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Theses Doctoral

The Effects of Observation of Learn Units During Reinforcement and Correction Conditions on the Rate of Learning Math Algorithms by Fifth Grade Students

Neu, Jessica

I conducted two studies on the comparative effects of the observation of learn units during (a) reinforcement or (b) correction conditions on the acquisition of math objectives. The dependent variables were the within-session cumulative numbers of correct responses emitted during observational sessions. The independent variables were the observation of reinforcement for correct responses as the control condition and the observation of corrections for incorrect responses. Eight 11-year-old target participants, 3 females and 5 males, were selected to participate in Experiment 1, during which a counterbalanced simultaneous treatment across participants design was used. Target participants and non-target peers were presented with math objectives that were not in repertoire. The non-target peers received feedback in the form of either reinforcement or a correction in 2 separate conditions while target students observed and received no feedback. Results from Experiment 1 showed that all of the target participants mastered the 3 math objectives presented during the observation of the correction condition and 7 of the 8 target participants mastered the objective during the reinforcement condition. Target participants met criterion with significantly fewer numbers of observing opportunities during the correction condition than during the reinforcement condition. Experiment 2 was a replication of Experiment 1 with greater experimental control. Six target participants, 4 females and 2 males, 10-year-olds, were selected to participate in Experiment 2, in which a between subjects counterbalanced reversal design across conditions and math objectives was implemented. Results showed that all target participants mastered 18 out of 18 math objectives presented during the correction condition and target participants mastered 10 out of 18 objectives presented during the reinforcement condition.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Applied Behavior Analysis
Thesis Advisors
Greer, R. Douglas
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
May 23, 2013