CHAPTER 19

Summary Points

1.      Many people who are not behaviorists or behavior modifiers conceptualize motivation
        as some “thing” inside us that causes our actions. For example, Brittany’s hockey coach
        says that she is highly motivated because she puts forth a great effort at practice,
        shows up on time, and is eager to practice more than the other players. The coach is
        conceptualizing motivation as the cause of Brittany’s behavior.

2.      A conceptual limitation of the traditional view of motivation is that it involves circular
        reasoning. The causal “thing” (drive, motivation, etc.) is inferred from the behavior that
        it is supposed to explain (e.g., Why does Brittany put forth a lot of effort at hockey
        practice? Because she is a motivated player. How do we know she is a motivated player?
        Because she puts forth a great effort.).

3.      (a) The idea that the cause of our behaviors are within us may cause us to ignore the
        behavioral principles for changing behavior and the data that supports the effectiveness
        of those behavioral principles; (b) it may influence some people to blame individuals for
        inferior performances (e.g., “Shawn is just not motivated enough to play baseball.”), vs.
        trying to help individuals improve their performance; (c) it may influence some to blame
        themselves for failure to emit certain behaviors (e.g., “I am just not motivated enough to
        get an A+ in this course”) rather than examining self-management strategies for
        improving performance.

4.      To influence someone to behave in a certain way (i.e. motivate him/her to act), one can
        manage antecedents (e.g., rules, goals, modelling, situational inducement, etc.) and
        consequences (e.g., reinforcement, extinction, punishment, etc.) for his / her behavior.

5.      Motivating operations (MOs) are events or operations that (a) temporarily alter the
        effectiveness of consequences as reinforcers or punishers (value-altering effect), and (b)
        influence behaviors that normally lead to those reinforcers and punishers (behavior-
        altering effect). For example, depriving someone of food increases the effectiveness of
        food as a reinforcer and increases the likelihood of behaviors that have produced food in
        the past.

6.      Motivating establishing operations (MEOs) increase the effectiveness of a consequence
        as a reinforcer and increase behavior that has produced that consequence. Motivating
        abolishing operations (MAOs) decrease the effectiveness of a consequence as a
        reinforcer and decrease behavior that has lead to that consequence.

7.      An unconditioned motivating operation (UMO) alters the effectiveness of consequences
        as reinforcers or punishers without prior learning. For example, if you are deprived of
        fluids, water becomes a more effective reinforcer without prior learning. A UMO also
        increases the likelihood of behavior that has been affected by that consequence, but
        this behavior-altering effect is learned. If you have not had something to drink for a
        lengthy period, the behavior of buying a soft drink is learned.

     8. Conditioned motivating operations (CMOs) alter the effectiveness of consequences as
       reinforcers or punishers (value-altering effect), and affect behavior that have lead to
       those reinforcers or punishers (a behavior-altering effect); both effects are learned. Any
       appropriate examples are acceptable.

Sd vs CMEO (p249 in 8th edition):
Suppose a football team has been practicing for a long time in hot/humid conditions without
water. The coach tells one of the players to bring the jug of water from his car and then hands
the players the keys to the car.
9.     A football coach’s request to get water for his thirsty team is an SD (disrim stim) because the
       players are already thirsty and want water. The coach’s request is a cue that tells the
       players what to do (go to the car) to get what they already want (water).

10.    A coach’s request might be interpreted as a Conditioned Motivating Establishing
       Operation (CMEO) for the player for asking for the keys to the coach’s car (where the
       water jug is located). That is, the request to bring the jug of water in conjunction with
       the locked car would increase the reinforcing value of the keys, and would increase the
       behavior of asking for the keys, both of which are learned effects.

11.    An echoic is a vocal imitative response that is typically reinforced by a social reinforcer.
       For example, when a mother is teaching her baby to say “Mama” she might say to her
       child, “Say Mama.” If later the child mimics “Mama,” the mother would praise the child
       by hugging him or her and saying “Yeha, that’s right, Mama!”

12.    A mand is a verbal response that is under the control of a motivating operation,
       and is reinforced by the corresponding reinforcer (or removal of corresponding
       aversive stimulus). A mand is a request or demand for something that a person “wants,”
       and the person is reinforced by receiving whatever it is that he/she wants. For example,
       a child who is very hungry and has limited speech says “food please,” and is given a
       snack. The child’s saying “food please” was a mand.

Mand example
13.   For example, in teaching verbal behavior to a child with disabilities, training may begin
      with having the child mand for a reinforcer that has high motivational value (i.e.,
      candy). The child is given a piece of candy on the first trial and then in full view of the
      child, the teacher may hide the candy and ask the child “What do you want? Say
      candy.” If the child says “candy,” he is given another piece of candy. On subsequent
      trials, the teacher asks, “What do you want?” and reinforces asking for “candy.” It’s
      hoped that after a certain amount of such training, the child will generalize manding for
      “candy” to other situations (e.g., at the store, in the kitchen, etc.).

Suppose that a pianist sets a goal for herself. This goal is as follows: “Before I can stop
practicing, I have to play this piece through 10 times in a row without making mistakes. Is
that goal conceptualized as an Sd or a CMEO?
14.     The rule that the pianist sets for herself is more like a CMEO than an SD because the
        rule temporarily alters the value of the conditioned reinforcer of playing the piece
        without making a mistake, and increases practice behavior that will lead to that
   • Motivating Operations are a type of antecedent environmental manipulation
     that temporarily alters the effectiveness of consequences as reinforcers /
     punishers (value altering), and influences behavior that normally leads to those
     reinforcers or punishers (behavior altering)
         – Motivating operations create an uncomfortable state which we wish to
            change. Basically, motivating operations create a need to act in some
         – Deprivation/satiation of food = motivating operation

   •   Types of MO’s
          – Motivating establishing operations (MEOs) which increase the
             effectiveness of consequences as reinforcers (i.e. food deprivation)
          – Motivating abolishing operations (MAOs) which decreases the
             effectiveness of consequences as reinforcers (i.e. food satiation).

   •   Basically, motivating operations temporarily increase the effectiveness of
       reinforcers and punishers both.

   •   MO’s can be learned (conditioned CMO) or innate (unconditioned UMO).

   •   CMO - Alters the effectiveness of the consequences of a behavior as reinforcer or
       punisher (value-altering effect) because of prior learning. I have learned the
       studying hard for a final exam may be more important than studying for a
       trivial pursuit tournament.

   •   CMEO (conditioned motivating establishing operation) – momentarily increases
       the value of the conditioned reinforcer and increases the likelihood of behavior
       that led to the reinforcement in the past.

   •   CMAO (conditioned motivating abolishing operation) - decreases the value of a
       conditioned reinforcer and decreases the likelihood of the behavior that was
       reinforced in the past (example: influences someone to no longer want a given
       consequence - coupons could only be exchanged for movies/ not music –
       receiving coupons is no longer a consequence I want)

   •   Discriminating variables and MO’s:
          • DV are related to the differential availability of a reinforcer
          • MO ‘related to differentially reinforcing effectiveness of environmental
          • In other words DV’s may or may not be there (available) which changes
             whether the behavior takes place, whereas MO’s are there and are able to
             alter the value of a reinforcer to increase or decrease the likelihood of a

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