From the IRAP and REC model to a multi-dimensional multi-level framework for analyzing the dynamics of arbitrarily applicable relational responding

Authors:

Dermot Barnes-Holmes, Yvonne Barnes-Holmes, Carmen Luciano, & Ciara McEnteggart

Abstract:

The article presents the beginnings of a conceptual framework for analyzing the dynamics of arbitrarily applicable relational responding (AARRing). The framework focuses on the dimensions and levels of AARRing that have been the focus of empirical and conceptual analyses in the literature on relational frame theory over the past 30 years. The name of the framework is abbreviated the MDML, and the conceptual and empirical context from which it emerged is presented. The framework currently consists of four dimensions, (i) coherence, (ii) complexity, (iii) derivation, and (iv) flexibility; and five levels of relational development, (i) mutual entailing, (ii) relational framing, (iii) relational networking, (iv) relating relations, and (v) relating relational networks. Within the MDML, each of the dimensions intersects with each of the levels, yielding 20 potential units of behavioral analysis, defined as functional-analytic abstractive relational quanta (abbreviated as FAARQs). Some of the conceptual and empirical implications of the MDML are considered, focusing in particular on how it highlights the dynamic properties of AARRing. Specific examples of how the MDML is (and may) impact upon research in relational frame theory are also presented.

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