Behavior Research Methods

, Volume 38, Issue 2, pp 232–236 | Cite as

An evaluation of response allocations to concurrently available slot machine simulations

  • Mark R. Dixon
  • Otto H. MacLin
  • Dustin Daugherty
Articles from the SCiP Conference


Gambling behavior often involves making choices between concurrently available game options. With regard to slot machine gambling, multiple games allow for choices to be made with respect to which game to play. The authors of the present study used a slot machine simulation created in Visual Basic. NET to examine gambling preference. The specific question addressed was whether gamblers prefer a smaller payout more often (averaging around every 10 spins) over a larger payout less often (averaging around every 50 spins). Two types of reinforcement were examined during the study: frequency of payouts and the amount of credits won. The results indicate that participants had a preference for a slot machine with the more frequent payout as opposed to one with more intermittent payout. These results support existing literature on theories of choice and provide a step toward understanding human gambling behavior.


Pathological Gambling Gambling Behavior Slot Machine Total Credit Response Allocation 
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Copyright information

© Psychonomic Society, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mark R. Dixon
    • 1
  • Otto H. MacLin
    • 2
  • Dustin Daugherty
    • 2
  1. 1.Southern Illinois UniversityCarbondale
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyUniversity of Northern IowaCedar Falls

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