Tony E. McCaffity
PSY390 Learning and Cognition
Individual Programmatic Assessment: Operant Conditioning
October 27, 2014
Describe the theory of Operant Conditioning
The theory of Operant Conditioning is developed the behaviorist B. F. Skinner. Operant Conditioning according to Skinner is based on the observing the causes of the action and its consequences. Skinner’s used this approach to study observable behavior instead of the internal mental activity. Though his study Skinner, found that behavior reinforced usually becomes repeated, and reinforced behavior will often extinguishes.
Skinner believed that learning is a ...view middle of the document...
Compare and contrast positive and negative reinforcement
First and foremost reinforcement can be positive or negative. When a present behavior is reinforced it is referred to as positive reinforcement. A reinforcement of a wanted behavior that is withdrawn is known to be a negative reinforcement and not a punishment.
The act of reinforcing includes the removing of a positive or creating a negative behavior. The behavior of an organism is strengthening by reinforcement and punishment is known to suppress the behavior. The person is motivated to act in ways that reduce the threat of punishment and which are incompatible with, and hence take the place of, the behavior punished. The process of shaping behavior by controlling the consequences of the behavior is reinforcement (Olson &Hergenhahn, 2009).
Reinforcement can produce a positive or negative outcome, depending on the action being presented. A positive reinforcement occurs when a child works hard to improve his or her grades and the parent or teacher acknowledges this with something positive. This positive reinforcement of the award will motive the child’s behavior to continue. A negative reinforcement could also work in the case in which an employee is thriving in the department in which he or she is and the owner of the company decides to leave him or her in that department instead of moving him or her to a department he or she would not like the employee will continue to perform strong (Olson &Hergenhahn, 2009).
Determine which form of reinforcement is the most effective. Explain your reasoning
Select a scenario in which you would apply operant conditioning to shape behavior
A child is rewarded with extra allowance money after he or she achieves the desired chores required by the parent. The operant conditioning in this case is the parent is controlling the child’s behavior through the reward of extra money.
Create a reinforcement schedule for your selected behavior