Chapter 16: Antecedent Control Procedures
•In antecedent control procedures, antecedent stimuli are manipulated evoke desirable
behaviors, so that they can be differentially reinforced, and to decrease undesirable behaviors that
interfere with the desirable behaviors.
Example of Antecedent Control: Getting Cal to Eat Right
•The steps you believe Cal could take to make it more likely that he would eat healthful foods.
o1. He got rid of all the unhealthful foods he had in his apartment and at work.
o2. He went shopping only on a full stomach, so that he wasn’t tempted to buy quick-to-
eat but unhealthful foods.
o3. He made a list of healthful foods to buy before shopping and never bought anything
that was not on the list.
o4. He packed a healthful lunch each day and brought it to work with him so that he
wouldn’t eat fast food or unhealthful snacks at lunchtime.
o5. He never kept any change in his pocket when he went to work, so he couldn’t buy any
junk foods from the vending machines.
o6. He bought a number of fruits and healthful snacks and kept them handy at home to
replace the unhealthful snacks he used to have at home.
o7. He told his roommate and his girlfriend that he was only going to eat healthful food
and asked them to remind him if they saw him eating unhealthful foods.
•By making these straightforward changes, Cal was able to change the antecedent conditions that
contributed to his eating behaviors.
Defining Antecedent Control Procedures
•Antecedent control procedures involve manipulating some aspect of the physical or social
environment to evoke a desired response or to make a competing, undesirable behavior
•They can be used individually or in combination. However, antecedent control
procedures should always be used in conjunction with differential reinforcement that will
strengthen the desirable behavior once it occurs.
•Antecedent Manipulations That Evoke a Desired Response:
1. Presenting the Discriminative Stimulus (SD) or Cues for the Desired Behavior.