Document Detail

Concurrent schedules: reinforcer magnitude effects.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  12908762     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Five pigeons were trained on pairs of concurrent variable-interval schedules in a switching-key procedure. The arranged overall rate of reinforcement was constant in all conditions, and the reinforcer-magnitude ratios obtained from the two alternatives were varied over five levels. Each condition remained in effect for 65 sessions and the last 50 sessions of data from each condition were analyzed. At a molar level of analysis, preference was described well by a version of the generalized matching law, consistent with previous reports. More local analyses showed that recently obtained reinforcers had small measurable effects on current preference, with the most recently obtained reinforcer having a substantially larger effect. Larger reinforcers resulted in larger and longer preference pulses, and a small preference was maintained for the larger-magnitude alternative even after long inter-reinforcer intervals. These results are consistent with the notion that the variables controlling choice have both short- and long-term effects. Moreover, they suggest that control by reinforcer magnitude is exerted in a manner similar to control by reinforcer frequency. Lower sensitivities when reinforcer magnitude is varied are likely to be due to equal frequencies of different sized preference pulses, whereas higher sensitivities when reinforcer rates are varied might result from changes in the frequencies of different sized preference pulses.
Jason Landon; Michael Davison; Douglas Elliffe
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of the experimental analysis of behavior     Volume:  79     ISSN:  0022-5002     ISO Abbreviation:  J Exp Anal Behav     Publication Date:  2003 May 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2003-08-11     Completed Date:  2003-12-09     Revised Date:  2010-09-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0203727     Medline TA:  J Exp Anal Behav     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  351-65     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Psychology, The University of Auckland, New Zealand.
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MeSH Terms
Behavior, Animal
Matched-Pair Analysis
Models, Statistical
Reinforcement Schedule*

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