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					Reinforcement Systems

Becky Turner 1/25/2001

Why are reinforcement systems important to have in your repertoire of behavioral interventions?
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Disruptive behavior within the classroom setting is predictive of less academic engagement time, lower grades, and a poorer performance on standardized tests. Students with behavior disorders have a high rate for school dropout, 65%! Many teachers report a lack of training in techniques to manage disruptive behavior (parents have the same difficulties).

Types of problems addressed (What a “Tough Kid” looks like)?
– Behavioral excesses: Too much of a behavior
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Noncompliance Does not do what is requested Breaks rules Argues Makes excuses Delays Does opposite of what is asked

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Aggression -Tantrums -Fights -Destroys property -Vandalizes -Sets fires -Teases -Verbally abuses -Is revengeful -Is cruel to others

Behavioral Deficits: Inability to adequately perform a behavior

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– Self-Management Skills -Cannot delay rewards -Acts before thinkingimpulsive -Shows little remorse or guilt -Will not follow rules -Cannot foresee consequences

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Social Skills -Has few friends -Goes through friends fast -Noncooperative-bossy -Does not know how to reward others -Lacks affection -Has few problem-solving skills -Constantly seeks attention

Behavioral Deficits
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Academic Skills -Generally behind in academics (particularly reading) -Off-task -Fails to finish work -Truant or frequently tardy -Forgets acquired information easily

Positive Strategies
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The Basics

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Positive reinforcement:
-The most powerful and effective method for increasing or maintaining appropriate behavior. -Positive reinforcement always works. If a behavior does not increase when it is followed by a stimulus then by definition, that stimulus is not a positive reinforcer. -A CQ follows every behavior in which we engage in. Those CQs can either serve to maintain, increase, or decrease the future probability of a behavior being performed (If it increases then the CQ is known as a positive reinforcer).

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Common Complaints
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Teacher: “I’ve tried that positive reinforcement and it doesn’t work” Reality: oxymoron, if the CQ did not have an effect of increasing the behavior it was not a positive reinforcer (particularly for this student). There was no positive reinforcement! Teacher: It’s bribery Reality: Bribery is giving a reward to a student to stop an inappropriate behavior or misbehavior. Positive reinforcement is given only after an appropriate behavior to increase or maintain it.

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Common Complaints
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Teacher: Nothing reinforces my student! There is always something that will reinforce a student (unless they are dead). The trick is to find the effective reinforcers.

Positive Reinforcers
 -Reinforcement is individual!
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-Must be something the student values or wants (not what we think they should value or want). -Five ways of identifying reinforcers
• • • • • preference scales preference lists (e.g., reinforcer checklist, reinforcer menu) interview with the child interview with the parent or teacher direct observation

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Reinforcement system for program must have reinforcers that are desired by the student. What do they want? What will they work for?

Types of Reinforcers
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1. Natural positive reinforcers (e.g., be team captain, help custodian, free time to use specific equipment/ supplies, sit next to a friend). 2. Edible Reinforcement (candy, ice cream, pop, pizza, “Baha Chips”) MMMM…these are so good! Material reinforcement (e.g., crayons, key chains, stuffed animals, wax lips & teeth, yoyos) Social Reinforcement (e.g., smile, a comment on a job well done, ATTENTION!) • Good job Becky you are talking SLOW!!

Golden Rules for selecting reinforcers
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-Inexpensive -Do not take a lot of staff time -Should be natural whenever possible

Why should the reinforcers be natural whenever possible?

How to make reinforcers more effective
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Deprivation Magnitude IFEED-AV Immediate (RF student immediately) Frequently (Frequently RF a student, “the living daylights”) Enthusiasm (Enthusiasm in delivery of the reinforcer) Eye Contact (eye contact suggests that the student is special and has the teacher‟s undivided attention) Describe the Behavior (the student may not know why reinforcement is being delivered or think it is for some other behavior) Anticipation (building excitement and anticipation for the earning of the reinforcer can motivate student to try their very best) Variety (avoid satiation of a reinforcer)

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Schedules of Reinforcement
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Continuous RF Intermittent RF 1. Fixed schedule of RF 2. Variable schedule of RF

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Why are the schedules of RF important in reinforcement systems?

Delivery Systems for Positive Reinforcement

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Name some ways to deliver positive reinforcement (reinforcement systems). Which are your personal favorites and why?

Delivery Systems for Positive Reinforcement
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– Wandering Reinforcers “Mystery Motivators” Chart moves Magic Pens Spinners Grab-bags Lottery/raffle tickets
*These can also be combined together to create a variety of different reinforcement systems!

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Wandering Reinforcers

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Wandering reinforcers….what could teachers learn from waitstaff? Why does this work?

Wandering Reinforcers
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– “The Wandering Teacher” -One of the most effective, but underused delivery systems for +RF -Wandering randomly while students are working: the teacher‟s proximity serves to help prevent problems from occurring in the first place. -Teachers can provide + Social RF!!! (e.g., a smile, nod, wink, pat on the back, etc.) Especially for on-task behavior -Allows quick checks of academic work

Mystery Motivators
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The name of a reinforcer is written on a slip of paper, sealed inside an envelope, and displayed in a prominent position somewhere in the classroom (e.g., middle of the chalkboard, clothespinned on a wire running across the ceiling of the room). .Monthly calendar in which the teacher has randomly marked reinforcement days with a small colored X. Each day on the calendar is covered with a self-sticking dot or masking tape (including days designated with an X). For each day the student earns the RF, they are allowed to peel off one dot. If there is and X under the dot the student is given an envelope with a mystery motivator. If there is no X the student must wait till the next day to peel off the next dot. -Can use magic “invisible pens” to make marks on the chart and the student earns the right to color the box on the chart for that day (surprise!…it‟s the hidden X). ****Hype is critical to making Mystery Motivators successful**** -Teachers must be tough marketers!!!!!

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Chart Moves
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(Examples) -utilizes a teacher-constructed dot-to-dot picture which is posted so that the student can track his/her own progress. -Each time reinforcement is earned, the student is allowed to connect another dot on the chart. -The student earns the prespecified reward each time the special reward dot is reached. -The reward dots are colored or circled to indicate that the student will receive the RF when they have earned enough chart moves to reach the special dot. ***The 1st or last chart moves may be dated each day , so that the student’s daily progress is automatically recorded as the chart is used.*** -The distance between the reward dots will vary according to the frequency the teacher believes the student‟s behavior needs to be reinforced (e.g., new behaviors = closer spacing of reward dots, as student „s behavior improves = further spacing of reward dots….”Fading”).

Variations of Chart Moves
Dot-to-dot chart is an actual picture of what the student wishes to earn (e.g., ice cream cone) Tower/Thermometer (e.g., student earns the privilege of coloring in blocks on the graphed tower/thermometer).

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Puzzles: student may earn a puzzle piece each time they land on a reward dot. When completed the puzzle forms a picture of the earned item itself, which the student receives when the puzzle is complete.
***Great for a variety of behaviors such as tantrums, talk-outs, and peer interactions***

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Magic Pens

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– Can combine the Chart Moves System with the use of a magic marker decoding pens. -The reward dots are not circled or colored, but rather are marked with an invisible ink magic marker. -This unpredictable reinforcement usually result in high performance rates

Spinners
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Divided into 5 or more sections with each section representing a different positive reinforcer. Bigger reinforcers are given the smallest slice on the spinner Can be used in combination with chart moves, whereby the student earns a spin on the spinner when they reach one of the colored reward dots. Remember to periodically change the +RFs on the spinner so that students don‟t get bored or satiated with a particular reinforcer resulting in the spinner‟s loss of effectiveness

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Grab-Bags
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Same concept as Mystery Motivators The reinforcer is placed in a bag and is earned when the student uncovers an X on the chart.

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The bag is earned when the spinner lands on the grab-bag section
Student can reach into the grab-bag and choose a wrapped reinforcer without looking in the bag.

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Lottery/Raffle Tickets
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-Teachers can reinforce on a daily basis -Students write their names on earned tickets and deposit them in designated container in the classroom. -Drawings can be held once-twice a day, weekly, or monthly depending on the prize and the level of reinforcement the class requires. -for the weekly or monthly drawings, all coupons earned for the week or month, including those which have already been drawn for prizes, are place din a container for the future drawing. -Students know that if they did not win in the daily drawing that they still have a chance in the weekly or monthly drawing. -COST or FINE SYSTEM: if a student has to be sent to the office or some other discipline action for more severe behavior, the student can be disqualified from collecting a prize if their name is drawn.

Guidelines for using Lottery/Raffle Tickets
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1. Select specific target behaviors (academic and/or social). 2. Design or select tickets. 3. Determine how often initial drawings must be held so that students will be motivated to work for tickets. 4. Explain the program to the students. Which behaviors will result in their earning tickets. Role-play if necessary. 5. Implement the program. 6. When giving out ticket, praise and specifically describe the behavior that merited a ticket. 7. Make sure to reward tickets to students who have not exhibited the targeted behaviors previously, but are doing so now. 8. Make sure to reward tickets to students who have exhibited the target behaviors in the past and continue to do so. 9. Evaluate the program within 2 weeks when implemented daily or 4 weeks when implemented weekly. Make any necessary adjustments.

Reductive Techniques

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Differential Reinforcement
As important as it is to reward good behavior, it is equally important to fail to reward bad behavior (Active Ignoring). (Ex. DRO…Differential Reinforcement of Other kid!!!!)

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What principles influence the effectiveness of reductive techniques?
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-Reward rate should be high. -Reward an appropriate behavior that interferes with the misbehavior. -Do not adapt the student to the reductive technique (e.g., start off with a less intense form of the reductive techniques and gradually work it up). -Start early in the student‟s behavior chain of misbehavior (identify the trigger misbehaviors in the chain). -Maintain peer attention to your advantage (use peer attention to reward appropriate behaviors through the use of “group contingencies”.

How do you use active ignoring?
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Active Ignoring is briefly removing all attention from the misbehaving child. Guidelines to follow: 1. Briefly remove all attention from your child. 2. Refuse to argue, scold, or talk. 3. Turn your head and avoid eye contact. (clinic example) 4. Don‟t show your anger in your manner or gestures. 5. Pretend to be absorbed in some other activity-or leave the room. 6. Be sure the child‟s bad behavior doesn‟t get him a material reward (e.g., candy bar) 7. Give your child lots of attention when his bad behavior stops. (These steps are a mild form of Time-out) (Ex. Down‟s Syndrome child)

What behaviors would you use “active ignoring” to weaken?
– Whining and fussing -Pouting and sulking -Loud crying intended to punish parents -Loud complaining -Continuous begging and demanding -Breath holding and mild tantrums -SPITTING!!!!!

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Rewarding good alternative behavior
– Target behavior – To be decreased (active ignoring) 1. Whining Good Behavior to be increased (use praise & attention) 1. Talking in a normal tone of voice 2. Toy sharing; toy trading

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2. Toy grabbing

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3. Hostile teasing

3. Playing cooperatively

What is Grandma’s rule?

– The Premack Principle!! “you can watch TV after you finish your homework” . “After you do your chore you get to play”.

TOKEN ECONOMIES
****Money**** -Money is a conditioned reinforcer, it is used to trade for things that we want or find desirable (e.g., food, car, clothes). – The child is reinforced for positive behaviors by earning tokens or points. They can lose tokens or points for inappropriate behaviors. The child can periodically turn in the tokens or points for certain rewards (reinforcer) such as free time, candy, etc.

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TOKEN ECONOMIES
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Thus, the token economy is comprised of three components • .Behaviors to be reinforced are identified and defined • .A medium of exchange is selected. A medium of exchange refers to some symbol or token that a child receives after successfully completing a target behavior. • .Back-up reinforcers are provided that can be purchased with the tokens. *Token economies have been successfully implemented for a wide variety of individual s and settings, such as residential settings for juvenile delinquents, psychiatric wards, classrooms for individuals with developmental disabilities, general classroom, the military, and normal family homes.

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What are some advantages of a token economy?
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1. Tokens can be administered immediately after the target behavior occurs. 2. It is easier for teachers to dispense tokens than verbal Reinforcement when dealing with student within age group. 3. Unlike edible and activity reinforcers, tokens can be used to reinforce a student‟s behavior at any time without interrupting the lesson or having satiation occur. 4. Tokens maintain a student‟s behavior over long periods of time. 5. Tokens allow use of the same reinforcer for students that favor different reinforcers since they can be exchanged for items each finds desirable (Reinforcer Stores)

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Rules for establishing a Token Economy
.Develop rules .Select an appropriate token (be careful of forgery) .Establish reinforcers for which tokens can be exchanged .Establish Select a target behavior .a ration of exchanges .Develop a reward menu and post it in the classroom .Designate a time when children can exchange tokens .Implement the token economy .Provide immediate token reinforcement for acceptable behavior • .Gradually change from a continuous to a variable schedule of reinforcement • .Provide a time for the child to exchange tokens for backup reinforcers Revise the menu frequently • • • • • • • • •

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Multipurpose Point sheet (token economy)
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Designed to focus on five general classes of behaviors those teachers find particularly troublesome for certain students. This system is designed to encourage students to perform specified behaviors throughout the day regardless of the teacher or content area. • .New sheet can be attached every day, or can be weekly. • .Operational definitions of the behavioral categories and the number of points students can earn for each behavior • .A reinforcement menu to choose reinforcer they are earning pints towards. • .A schedule for exchanging points for back-up reinforcers should also be included

Multipurpose Point sheet (token economy)
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**Success depends upon cooperation of all teachers!!!**
Main reasons teachers balk on using this system……. • .they may think it is too time consuming • .Some teachers may resent having to reinforce students when they expect them to be good.

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Mark
 Mark is an 11-year-old 6th grader at Boondock Middle School. Mark had been diagnosed with ADHD, but is currently not receiving any meds. Parental report indicates that the family is of low SES and that they have difficulties controlling Mark‟s behavior. Teacher report indicates that Mark is, to put it frankly, driving them batty. According to the teachers, He has difficulty staying in his seat, verbal outbursts (not raising hand), coming to class prepared (paper, books, pencils, etc.), bad attitude (arguing with teacher), stealing, lying, and poor social skills with his peers.

Mark
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Based upon the above information, what type of behavior plan would you create to address some of Mark‟s difficulties? Which sort of reinforcement system would you use and why? Would you incorporate only positive forms of RF, negative forms of RF, or both and WHY? (Why? Why? Why?)
What was actually implemented at the site…..

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What are some common errors that adults can make that contribute to causing behavior problems? (4 common errors).
• .Failure to reward good behavior
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Jessie a 5th grader, walks up to her father to show him her report card. Father, sitting in his easy chair is busy reading the paper. Jessie says “I made pretty good grades Dad. Would you like to see my report card? Dad?” Father replies, “yes, but let me finish reading the paper first….Would you go and ask you mother is she picked up the dry cleaning today

Adult’s “accidentally” punish good behavior
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Jarred 8-year-old wants to surprise mother by washing the lunch dishes. Jarred: “I washed the dishes all by myself mom!” Mom: “It‟s about time you did them on your own. Now what about the pans on the stove? Did you forget about them?….”

.Adults “accidentally” reward bad
behavior
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5 year-old Tommy and his mother are in the grocery store. Tommy spies a candy bar he wants. Tommy: “I want a candy bar! Mom, I want it, please……!” Mom: “No Tommy, it‟s too close to supper for you to have a snack.” Tommy: (Tantrumming) “I WANT THE CANDY BAR, GIMMEE IT, I WANT IT!” Mom: “fine have the darn candy bar and quit screaming about it, it‟s embarrassing.”

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Adult’s fail to punish bad behavior (when mild punishment is indicated)
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Jim is a 5 year-old with Down’s Syndrome who is sitting in the playroom with his caregiver. When the caregiver begins to talk to another adult in the room, Bob throws his baseball at the caregiver. The caregiver looks at Bob, then says to the other adult, “boys will be boys.”

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Main points to remember
1. Both good and bad behaviors are strengthened when rewarded. 2. Reward the child‟s behavior quickly and often. 3. Avoid rewarding the child‟s bad behavior.

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4. Use some mild punishment to decrease or eliminate some behaviors

Resources
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Clark, L. (1996). SOS Help for Parents: A practical guide for handling everyday behavior problems. Bowling Green: Parents Press. Jenson, W. R., Rhode, G., & Reavis, H. K. (1994). The Tough Kid Toolbox. Longmont: Sporis West. Maag, J. W. (1999). Behavior Management: From theoretical implications to practical applications. San Diego: Singular Publishing LTD. Rhode, G., Jenson, W. R., & Reavis, H. K. (1992). The Tough Kid Book: Practical classroom management strategies. Longmont: Sopris West. Sheridan, S. M., Kratochwill, T. R., Bergan, J. R. (1996). Conjoint Behavioral Consultation: A procedural manual. New York: Plenum Press Stage, S. A. & Quiroz, D. R. (1997). A Meta-analysis of interventions to decrease disruptive behavior in public education settings. School Psychology Review, 26, 333-368.

Practical Considerations within the CBC context
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When parents are involved in their children‟s education, their children do better in school and go to better schools. Parental participation is related to increased student achievement, better school attendance, better study habits, fewer discipline habits, more positive attitudes toward school, more regulate work habits,and greater similarity between the school and family. *Parental involvement is considered to be essential variable in improving the likelihood that interventions to solve school [problems will be maximally effective

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Practical Considerations within the CBC context
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Behavioral theory is founded on the assumption that behaviors are learned as a function of their interaction with the environment. .Ecological theory considers that the child is an inseparable part of of systems (their environment) from which they cannot separated.
– Home and school are the largest and most impactful systems that a child is part,. – Thus, both ecological and behavioral theorists believe that an intervention must take place within the home setting and major social institution such as the school – ***Further, interventions that are in concordance with the child‟s settings (home and school ) are more likely to produce last change

How to maximize on the advantages of utilizing both Home & school with reinforcement systems
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The parent‟s could provide the renforcers at home. They might have a better control of reinforcers that a child really desires such as going to the movies, watching TV, getting a new video game, etc. – Home based contingencies: earn your “points” in school and receive your reifnrcer at home.
The 3 things that parents can control greatly can influence the child‟s academic performance – 1. absenteeism – 2. reading materials in the home – 3. TV viewing – **STRUCTURE***

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Practical Considerations
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What are some other practical considerations for implementation within the CBC context?


				
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