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Assessment that predicts what you like



Predicts what you might work for

Reinforcer assessment


Inelastic means...

No change. Does not change defense of consumption


Elastic means…

Change. Would Stop paying.


If preference does not change then reinforcer probably…

Won’t change either


Research suggests that individuals with ASD display more stable preferences that individuals without similar diagnosis
-RANK ORDER correlations used to examine stability

Ciccone Graff Ahean 2007. Examined rank order correlation coefficient is for a food only. After six months and 12 months. Suggest that food is more stable than leisure items (Zhou) As reinforcement

Shifts in preference and stimulus value. What are variables that contribute to stability of stimulus preferences


Castillo, Deleon, crawford:
Proportion and mean correlation for 1st versus 2nd ...

Greater for edibles for all analysis


Brief DALY MSWO assessment did NOT result in same top ranked items identified through paired stimulus preference assessment at beginning

More responding allocated to the tasks associated with top ranked stimulus, identified by daily brief SPA, then to tasks associated with original top ranked stimulus

**Changes in preferences often correspond to changes in reinforcer value**

BUT According to Thomson, depends if preferences very

Shifts in preferences and stimulus value. Category showing greater stability may require less frequent Assessment – however be careful

Deleon First PSPA


1. It’s momentary capacity to support responses that produce it

2. It’s utility in producing long-term behavior change

The effectiveness of a reinforcer can refer to both..

Determinants of stimulus value


Hanley: By pairing less preferred activity with established reinforcers through contingent delivery or three non-contingent delivery?

—Enhancing an activity with supplemental contingent reinforcement can shift choices towards activity

—Non-contingent pairing of an activity with established pay for it stimuli can shift choices towards activity

BUT Affects seem transient in general – does not persist after discontinuation of pairing

Can we make something preferred that was not preferred


1. Weakens effectiveness

2. Results in decreases in value of reinforcer

Delays to reinforcement


Generally, delays to reinforcement:
1. Weakens effectiveness
2. Results in decreases in value of reinforcer

Leon: (In preparation):
1. Delayed food produced greatest persistence

2. Delayed tokens produce the most rapid decrease in responding

3. Immediate token delivery with a delayed exchange opportunity equaled or exceeded effects of delayed food

4. Conditioned reinforcer is less susceptible to adverse affects of delay - DEPENDS on when they earned and exchanged

Delay to reinforcement


Organisms will distribute behavior among currently available alternatives in same proportion that reinforce was distributed among those alternatives

Matching law


Quality of reinforcement:
“ LEVEL of PREFERENCE- Hi your preference equals better quality

But, HP and LP stimuli sometimes support similar rates are responding

Deleone: Progressive ratio schedules found higher preference, better quality reinforcers may function as relatively more potent reinforcers

Quality of reinforcement


Can vary according to:

May support higher break point (Progressive ratio)

May play a role in thinning schedules of reinforcement



The EFFECTIVENESS of a reinforcer refers to:
A. . Momentary capacity to support responses that produce it

B. Utility in producing changes in motivating operations

C. Utility in producing long-term behavior change

D both A and C

Look up momentary capacity


A stimulus that evokes behavior because of a differential reinforcement history such that the reinforcer is available in the presence of the stimulus but not in the absence of it

Discriminative stimulus


What sort of stimulus is always present when a reinforcer is delivered?

The reinforcer itself