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National University Psychology Evaluate Learning Experiences that Modify Behavior Paper

National University Psychology Evaluate Learning Experiences that Modify Behavior Paper


Imagine that you are a behavioral consultant at a community-based parenting center. Your job is to review cases to determine if the behavioral interventions planned by the staff are appropriate. Review the brief case descriptions below: 

Scenario 1: Mrs. Levinsky has come to the clinic for help with her 9-year old son’s messiness. She is a working mother and doesn’t have time to pick up after her children. Her older girls are neat and tidy, but Leo is very messy. He never makes his bed and his toys are usually thrown on the floor. His school clothes lie in piles on his chair and his desk is usually so messy that he is often late for school because he has to search for his books and notebooks buried in the mess on his desk. He spends most of his afterschool hours texting his friends or playing computer games. His grades are good, but his personal habits are frustrating to his mother. Leo himself says that his mom is too picky and he has no problem with his room as it is.

The consultant on the case, Kim Lee, suggests a behavior contingency program. Leo has until 5 p.m. everyday, when his mom comes home from work, to get his room clean and tidy. If the room is not tidy, then Leo will be punished by not being allowed outside to play.

Scenario 2: Mr. and Mrs. Kamali are upset about their 3-year old son’s aggressive behavior. Lately, Basem has begun to smash his toys, or to bang on the doors and tables in the home and has actually managed to put some holes and scratches in some of the family’s furniture. The family has had to remove all decorative pieces from the coffee tables and keep all glasses and breakables out of his reach. He seems to take great delight in this behavior and laughs with glee while he smashes and crushes his toys and other belongings. His parents always react by scolding him or picking him up and taking him out of the room to make him busy with something else, depending on their mood. Mr. Kamali’s grandparents, who live in an upstairs apartment and take care of Basem until their parents return home from work in the afternoon, say that it’s nothing, he’s just being a boy. They find some of his antics even cute and often laugh when he goes into his aggressive mode.

The caseworker suggests a program of extinction. The parents are to ignore the aggressive behavior altogether and neither scold Basem, nor pick him up and play with him when he does this.

Scenario 3: Seven-year old Tania is always teasing her younger brother Derrick. She hides Derrick’s favorite blanket, taunts him, and always seems to know how to make him cry. Her mother can’t leave them alone for even a minute without worrying about what Tania will do to Derrick. She has never done anything violent or physically harmful, but she usually upsets Derrick so much that mother has to take time from her cooking or part time at home office work to calm the children. Whenever mother tries to scold Tania, Tania objects saying, “I didn’t do anything. I was just playing. Why do you always pick on me?”

The caseworker suggests punishing Tania by sending her to her room any time she is in the room with Derrick when he starts to cry.

Next, write a paper identifying which scenarios you would okay for further development, and which scenarios need to be reframed using different behavioral techniques. Explain your evaluations using principles learned in the readings. Include in your assessment what behavioral change principles are involved in the program each case worker is suggesting and explain why you believe the suggested principles would work or not. Then, choose one of these cases and develop a complete behavioral change program. In your behavioral change program, explain your program goals, how you would track progress, and what techniques or principles you would follow and why.

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