PS360: ABA 1
Prof: Monica Labrie
February 21, 2014
Behavioral chaining is a complex behavior that consists of many behaviors happening all together. The chain establishes all the steps in a procedure and list them so all the instructors are using the same information. Chaining provides a means of linking several discrete behaviors to a more complex series of responses, and are usually established after observing the steps of the event several times and work well when trying to teach self-help skills. The instructor should verbalize each step in the chain as it is being completed, and should be followed by praise for a job well done (1). Simply saying, behavioral chaining is breaking a task or job down into smaller steps.
Primary reinforcement is often called unconditional reinforcement that occurs naturally and does not require learning in order to work. Often primary reinforcers have a basis of evolution because they aid in species survival. Some examples would be food, air, sleep, and water. This would work in behavior chaining because for some people certain things come naturally. If Brenda has one area of tennis that comes naturally to her, such as making contact with the ball, the behaviorist can use that to help in making the other areas better (2).
Secondary reinforcement is also known as conditioned reinforcement and involves stimuli that has become rewarding by being paired with another reinforcing stimulus. In this case, when Brenda is training, something positive (such as praise) could be used as a primary reinforcer. A sound or a word could be used and associated with the praise and after a period of time, Brenda would hear the word and it would begin to work as a secondary reinforce. This is the same concept as operant conditioning. In situations when the presentation of reinforcement is controlled, such as during training, the timing of when a reinforcer is presented can becontrolled. During the
References: Cooper, J. O., Heron, T. E., & Heward, W. L. (2007). Applied behavior analysis. (2nd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education (1) http://www.midlandstech.edu/sbs/pilkingtonl/218unit3.htm (2) http://psychology.about.com/od/operantconditioning/f/reinforcement.htm (3) http://www2.bakersfieldcollege.edu/gleblanc/Beh%20mod/Beh%20mod%20lectures%20main/Behavior%20Mod%20lectures%20martin%20pear%20spring%202011/Martin_9e_Ch11.ppt (4) gator.uhd.edu/~williams/aba/CH20.ppt