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Arquivos Brasileiros de Psicologia

On-line version ISSN 1809-5267


LEITE, Emerson Ferreira da Costa  and  MICHELETTO, Nilza. Reinforcement of behavioral variability in problems solving. Arq. bras. psicol. [online]. 2020, vol.72, n.1, pp. 204-220. ISSN 1809-5267.

The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of reinforcement of varying the precurrent responses on problem solving involving composing pre-defined figures, combining colors, shapes and locations on the computer screen, with students aged 18 to 25 years. Points were given by any compositions formed (QQ condition) and by varying precurrent responses in the formation of compositions (VAR condition). In all conditions, more points were presented for forming pre-defined target compositions, the only contingency present in the Test condition. Six participants were exposed to conditions in the QQ-VAR order and six in the reverse order, preceded and followed by Test. In part, they formed more target compositions in fewer trials during VAR, but a possible order-of-conditions effect was observed. Higher levels of variability accompanied larger numbers of target compositions formed and in fewer trials, showing that varying precurrent responses facilitated problem solving.

Keywords : Response variability; Creativity; Problem solving.

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