Matching is not an Emergent Property of the Operant Reserve Open Access

Berg, John Peder (2009)

Permanent URL: https://etd.library.emory.edu/concern/etds/rx913q511?locale=en
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Abstract

Matching theory has been highly successful in describing behavior at equilibrium across
a wide variety of live organisms. Despite this success, the dynamics from which
equilibrium behavior emerge are not well understood. Numerous dynamic models of
behavior have been proposed and while some have been successful in accounting for
particular types of behavior, only recent advances in computational modeling, namely the
McDowell (2004) model of selection by consequences, have produced results that
account for a wide variety of behavior. Catania (2005) found that a computational model
of the operant reserve (Skinner, 1938) produced realistic behavior in initial, exploratory
analyses. Although Catania's operant reserve computational model demonstrated
potential to simulate varied behavioral phenomena, the model was not systematically
tested. The current project replicated the Catania model, clarified its capabilities through
systematic testing, and determined the extent to which it produces behavior
corresponding to matching theory. Significant departures from both classic and modern
matching theory were found in model behavior across all conditions. The results suggest
that a simple, dynamic operant model does not simulate realistic steady state behavior.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


List of Tables

List of Figures

I. Introduction....................................................................................1
II. Method........................................................................................14
III. Results........................................................................................20
IV. Discussion...................................................................................34
V. References...................................................................................44
VI. Tables.........................................................................................47
VII. Figure Captions..............................................................................53
VIII. Figures........................................................................................59






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