Time-Out as a Punishment for Button Pushing Three normal-speaking adults were assigned the task of speaking spontaneously for fifteen 40-minute sessions. During baserate, the subjects simultaneously performed a motor task that consisted of depressing one or the other of two buttons on signal—one button push each seven seconds. During treatment sessions, each depression of the predetermined criterion ... Research Article
Research Article  |   March 01, 1971
Time-Out as a Punishment for Button Pushing
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Richard Martin
    University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Judith Gaviser
    University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Article Information
Research Articles
Research Article   |   March 01, 1971
Time-Out as a Punishment for Button Pushing
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, March 1971, Vol. 14, 144-148. doi:10.1044/jshr.1401.144
History: Received August 25, 1969
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, March 1971, Vol. 14, 144-148. doi:10.1044/jshr.1401.144
History: Received August 25, 1969

Three normal-speaking adults were assigned the task of speaking spontaneously for fifteen 40-minute sessions. During baserate, the subjects simultaneously performed a motor task that consisted of depressing one or the other of two buttons on signal—one button push each seven seconds. During treatment sessions, each depression of the predetermined criterion button activated a red light. The light remained on for seven seconds, after which it was extinguished automatically until the next depression of the criterion button. Prior to each treatment session the subjects were told to stop speaking immediately when the red light came on and to remain silent for as long as the light was on.

For all three subjects, arranging the circumstances such that time-out from speaking for seven seconds was made contingent on pushing the criterion button resulted in a marked decrease in the frequency of criterion button pushes.

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