➢ Generalized Conditioned Reinforcers
The ones that are paired with many different reinforcers
Ex: money, praise, token economy(individuals can trade in tokens for something else)
➢ Effectiveness of Reinforcement
5 different factors that affect how reinforcement occurs
• If a reinforcer is not immediately delivered, it has an affect.
• Otherwise there is no associated being made (no activity in the brain?)
• Specific & consistent delivery
• Establishing operations
• Deprivation & satiation
• Deprivation = motivation to acquire something = hunger is deprivation,
and you acquire food.
• Satiation= at a point, an individual will become satiated and the person
may not want reinforcement (e.g. candy)
• So you must have a procedure where the reinforcer has to be effective across
many the entire period of operation.
• Individual Differences
• Variability across pple
• Different things may be reinforcing for different people
• You can't assume that a reinforcer is reinforcing for someone, you have to
scientifically determine that.
• You need to observe the child or person to determine what is reinforcing
• Intensity of stimuli
• if the aversive stimulus is high in intensity, it will strengthen the
behaviour that much more to get out of the situation.
All of these factors play a role in how effective a reinforcement is in a given behaviour
➢ Schedules of Reinforcement
specifies which/when responses will be followed by a reinforcer
• Each response is followed by the reinforcer
• simplest one: reinforcement is provided everytime
• Reinforce at the beginning of the treatment
• Not that resistant to extinction
• Not every response is followed by a reinforcer
• Resistant to extinction
• Different types
• fixed ratio
• reinforcer occurs after x number of responses and the number does
not change. • Ex: for every package that you complete, you will get a reward
• produces a high rate of behaviour
• but produces a post reinforcement pause = satiation may have occured
• Once satiation is eliminated, then the rate of behaviour goes up.
• variable ratio
• reinforcer is delivered after and avg number of responses → not
predictable to the individual.
• It produces a high and steady rate of behaviour with no post
• this is the preferred approach because it is steady and has the highest
rate of behaviour
• fixed interval
• the reinforcement is delivered after a fixed interval of time (every 10
• produces a low rate of behaviour and on/off pattern
• this is rarely used in treatment programs.
• Ex: if supervisor checks up on you every 10 minutes, you'll only
speed up and work right before you expect him to come in.
• variable interval
• reinforcer for the first response after X variable amount of time
(based on an avg)
• produces low but steady rate of behaviour
• reinforcement is applied in a non-predictable and non-consistent
• Notation (eg, FR 10, VI-20-minute)
➢ Concurrent Schedules of Reinforcement
In everyday circumstances, there isn't just one behaviour and one reinforcement
Schedules of reinforcement exist at the same time for 2 or more different behaviours
# of factors influence your choice and which concurrent operant behaviours you will
• schedule of reinforcement
• magnitude of reinforcement
• immediacy of reinforcement
• response effort
• the more difficult a task is, the less likely you'll engage in, as opposed to
another easier household task which involves less effort. Chapter 5 – Extinction
➢ Critical Questions
What is the principle of extinction?
What happens during an extinction burst?
How is extinction different after positive and negative reinforcement?
What is a common misconception about extinction?
What factors influence extinction?
is a basic principle of behaviour
is supported by years of basic and applied research
is a component of many modification procedures.
Extinction is the weakening of a behaviour as opposed to positive reinforcement which
is the strengthening of a behaviour.
Definition of Extinction
When a response (previously reinforced) is not followed by reinforcement, person is
less likely to engage in behaviour again.
➢ Extinction Process
1) Apreviously reinforced behaviour
2) Is no longer followed by the reinforcing consequence
3) The behaviour is weakened (decreases and stops occuring in the future)
➢ Examples of Extinction
turning the key in a broken trunk