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PSYB45H3 (1,056)
Chapter 5

Chapter 5 Notes

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Zachariah Campbell

Chapter 5: Extinction Extinction is a process that weakens operant behavior. An example of extinction o Right before class everyday Rae stops at the coffee machine, puts a dollar in the machine, pushes the button, and gets her coffee for class. o One day, she walks up to the machine, puts her money in, and pushes the button, but she doesnt get her coffee. She pushes the button again and nothing happen. She pushes the button harder and harder and then slams the button a few times, but she still does not get her coffee. o She finally gives up, and walks to class without her coffee. She doesnt try again for a week, but then she tries and the same thing happens. From then on, she never tries the machine again. Defining Extinction Extinction occurs when: o 1. A behavior that has been previously reinforced o 2. no longer results in the reinforcing consequences o 3. And, therefore, the behavior stops occurring in the future. Numerous studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of extinction for decreasing problem behaviors in children and adults. In each of these studies, the reinforcer for a problem was eliminated or withheld, and the behavior decreased. An example is a study where extinction was used to reduce arithmetic errors made by an 8-year old boy. o Whenever the boy did addition problems with two-digit answers, he reversed the digits. o The researchers determined that the attention (extra help) provided by the teacher for incorrect answers was reinforcing the childs behavior of reversing the digits. o The extinction procedure required the teacher to refrain from providing attention for incorrect answers. The teacher also praised the child for correct answers. www.notesolution.com
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