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Psychology

Western Michigan University

Theses/Dissertations

1983

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The Effects Of Contingency-Management On Probationary Students' Academic Behavior, Brian Delano Yancey Dec 1983

The Effects Of Contingency-Management On Probationary Students' Academic Behavior, Brian Delano Yancey

Master's Theses

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of procedures designed to reduce student attrition. The contingency-management approach was presented as an alternative to other approaches which assume student attrition to be a function of personality differences, study-skills deficiencies, and ecological deficits. Forty undergraduate students on academic probation were referred to the Self-Management Course offered by the Psychology Department at western Michigan University. The Self- Management Course was designed to deliver behavioral consequences for study behavior more immediately than is normally the case. Students taking the Self-Management Course completed several worksheets, participated in group discussions, and attended a ...


The Role Of Automatic Conditioned Reinforcement And Automatic Conditioned Punishment In Infant Vocal Behavior, Rick A. Smith Dec 1983

The Role Of Automatic Conditioned Reinforcement And Automatic Conditioned Punishment In Infant Vocal Behavior, Rick A. Smith

Master's Theses

Two female children, aged 11 and 14 months, were exposed to a procedure in which an experimenter-emitted vocal response was paired with a reinforcing stimulus (positive condition), a neutral stimulus (neutral condition), or a mild aversive stimulus (negative condition). An AB design was utilized to examine the effects of the pairing procedure on the subjects* vocal responding. Sessions were conducted in each subject’s home. Only one subject was exposed to the pairing with a neutral (control) stimulus, and with the mild aversive verbal stimulus. Responding during the post-pairing period remained constant in the neutral condition, but was markedly reduced ...


The Effects Of Caffeine Alone, And In Combination With Nicotine, On Several Behaviors In Rats, Judith S. Devoe Dec 1983

The Effects Of Caffeine Alone, And In Combination With Nicotine, On Several Behaviors In Rats, Judith S. Devoe

Master's Theses

Several doses of caffeine-sodium benzoate (0.0, 2.5, 5.0, 10.0 & 20.0 mg/kg, stated as salt) were administered daily by intraperitoneal injections (IP) for an initial twelve consecutive days which constituted Phase I. A probe-dose of nicotine (2.0 mg/kg) was administered in combination with each caffeine dose for the following seven days comprising Phase II. Removal of nicotine subsequent to the last day of Phase II initiated a second caffeine-only (nicotine withdrawal) condition, Phase III. Tests of locomotion and aggression ensued at various points of the study and water intakes and body weights were ...


Reducing Severe Diurnal Bruxism In A Severely Retarded Person, A. Daniel Gomez Fuentes Dec 1983

Reducing Severe Diurnal Bruxism In A Severely Retarded Person, A. Daniel Gomez Fuentes

Master's Theses

Bruxism, the nonfunctional grinding, clenching or clicking of the teeth, has been viewed as a psychophysiological disorder. The literature on the incidence and effects of bruxism indicates that bruxism may affect a significant portion of both normal and retarded population. In the current study a multiple baseline, combining with an ABA design within sessions was conducted. During the generalization step, an ABAB design was used. The present study was designed to evaluate the effectiveness of an operant weakening (ice) and operant strengthening (tokens and praises) procedures to reduce the rate and duration of an audible teeth grinding sound in a ...


The Cultural Roots Of Behaviorism, Juan Mario Herakovic Dec 1983

The Cultural Roots Of Behaviorism, Juan Mario Herakovic

Master's Theses

This thesis traces some of the economic, social, religious and political events that played an important role in the development of behaviorism in the United States. The effects of the Enlightenment, the dislocation of moral and social values, the decline of religion, political upheavals and increased immigration, are seen as destabilizing elements in American society. Emphasis is placed upon the specific values of the American society, and the way in which these values remained constant throughout the social history of the United States. As such, behaviorism represents a scientific approach to the historical continuity of ideas within the nation.


Input Frequency And Perceived Impact Of An Interactive Newsletter In A Small Organization, Patricia Calle Dec 1983

Input Frequency And Perceived Impact Of An Interactive Newsletter In A Small Organization, Patricia Calle

Master's Theses

A newsletter, based on the results of two tailor-made self-report questionnaires, was implemented in a vegetable by-product manufacturing company with 83 employees. Need for improvement was detected in the formal communication of organizational policies, projects, goals and events for downward and upward communication relative to performance feedback, non-monetary performance incentives, and response to job-related and personal requests. The newsletter was aimed at facilitating the supply of verbal incentives, performance feedback, formal and informal organizational information and participation in different areas. Prompting procedures were designed to encourage employees' participation in the newsletter. Newsletter impact was analyzed in terms of pre- and ...


Self-Actualization And Well-Being Of Baccalaureate Degree Nurses, Lori L. Butkovich Dec 1983

Self-Actualization And Well-Being Of Baccalaureate Degree Nurses, Lori L. Butkovich

Master's Theses

A study of self-actualization and well-being was carried out using a sample of 80 baccalaureate degree nurses working in two medium size city hospitals. Shostrom's Personal Orientation Inventory was used to measure self-actualizing levels. Campbell, Converse and Rodgers' Quality of Life Questionnaire was used to assess global well-being and well-being within different life domains, specifically job satisfaction. The nurses in this study were generally found, using a t-test analysis over all well-being scores but lower job satisfaction scores than the normative populations. A significant positive correlation between self-actualization levels and global well-being scores was not evidences. Further more, a ...


Preference Under Concurrent Mixed Fixed-Ratio Fixed-Ratio Schedules Of Reinforcement: Control By Intracomponent Ratio Length, Earl Hall-Johnson Dec 1983

Preference Under Concurrent Mixed Fixed-Ratio Fixed-Ratio Schedules Of Reinforcement: Control By Intracomponent Ratio Length, Earl Hall-Johnson

Master's Theses

Previous studies using concurrent variable-interval variable interval schedules have suggested that molar, not molecular variables primarily control choice responding. These studies examined pigeons performance under discrete-trial concurrent mixed fixed-ratio fixed-ratio schedules of reinforcement. When each alternative provided two reinforcements per 100 responses, pigeons preferred the alternative containing the shorter initial fixed-ratio. Subsequent studies attempted to shift preference through manipulations of ratio requirement and reinforcement duration in either alternative. Preference was shifted from the mixed fixed-ratio fixed-ratio only when the reinforcement associated with the first component was eliminated. Under all other conditions, pigeons preferred the mixed fixed-ratio fixed-ratio schedules with the ...


Effects Of Perceived Power Of Those Assigning Goals On Goal Attainment, Larry L. Langeland Dec 1983

Effects Of Perceived Power Of Those Assigning Goals On Goal Attainment, Larry L. Langeland

Master's Theses

The purpose of this study was to present and test with a field experiment the hypothesis that the perceived power of those assigning goals has a significant effect on goal attainment. A survey was used to determine three levels of the independent variable perceived power of three individuals who assigned tasks to subjects. The dependent variables were the number of responses on the tasks of listing 15 specific responses each for increasing cost-effectiveness, improving morale, and improving communication. Forty-three office and management personnel were randomly assigned to three groups, with each group receiving a all levels of power type and ...


Growth Rates: Influence Of Prednisolone, Sex And Crowding In Rats, Karen M. Allen Aug 1983

Growth Rates: Influence Of Prednisolone, Sex And Crowding In Rats, Karen M. Allen

Master's Theses

Growth inhibition As frequently noted in the chronically ill child. Causes of such growth rate decrements appear multiple and include both internal and environmental factors. The present study analyzed growth of rats by manipulation of glucocorticoid treatment, housing conditions and sex of subject in a search for potential interactions. Specifically, body weights were assessed daily in post-weanling male and female Spraque-Dawley rats which received 16 daily I.P. injections of prednisolone acetate (0.0, 2.0, or 4.0 mg/kg) under either individual or group-housed (6/cage) conditions. Effects of dose and of sex were found, while a main ...


The Relationship Between Systems Theory And Behavior Analysis, Michael B. Oberlin Aug 1983

The Relationship Between Systems Theory And Behavior Analysis, Michael B. Oberlin

Dissertations

This paper provides a conceptual framework which clarifies the relationship between General Systems Theory and Behavior Analysis. This framework is supplied by a theoretical notion borrowed from Simon (1962), the notion of "dynamics of interaction." "Interaction" refers to interaction between the units of analysis of science, e.g., in the analysis of behavior, stimuli, responses, and consequences in economics, units of supply and demand. The paradigm of Behavior Analysis is seen to accommodate a "higher-frequency dynamics" found in subsystems; and General Systems Theory, along with disciplines like Economics and Organizational Analysis, accommodates a "lower-frequency dynamics" found in systems. Argument is ...


Behavioral Management Of Multiple Food Aversions Of A Multiply Handicapped Child, Steven A. Stang Aug 1983

Behavioral Management Of Multiple Food Aversions Of A Multiply Handicapped Child, Steven A. Stang

Master's Theses

Several behavioral treatments utilizing the delivery of preferred food with praise contingent upon consumption of nonpreferred foods were evaluated with a multiply handicapped child who exhibited multiple food aversions. Behavioral assessments of food preferences were used to identify preferred and nonpreferred foods and to monitor changes in the subject's preferences for nonpreferred target foods relative to other foods.

Following the implementation of treatment contingencies, a modest increase in the consumption of one nonpreferred target food, and substantial increases in consumption of a second nonpreferred target food, milk, other foods appearing on the lunch menu, and essential nutrients were observed ...


The Effects Of Music Upon Job Attitudes And Performance In An Industrial Inspection Task, Christopher D. Freiburger Aug 1983

The Effects Of Music Upon Job Attitudes And Performance In An Industrial Inspection Task, Christopher D. Freiburger

Master's Theses

An experiment was designed to study the effects of music on the quality of inspection performance, job attitudes, and observed frequency of non-work related conversations of workers engaged in a complex, repetitive industrial inspection task in a pharmaceutical company. Three middle-aged inspectors volunteered to participate in the ABAB designed experiment. Musical selections by Muzak and Mantovani were played via portable stereo cassette players with headphones. Quality was measured by testing subjects on two sets of 1,000 test vials with 10% planted defects and recording the number of false rejects and the percent of false acceptances. Certain job attitudes were ...


A Short Data Based Inservice Program For Teachers Of Direct Instruction, Patricia Mckeen Salvi Aug 1983

A Short Data Based Inservice Program For Teachers Of Direct Instruction, Patricia Mckeen Salvi

Master's Theses

The purpose of this study was to empirically determine the effectiveness and practical aspects of a researcher developed inservice training program. This training program was used with three middle school teachers to improve theirs kills in Direct Instruction Decoding teaching techniques. The training program utilized verbal instructions, modeling, positive and corrective feedback, and checkouts to determine the teachers' mastery of each skill area trained. The trainer employed a multiple probe design, and the training proved to be effective in improving each teacher's performance across each skill area trained. The inservice program proved to be practical in that it could ...


The Repeated Acquisition Procedure As A Means Of Analyzing Instructional Stimulus Control And Rule-Directed Behavior, Jeffrey S. Danforth Aug 1983

The Repeated Acquisition Procedure As A Means Of Analyzing Instructional Stimulus Control And Rule-Directed Behavior, Jeffrey S. Danforth

Master's Theses

Pre-school children were taught to emit four-response chains using the repeated acquisition design. Experiment 1 examined the effect of instructional stimuli. Many errors were made in Control Learning, followed by few errors in Control Relearning. Instructional cues resulted in few errors in the morning learning session, but many relearning errors were made. Experiment 2A determined if two-trial cuing with instructional stimuli would improve relearning performance. The result was fewer relearning errors, but the criterion required more learning trials. In Experiment 2B a rule was taught relevant to two-trial cuing. In Experiment 3 a child was told that the morning and ...


Two Apparently Effective Strategies For Increasing Employee Compliance, Ann M. Backe Aug 1983

Two Apparently Effective Strategies For Increasing Employee Compliance, Ann M. Backe

Master's Theses

The present study investigated the controlling aspects of employee participation on compliance to store procedures through the use of a total participative group and a group trained in the technical and beneficial aspects of the procedures. Five grocery store cashiers comprised the Participative Group and six cashiers comprised the Value- and Skill- Trained (VST) Group. The researcher conducted one meeting with the members of the Participative Group to design procedures to decrease the number of checks returned to the stores because of non-sufficient funds. Following the development of the new procedures, the Participative Group received technical training on the procedures ...


A Comparative Analysis Of Two Methods Of Administering The Position Analysis Questionnaire (Paq), Michael Heenan Swearingen Aug 1983

A Comparative Analysis Of Two Methods Of Administering The Position Analysis Questionnaire (Paq), Michael Heenan Swearingen

Master's Theses

This research examined two methods of administering the Position Analysis Questionnaire (PAQ), a commercially available job analysis tool. The currently accepted method of administering the PAQ involves reading the job description, touring the work-site and then completing the PAQ with the incumbent. The second method used only the job description for the analysis data base. The comparison was made using three different measures, selection of GATB tests, "Selected PAQ Items" and PAQ aptitude attribute ratings. The two different methods selected the same GATB tests an average of 83% of the time and selected the same attributes 96% of the time ...


Effects Of Positive, Negative And Balanced Emphases On Perceived Effectiveness Of Performance Appraisal, Joseph Andrew Hammond Aug 1983

Effects Of Positive, Negative And Balanced Emphases On Perceived Effectiveness Of Performance Appraisal, Joseph Andrew Hammond

Master's Theses

The central theme of the research is the experimental manipulation of three different appraisal processes, namely positive, negative, and balanced appraisals to determine which evaluation tool would be perceived as most useful in motivating and stimulating employees to improve on their performance. Subjects were randomly assigned to groups and presented with scripts exemplifying three appraisal approaches and asked to evaluate the perceived effectiveness of each approach in producing a desired performance outcome. The results showed significant differences between the balanced approach and the other two approaches. However, there was no significant difference between the means of the positive versus negative ...


The Effects Of An Instructional Package On Study Question Completion Skills Of High School Students, Jeffery David Montgomery Aug 1983

The Effects Of An Instructional Package On Study Question Completion Skills Of High School Students, Jeffery David Montgomery

Master's Theses

The purpose of this study was to empirically evaluate the effects of an instructional package on study question behaviors. The instructional package, incorporating contingent reinforcement, modeling, feedback, contingency contracting and a programmed instruction format was implemented to train four study question answering behaviors identified through task analysis. Each subject demonstrated ability to perform the four behaviors with increased accuracy on experimental measures following training. Results indicated that the instructional package was effective in training increased accuracy in each instructional behavior for each subject. Generalized performance of these behaviors in the classroom environment, assessed through comparison of classroom grades and study ...


The Effects Of A Minimal Intervention On The Acquisition Of Behavior And An Evaluation Of The Utility Of Its Maintenance, Cheryl Anne Brandt Aug 1983

The Effects Of A Minimal Intervention On The Acquisition Of Behavior And An Evaluation Of The Utility Of Its Maintenance, Cheryl Anne Brandt

Master's Theses

Data based measures are rarely collected in. organizations to evaluate the performance of individuals and of any, except for the most major, projects implemented. The present study attempted to determine what was needed to initiate behaviors in implementing new activities and how long it was worthwhile to maintain those behaviors. A minimal antecedent control procedure was utilized to establish product promotion behaviors with six tellers in two banking branches. Data were collected both on teller behavior and the outcomes of teller behavior. The results of the study showed that antecedent controls were enough to initiate behavior but that over time ...


Eliminating Overselective Stimulus Control: A Comparison Of Two Procedures For Teaching Mentally Retarded Children To Respond To Compound Stimuli, Keith D. Allen Aug 1983

Eliminating Overselective Stimulus Control: A Comparison Of Two Procedures For Teaching Mentally Retarded Children To Respond To Compound Stimuli, Keith D. Allen

Master's Theses

Overselective stimulus control occurs when behavior fails to come under control of all characteristics of a compound stimulus after discrimination training. The efficacy of two procedures designed to eliminate overselective stimulus control observed with six trainable mentally retarded children was compared in Experiment 1. A training procedure using S-'s which were minimally different from the S+ was designed to reduce the probability that stimulus discriminations could be based on stimulus characteristics othre than experiimenter specified characteristics defining the S+. This procedure proved more effective in preventing and eliminating overselective stimulus control than an alternate discrimination training procedure. Experiment 2 ...


An Application Of Performance Analysis In A Food Cooperative, Lone Milani Aug 1983

An Application Of Performance Analysis In A Food Cooperative, Lone Milani

Dissertations

A performance systems analysis was applied in a small business to diagnose problems and direct decisions in order to solve performance deficiencies of that organization. A "performance audit," as the approach is called, consists of analyzing an operating system from the most general to the most specific levels of vantage (i.e., levels at which a system operates). The levels of vantage for any system are: philosophical, cultural, policy, strategic, tactical, and logistic. At each level the actual performance was compared to predetermined standards called "exemplary performance." This comparison facilitated the diagnosis of the organization's deficiencies.

The study attempted ...


Improving Customer Service Using A Self-Recording Checklist, Donald Troy Apr 1983

Improving Customer Service Using A Self-Recording Checklist, Donald Troy

Master's Theses

The purpose of the present study was to investigate a method for improving customer service of three parttime salespeople. A job aid which consisted of a checklist was used to increase the frequency of eight target behaviors. The target behaviors consisted of: appropriately approaching and greeting the customer, being courteous and helpful, appropriately ringing up the sale and closing, having a neat appearance and wearing an identification badge. After training, the salespeople were taught to self-record their customer service behavior. Training increased the subjects' performance, but only had a short term effect. Customer service behaviors increased after implementing the checklists ...


Complex Behavior: A Systematic Reformulation Of Radical Behavioral Analyses, Linda J. Parrott Apr 1983

Complex Behavior: A Systematic Reformulation Of Radical Behavioral Analyses, Linda J. Parrott

Dissertations

Mentalistic psychology thrives in the absence of a satisfactory, naturalistic account of complex human behavior. Inadequacies in the radical behavioral position with respect to complex events are of two sorts. First, the complexity of such events is undermined, either by reducing the latter; or, by providing only a very superficial treatment of events at their own level of complexity. The former procedure applies to Skinner's treatment of verbal behavior; the latter to his distinction between rule governed and contingency shaped behavior. Second, the analyses made of some classes of complex phenomena indicate a commerce with metaphysical philosophy, and they ...


The Use Of Punishment In Industry, Promise Sibonisiwe Zungu Apr 1983

The Use Of Punishment In Industry, Promise Sibonisiwe Zungu

Master's Theses

This study was aimed at finding out if apparent inadequate use of punishment in industry is a problem of lack of knowledge of appropriate punishment procedures on the part of punishment agents (supervisors/managers) or a problem of execution. Variables that affect the effectiveness of punishment were identified by means of a literature search, as timing, intensity , consistency, appropriateness, providing a ration ale and punishment schedules.

Test items were constructed and administered to two groups to find out if there was any consistency between participants ' recommendations about disciplinary procedures and punishment principles. Results showed that the majority of participants made ...