Matching in Context: The Choice Altering Effects of Function Altering Stimuli
AuthorJacobs, Kenneth Walter
AdvisorHayes, Linda J.
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The development of the generalized matching law has expanded the scope of operant choice research beyond the laboratory. The generality of this law has been evidenced, for instance, in applied settings and elite sport competition. Although these studies have observed deviations from strict matching under more varied circumstances, the complexities underlying these results still require intricate analysis. This research attempts to incorporate contextual factors reminiscent of everyday human behavior into the laboratory so as to better parse out any resulting variances in choice behavior. Deviations from strict matching are produced and analyzed through the implementation of what may be referred to as higher order conditional relations or contextual factors. How such variables affect choice behavior and the implications of this experimental preparation are discussed.