchange rates for backup reinforcers, award tokens asap after beh is done, use natural reinforcers like praise , keep careful and accurate records of target beh and reinforcers dispensed and provide bonus rewards for high level performance  who will administer consequences? - ppl who deliver and keep track of tokens and backup reinforcers or punishers received will need to monitor the target beh, record data and deliver tokens  how many tokens will a beh earn? Supply and demand influences this – and abilities of diff target ppl  what will the exchange rates be? Depends on number of tokens target person can ear for each beh, the cost of backup reinforcers, degree of demand of diff reinforcers and therapeutic relevance of diff reinforcers  how often will backup reinforcers be available? Depends on intellectual ability of target ppl  when token economy uses group contingency – tokens are given on basis of group's performance as a whole  group contingency is easy to administer and have built in incentives to prevent group members from reinforcing one another's inappropriate beh Phasing Out the Program  approaches for maintaining improved beh after intervention include thinning and delaying reinforcement – these methods can be implemented by: - decreasing number of tokens each target beh earns - decreases number of target beh that earn tokens - increases number of tokens required to buy backup reinforcers - increasing delays between receiving tokens and having opportunities to redeem them for backup reinforces - assuring that the person's everyday environment will encourage the improved beh by prov
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