Motivation of behavior w f skinner research paper

Tendencies Modification, Confident And Bad Reinforcement, Great Reinforcement, Patterns

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B. F. Skinner’s Motivation of Behavior

Skinner remains one of the most important contributors to the field of behaviorism. According to Skinner, folks are often liberal to engage in some sort of behavior. Nevertheless , most times, there are consequences connected with specific deeds or actions. Pleasant effects are likely to encourage the kind of tendencies that created the explained consequences. It’s this that Skinner known as reinforcement learning. This text concerns itself with the modern-day application of reinforcement learning in both education and behavior therapy.

Reinforcement theory, in the words of Lussier and Achua (2009, p. 93), “purposes that through the consequences for patterns, people will be motivated to behave in predetermined ways. ” As the creators further point out, this particular theory makes use of patterns modification along with operant health and fitness. According to Skinner, the training of some form of behavior takes place via runs into with great and adverse consequences (Lussier and Achua, 2009, g. 93).?nternet site have stated in the initial section, pleasurable consequences probably motivate the performance from the behavior that triggered the said implications. This is the gist of strengthening learning. This is certainly particularly so given that the chance of performing a specific behavior is increased or ‘reinforced’ by great outcomes. For instance, rewarding the cat with milk every time this rubs it is body upon ones calf is likely to make this kind of rubbing habit more common. In cases like this, milk is definitely the reinforcer. Most of Skinner’s research made use of laboratory pigeons and rats. It is important to note that although the jobs performed by simply these house animals as well as the reinforcers Skinner used were simple and easy, his trials were able to give an insight in the behavior of men and women not only in straightforward, but also in intricate scenarios.

It is crucial to note, from the onset, that operant fitness has been applied to a variety of sensible settings which includes, but not restricted to, teaching (i. e. with regards to classroom management), behavioral therapy (i. at the. with regard to patterns modification), and animal training (i. electronic. training of pets). Ahead of highlighting a few of the practical applying reinforcement learning in a useful situation, it would be prudent to focus on just how Skinner proved that his findings were indeed justified and founded on truth. Skinner was keen to demonstrate that great reinforcement did indeed work and with this, he introduced a Skinner container and proceeded to place a hungry tipp therein. Within the box was obviously a rod which usually at first the rat pulled as it relocated about. Nevertheless , each time the rat pulled the fly fishing rod, a food (pellet) would fall inside the box. Eventually, the rat learnt that pressing the lever could result in food – therefore repeating the action when it necessary food. I use repeated this kind of example to point just how positive reinforcement contributes towards the strengthening of a particular behavior. Because regard, therefore , when a certain outcome is found to be rewarding, the behaviour resulting in that specific outcome is likely to be increased.

In aiming to bring bad reinforcement for the fore, Skinner positioned a rodent in a box and subjected that to an electrical shock which has been only ended one the rat operate about this and unintentionally knocked over a lever. Sooner or later, the rat came to affiliate the banging of the lever with the blocking of the electric powered shock – effectively and therefore every time it absolutely was subjected to the said electric shock, it would head right to the leaver. The need to escape the current which brought about a lot of discomfort resulted in the verweis would duplicate the action/behavior time and again.

In essence, Skinner was interested in both equally how the house animals he utilized for his research learned how to undertake or perhaps engage in several tasks/behaviors, and what impact reinforcement experienced on the stated learning. Of key importance in this case is the fact that that the novice experiences an even more pleasant point out from reinforcement. Positive reinforcement could, consequently , be likened to a reward. On this front side, a pleasant government follows a behavior. When the termination of your negative government is what comes from a specific behavior, then this is certainly referred to as unfavorable reinforcement. A good example would in this case be for the alcoholic requires a bottle of vodka to fight a splitting pain in the morning. Considering that this involves the removal or perhaps taking away anything from the student, i. elizabeth. stopping the splitting pain, this could be viewed as negative support – where a more pleasant outcome is definitely the result. Essentially, the behavior can be, as a result of the reinforcement, not only made better, but as well highly likely to be repeated – particularly as the outcome can be desirable. When positive reinforcement has got to carry out with the application of a reinforcer, negative strengthening involves the withdrawal of something like a reinforcer. Confident reinforcement within a sporting point of view could entail the issuance of medals to the earning team, when negative encouragement, in the framework of a learning environment, could involve reprimanding a child pertaining to poor functionality. In equally cases, an increase in the target behavior is always the end result.

Reinforcement learning, as Tuckman (2009) points out, is an important application for instructors as they keep pace with modify the behaviors of learners in order to facilitate learning and further boost classroom administration. In a class setting, numerous positive reephasizes could be utilized to enhance the likelihood of desired activities. Positive payoffs could in this instance include, but are not limited to, permitting a learner to assume their exclusive sitting location in class, offering praise, providing candies, etc . (Tuckman, 2009). In the terms of Tuckman in today’s educational setting, “activity reinforcers will be amongst the many educational relevant, since the activity can be done with educational benefit such as doing a jigsaw problem or seeing an training video. inch However , since the creators further explain, there is need to ensure that the activity reinforcer is definitely immediately preceded by the preferred behavior to be able to “strengthen the response. inches

Reinforcement learning has also gained significant dominance in the realm of developmental problems. Given their behavioral deficits, people with problems require special education. In a special class setting, behavioral modification could be used in the control of actions seen as getting problematic, just like noncompliance with class rules, toileting, and personal hygiene. The same could also be useful in the further enhancement of functional skill deficits along with promotion of self-management. Students could in such a case be taught appropriate behaviors by not only modeling ideal behaviors, but by as well coming up or perhaps formulating course routines aimed at reinforcing confident behaviors.

Patterns modification is instrumental in seeking to change the problematic actions of people. In this case, the purpose of tendencies change and/or modification can often be to alter or reshape the concerned individual’s behavior, while seeking to lead to a positive effects with regard to a certain aspect of could be life.

This is more so the situation when it comes to these kinds of manners that are in a single way yet another disruptive to a individual’s your life, behaviors known as being unacceptable or unacceptable on the basis of someone’s mental capabilities or even grow older, etc . It is important to note that behavioral remedies are founded on the supposition that, in essence, behaviors will be learnt. In the event that that is certainly true, then simply behaviors could be ‘unlearnt’ and more adopted. In the words of Spiegler and Guevremont (2009), “reinforcement constantly increases the regularity of a patterns. ” In line with the Counseling Directory (2014), a number of the techniques employed by operant health in an attempt to get a new erratic tendencies of an individual include building, punishment, along with positive reinforcement. Some of the strategies that could be applied as far as healing is concerned happen to be: token financial systems, contingency administration and modeling, as well as extinction (Counseling Directory, 2014). Of key importance here, in terms of reinforcement learning is concerned, is usually token financial systems. This approach, according to the Counseling Directory (2014) is definitely founded on great reinforcement, wherever people are provided tokens which can be redeemed for any variety of preferred items or perhaps privileges when the desired (positive) behavior is viewed.


It can be clear from your discussion above that positive and negative support is as powerful in framing human tendencies, as it was inside Skinner’s container. In that regard, reinforcement learning has useful applications in a number of settings, besides the ones talked about above. Pros in many different fields just like prisons officials, marketing management, etc ., as a result have an possibility to make use of encouragement learning to affect the actions of those they interact with each and every day.


Therapies Directory. (2014). Behavior Remedy. Retrieved coming from

Lussier, R. Achua, C. (2009). Leadership: Theory, Application, and Skills Development (4th ed. ). Mason, OH: Cengage Learning.

Tuckman, B. (2009). Operant Health. Retrieved coming from

Spiegler, M. Guevremont, D. (2009). Contemporary Habit Therapy (5th ed. ). Belmont, FLORIDA: Cengage Learning.

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