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Chapter 13

Behaviour Modficiation - Chapter 13 Book Notes

9 Pages
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Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYB45H3
Professor
Zachariah Campbell

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Chapter 13 – Functional Assessment
First step is to understand why the person engages in the behaviour
Functional assessment: an assessment of three-term contingency to determine the
antecedent events that evoke the behaviour + the reinforcing consequences that maintain
the behaviour
Example:
Conduct a functional assessment of why Jacob engages in problem behaviour
1. Interview mother
2. Observe b-behaviour in the daycare setting + record information on the
antecedents, behaviour, and consequence
oAntecedent = other kids play with Jacob’s toys
oBehaviour = bangs his head, whines + throws toys
oConsequence = kids return Jacobs toys to him
oOutcomes = Jacob is more likely to engage in head-banging, whining, and toy-
throwing when other children play with his toys
oHypothesis = reinforcer for problem behaviour = other children gave back toys
3. Conduct a brief experience to test if the hypothesis was correct
oAsk children not to immediately give back his toys on some days + not to play
with them on other days
oExperiment confirmed that other children playing with Jacob’s toys was an
antecedent
oAlso confirmed that the reinforcer was that other children gave back his toys
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4. Treatment involved teaching him to ask the children to return toys
oGoal is replace undesirable behaviour with desirable behaviour
oDifferential reinforcement was used to increase desirable behaviour + decrease
undesirable behaviour
oAntecedent = other children play with Jacob’s toys
oBehaviour = Jacob asks for toys back
oConsequence = children return toys to him
oOutcome = he is more likely to ask for his toys back
Defining Functional Assessment
The principle of behaviour analysis is that behaviour is lawful – occurrence is controlled
by environmental variables
Respondent behaviour is controlled by antecedent stimuli
Operant behaviour is controlled by antecedent stimuli + consequences that make up the
3-term contingencies of reinforcement & punishment
Functional assessment: the process of gathering information about the antecedents +
consequences that are functionally related to the occurrence of problem behaviour
oProvides information that help us determine why problem behaviour is occurred
oProvides detail information about antecedent stimuli – time + place of the behaviour,
people present when the behaviour occurs, environmental event immediately
preceding the behaviour & the frequency of the target behaviour
oProvides information that are important for developing alternative behaviours that
may be functionally equivalent to the problem behaviour
Categories of Information from a Functional Assessment
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Problem behaviour – the behaviours that make up the problem
Antecedents – environmental events preceding the problem behaviour, including aspects
of the environment + behaviour of their people
Consequences – environmental events that follow the problem behaviour
Alternative behaviour – information on desirable behaviour in the persons repertoire that
may be reinforced to compete with the problem behaviour
Motivational variables – information on environmental events that function as
establishing operations to influence the effectiveness of reinforcers + punishers for the
problem & alternative behaviour
Potential reinforcers – information on environmental events that may function as
reinforcers + be used in treatment programs
Previous interventions – information on the interventions that have been used in the past +
the effects of the problem behaviour
Function of Problem Behaviours
1. Social positive reinforcement
Delivered by another person after the target behaviour
Involves attention, assess to activities, or tangibles
Ex – Jacob received his toys back from the other children (tangibles) as a reinforcer
2. Social negative reinforcement
When another person terminates an aversive interaction after the occurrence of a
target behaviour
Ex – asking your friend not to smoke in the car is negatively reinforced by escape or
avoidance of the smell of smoke
3. Automatic positive reinforcement
www.notesolution.com

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Description
Chapter 13 Functional Assessment First step is to understand why the person engages in the behaviour Functional assessment: an assessment of three-term contingency to determine the antecedent events that evoke the behaviour + the reinforcing consequences that maintain the behaviour Example: Conduct a functional assessment of why Jacob engages in problem behaviour 1. Interview mother 2. Observe b-behaviour in the daycare setting + record information on the antecedents, behaviour, and consequence o Antecedent = other kids play with Jacobs toys o Behaviour = bangs his head, whines + throws toys o Consequence = kids return Jacobs toys to him o Outcomes = Jacob is more likely to engage in head-banging, whining, and toy- throwing when other children play with his toys o Hypothesis = reinforcer for problem behaviour = other children gave back toys 3. Conduct a brief experience to test if the hypothesis was correct o Ask children not to immediately give back his toys on some days + not to play with them on other days o Experiment confirmed that other children playing with Jacobs toys was an antecedent o Also confirmed that the reinforcer was that other children gave back his toys www.notesolution.com
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