Chapter 18 Book Notes

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16 Dec 2010
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Chapter 18: Positive Punishment Procedures and the Ethics of Punishment
Should punishment be used?
Use of punishment has always been highly controversial even before the advent of behavior
modification
No humane person would this it is ethical to induce pain if nonaversive methods that are
equally effective are available
There are some extremely harmful behaviors that in some cases can be suppressed only with
pain-inducing punishment
The only alternative to using pain-inducing punishment appears to be restraint
Gentle teaching is when claim can effectively replace all forms of aversive control
What is clear is that decision to use or not use pain-inducing punishment in particular case
requires considerable professional training & expertise & should not be made by unqualified
individuals
Time-out area need not be incredibly comfortable & desirable not also should be extremely
unpleasant if punishment has to be used it must never be in humiliating or degrading manner
Punishment can have a # of potentially harmful effects. These may be summarized as follows
1) Aggressive behavior. punishment tends to elicit aggressive behavior
Ex: individual who have just been punished attacking other individual
2) Emotional behavior. punishment can produce other undesirable emotional side
effect Ex: crying & general fearfulness; not only are these side effect unpleasant
they interfere with desirable behavior if its of a complex nature
3) Escape & avoidance behavior. punishment may cause the situation & ppl
associated with the aversive stimulus to become conditioned punisher.
Ex: when teaching a child to read u punish the child
whenever he makes mistake anything associated with this situation
4) No new behavior. punishment does not establish any new desirable behavior it
only suppresses old behavior. Punishment does not teach individual what to do; at
best it only teaches what not to do.
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