Technological Advances in the Experimental Analysis of Human Behavior

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Abstract

The experimental analysis of human behavior (EAHB) involves the study of basic operant and respondent phenomena with human subjects and is a well-established proving ground for exploring behavioral principles and processes that may be difficult to study in applied settings. EAHB has significant implications for the understanding of human behavior in typical environments and could assist in translating findings from the basic laboratory to areas of social importance. Early research in EAHB relied heavily on analyzing gross motor responses using cumbrous stimuli and apparatus, which have both logistic and analytic limitations. Fortunately, the advent of technological innovation has revolutionized how EAHB can be conducted as well as the future of these research methodologies. We present a discussion on technology as applied to EAHB and contrast modern methods to those historically used. We also offer strategies for how technologies could be incorporated into EAHB research as well as challenges that the behavioral scientist might encounter when embarking on a technologically sophisticated EAHB investigation.

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