Accession Number:

ADA269083

Title:

Response Acquisition under Targeted Percentile Schedules: A continuing Quandary for Molar Models of Operant Behavior

Descriptive Note:

Corporate Author:

WALTER REED ARMY INST OF RESEARCH WASHINGTON DC

Report Date:

1993-07-01

Pagination or Media Count:

16.0

Abstract:

The number of responses rats made in a run of consecutive left- lever presses, prior to a trial-ending right-lever press, was differentiated using a targeted percentile procedure. Under the nondifferential baseline, reinforcement was provided with a probability of .33 at the end of a trial, irrespective of the run on that trial. Most of the 30 subjects made short runs under these conditions, with the mean for the group around three. A targeted percentile schedule was next used to differentiate run length around the target value of 12. The current run was reinforced if it was nearer the target than 67 of those runs in the last 24 trials that were on the same side of the target as the current run. Programming reinforcement in this way held overall reinforcement probability per trial constant at .33 while providing reinforcement inforcement differentially with respect to runs more closely approximating the target of 12. The mean run for the group under this procedure increased to approximately 10. Runs approaching the target length were acquired even though differentiated responding produced the same probability of reinforcement per trial, decreased the probability of reinforcement per response, did not increase overall reinforcement rate, and generally substantially reduced it.

Subject Categories:

  • Psychology

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE