Reinforcement FAQs:


Q: Is reinforcement a consequence that will strengthen an organism's future behavior whenever that behavior is preceded by a specific antecedent stimulus?

A: Yes.

Q: Is reinforcement a type of compound schedule that evolved from the initial work on simple schedules of reinforcement by B.F?

A: Yes, Skinner and his colleagues. They demonstrated that reinforcers could be delivered on schedules, and further that organisms behaved differently under different schedules.

Q: Was reinforcement evidence for B.F?

A: Yes, Skinner's claim that by using operant conditioning he could obtain "control over behavior", in a way that rendered the theoretical disputes of contemporary comparative psychology obsolete.

Q: Is reinforcement otherwise similar?

A: Yes.

Q: Is reinforcement continuous reinforcement?

A: Yes, where every response is reinforced, and extinction, where no response is reinforced.

Q: Is reinforcement "thinned" may experience "ratio strain" if thinned too quickly?

A: Yes.

Q: Is reinforcement superior to punishment in shaping behavior?

A: Yes.

Q: Is reinforcement schedules of reinforcement that are simultaneously available to an animal subject or human participant?

A: Yes, so that the subject or participant can respond on either schedule.

Q: Is reinforcement delivered if the response requirement is met while a schedule is in effect?

A: Yes.

Q: Is reinforcement defined by an increased probability of a response?

A: Yes.

Q: Is reinforcement that something is a reinforcer because of its effect on behavior?

A: Yes, and not the other way around.

Q: Is reinforcement often used by laypeople and even social scientists outside psychology as a synonym for punishment?

A: Yes.

Q: Is reinforcement a basic term in operant conditioning?

A: Yes.

Q: Is reinforcement delivered if the response requirement is met while a schedule is in effect?

A: Yes.

Q: Is reinforcement an important part of operant or instrumental conditioning?

A: Yes.

Q: Is reinforcement usually dated from the work of Edward Thorndike?

A: Yes, and known for his experiments with cats escaping from puzzle boxes.

Q: Is reinforcement often used as a synonym for reward?

A: Yes, and with people thus being "reinforced", but this is contrary to the term's consistent technical usage, as it is a dimension of behavior, and not the person, which is strengthened.

Q: Is reinforcement not punishment?

A: Yes.

Q: Is reinforcement delivered on the average after 4 minutes?

A: Yes.

Q: Is reinforcement a pigeon in an experimental cage pecking at a button?

A: Yes.

Q: Is reinforcement in fact created to build or develop skills?

A: Yes, and to generalize, it is important that either a behavior trap is introduced to "capture" the skill and utilize naturally occurring reinforcement to maintain or increase it.

Q: Is reinforcement the central concept and procedure in special education?

A: Yes, and applied behavior analysis, and the experimental analysis of behavior and is a core concept in some medical and psychopharmacology models, particularly addiction, dependence, and compulsion.