Category Archives: Behavior analysis

When Is Citing a Research Study Not Enough?

Answer: Almost always. One study is usually flimsy evidence. What we need to consider is the bulk of the research. I’ll explain. Most of the online requests for studies I see are from people who want to support their points … Continue reading

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Posted in Behavior analysis, Critical Thinking, Research | 10 Comments

Socially Mediated Negative Reinforcement

I’ve updated one of my earlier posts to reflect better terminology and rewritten it quite a bit. Check it out, and feel free to share! Automatic vs. Socially Mediated Negative Reinforcement   Copyright 2017 Eileen Anderson

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Posted in Behavior analysis, Negative Reinforcement | 9 Comments

Higher-Order Conditioning: Did it Happen To My Dog?

The other day I was sitting in my bedroom with Clara and Zani and the doorbell rang. And there was dead silence.

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Posted in Behavior analysis, Classical conditioning | Tagged , , , , | 16 Comments

What’s a Functional Assessment in Dog Training? (And Why You Should Care)

A lot of dog training advice you get on the Internet won’t help. Pretty strange comment coming from a dog blogger who frequently writes about training, right? But even if people recommend a humane, positive reinforcement-based approach, something is missing … Continue reading

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Posted in Behavior analysis | 15 Comments

So Tell Me What You Want, What You Really Really Want: 9 Ways Preference Testing Can Go Wrong

What’s your favorite color? Do you prefer pie or ice cream? Which shirt do you like better: the striped one or the solid green one? Most of us have been asked our preferences since we were children. Sometimes we are being asked … Continue reading

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Posted in Behavior analysis, Choice, Research | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Do You Dogs REALLY Want To Come In?

(In answer to a couple of comments: The title of the post is correct. I am addressing my dogs and asking if they want to come in. Sorry if it comes off as clunky,) What do my dogs understand when … Continue reading

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Posted in Behavior analysis, Cues | Tagged , | 21 Comments

Latent Learning: The Original Definition

Latent learning has a precise definition in learning theory and it’s not what many people think. It’s not magic learning that happens during downtime–at least not in the way people assume. It is not a sudden better performance after a … Continue reading

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Posted in Behavior analysis, Positive Reinforcement | Tagged , , , , | 14 Comments

Leave It: Not Just for Dead Men Anymore

The other day I was pondering the trend of talking about teaching “self-control” and “impulse control” in our dogs. I got to thinking about “leave it,” both the term and the behavior. I realized a couple things. First, the term “leave it” … Continue reading

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Posted in Behavior analysis, Terminology, Zen/Leave it | Tagged , , | 27 Comments

Local Enhancement and Socially Facilitated Behaviors in Dogs

This post started out as one thing and transformed into another as I went along, as many of mine do. I have been familiar for a while with the term local enhancement for a type of social learning in dogs. … Continue reading

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Posted in Behavior analysis, Terminology | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

Will the Mystery Antecedent Please Stand Up?

Thank you to Randi Rossman for discussing the scholarly work about antecedents with me. All mistakes are my own.  I recently found myself in a situation that dogs are in a lot of the time, and it was a revelation. … Continue reading

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Posted in Behavior analysis, Cues, Human and dog misunderstandings | Tagged , , , , , | 23 Comments