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Chapter 5

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Zachariah Campbell

Chapter 5 – Extinction Defining Extinction Extinction: a behaviour that had been reinforced for a period of time was no longer reinforced and the behaviour stopped occurring. Behavioural definition 1. A behaviour that has been previously reinforced 2. No longer results in the reinforcing consequences 3. And, therefore, the behaviour stops occurring in the future. As long as a behaviour is reinforced, even intermittently, it will continue to occur. If a behaviour is no longer followed by a reinforcing consequence, the person will stop engaging in that behaviour. When a behaviour stops occurring because it is no longer reinforced, it has undergone extinction or has been extinguished. Extinction Burst Extinction burst: Increase in the frequency, duration, or intensity of the unreinforced behaviour during the extinction process. This is a natural characteristic of an extinction situation. Novel behaviours (behaviours that did not typically occur in a particular situation) may occur for a brief period when the behaviour is no longer reinforced.  This can include emotional responses. Aggressive behaviour is often seen when extinction is used. Example: Amanda cries every time she is put to bed. When her parents stop coming to check on her when she cries, she screams and cries louder in order to get attention – extinction burst. She also throws her toys and kicks her bed – novel behaviours. Spontaneous Recovery Spontaneous recovery: the behaviour occurs again, even after it has not appeared for some time.  People have to be careful not to reinforce this spontaneous recovery or else the process may have to start again. Procedural Variations of Extinction Behaviour can undergo extinction whether it was reinforced by positive or negative reinforcement. The outcome is still t
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