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Episode 239: Dr Joe Layng Pt 1: Schedules of Reinforcement


We’re beginning a four part series on schedules of reinforcement with Dr Joe Layng. Dr. Layng is a behavior analyst with over fifty years of experience in the experimental and applied analysis of behavior. His most recent book is “Nonlinear Contingency Analysis: Going Beyond Cognition and Behavior in Clinical Practice. I could go on with a long list of Joe’s professional credentials, but instead I’ll say that Joe was one of the regular presenters at the Art and Science of Animal Training conference. That’s where I first met him. Joe’s talks were always for me the highlight of the conference in part because he prompted me to look at familiar concepts through a different lens.


I always think of Joe as better than google. During any conversation he’ll rattle off at least half a dozen references that need to be explored. You’ll discover very quickly what I mean by that in the first part of this episode. Joe has our guest before. We’ve talked about contingency adduction, the effect of schedules on social behavior, and one of my favorite topics to discuss with Joe, degrees of freedom. If those topics sound too academic for your tastes, don’t worry. Joe is a wonderful story teller.


In every conversation Joe has left us with a teaser. In this case he begins with a teaser. Our plan was to talk about reinforcement schedules, but Joe jumped in chatting about a topic he’s been exploring recently - that of private experiences.


Typically, I edit out the conversations we have when we first sign into zoom and we’re getting ourselves organized. In this case Joe’s comments were too much fun not to share. So yes, we are going to talk about schedules of reinforcement in this episode, but first we’re going to indulge in a journey down a couple of interesting rabbit holes.



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