Association for Behavior Analysis International

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45th Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2019

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Poster Session #279
Sunday, May 26, 2019
1:00 PM–3:00 PM
Hyatt Regency East, Exhibit Level, Riverside Exhibit Hall
Chair: Gisel G. G. Escobar (National Autonomous University of Mexico)
29. Differential Acquisition of Incrementing Matching- and Non-Matching to Sample Tasks in Rats
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
THOMAS WAGNER (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Nicole Westrick (University of North Carolina, Wilmington), Genevieve Guidone (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Jonathan David Shaw (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Ashley Summer Campbell (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Connor Hebert (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Katherine Ely Bruce (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Mark Galizio (University of North Carolina Wilmington)
Discussant: Gisel G. G. Escobar (National Autonomous University of Mexico)
Abstract: In the rodent odor span task responses to odors are always reinforced the first time they are presented in a session, but never reinforced when presented again during that same session. This task may be described as in incrementing non-matching to sample task with each new odor serving both as a sample and as a reinforced comparison stimulus on first presentation. Rats rapidly learn to respond only to session-novel stimuli in this task, but the extent to which acquisition is based on novelty preference is unknown. The present study created a free operant version of the odor span task and compared acquisition under both incrementing non-matching- and matching-to-sample variations of the task. Twelve rats (six matching, six non-matching) were trained to make nose-poke responses to either session-familiar (Matching Group) or session-novel (Non-Matching Group) odor stimuli to on an FI 5-s schedule of food reinforcement. Rats in the Non-Matching Group mastered the task at much faster rates, and were performing with better accuracy at the end of training. Discriminated performances were obtained in most of the rats in the Matching Group, but several failed to develop above chance responding. Preference for novelty may explain the more rapid acquisition of incremental non-matching, but data from the Matching Group shows that the incrementing task can be learned even when it requires responding to more familiar stimuli.
 
30. Variables Affecting Performance on an Incrementing Non-Matching to Samples Task
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
NICOLE WESTRICK (University of North Carolina, Wilmington), Genevieve Guidone (UNCW), Angela Marie Bennett (University of North Carolina Wilmington ), Mark Galizio (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Katherine Ely Bruce (University of North Carolina Wilmington)
Discussant: Gisel G. G. Escobar (National Autonomous University of Mexico)
Abstract: The Rodent Odor Span Task (OST) is used in cognitive neuroscience as a model of both working and episodic memory. In this task, rats learn to select the session-novel scent on each trial; the task is in effect an incrementing non-match to samples procedure. Rats perform at high accuracy even as the number of odors to remember increases during the session. We investigated variables that may impact performance. Rats were trained daily on the OST (24 trials/session) with three odors on each trial-one session-novel and two randomly selected from odors presented earlier in the session. After rats consistently performed the task accurately, we manipulated the comparison odors used in the second half of the session; one was an odor presented early in the session and the other had been recently presented. More errors were made by selection of the less recent odor comparison, suggesting that “time since smelled” may be more important than is often recognized in the OST. Further, insertion of a short delay in the middle of the session resulted in a short-lived decrement in performance, again underscoring the contribution of relative familiarity for stimulus control.
 
31.

An Analysis of the Impact of Identity Training With Consequence Images on the Emergence of Equivalence Classes Based on Class-Specific Consequences

Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
ANNA REEVES SHEPHERD (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Carol Pilgrim (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Courtney Mullinax (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Caroline Draughon (University of North Carolina Wilmington)
Discussant: Gisel G. G. Escobar (National Autonomous University of Mexico)
Abstract:

Recent stimulus equivalence research has utilized simple-discrimination training procedures with three-term contingencies. However, these procedures have not been effective from the outset for some participants. Crossmodal identity training with compound-consequence images has been shown to facilitate early probe performances (Sheehan, 2018). The current study examined which stimulus-control topographies are important for success on initial probe performances. Specifically, the impact of the crossmodal component of identity training and whether it helps establish a correspondence between the computer-presented images and reinforcer tokens was evaluated. Seven typically developing children (ages 3-4) received one of three variations of identity training (i.e., crossmodal identity training, computer-based identity training, or tabletop identity training) prior to simple discrimination training with compound discriminative stimuli and class-specific reinforcers. Data to date suggest signs of emergence for one participant, who received crossmodal identity training, although these data do not indicate complete emergence. These data raise the question of which variables are responsible for the lack of emergent performances in the current study.

 
32. Comparing the Use of Different Parameters to Reduce Negative Racial Biases Through Equivalence Class Formation in Children
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
TÁHCITA MEDRADO MIZAEL (Federal University of São Carlos (UFSCar - Brazil)), João Henrique de Almeida (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Julio C. De Rose (Universidade Federal de Sao Carlos)
Discussant: Gisel G. G. Escobar (National Autonomous University of Mexico)
Abstract: A previous study has shown that equivalence class formation can be used to reduce children’s negative racial biases towards Black faces by training participants to relate a positive (A1) or negative symbols (A2) to abstract stimuli (B1 and B2) and then the abstract symbols to Black faces (C1) or another abstract stimulus (C2). Given the social implications of this, this research is based on it and was aimed to examine the effectiveness of the three parameters used in this previous research to class formation and maintenance six weeks after training. Forty-six children (27 female; 11 Black), all aged 8-10 were recruited for demonstrating negative racial biases towards Black faces. They were divided into four groups and 1) Symmetry tests, 2) mixed training or 3) feedback reduction were used after AB and BC training; for the 4) control group only AB and BC training were given. Then, all groups were tested for equivalence. Results showed that symmetry tests were the most effective parameter regarding equivalence class formation, with 10 participants forming the classes, in comparison to 6-8 in the other groups. However, the results for maintenance were very similar across groups (6 or 7 participants maintained equivalence relations in all groups). This type of investigation is important because some of these parameters could be used, in the future, as part of intervention packages aimed at reducing racial and other types of prejudices.
 
33.

Effects of Notecard Training and Selection-Based Instruction via Blackboard on Topographical Responding With College Students

Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
HELOISA CURSI CAMPOS (Arkansas State University), BillyJoe Dromgool (Arkansas State University)
Discussant: Gisel G. G. Escobar (National Autonomous University of Mexico)
Abstract:

Selection-based instruction (i.e., multiple-choice format) might not be enough for the emergence of topographical responses such as writing. This study examined the emergence of topographical responses after participants read notecards, which presented descriptions of the trained relations, and answered selection-based questions, and the formation of equivalence classes. Stimuli involved 4 four-member classes [textual label (A), textual definition (B), graph (C), vignette (D)] of single-subject designs. Fifteen undergraduates were submitted to a pretest-training-posttest design. Pre and posttests presented AB, AC, AD, BA, CA, DA, BC, BD, CB, DB (selection-based), CA tact and AB and BA intraverbal (topographical) relations. AB, AC, AD relations were trained and BA, CA, DA, BC, CB, BD, DB emergent relations were tests. Ten participants increased pre- to posttests scores on the selection-based and topographical tests, indicating that the training comprised of notecards and selection-based questions taught participants to select the correct answers on the selection-based questions. Moreover, the training taught some of the participants to write the names and definitions of the single-case designs, even without explicit training. Five participants demonstrated the emergence of equivalence classes. This study showed the emergence of topographical responses after participants were exposed to a training comprised of notecards and selection-based questions.

 
34. Derived Reading Via Stimulus Pairing With Orientation
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
GIOVAN WILLIAN RIBEIRO (Federal University of Sao Carlos), Hindira Naomi Kawasaki (Federal University of Sao Carlos), Letícia Regina Fava Menzori (Federal University of Sao Carlos), Deisy De Souza (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Micah Amd (McGill University; Federal University of Sao Carlos), Julio C. De Rose (Universidade Federal de Sao Carlos)
Discussant: Gisel G. G. Escobar (National Autonomous University of Mexico)
Abstract: A relational learning procedure involving the presentation of stimulus-stimulus (S-S) pairs with an orientation requirement (a fixation cross signaling the position of stimulus onsets) was used for establishing SAME-AS relations in the present study. We employed the pairing procedure for relating written words (A) with pictures (B), followed by tests for emergent relations, to determine whether reading of the written words were derived. Four children (6-7 years) with reading performance deficits participated in our study. Stimuli constituted of written words and their visual referents (‘LUA’ and image of moon), divided into two sets of three S-S pairs (Set 1: A1-B1, A2-B2, A3-B3; Set 2: A4-B4, A5-B5, A6-B6). Each S-S pair was presented for 30-40 trials (90-120 trials per set). Each trial commenced with a fixation cross on one of four corners of the screen. The participant was required to click on the cross, which produced a word-picture sequence. Probes investigating the acquisition of reading abilities showed strong evidence that all children could read words from both sets within 120 training trials. We also report evidence of partial to total retention of derived reading capacities. The results have significant implications for educational interventions on relational learning.
 
35.

Reorganization of Equivalence Classes Established by Delayed Matching to Sample Procedure

Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
GIOVAN WILLIAN RIBEIRO (Federal University of Sao Carlos), Deisy De Souza (Federal University of Sao Carlos)
Discussant: Gisel G. G. Escobar (National Autonomous University of Mexico)
Abstract:

Delayed matching to sample (DMTS) improves equivalence classes formation when compared to simultaneous matching (SMTS). However, this differential outcome was not observed for classes established by SMTS when the reorganization of classes was tested after reversal of conditional discriminations using both procedures. We aimed to complete this investigation evaluating the effects of conditional discrimination reversals, carried out by DMTS or SMTS, over the reorganization of classes initially established by DMTS. Undergraduate students learned AB, AC and AD conditional discriminations through DMTS (2s). After the emergence of equivalence relations between B, C and D stimuli, participants were divided into two groups: DMTS Group continued with DMTS (2s) and SMTS Group was exposed to SMTS. A reversal training modified AD relations (A1D2, A2D1) and reorganization tests verified whether baseline equivalence relations were altered. Out of 20 participants, 15 reorganized the classes. No differences were observed when accuracy on reorganization tests was compared between the groups. However, choice response speed was significantly lower for SMTS group in reorganization tests when compared to DMTS or to both groups in equivalence tests. The results suggest that additional measures of classes reorganization (e.g., response speed) should be useful to investigate the modification of equivalence relations.

 
36.

The Effects of Go/No-Go Discrimination Pretraining on Subsequent Stimulus-Equivalence Outcomes

Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
Richard W. Serna (University of Massachusetts Lowell), SAMANTHA HOPE MCGOULDRICK (University of Massachusetts Lowell), Clinton Fuller (University of Massachusetts Lowell; Nashoba Learning Group, Bedford, MA), Matthew Hayes (University of Massachusetts Lowell), Angel Monegro (University of Massachusetts Lowell)
Discussant: Gisel G. G. Escobar (National Autonomous University of Mexico)
Abstract:

In pursuit of a behavior analytic account of symbolic meaning, researchers often investigate conditions that influence the probability that derived stimulus relations will emerge. One common preparation for such investigations is premised on a well-replicated experimental outcome termed “The Meaningful PIC Effect”: In potential stimulus classes of otherwise non-representational (meaningless) forms, ABCDE, a higher percentage (yield) of participants demonstrate equivalence relations in conditions where the C stimuli are pictures than in conditions where C stimuli are non-representational. Further, within this paradigm, pretraining a stimulus function to non-representational C stimuli through successive-discrimination procedures enhances equivalence outcomes. However, such pretraining typically has been conducted with keyboard responses involving letters of the alphabet, themselves meaningful stimuli - a potential confound. The present study asked whether pretraining successive discrimination of non-representational C stimuli using a simple one-button go/no-go procedure would similarly enhance subsequent equivalence yield with ABCDE non-representational stimuli. College-student participants were randomly assigned to a keyboard-response successive-discrimination condition, a one-button go/no-go successive-discrimination condition, or two control conditions. Across 29 participants to date, both variations of successive-discrimination pretraining enhanced equivalence yields, suggesting another way in which meaningfulness emerges from acquired stimulus function. Additional data collection is ongoing to increase group sizes and statistical power.

 
37.

Assessment of Fading Procedures for Teaching Arbitrary Relationships to Children

Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
LIDIA MARIA MARIA MARSON MARSON POSTALLI (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Hindira Naomi Kawasaki (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Mayara Ferreira (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Felipe de Rose (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Deisy De Souza (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), William J. McIlvane (University of Massachusetts Medical School)
Discussant: Gisel G. G. Escobar (National Autonomous University of Mexico)
Abstract:

The comprehension of socially agreed codes (arbitrarily related to other events) plays important roles in everyday tasks. The present study investigated the acquisition of arbitrary relations in typically developing children, using two procedures for fading the sample stimulus in a matching-to-sample procedure (MTS). In Static Fading, gradual transformations in the sample stimulus occurred in a sequence of trials; in Dynamic Fading, transformations occurred within each trial. Twelve children aged between three and six years participated. We used four sets of three pairs of stimuli, each pair consisting of a picture and a letter. The computerized procedure began by teaching letter-letter identity matching (IDMTS), which gradually morphed into arbitrary visual-visual picture-letter matching. Each participant was exposed to the four stimulus sets, which alternated according to the fading procedure, and the order of alternation was balanced between participants (DSDS x SDSD). Six children learned all relations, two learned the relations for two stimulus sets, one child learned one stimulus set and three children did show any learning. The amount of training and the number of learned stimulus sets relations varied with age: older children tended to learn more relations with less exposure to the procedure, regardless of the type of fading procedure.

 
38. Enhancing Derived Relational Learning Through Stimulus Variation
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
NICHOLAS VAN ZANDT (Western Michigan University), Adam H. Doughty (College of Charleston)
Discussant: Gisel G. G. Escobar (National Autonomous University of Mexico)
Abstract: It is critical that behavior analysts develop novel procedures to broaden our means of teaching derived relational learning. The present research involved two experiments with undergraduate-student participants investigating the impact of varying, or interchanging, stimuli on the formation of transitive relations. In Experiment 1, a linear-series training structure was used (AB, BC, CD) in which each A stimulus (A1, A2, A3) was comprised of three stimuli (e.g., A1 varied between three stimuli across trials). In addition, there were two groups such that the variation was in either real or pseudo-words. Robust AD transitive relations were generated regardless of word type. Using only pseudo-words, Experiment 2 then found similar results when only the D stimuli were interchanged. This reliable learning occurred despite the presence of a linear-series training structure, known to be less effective at instilling relational learning. As such, the present procedures may prove particularly useful in teaching derived relational learning.
 
39.

An ERP Investigation of Stimulus Equivalence Based on "Name-Object" Relations

Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
Gustavo Dias (Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais), Renato Bortoloti (Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais), MARCELO VITOR SILVEIRA (Universidade Federal do ABC), Edson Massayuki Huziwara (Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais)
Discussant: Kenneth David Madrigal Alcaraz (Universidad de Guadalajara - CEIC)
Abstract:

The N400 is an event-related brain potential sensitive to the semantic relations in naturally occurring language. To illustrate, when words are unrelated (e.g., grease-bread) the N400 will be more negative than N400 evoked by related words (e.g., butter-bread). The peak amplitudes can be used to differentiate the types of experimentally-defined stimulus relations established by Matching-to-Sample (MTS) procedures. That is, the N400 will be more negative for the “non-equivalent” than to the “equivalent” stimulus-stimulus relations. Research reported here concerns the impact of explicit training of name-object relations, in the N400 waveforms. In this regard, a between groups design was used, in which both groups were exposed to the same experimental procedures, except for the stimuli used, so that Group 1 used only abstract figures, and Group 2 used both pseudowords and abstract figures, during MTS training. The waverforms obtained from participants shows a clear N400 effect for Group 2, but not for Group 1. These results are discussed considering the possibility that this effect reflects a difference between groups in the degree of relatedness between stimuli in equivalence classes.

 
40. Equivalence Class Formation and Priming with Pictures and Words
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
GURO DUNVOLL (Norwegian Centre for Mental Disorders Research, KG Jebsen Centre for Psychosis Research, Oslo University Hospital), Erik Arntzen (Oslo Metropolitan University ), Torbjørn Elvsåshagen (Norwegian Center for Mental Disorders Research, KG Jebsen Centre for Psychosis Research, Oslo University Hospital ), Eva Malt (Department of Adult Habilitation, Akershus University Hospital )
Discussant: Kenneth David Madrigal Alcaraz (Universidad de Guadalajara - CEIC)
Abstract: Finding effective training methods is an important issue when teaching people with autism. A matching to sample (MTS) arrangement is one way to train relations between stimuli and test for emergent relations. Also, testing of relations can be done by a priming procedure in which two stimuli are presented, and the participant are asked to judge whether or not the stimuli are related. In the current experiment, one participant diagnosed with autism and a chromosome 3q29 microdeletion, two participants with high functioning autism and two typically developing adults participated. They were all trained in 6 conditional discriminations in a many to one (MTO) training structure with C-stimuli as meaningful pictures. One-third of the possible emergent relations where tested in an MTS format before the rest of the relations were tested with a priming procedure. The participants also conducted a priming procedure with related and unrelated words. Finally, a complete MTS test were conducted. The results show that the participant with 3q29 microdeletion used more training trials than the participants with high-functioning autism and typically developing adults, but responded within the criteria of 90% in all of the test except the word priming. The other participants responded within the criteria of all tests. The findings rise the question whether word priming deficit may be a specific deficit in 3q29 deletion carriers with autism.
 
42.

Emotion Induction of Three Emotions (Happiness, Sadness, and Gratitude) and Their Effects on an Equivalence Test

Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
MARIA ISABEL MUNOZ-BLANCO (Universidad Panamericana)
Discussant: Kenneth David Madrigal Alcaraz (Universidad de Guadalajara - CEIC)
Abstract:

Research outside of behavior analysis has explored the use of emotion induction procedures. Previous research has shown that depending on the emotion induced, it is possible to alter discounting when an emotion of “gratitude” was induced, compared to the induction of happiness or sadness. The current research explores the effects of emotion induction of these three emotions on an equivalence test. 120 undergraduate students were separated randomly into four groups according to the emotion they were induced: gratitude, happiness, sadness and control. After the emotion induction procedure, participants went through a respondent conditioning training of four stimuli classes and were later presented with a learning test of the relations trained and an equivalence test with a multiple matching-to-sample test. Results so far show that most of the participants (independent of their group) scored well in the learning test but didn’t achieve equivalence, however, the participants of the control group had better scores in the equivalence test. Higher scores on the learning test are observed in the gratitude and the control groups. Results are discussed with respect to the effectiveness of emotion induction procedures and their value in behavior analytical research.

 
43.

Studying Conditional Discrimination Using Different Training Protocols in a Patient With Vascular Dementia: A Replication

Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
HANNA STEINUNN STEINGRIMSDOTTIR (Oslo Metropolitan University), Heidi Grete Aasland (Oslo Metropolitan University), Erik Arntzen (Oslo Metropolitan University)
Discussant: Kenneth David Madrigal Alcaraz (Universidad de Guadalajara - CEIC)
Abstract:

Vascular Dementia is a type of neurocognitive disorder caused by a disruption in the blood supply to the brain. Such disruption can damage the brain cells, leading to problems in cognitive functioning such as remembering. The participant, Charlie, was a 74 year-old male diagnosed with Vascular Dementia. He lived in a nursing home at the time of the study. The study was a replication of an earlier experiment conducted with the same participant seven months earlier. In that study, a conditional discrimination training was presented by the use of either simultaneous (A-phases) or the simple-to-complex (B-phases) protocol. These phases were replicated in the current study. The stimuli, pictures of Charlie’s significant other, were presented using the Many-to-One training structure. Based on the findings from previous study, the inter-trial-interval was set to 5000 ms throughout the experiment. The results showed that the simple-to-complex protocol lead to higher accuracy of responding (see Figure 1). Additionally, the results also show how conditional discrimination may be sensitive to changes in cognition caused by additional disruptions of blood flow to the brain (a new stroke).

 
44.

Self-Rated Pain Stimuli in Equivalence Class Formation

Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
JON MAGNUS EILERTSEN (Oslo Metropolitan University ), Erik Arntzen (Oslo Metropolitan Univeristy)
Discussant: Kenneth David Madrigal Alcaraz (Universidad de Guadalajara - CEIC)
Abstract:

Training structures have been observed to influence yields in equivalence class formation. The Linear Series (LS) training structure provides the lowest yields. The current study investigates the influence of a LS training structure on the transfer of stimulus function and preference tests. Sixteen college students rated six images showing needle injections to different parts of a human hand. The images were rated on a 5-point Likert Scale ranging from least to most painful (1¬–5). The images rated as most and least painful were later employed as D1 and D2 stimuli, respectively. The D3 image showed a Q tip being pressed against a hand. Next, the participants trained six conditional discriminations in a LS training structure and tested of forming three 3-member equivalence classes. Six out of the 16 participants formed three 3-member classes, whereas five out of six participants successfully expanded the classes to three 4-member classes. Class expansion was done by training the needle injection images (D-stimuli) to the A-stimuli. In a preference test, three bottles were labelled with the B-stimuli. Three participants chose bottle B3, whereas one participant chose bottles B1 and B2. One out of five participants rated the B and D stimuli the same.

 
45. Conflicting Relations Paradigm: The Effects of A Stimulus Equivalence-Based Approach to Changing Bias
Area: EAB; Domain: Applied Research
ROBERT HENERY (University of Minnesota), Jennifer J. McComas (University of Minnesota)
Discussant: Kenneth David Madrigal Alcaraz (Universidad de Guadalajara - CEIC)
Abstract: The stimulus equivalence paradigm has been used in a small number of studies to examine attitudes and responding towards socially relevant stimuli. The present study was a systemic replication of the training and testing protocol from Mizael, de Almeida, Silveira, & de Rose (2016) with a novel study population that included 8 East African and 7 Native American elementary age children. The school that these children attended reported frequent and hostile interactions between these groups of students. All 15 children learned relations during matching tasks and demonstrated symmetry and transitivity between outgroup faces and positive stimuli. Fourteen of the 15 children demonstrated equivalence class formation, successfully replicating the results of the Mizael et al. (2016) study. All 15 children also completed an array of stereotyping and prejudice measures before and after delayed match-to-sample training (DMTS) and testing to detect any generalization of the DMTS training effects beyond the experimental context. Participant performance on those measures suggested little, if any, generalization of training effects. Results are discussed in terms of the utility of the stimulus equivalence paradigm for addressing the challenges related to stereotyping and prejudice.
 
46. Effects of Stimuli Dimension on the Emergence of Transitive Relations Using a Go/No-Go Procedure
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
BEATRIZ ELENA ARROYO ANTUNEZ (Universidad de Guadalajara (Centro de Estudios e Investigaciones en Comportamiento)), Cristiano Dos Santos (Universidad de Guadalajara), Carlos Flores (Universidad de Guadalajara )
Discussant: Kenneth David Madrigal Alcaraz (Universidad de Guadalajara - CEIC)
Abstract: The establishment of derived relations on non-human subjects has been difficult to report, due it is apparently a human phenomena. However, it has been found that by using a go/no go procedure instead of a matching-to-sample procedure, relations that have not been trained can emerge on animal subjects. Two pigeons were exposed to a go/no go procedure, one replicating the procedure reported by Urcuioli and Swisher (2015), training three different relations: hue-form (A-B), form-hue (B-C) and form-form (B-B) in order to test hue-hue transitivity (A-C). The other pigeon was trained in form-hue (A-B), hue-form (B-C) and hue-hue (B-B) to test a transitive relation form-form (A-C). The first pigeon responded more to the comparisons of the AC relation that was not related to a positive trial, while the second pigeon responded more to the comparison of the AC relation that was related to a positive trial. This preliminary results indicate the possible lack of generality of the phenomena of emergence relations in non-human subjects.
 
47. An Evaluation of the Efficiency of Equivalence-Based Instruction
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
JULIANA SEQUEIRA SEQUEIRA CESAR DE OLIVEIRA (Texas Christian University), Anna I. Petursdottir (Texas Christian University)
Discussant: Kenneth David Madrigal Alcaraz (Universidad de Guadalajara - CEIC)
Abstract: Few studies have compared the efficiency of equivalence-based procedures to other methods of instruction. Therefore, this study evaluated the efficiency of EBI protocol compared to direct instruction (DI), using fifteen visual abstract stimuli (A1 through E3). Forty-eight undergraduate students were assigned to one of four groups: The EBI-DI group received EBI in Phase 1 and DI in Phase 2, and vice versa for DI-EBI group. EBI-EBI and DI-DI group received EBI and DI in both phases, respectively. In Phase 1,EBI-first groups received training on AB and BC relations and DI-first groups received training with all possible relations. After achieving mastery criterion, the ABC test included all possible trial types. In Phase 2, all groups received training to (a) add a fourth stimulus (D), and (b) add a fifth stimulus (E) to the class. No statistically significant difference was found between EBI and DI-first groups in the number of trials, reaction time during test and overall trials to achieve criteria and the performance in ABC test. There were effects of the first training condition (EBI vs. DI) and the second training condition (EBI vs. DI) on the percentage accuracy in the first ABCD, but not in EBCDE test.
 
48.

Relational Density Theory: The Relative Influence of Volumetric-Mass-Density on the Resistance of Relational Classes

Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
ANNALISE GIAMANCO (Missouri State University), Mason Todd (Missouri State University), Jordan Belisle (Missouri State University), Lacie Campbell (Missouri State University), Taylor Lauer (Missouri State University)
Discussant: Kenneth David Madrigal Alcaraz (Universidad de Guadalajara - CEIC)
Abstract:

Relational Density Theory (RDT) provides a behavioral account of higher-order and self-organizing properties of equivalence networks. Similar to behavioral momentum theory, RDT posits that a first self-organizing property is the relative resistance of relational behavior as a product of behavioral mass. In RDT, mass is a function of the competing molar state volume (class size and nodal distance) and density (response strength) of a given equivalence class. The purpose of the present study was to extend upon prior research on RDT with 13 college student participants. In phases 1 and 2, 4 classes were established that differed in size (3-member, 4-member, 6-member, 8-member) in a one-to-many training structure (max. nodal distance = 1 for all classes). In phase 3, a single derived relation within each class was counter conditioned (-x), and changes in relational responding for each class were evaluated in phase 4. We predicted that classes with greater volume would be more resistant given similar obtained density values in phases 2 and 3. Results suggest that greater distance from the counter-conditioned relation was predictive of greater resistance to counter-conditioning, consistent with a first model prediction within RDT.

 
49. Relational Density Theory: Nodal Distance from Counter Conditioning Influence Resistance of Equivalence Classes
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
MASON TODD (Missouri State University), Jordan Belisle (Missouri State University), Lacie Campbell (Missouri State University), Annalise Giamanco (Missouri State University), Taylor Lauer (Missouri State University)
Discussant: Alvaro A. Alvarez (Universidad Nacional de Colombia)
Abstract: Belisle and Dixon (in press) put forward Relational Density Theory (RDT) as a behavioral account of non-linear higher-order and self-organizing properties that influence the development and resistance of equivalence classes. In RDT, relational mass is a self-organizing property that can predict the resistance of classes that differ along the competing properties of relational volume (sum nodal distance) and relational density (mean strength of relations contained within a class). The theory predicts that classes that contain more nodes and are stronger will also be more resistant to force applied to the class, such as through counter conditioning or the application of any other control parameter. The purpose of the present study was to extend upon prior research on RDT with 12 college student participants. In phases 1 and 2, 4 classes were established that differed both in size and nodal distance (3-member, 4-member, 6-member, 8-member) in a linear training structure (nodal distance = class size -1). In phase 3, a single derived relation within each class was counter conditioned (-x), and changes in relational responding for each class were evaluated in phase 4. Results showed that relations within classes that operated at greater nodal distance from the source of counter conditioning were more resistant, producing orderly outcomes with most participants. Results have implications for understanding higher-order molar properties of equivalence classes with implications for developing models of complex human behavior.
 
50. Instructional Function: Effects of Type and Description´s Contents and Feedback Frequency in Adult Performances
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
PAULA CUEVAS LÓPEZ (Universidad de Guadalajara (CEIC)), Gerardo A Ortiz Rueda Rueda (Universidad de Guadalajara-Mexico)
Discussant: Alvaro A. Alvarez (Universidad Nacional de Colombia)
Abstract: The instructional function of a description is to restrict the individual´s range of responses in order to prevent the participants from making mistakes. The acquisition of this function is related to variables such as the specificity (type) of the instruction, the feedback frequency received and the correspondence between description and contingencies. We assess the effects of description’s contents with aforementioned variables on the acquisition and maintenance of instructional function of human performance in a first-order matching-to-sample task. In Experiment 1 sixteen undergraduate students were assigned to groups that received an instruction qualified as Specific-Pertinent differing in the contents of the description (instantial, dimensional) and the feedback frequency (absent, continuous). Experiment 2 followed the previous logic, differing only in the type of the instruction, that was Generic-Pertinent. Results showed high percentage of correct responses in training sessions since the beginning of this phase for all the groups in Experiment 1. In Experiment 2, the groups with continuous feedback showed high percentage of correct responses in training phase. These findings are discussed in terms of information given by the variable interaction that is required in order to acquire the matching criteria.
 
51.

Say-Do-Report Correspondence in Adults: Linguistic Morphology and Delay Between Contexts

Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
CONCEPCION SERRADOR DIEZ (Universidad de Guadalajara (CEIC)), Gerardo A Ortiz Rueda Rueda (Universidad de Guadalajara-Mexico), Maria Xesus Frojan Parga Parga (Universidad Autonoma de Madrid)
Discussant: Alvaro A. Alvarez (Universidad Nacional de Colombia)
Abstract:

The effects of linguistic morphology of saying and reporting, and delay between the say-do-report moments, have not been systematically assessed in the say-do correspondence studies. In the present study adults were exposed to task, differentiated by the moment: 1) Say, i.e. answer questions; 2) Do, i.e. perform do-moment-related actions; 3) Report, i.e. answer questions about previous moments. In Experiment 1 groups of adults were exposed to three different linguistic morphologies (e.g. writing, vocalizing, pointing); whereas, for Experiment 2 two groups were exposed to different delay values (e.g. 0 and 24hrs). Results showed little difference between linguistic morphologies and correspondence, and less correspondence under the 24hr delay. These results are discussed in terms of the factors that modulate the establishment of correspondence (i.e. task dependence, existing temporality between the Say, Do and Report moments).

 
52. Examining Behavioral Flexibility Following Discontinuation of Reinforcement for Previously Reinforced Responses Using a Touchscreen
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
YAARA SHAHAM (Florida Institute of Technology), Carolyn Ritchey (Florida Institute of Technology), Victoria Ryan (Florida Institute of Technology ), Ronald Joseph Clark (Florida Institute of Technology), Yuto Mizutani (Aichi Gakuin University), Weizhi Wu (Florida Institute of Technology), Toshikazu Kuroda (Aichi Bunkyo University), Christopher A. Podlesnik (Florida Institute of Technology)
Discussant: Alvaro A. Alvarez (Universidad Nacional de Colombia)
Abstract: Using a touchscreen interface, this study assessed (1) the extent to which operant responding tracks contingency changes and (2) whether extinguishing a recently reinforced response results in either an increase in a previously reinforced response or generates a general increase in variability. University students and children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder were exposed to a single 6-min session in which they could swipe an animated 3D soccer ball any direction/angle. The session started with a 1-min period (Phase 1) during which reinforcer delivery was presented upon every target determined by the first swipe direction. This was followed by a 3-min period (Phase 2), during which reinforcer delivery was presented upon every alternative swipe, 180-degrees from the target-swipe direction. Reinforcer delivery was discontinued during the last 2-min period (Phase 3) with no exteroceptive stimulus change accompanying the phase change. Target-swipe direction resurged during Phase 3 but an increase in swiping variability also increased in both sets of participants. This procedure offers methods to assess a continuum of variability during conditions producing relapse in human participants.
 
53. Conjugate Reinforcement of Video Playback Speed
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
SEAN SAUNDERS (University of Nevada, Reno), Morgan L. Manson (University of Nevada, Reno), Patrick M. Ghezzi (University of Nevada, Reno)
Discussant: Alvaro A. Alvarez (Universidad Nacional de Colombia)
Abstract: Conjugate schedules are an integral component to learning from our natural environment. Despite this, they still remain one of the least studied schedules of reinforcement. Many of the studies examining conjugate reinforcement run into the problem of containing either an artificial ceiling (i.e., picture gains clarity) or an artificial floor (i.e., tone decreases in volume). To remove these artificial caps, we examined conjugate reinforcement by manipulating the playback speed of a chosen video. Participants were given a list of popular television shows and asked to choose which one they would prefer to watch. The chosen video would then play at varying speeds, depending on the phase, and the participants could alter the playback speed by pressing a single button on a keyboard. The playback speed of the video would constantly either decrease or increase back to the predetermined speed for that phase causing the participant to find an optimal button press rate to view their chosen video.
 
54. Resistance to Extinction: A PORTL Replication of Podlesnik, Bai, and Elliffe (2012)
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
LINDSAY COHEN (University of North Texas), Kyle Roundtree (University of North Texas), Samantha Bergmann (University of North Texas ), Mary Elizabeth Hunter (The Art and Science of Animal Training; University of North Texas), Jesus Rosales-Ruiz (University of North Texas)
Discussant: Alvaro A. Alvarez (Universidad Nacional de Colombia)
Abstract: Previous research has demonstrated that a target response will be more resistant to disruption if an alternative response is also reinforced in the same context as the target response. This effect has sometimes been attributed to “behavioral momentum theory,” which posits that a Pavlovian relation between the stimulus and reinforcer is being strengthened. A previous study conducted by Podlesnik, Bai, and Elliffe (2012) with pigeons using VI schedules showed that a target response occurred less frequently, but was more persistent when it was reinforced in the same context as an alternative response. However, the authors attributed this effect to the phenomenon of discrimination training, rather than to behavioral momentum. The purpose of the current study was to replicate Podlesnik et al. using PORTL (the Portable Operant Research and Teaching Lab) and human participants. Similar to the results reported by Podlesnik et al., our data showed that resistance to extinction was reduced when the target stimulus and alternative stimulus were introduced in separate contexts, compared to when they were introduced in the same context, thus providing further translation evidence for this phenomenon.
 
55.

Can a Negative Discriminative Stimulus Punish Behavior? A PORTL Replication of Bland, Cowie, Ellfie, and Podlesnik (2018)

Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
KATHERINE DRUMMOND (University of North Texas), Jules Ochoa (University of North Texas), Samantha Bergmann (University of North Texas ), Mary Elizabeth Hunter (The Art and Science of Animal Training), Jesus Rosales-Ruiz (University of North Texas)
Discussant: Alvaro A. Alvarez (Universidad Nacional de Colombia)
Abstract:

Research by Bland, Cowie, Ellfie, and Podlesnik (2018) demonstrated that a negative discriminative stimulus (i.e., stimulus correlated with the absence of reinforcers, S-) could be used to punish behavior maintained by positive reinforcers with pigeons. We replicated Bland et al. using the Portable Operant Research and Teaching Lab (PORTL). In the first phase, college students card touching was reinforced in the presence of one card (S+) and extinguished in the presence of an S-. In subsequent phases, we evaluated whether the S- functioned as a punisher when the S- was placed atop the S+ for 1-s intervals when presented (a) after an average of four responses to the S+ and (b) after each response to the S+. In both phases, participants’ behavior changed following the presentation of the S- when compared to a phase with the S+ only and a control stimulus. Most participants responding decreased in at least one of the punishment conditions. These results replicated Bland et al. because the presentation of the S- decreased the rate of responses maintained by positive reinforcement.

 
56.

Resurgence in a Vigilance Task With Human Participants

Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
KATYA QUIÑONES-OROZCO (National Autonomous University of Mexico), Rogelio Escobar (National Autonomous University of Mexico)
Discussant: Alvaro A. Alvarez (Universidad Nacional de Colombia)
Abstract:

A recurring issue in the literature on resurgence of operant responding in human participants is lack of sensitivity to reinforcement schedules and extinction. In the present experiment, to increase the sensitivity to the schedule, a vigilance task was used. In the 1950s, Holland found that these tasks are useful to demonstrate systematic effects of different reinforcement schedules on human operant responding. Participants pressed a button to observe the state of a pointer on a dial (vigilance response). The pointer moved on a variable interval (VI) schedule and served as reinforcement of the vigilance response. When a change in the state was detected, pressing a red collect button produced points that were exchanged for money. A console with three buttons was built to establish two vigilance responses on a three-phase resurgence procedure. During Phase 1, presses on a green button were reinforced. During Phase 2, alternative presses on a blue button were reinforced and presses on the green button were extinguished. In Phase 3 presses on both buttons were extinguished. Resurgence of the vigilance response established in Phase 1 was found on the four participants. Alternative responses, however, were observed during most of the extinction sessions.

 
57.

Shaping the Autoshaped Response

Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
NOLAN WILLIAMS (The University of North Texas), Jesus Rosales-Ruiz (University of North Texas)
Discussant: Alvaro A. Alvarez (Universidad Nacional de Colombia)
Abstract:

Autoshaping is a phenomenon that produces steady rates of responding, despite the lack of contingency between reinforcer and responding (Brown & Jenkins, 1968). Attempts to determine the processes responsible for the establishment and maintenance of autoshaped responding have produced conflicting results (e.g. Williams & Williams, 1969; Barrera, 1974). These experiments employed negative automaintenance procedures to determine the role of operant and respondent processes. A comparison of the procedures of each study revealed a discrepancy in these negative automaintenance procedures. This study attempted to determine the effect of this discrepancy on the persistence of autoshaped responding in each of the two procedural variations. This study was conducted using human participants in the Portable Operant Research and Teaching Laboratory (PORTL) ( Rosales-Ruiz & Hunter 2014). A forward pairing preparation was used to establish responding to two different manipulanda (see Brown & Jenkins, 1968). Once established, each manipulandum was assigned to one of the two different negative automaintenance conditions. Each participant was exposed to both conditions consecutively. Results suggest that the procedural variation may account for the discrepancy in the previous findings. Implications for the role of conditioned reinforcers and shaping in autoshaping and automaintenance are discussed.

 
 

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