Whelan & Barnes-Holmes, 2004

Printer-friendly version
APA Citation: 

Whelan, R., & Barnes-Holmes, D. (2004). The transformation of consequential functions in accordance with the relational frames of same and opposite. Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 82, 177-195.

Publication Topic: 
RFT: Empirical
Publication Type: 
Article
Language: 
English
Keyword(s): 
consequential functions, relational frame theory, multiple stimulus relations, reversal
Abstract: 

Although the literature on reinforcement in behavioral psychology is extensive, few studies have examined the derived transformation of reinforcing functions in accordance with equivalence classes, and no published research has yet examined the derived transformation of consequential functions in accordance with nonequivalence relations. In the present study, which consisted of four experiments, the basic preparation was as follows. First, an arbitrary stimulus, B2, was established as a conditioned punisher, using direct stimulus pairing. Following nonarbitrary relational training, designed to establish SAME and OPPOSITE contextual cues, subjects were exposed to arbitrary relational training using these contextual cues to establish A1 as the same as B1 and C1, and as opposite to B2 and C2. Subsequently, C2 (based on its Same relation with B2) functioned as a punisher and C1 (based on its Opposite relation with B2) functioned as a reinforcer in a simultaneous discrimination task. Critically, the C1 stimulus acquired reinforcing functions, based on the derived relation of Opposite, although no such function had actually been established for any member of the network. Furthermore, these effects were observed across ABA reversals in the baseline contingencies.

Comments: 
Formative augmenting, behavior due to relational networks that establish given consequences as reinforcers or as punishers, was demonstrated in accordance with Same and Opposite relational networks. Some stimuli acquired reinforcing functions, based on the derived relation of Opposite, although in some cases no such function had actually been established for any member of the network. These effects were also observed across ABA reversals in the baseline contingencies.
This page contains attachments restricted to ACBS members. Please join or login with your ACBS account.