Category Archives: Extinction

All That’s Unpleasant Does Not Punish

I’ve written a lot about the behavior science definitions of reinforcement and punishment. That’s because they can trip us up so easily. Something can be attractive, but not always reinforce behavior. Something can be unpleasant, but not serve to decrease … Continue reading

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Posted in Aversive stimulus, Behavior Science, Extinction, Punishment | 4 Comments

Resistance to Extinction Can Be Incredibly Annoying

I’ve written before about the concept of “resistance to extinction” and how it’s not all that it’s cracked up to be when we want strong, fluent behaviors from our dogs. Unfortunately, the situation where we are likely to notice resistance … Continue reading

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Posted in Cues, Extinction | 20 Comments

A Quadrant by Any Other Name is Still a Cornerstone of Operant Learning

There is a science that deals directly with how organisms learn and how to use that information to change the environment in order to change behavior. It’s called applied behavior analysis (ABA). It is the applied version of behavior analysis, … Continue reading

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Posted in Behavior Science, Extinction, Operant conditioning, Terminology | Tagged , | 17 Comments

How to Make Extinction Not Stink

[In operant learning], extinction means withholding the consequences that reinforce a behavior.  –Paul Chance, Learning and Behavior, Fifth Edition, 2003 This post is Part 2 (a year later!) of But Isn’t it Punishment to Withhold the Treat? In that post I … Continue reading

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Posted in Behavior Science, Extinction, Punishment | 29 Comments

But Isn’t it Punishment to Withhold the Treat?

Lots and lots of people think that if you withhold the treat you are punishing the dog. Some will ask the above question in a gleeful, challenging way, feeling certain that they have caught the positive reinforcement based trainers in … Continue reading

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Posted in Behavior Science, Extinction, Operant conditioning, Punishment, Terminology, Training philosophy | Tagged , , | 36 Comments