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Chapter 2

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Amanda Uliaszek

Chapter 2: Identifying and Assessing Target Behaviours Goals and Target Behaviours  You should always talk about specific behaviours that need to be changed (not broad charactertistics)  Ex. Al complains about his workload rather than finding solutions to these difficulties (behaviour deficit)  A target behaviour is objective and unambiguous so that it defines exactly what the person does that constiutues the behavioral excess or deficit you want to change (ex. cuticle biting: a persons finger and their mouth and thy are biting on the skin beside the nail) Identifying and Defining Behavioural Goals  Two types of goals for applying a behaviour change are outcome goals and behaviour goals  Outcome goals are the broad or abstracted results we want to achieve (ex. For Al to become more productive)  Outcome goals are usually straightforward, relating right to the broad characteristics of a person (ex. Loosing weight)  A behaviour goal is the level of the target behaviour we hope to achieve in a program (more directly tied to the specific behaviours)(ex. Increase jogging to three 1-hour sessions each week, from the target behaviour of jogging) (ex. Reduce snacking to two servings per day)  Sometimes outcome and behavioural goals are the same, this happens when both goals simply involve quitting a particular behaviour (ex. Such a twirling ones hair)  People that want students to improve their learning often focus on an outcome goal (ex. Get better grades) however focusing on a behaviour goal and target behaviour would allow them to focus on a specific behaviour which would allow them to achieve better grades (identify the skills as the target behaviour)  Identify behavioural goal and some subgoals Defining Operant Target Behaviours  Eating is am operant behaviour, and to change it you will need to alter its antecedents and consequences (need to define the target behaviour specifically)  Someone can easily define overt behaviours  Cannot really define covert behaviours (because its internal behaviours no one else can see or feel but yourself) – it is subjective and we need self reports to measure it  Sometimes the operant target behaviour we want to teach or improve involves a complex set of responses (see what responses are and if they need to be performed in a sequence)  A motor activity that consists of a sequences of antecedents (stimuli) and responses is called behavioural chain, and each antecedent-response pair making up the chain is called a link (ex. Washing your hair) Defining Respondent Target Behaviours  Respondent behaviours can be overt and covert  Can show external signs of fear or experience internal behaviours  To change a respondent behaviour, need to find out if have internal or external behaviours or both Prioritizing: Which Behaviour to Address First  Need to figure out how to sequence the changes of the behaviour (because often that target has many behaviours that need to improve)  To make this decision, will use different questions…is the new or changed behaviour likely too: lead to reinforcement in the target persons everyday environment? Be a perquisite for learning a new skill that enables the person to function better? Affect in positive ways important individuals in a client’s life? Be a behaviour cusp? Show response generalization? Take the place of interfere with performing a problem behaviour? How to Assess Target Behaviours  We need to be able to measure the target behaviour at different points in the process to whether our efforts are working  When the problem involves a behavioural deficit we want the measure to show an increase, and when the problem is a behavioural excess, we want the measure to decrease  This requires that we collect data that must measure the target behaviour and reflect any progress that has been made towards the behavioral goal  Select the types of data that will best reflect how we want the target behaviour to change  Frequency: refers to the number of times the response was observed (appropriate measure when the behavioural goal involves how often the behaviour occurs and each instance o the target behaviour is discrete) (ex. Changing how often bedwetting occurred)  Duration: refers to the length of time each instance of the target behaviour lasts from start to finish (appropriate for assessing instances of a target behaviour that lasts for varying periods of time and are subject to a behavioural goal that involves wither increasing or decreasing that time ) (ex. Waching tv, studying, playing computer games)  Magnitude: (ex. How strong anger is) refers to the intensity, degree or size of the behaviour (is appropriate if the behavioural goal involves changing the intensity, degree or size, of an action or its product and if that measure can or does vary (ex. To try and increase the loudness of a girl speaking) –usually use magnitude measure when changing emotional behaviours, most common is to use a rating scale, 1-10  Latency: the amount of time a person takes to initiate the appropriate response to an antecedent (ex. The progress in treating peoples insomnia can be assessed by noticing their late
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