Applications of Operant Conditioning

  1. A token economy is a system of behavior modification based on the systematic reinforcement of target behavior. The reinforcers are symbols that can be exchanged for other reinforcers.
  2. Shaping is a conditioning paradigm used primarily in the experimental analysis of behavior. The method used is differential reinforcement of successive approximations.
  3. Chaining is an instructional procedure used in behavioral psychology, experimental analysis of behavior and applied behavior analysis. It involves reinforcing individual responses occurring in a sequence to form a complex behavior.
  4. Premack's principle, or the relativity theory of reinforcement, states that more probable behaviors will reinforce less probable behaviors.
  5. Observing pigeons behaving ritualistically in an attempt to receive food from a dispenser, Skinner believed that the pigeons were trying to influence their feeding schedule by performing these actions, exhibiting superstitious behavior.
  6. Applied behavior analysis is defined as the process of systematically applying interventions based upon the principles of learning theory to improve socially significant behaviors, and to demonstrate that the interventions are effective.