Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


41st Annual Convention; San Antonio, TX; 2015

Event Details

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Poster Session #267
TPC Sunday PM
Sunday, May 24, 2015
7:00 PM–9:00 PM
Exhibit Hall C (CC)
23. The Evolution of Superstitious Behavior
Area: TPC; Domain: Theory
AMEDEE MARTELLA (University of Colorado Boulder)
Abstract: Superstitious behavior has not been highly researched in evolutionary biology. From a psychological perspective, it is understood that superstitious behavior can be conditioned through the accidental reinforcement of behaviors. There have been a couple of evolutionary models that have been proposed to explain the fitness advantage of displaying superstitious behavior. I am investigating whether or not organisms inherited the biological ability to recognize patterns due to a selective advantage. There are three main biological hypotheses to explain the establishment of superstitious behavior in a myriad of species: (a) Superstitious behavior provides a selective advantage that has a genetic basis. (b) Superstitious behavior does not have a genetic component but rather is the result of learned behavior. (c) Superstitious behavior is a combination of genetics and cultural/environmental factors. The evidence to date supporting patternicity seems to be inconclusive due to a lack of research. It seems possible that patternicity is a necessary but not sufficient causal variable for superstitious behavior. We, along with other animals, may have inherited the biological ability to recognize patterns due to a selective advantage, but behaviors based on these patterns may not manifest themselves until there are environmental and/or cultural variables present that support such behavior.

An Understanding of the Behavior of the Critic with Respect to Creative Behavior

Area: TPC; Domain: Basic Research
MARIA ISABEL MUNOZ BLANCO (University of Guadalajara), Maria Antonia Padilla Vargas (University of Guadalajara)

Creative behavior is said to be novel and unique with respect to previous behavior, but this position leaves open more questions than answers. It is suggested that the analysis of "creative behavior" involves two behaviors: the behavior of the creator (as the person that engages in creative behavior) and the critic (as the individual that identifies the behavior or behavioral product as creative). A review of the behavior analytic and interbehavioral literature on creativity showed that the behavior of the critic has been so far neglected from experimental research. In the present poster an analysis of the behavior of the critic as part of the study of "cultural behavior" as defined by Kantor (1982) is proposed. This involves the study of the reactions with respect to institutional stimuli of persons belonging to a different group, comparison of individuals of the same group but with different subgroups, and finally, the study of the origins and changes of the person's behavior through a study of the products of its own cultural group. Challenges and future directions of this research are also discussed.

25. The Investigative and Interpretive Subsystems of Interbehaviorism: How Does One Conduct Interbehavioral Research?
Area: TPC; Domain: Theory
SARAH M. RICHLING (University of Nevada, Reno), Linda J. Parrott Hayes (University of Nevada, Reno), Molli Luke (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract: Kantor (1888-1984) dedicated his career to the development and promotion of a comprehensive, integrated, and coherent psychological system which he termed interbehaviorism. Kantor’s scientific system of Interbehavioral Psychology consists of various subsystems including the investigative, interpretive, and applied domains. One of the often-mentioned critiques of interbehaviorism is lack of interbehavioral research being conducted. Interbehavioral research is simply research that is closely guided by the philosophical assumptions of the interbehavioral system as a whole. This approach necessitates a precise consideration of how the scientist’s assumptions interrelate with the selected subject matter, methods, procedures, treatment of data, and formulation of conclusions. Given the perceived lack of interbehavioral research currently being conducted, this poster provides an outline of how one may go about conducting interbehavioral research. This poster is constructed utilizing the typical organization of the scientific procedural system as presented by Kantor (1958), which is in accordance with the typical structure of current published research papers.
27. The Hard Problem of Consciousness: Radical Behaviorism and Qualia
Area: TPC; Domain: Theory
DIEGO ZILIO (State University of São Paulo)
Abstract: According to philosophers of mind, there are two problems of consciousness. There is the easy problem, related to the cognitive aspects of the phenomenon (e.g, attention, thinking, imagery, and intentionality) and the hard problem, related to the qualitative aspects of experience (e.g., the qualia of being in pain, tasting an apple, smelling a rose, seeing a movie, hearing an opera, and so on). My goal here is to discuss the so-called hard problem of consciousness from the perspective of radical behaviorism. I will first present a definition of qualia, including its principal characteristics subjectivity and ineffability. Second, I will propose an interpretation of these characteristics as being aspects of behavioral relations, instead of qualitative mental properties. Finally, I will discuss the very existence of qualia as a qualitative property different from the physical substance that constitutes and the relational aspect that defines behavioral relations. I will argue that, in dealing with the qualitative aspect of experience, it is not necessary to propose the existence of qualia as a qualitative property.



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