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Psychology ABAB, Term Paper Example

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Term Paper

A famous case study in the history of psychology would have to be the case of Washoe, the chimpanzee who learned how to use sign language (Yin, 1994). This little chimp was the first animal to learn American Sign Language, and this was done through research conducted in regards to the experiment on animal language acquisition. An experiment like this greatly impacted the scientific community because it showed that Washoe was not just able to communicate with humans, but she was also able to show emotion and sensitivity. In the field of science, this indicates that Washoe’s relationship with humans deems her deserving of a moral status, maybe not just her but most, if not all animals (Yin, 1994). The disadvantages of this method would be in terms of teaching. If the teaching methods, or the teacher his or herself was not as great as the one who communicated with Washoe, the experiment might be rendered useless in the future, if ever attempts to communicate with other animals are made.

The ABAB method can be used to change a child with emotional or behavioral disorders in a classroom setting. This can be done where the baseline is praise, and the changing factor is reward. The difference between the two can be measured out, and the one that received the most positive response will be deemed the most affective. In a hypothetical scenario, the child with EDB might want to participate in classroom activities 20-50% more with praise but 30-60% more with rewards. This means, that giving the child positive reinforcement in the form of materialistic rewards is more effective than verbal praise.

Another example of using this method could be done in training a puppy to sit. The baseline could be a treat as compared to praise. The negative aspects of this method is the inconsistency of the method, and the need for recovery from the baseline. Also, a method like this is focused on an individual, and it would be difficult to measure group statistics. Additionally, the results from a certain individual varies and can change in accordance to mood or other variables given.

References

Yin, R.(1994). “Case study research: Design and methods” (2nd ed.).Sage Publishing:Beverly   Hills, CA. ISBN 978-0-7619-2553-8.

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