ERIC Number: ED051528
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1971-May
Reference Count: 0
Reinforcement Schedules and Attributed Freedom.
Davidson, Andrew R.; Steiner, Ivan D.
This study tests the contention that a reinforcing agent's manner of administering rewards and punishments is construed by his associates as revealing his margin of freedom, and that associates are more attentive to cues concerning a reinforcing agent's dispositional qualities, and more inclined to ingratiate themselves to him, when he employes reinforcement techniques that imply a high degree of freedom. Eighty-eight naive subjects were reinforced for performance on an anagram task on either a 40% or a 100% reinforcement schedule. Those subjects receiving 40% reinforcement: (1) attributed greater freedom to the "teacher"; (2) were more attentive to cues concerning the teacher's dispositional qualities; and (3) manifested a greater tendency to ingratiate themselves to the teacher. Results suggest that reinforcements are communicative acts which inform the recipient of the probable intentions, attitudes and freedom of the agent who administers them. (Author/TL)
Descriptors: Attitudes, Behavior, Behavior Change, Behavioral Objectives, Communication (Thought Transfer), Discrimination Learning, Motivation, Operant Conditioning, Perception, Reinforcement, Rewards, Teaching Methods
Ivan D. Steiner, Department of Psychology, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Massachusetts 01002
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Institutes of Health (DHEW), Bethesda, MD.
Authoring Institution: Massachusetts Univ., Amherst. Dept. of Psychology.; Illinois Univ., Champaign.
Note: Paper presented at the Rocky Mountain Psychological Association Convention in Denver, Colorado, May 12-15, 1971