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A behavior controlled by any physical movement that serves as a novel model excluding vocal-verbal behavior, has formal similarity with the model, and immediately follows the occurrence of the mode.


Impure Tact

A verbal operant involving a response that is evoked by both an MO and a nonverbal stimulus; thus, the response is part mand and part tact


Independent Variable

The variable that is systematically manipulated by the researcher in an experiment to see whether changes in the independent variable produce reliable changes in the dependent variable. In applied behavior analysis, it is usually an environmental event or condition antecedent or consequent to the dependent variable. Sometimes called the intervention or treatment variable.


Indirect Functional Analysis

Structured interviews, checklists, rating scales, or questionnaires used to obtain information from people who are familiar with the person exhibiting the problem behavior; used to identify conditions or events in the natural environment that correlate with the problem behavior.


Indirect Measurement

Occurs when the behavior that is measured is in some way different from the behavior of interest; considered less valid than direct measurement because inferences about the relation between the data obtained and the actual behavior of interest are required.


Indiscriminable contingency

A contingency that makes it difficult for the learner to discriminate whether the next response will produce reinforcement. Practioners use indiscriminable contingencies in the form of intermittent schedules of reinforcement and delayed rewards to promote generalized behavior change.


Informed Consent

When the potential recipient of services or participant in a research study gives his explicit permission before any assessment or treatment is provided. Full disclosure of effects and side effects must be provided. To give consent, the person must a) demonstrate the capacity to decide, b) do so voluntarily, and c) have adequate knowledge of all salient aspects of the treatment.


Instructional Setting

The environment where instruction occurs; includes all aspects of the environment, planned and unplanned, that may influence the learner's acquisition and generalization of the target behavior.


Interdependent Group Contingency

A contingency in which reinforcement for all members of a group is dependent on each member of the group meeting a performance criterion that is in effect for all members of the group.


Intermittent Schedule of Reinforcement

A contingency of reinforcement in which some, but not all, occurrences of the behavior produce reinforcement.


Internal Validity

The extent to which an experiment shows convincingly that changes in behavior are a function of the independent variable and not the result of uncontrolled or unknown or uncontrolled variables.


Interresponse Time (IRT)

A measure of temporal locus; defined as the elapsed time between two successive responses.


Interobserver Agreement

The degree to which two or more independent observers report the same observed values after measuring the same events.


Interval-by-Interval IOA

An index of the agreement between observers for data obtained by interval recording or time sampling measurement period by comparing the two observers' recordings of the occurrence or nonoccurrence of the behavior in each observation interval and dividing the number of intervals of agreement by the total number of intervals and multiplying by 100.


Interval DRL

A procedure for implementing DRL in which the total session is divided into equal intervals and reinforcement is provided at the end of each interval in which the number of responses during the interval is equal to or below a criterion limit.



An elementary verbal operant that is evoked by a verbal discrimination stimulus and that does not have point-to-point correspondence with that verbal stimulus.



A situation that occurs when the level of responding observed in a previous phase cannot be reproduced even though the experimental conditions are the same as they were during the earlier phase.