Applied Behavior Analysis Unit 4 Assignment

Case 1: Bobby
Select and identify a target behavior for an increase in this case and provide an operational definition[CJ1]

Bobby’s bedroom is always in a mess and disorganized. Bobby’s father would like to devise a way in which he can encourage Bobby to keep his room in an organized manner regularly.  I will identify target behavior and recommend a modification program which may commence his father’s wish[CJ2] . Bobby’s behavior causes stress to the father and wishes to change this as soon as possible. The modification that I will design is using Operant conditioning, which may result in a positive improvement in Bobby’s behavior that his father desires (William L Heward, 2011). [CJ3] 
Identify and discuss the reinforcement system at work that is supporting the undesired target behavior. Define operant conditioning and discuss how this method works to increase desired behavior.
In most cases, analysts will use a continuous reinforcement in their first period of behavior modification. Positive reinforcement results when the desired response occurs after specific stimuli is introduced. These[CJ4]  may include the motivational level of the individual participants and being age conscious of reinforces. An example of an inappropriate reinforcement is giving a baby rattle to a teenage like Bobby as a reward (William L Heward, 2011).[CJ5] 
Operant conditioning can be defined as the process and selective effects of consequences on behavior.  This method helps to increase the desired behavior which may trigger a positive change[CJ6] . An example in Bobby’s case is to clean his room to space for his new game (William L Heward, 2011).[CJ7] 
Select and outline a reinforcement-based intervention for this case and include your rationale for selection. Be sure to include a definition of positive reinforcement and operant conditioning in your discussion.
           A schedule of reinforcement can be defined as a rule that describes a contingency of reinforcement, those environmental arrangements that determine conditions by which behaviors will produce reinforcement. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of two possible schedules of reinforcements along with their case implementation:
Fixed Schedule – in this reinforcement technique, the time requirement will always remain constants or the same. This reinforcement would be used to attain the desired behavior, for Bobby’s case, I would implement this by telling him that for each night his room is clean he will get $5.00. Advantages of this process are that it maximizes the delivery rate and it can produce faster rates of the desired behavior. While the disadvantages, if the ratio requirement becomes large then it rates of response may reduce and may result to post-reinforcement pause (Alberto, 2013).
Variable Schedule – this requires a different and undisclosed number of responses before the participant receives the desired reinforcement. This case would also be used to attain the desired behavior, For Bobby’s case, I would implement by telling Bobby that he if he occasionally cleaned his room he would get $20.00 to go to the mall. Advantages of this process are that it produces a steady rate of response and doesn’t result to post-reinforcement pause. Its advantages are that it is rarely implemented with any type of systematic approach (William L Heward, 2011).[CJ8] 

Case 2: Jackie
Identify the target behavior and provide an operational definition.
Jackie started fearing dogs at the age of 3 after being bitten by a dog; the injury also came with several stitches. It has now over twenty years since the incident and Jackie recalls the event in full detail. The distress caused by this event has caused her not to be able to be around or even see dogs. If such a scenario occurs, it causes here to have heart palpitations and nausea. Since the event, she has avoided dogs but now she yet to marry a breeder[CJ9] . She is now seeking assistance before her marriage which is in 6 months (Alberto, 2013).[CJ10] 
Both classical and operant conditioning account for Jackie developing this phobia. Pick one and use it to explain why Jackie has remained fearful of dogs.
In a situation where ABA professionals try to change socially significant behavior that is causing distress to their client’s life, they use specific principles. There are several theories that can be used but one specific theory that can be used in Jackie’s case is due to negative reinforcement. Negative reinforcement can be described as the removal or termination of specific stimulus that leads to a specific response[CJ11] . This can be used to change what one may consider undesirable behavior (William L Heward, 2011).[CJ12] 

What evidence-based behavior modification program can be designed for Jackie so that she does not experience fear when seeing dogs? What is your rationale for selection?
Applied behavioral analysts use continuous reinforcement during the initial stages of learning and for strengthening behavior. One of the most particular modifications that I would use to help Jackie is classical conditioning.
This principle is mostly used to deal with fears and phobias. I would implement this theory by asking Jackie to meet with a dog and offer it a steak bone and in return, the dog will lick Jackie[CJ13] . This will be the routine at least three times a week until the dog becomes familiar with Jackie. And with time, the dog will show Jackie that they are not all going to cause injury (William L Heward, 2011).[CJ14] 
Case 3: Emma
Identify the target behavior and provide an operational definition.
Emma is a 4-year-old who refuses to clean the room despite the rewards offered and time out. When it comes to cleaning time, Emma shows anger, which includes yelling, screaming and throwing around her toys. In different scenarios, the parents have always picked up during[CJ15]  outbursts and resulted to them cleaning the room themselves instead (Austin, 2010).[CJ16] 
Discuss the principles of operant conditioning that may be maintaining Emma's current challenging behavior.
Emma’s exhibit of her outbursts and tantrum can be explained by the underlying principle of operant conditioning that her parents will always pick her up and clean the room themselves[CJ17] . This shows Emma that despite her behavior her parents will always reward her with love and won’t have to clean the room because her parents will always end up doing it (William L Heward, 2011).[CJ18] 
Describe how you could apply operant conditioning theory to create an evidence-based behavior modification to address Emma's behavior. Outline all components of the procedure selected and be sure to provide the rationale for its selection based on the information provided in #2
In this case, I would also use the Operant conditioning theory to create a modification program which will change Emma’s behavior. This would result in her parents changing their action of picking her up and cleaning the room by themselves[CJ19] . An example would be to tell her that it is okay and she will only be picked up when her room is clean or also praise her on every step in cleaning her room (William L Heward, 2011).[CJ20] 
After reviewing the three cases, we see that we can use different procedures in applied behavior analysis to address human behavior. Some can be valuable modification techniques. Operant conditioning and classical conditioning are the behavior modification procedures that I choose to implement for these cases, refusal to clean a room on a regular basis, fearing dogs and throwing temper tantrums when asked to clean a room. The above procedures would also be used to improve individual behavior as compared to those of group setting.


Alberto, A. C. (2013). Applied behavior analysis. New York: Wiley.
Austin, J. (2010). Applied behavior analysis. New York: McGraw-Hill.
Cooper, J. O., Heron, T. E., Heward, W. L. (2007). Applied Behavior Analysis (2nd edition). New Jersey: The Lehigh Press, Inc.
William L Heward, J. O. (2011). Applied behavior analysis. Harlow: Prentice Hall.

 [CJ1]Remember that assignments should be written in APA format rather than question and answer format.
 [CJ2]So what is the target behavior? How is it defined?
 [CJ3]Incorrect citation.
 [CJ4]So what is the reinforcement system at work that is maintaining Bobby’s behavior? This should be considered in terms of reinforcement or punishment.
 [CJ5]Incorrect citation.
 [CJ6]This is true, but also very vague and does not fully describe what operant conditioning is. The following example of Bobby is not an example of operant conditioning.
 [CJ7]Incorrect citation.
 [CJ8]While this is true about schedules of reinforcement, there is no discussion of what positive reinforcement is and a description of how to implement positive reinforcement with Bobby with a rationale.
 [CJ9]What is the target behavior and target behavior definition? That is not described here.
 [CJ10]Incorrect citation.
 [CJ11]How is this done with Jackie? Would you say operant or classical conditioning is happening here and why?
 [CJ12]Incorrect citation and untrue information here.
 [CJ13]How is this related to classical conditioning? I don’t think it is. There are other behavioral procedures, however that could be helpful.
 [CJ14]Incorrect citation.
 [CJ15]It would be important here to include the target behavior and operational definition.
 [CJ16]Incorrect citation.
 [CJ17]While operant conditioning is occurring, it is important here to be more specific about which operant conditioning procedure is occurring.
 [CJ18]Incorrect citation.
 [CJ19]Great! What would this program look like? What behavioral procedures would be implemented?
 [CJ20]Incorrect citation.

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