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Verbal versus Nonverbal Interlocked-Behaviors in an Elaborated Account of the Metacontingency
AdvisorHoumanfar, Ramona A.
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The experimental literature on metacontingency has demonstrated the selection of aggregate products (APs) by factors external to the group (i.e., cultural consequences) and has begun to focus on properties of interlocked-behaviors (IBs) in addition to the variables influencing the associated re-occurrence in the recent years. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of low level of explicitness (i.e., ambiguity) of rules on performance at the dyad level, and determine effects of linguistic interactions in the formation of IBs under ambiguous conditions.The experimental conditions required interlocked behaviors of participants in an analog organizational task to generate APs. Instructions varying in three levels of ambiguity --high explicit (HE), medium explicit (ME), and low explicit (LE)-- were presented to participants throughout the experiment to determine their effect on participants’ IBs. Additionally, vocal verbal interactions participating during acquisition and maintenance of IBs were also measured and analyzed. Overall statistical analyses revealed significant differences between dyads’ performance with respect to their assigned groups (Verbal vs Non-Verbal). Within-subject data analyses suggest that individuals engage in linguistic interactions throughout the session regardless if APs are selected or not. In sum, dyads spent more time cooperating than interacting in any other way, and similar patterns of cooperation were observed across dyads.