NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ846319
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 20
ISSN: ISSN-0889-9401
Emergence of Mands and Tacts of Novel Objects among Preschool Children
Petursdottir, A. I.; Carr, J. E.; Michael, J.
Analysis of Verbal Behavior, v21 p59-74 2005
According to Skinner's (1957) analysis of verbal behavior, the mand and the tact are functionally independent verbal operants, each of which is acquired through a unique history of reinforcement. The present study attempted to replicate the findings of Lamarre and Holland (1985), who empirically demonstrated functional independence of mands and tacts in typically developing preschool children. Five children participated. All were initially trained to complete two 4-piece assembly tasks. Four children were then trained to tact the four pieces that comprised one of the assembly tasks, and to mand for the four pieces that comprised the other task, using arbitrary vocal response forms. The remaining child received tact training only, and only on one task. The effects of training on the untrained operant were evaluated in a multiple-probe design across tasks. Following mand training, 4 out of 4 children reliably emitted tacts under testing conditions, while the effects of tact training differed across participants. The results differ from those of Lamarre and Holland, but are not necessarily surprising from the point of view of either Skinner's analysis or more recent behavioral accounts of language. Future research should attempt to identify variables that affect transfer between mand and tact relations. (Contains 2 tables and 6 figures.)
Association for Behavior Analysis International. 1219 South Park Street, Kalamazoo, MI 49001. Tel: 269-492-9310; Fax: 269-492-9316; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A