Concurrent Behavior: Are the Interpretations Mutually Exclusive?
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The experimental literature is replete with examples of behavior which occur concurrently with a schedule of reinforcement. These concurrent behaviors, often with similar topographies and occurring under like circumstances, may be interpreted as functionally autonomous, collateral, adjunctive, superstitious or mediating behavior. The degree to which the interaction of concurrent and schedule controlled behavior is used in the interpretation of behavior illustrated the importance of distinguishing among these interpretations by experimental procedure. The present paper reviews the characteristics of these interpretations, and discusses the experimental procedures necessary to distinguish among them. The paper concludes that the interpretations are mutually exclusive and refer to distinct behaviors, but that the distinction between any two of the interpretations requires more than one experimental procedure.
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