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The Effects of Delayed versus Simultaneous Matching-to-Sample on Equivalence Classes Reorganization

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The delayed matching-to-sample (DMTS) procedure enhances equivalence class formation when compared to the simultaneous matching-to-sample (SMTS). However, studies have shown different outcomes for classes reorganization. In this study, we investigated the effects of DMTS and SMTS for reorganizing classes that were initially established using DMTS. Twenty undergraduate students learned conditional discriminations AB, AC, and AD using a DMTS (2s). After this training, equivalence test trials assessed the formation of two classes (A1B1C1D1; A2B2C2D2). Participants were then assigned to two groups, DMTS Group and SMTS Group. All participants performed a reversed AD training (A1D2; A2D1) and a baseline review containing AB, AC and reversed AD trials, but under different MTS procedures according to their respective groups. Eight participants in DMTS group and seven in SMTS group reorganized the classes (A1B1C1D2; A2B2C2D1). The percentage of correct responses in the reorganization tests was not significantly different between groups. Procedural features were examined to explain why DMTS improves class formation but not class reorganization.

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All data generated or analyzed during this study are included in this published article (and its supplementary information files).


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We thank Ramon Marin and Alceu Regaço for their careful reading and valuable suggestions for the manuscript.


This research is part of the scientific program of Instituto Nacional de Ciência e Tecnologia sobre Comportamento Cognição e Ensino (INCT-ECCE), supported by São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP: Grant #2014/50909-8), by the Brazilian Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq: grant #465686/2014-1), and by Coordination for the Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES: grant #88887.136407/2017-00). G. W. Ribeiro holds a doctoral scholarship from FAPESP (grant #2017/25786-8). D. G. de Souza have a Research Productivity Grant from CNPq.

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Correspondence to Giovan W. Ribeiro.

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All procedures performed in this study involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the local ethics committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

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Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

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Ribeiro, G.W., de Souza, D.G. The Effects of Delayed versus Simultaneous Matching-to-Sample on Equivalence Classes Reorganization. Psychol Rec 73, 133–137 (2023).

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