By Todd A. Ward, PhD, BCBA-D
President, bSci21Media, LLC
The newest issue of the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis reported on a study by Romanowich and Lamb (2015) on smoking cessation. The researchers investigated fixed vs escalating reinforcement schedules on smoking abstinence. More specifically, participants in the fixed reinforcement condition received $19.75 for each smoke-free breath sample, while participants in the escalating reinforcement condition received $5.00 for their first smoke-free breath sample with a 50 cent increase for each sample thereafter. Finally, participants in the control condition received payment for delivering any breath sample.
The results of this study are actually in conflict with earlier studies investigating opioid dependency. Also of interest is that control participants maintained similar levels of abstinence as participants in the fixed reinforcement condition, while those in the escalating condition abstained longer despite relatively smaller reinforcer values for the first six weeks.
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Todd A. Ward, PhD, BCBA-D is President of bSci21 Media, LLC, which owns bSci21.org and BAQuarterly.com. Todd serves as an Associate Editor of the Journal of Organizational Behavior Management and as an editorial board member for Behavior and Social Issues. He has worked as a behavior analyst in day centers, residential providers, homes, and schools, and served as the director of Behavior Analysis Online at the University of North Texas. Todd’s areas of expertise include writing, entrepreneurship, Acceptance & Commitment Therapy, Instructional Design, Organizational Behavior Management, and ABA therapy. Todd can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.