Suppose an instructor is investigating ways to improve scores on the weekly exams she gives her class. She decides to introduce online discussion questions, but chooses to alternate the discussions, assigning them every other week. At the end of the term, she compares the exam results on “discussion weeks” versus “non-discussion weeks.” Without realizing it, this instructor has designed an alternating treatment experiment.
Single-subject experimental designs aim to test the effectiveness of an intervention or to compare the relative effectiveness of two or more interventions. They differ from case studies in that they are true experiments, not merely observational. Two examples of single-subject experimental designs are alternating treatment (as introduced by the instructor in the above example) and changing criteria designs.
In this Discussion, you will examine the application of alternating treatments and changing criteria designs. You will identify behaviors that may benefit from these experimental designs and explore the appropriateness of their use.
Review the Learning Resources for this week, including the required weekly media programs, to gain an understanding of reinforcing functionally equivalent alternatives to problem behavior when using a reductive procedure.
Note: It is critical for you to review all media for this week prior to completing this Discussion.
By Day 4, Week 7 (Required but not assessed)
Post a description of a behavior that the following designs might be appropriate:
Select an example from your own life for each of the following: Continuous Reinforcement
Fixed Ratio Schedule
Fixed Interval Schedule
Variable Interval Schedule
Variable Ratio Schedule
Post and describe each example you selected from your own life for each of the above listed.
Explain if you think any one of these plays a greater role in your life than others.