Title page for ETD etd-11122012-154709

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Miller, Sarah Joanne
Author's Email Address smill47@tigers.lsu.edu
URN etd-11122012-154709
Title A Comparison of Response-contingent and Noncontingent Pairing in the Conditioning of a Reinforcer
Degree Master of Arts (M.A.)
Department Psychology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Noell, George Committee Chair
Gresham, Frank Committee Member
Tiger, Jeffrey Committee Member
  • primary reinforcer
  • conditioning
  • secondary reinforcer
  • conditioned reinforcement
  • conditioned reinforcer
Date of Defense 2012-08-23
Availability unrestricted
Two pairing procedures were compared in the conditioning of a secondary reinforcer. Pairings of a neutral stimulus and primary reinforcer were delivered either contingent upon a participant response or noncontingently (i.e., independent of a participant response). Maintenance of responding when responses resulted in the neutral stimulus alone was compared before and throughout pairing using progressive-ratio probes. Results yielded undifferentiated responding between the contingently-paired and noncontingently-paired stimuli and a stimulus never paired with reinforcement, indicating that no conditioning effect occurred. Potential factors in producing this lack of differentiation are discussed, including differences in methodology between this study and past studies.
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