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Acta Comportamentalia

versión impresa ISSN 0188-8145


CALIXTO, Fernanda Castanho; PONCE, Guilherme Dutra  y  COSTA, Carlos Eduardo. The effects of different instructions on the behavior in DRL and the behavioral sensibility. Acta comport. [online]. 2014, vol.22, n.2, pp. 201-217. ISSN 0188-8145.

Rules may facilitate the acquisition of new behaviors and at the same time decrease the likelihood of behavioral change across contingency changes. This study aimed to investigate the effect of participant exposure to different rules on DRL tasks and on behavioral sensitivity to changes in programmed contingencies.Two experiments were conducted with thirteen undergrad students each. Experiment 1 differed from 2 by a consummatory response required to obtain reinforcement. Experiments consisted of two consecutive phases lasting 20 minutes each. In Phase 1, groups were assigned according to the instruction provided to them to perform on a DRL 5s schedule: Group IM (Minimum Instruction), Group IC (Correspondent Instruction) and Group ID (Discrepant Instruction). Phase 2 was identical to Phase 1, excepted that programmed consequences were not delivered (extinction). The purpose of Phase 2 was to determine how different instructions provided in Phase 1 affected participant's behavior after contingency changes. The Experiment 1 (Phase 1) showed that two participants out of 15- P5 (Group IM) and P9 (Group IC) did not show low response rates, while participants in Group IC and ID emitted initially high response rates. Results from Phase 2 suggest that participant's behavior in Group IC showed a lower change from Phase 1 in comparison to Group IM and Group ID groups. Results obtained in Experiment 2 replicated those from Experiment 1, except that participants in Group IC (Experiment 2) emitted low response rates at the start of Phase 1. Taking together, results demonstrated that instructional control can be abandoned in situations where the programmed contingency do not allow occasional reinforcement, and a history with corresponding instruction generates a smaller proportion of change in comparison to a history with minimal instruction and discrepant instruction.

Palabras clave : rules governed behavior; behavioral sensitivity; schedules of reinforcement; DRL; extinction.

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