The Effectiveness of Positive Reinforcement Term Paper by Master Researcher

The Effectiveness of Positive Reinforcement
An overview of behavior modification techniques.
# 38805 | 900 words | 4 sources | APA | 2002 | US
Published on Oct 15, 2003 in Psychology (Behaviorism)

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This paper examines moderate behavioral problems in both adults and in children in respect to how such behaviors can be altered or prevented altogether. The paper concentrates on positive reinforcement as an effective means of encouraging behavioral modification and looks at several techniques that are used in behavioral modification. The paper notes that techniques such as punishment are not as effective as techniques like covert behavioral methods.

Behavioral Modification in Patients

From the Paper:

"One way of addressing behavioral modification is through examining the situation itself. In their book, Psychology Applied to Teaching, authors Biehler and Snowman find that many of the behavioral problems that are manifested in children and young adults are encouraged because the teachers stay within Jon Paige's "concrete" stage of development. One example of this is found when a small child drops a glass of milk and is punished, and when that child sees his mother slip and spill a glass of milk, the child immediately assumes that the mother should be punished. In the concrete stage of development, therefore, the action is the only aspect of behavior that has any reality. This indicates that teachers tend to treat their students as though these students are between the ages of 2 and 6, or old enough to know what "concrete" objects are but not old enough to hypothesize or to rationalize specific social issues depending on context. This creates problems because in almost every instance the student is not that young and these students are treated instead as being extremely infantile: Each problem is simply a behavioral problem despite the circumstances that may be involved. However, in the adult world, problems are frequently generated through the situation and not simply through an action. (Biehler & Snowman: 2000)"

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