My Psych 111 Class Through Operational Conditioning Using M & M 's As A Positive Reinforcer Essay

953 WordsDec 3, 20154 Pages
In a study done by Dianne M. Tice and Roy F Baumester (1997), procrastination was shown to cause a higher amount of stress for college students late in the semester, an overall increase in illness, and lower grades on assignments. Thus, procrastination on studying, or “cramming,” can be inferred to have a negative effect on both health and exam performance. The purpose of this experiment is to reduce cramming by increasing the time spent studying daily for my Psych 111 class through operational conditioning using M&M’s as a positive reinforcer. Studying is conceptually defined as the act of devoting time and attention to acquiring knowledge on a subject. Before the experiment was performed, the daily time spent studying for Psych 111 averaged 10-20 minutes. The positive reinforcer, M&M’s, are conceptually defined as button-shaped candies produced by Mars, Incorporated that contain a milk chocolate interior. Chocolate serves as an effective positive reinforcer as it stimulates the release of pleasure-causing endorphins (Dyer 2006). Because chocolate stimulates pleasure and arousal, I hypothesized that my study time will increase compared to my study time not using a positive reinforcement as I will be motivated to study more for the chocolate reward. The goal of this experiment is to increase study time to at least 30 minutes of studying per day on average while the subject is being positively reinforced. Methods To provide a control for this experiment, a baseline

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