The Behavior Analyst

, Volume 18, Issue 1, pp 99–111 | Cite as

A Model of Cause-Effect Relations in the Study of Behavior

  • Drake C. Chisholm
  • Donald A. Cook


A three-phase model useful in teaching the analysis of behavior is presented. The model employs a “black box” behavior inventory diagram (BID), with a single output arrow representing behavior and three input arrows representing stimulus field, reversible states, and conditioning history. The first BID describes the organism at Time 1, and the second describes it at Time 2. Separating the two inventory diagrams is a column for the description of the intervening procedure. The model is used as a one-page handout, and students fill in the corresponding empty areas on the sheet as they solve five types of application problems. Instructors can use the BID to shape successive approximations in the accurate use of behavior-analytic vocabulary, conceptual analysis, and applications of behavior-change strategies.

Key words

model diagram causality paradigm notation procedure 


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Copyright information

© Association for Behavior Analysis International 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Drake C. Chisholm
    • 1
  • Donald A. Cook
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyBridgewater State CollegeBridgewaterUSA
  2. 2.Cambridge Center for Behavioral StudiesConcordUSA

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