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Ninth International Conference; Paris, France; 2017

Event Details

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Invited Paper Session #50
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
Temporal Control: A Spencean Model, Its Strengths and Limitations
Wednesday, November 15, 2017
8:00 AM–8:50 AM
Scene AB, Niveau 0
Area: EAB
CE Instructor: Armando Machado, Ph.D.
Chair: Peter R. Killeen (Arizona State University)
ARMANDO MACHADO (University of Minho)
Dr. Armando Machado obtained his Ph.D. in 1993 from Duke University. His doctoral research examined the conditions in which pigeons generate highly variable, random-like behavior, and received a Behavior Analysis Dissertation Award from Division 25. Dr. Machado currently teaches and conducts research at the University of Minho in the north of Portugal, where he continues to study a variety of issues related to behavior and learning (e.g., time and number discrimination, choice). His studies contrast the results of laboratory experiments with the predictions of simple mathematical models of behavior and learning. In addition to the psychology of learning, Dr. Machado's interests include mathematics, evolutionary biology, philosophy, and the history of psychology. His work has been funded by the National Institutes of Mental Health (USA) and the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology and published in Animal Cognition, Behavioural Processes, Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, and others. He has served as the program chair and president for the Society for the Quantitative Analysis of Behavior, and as president of the Portuguese Association of Experimental Psychology.
Abstract: Dr. Machado willpresent a Spencean, synthetic approach to interval timing in animals, an approach grounded on the hypothesis that temporal generalization gradients may combine to produce complex forms of behavior. The hypothesis is instantiated by the Learning-to-Time (LeT) model. First,he will review how LeT accounts for the generalization gradients obtained in prototypical timing procedures. Then,he will show how, by combining these gradients, LeT accounts for more complex data and some surprising findings. Finally,he will discuss some current obstacles to our understanding of timing, including the boundary conditions of generalization gradients, the possibility of inhibitory temporal gradients, and how temporal memories are created, accessed, and retrieved.
Target Audience: Licensed behavior analysts, psychologists, graduate students.
Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) describe the main behavioral properties of temporal generalization gradients; (2) describe how, using a Spencean approach, these gradients may be combined to explain more complex behavior; (3) explain how some laboratory findings related to temporal performance challenge our theoretical understanding of timing.



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