Wulfert & Hayes, 1988

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APA Citation: 

Wulfert, E., & Hayes, S. C. (1988). Transfer of a conditional ordering response through conditional equivalence classes. Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 50, 125-144.

Publication Topic: 
RFT: Empirical
Publication Type: 
conditional equivalence classes, stimulus equivalence, transfer of function, second-order conditional discriminations, adults

Eight adult humans were taught conditional discriminations in a matching-to-sample format that led to the formation of two four-member equivalence classes. When subjects were taught to select one comparisson stimulus from each classs in a set order, they then ordered all other members of the equivalence classes without explicit training. When the ordering response itself was brought under conditional control, conditional sequencing also transferred to all other members of the two equivalence classes. When the conditional discriminations in the matching-to-sample task were brought under higher order conditional control, the eight stimulus members were arranged into four conditional equivalence classes. Both ordering and conditional ordering transferred to all member of the four conditional equivalence classes; for some subjects this occurred without a typical test for equivalence. One hundred twenty untrained sequences emerged from eight trained sequences for all subjects. Transfer of functions through equivalence classes may contribute to a behavior-analytic approach to semantics and generative grammar.

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