In order to illustrate most clearly the various types of consequences it is necessary to introduce a second type of feedback: a statement describing how effective your choice was or another event planned by the behavior modifier (me!). These evaluations of performance are analogous to the consequences that a therapist might set up for a client. Which is to say they are planned out thoughtfully and added, more or less, artificially by an external agent. They overlay the natural consequences for a behavior and usually are planned to outweigh the natural consequences.
In each game the pop-up box may contain evaluative statements that represent one of the consequences of interest. For example, Click on the two symbols below.
Notice that the dark blue box includes the natural consequence (in the game world) of 2 credits but also has a supportive statement. The supportive statement is meant to be a positive consequence. (Whether it actually is a positive reinforcer for you in particular is unknown.) The light blue box contained no additional event, ergo no additional consequence.
On some items, clicking correctly stops an unpleasant experience (flashing images). Being able to stop the flashing image is something planned by me in the role of "therapist" to encourage correct clicking by letting you avoid something unpleasant. This experience illustrates the combination of natural consequences with planning. The flashing is (in general) naturally irritating. I harness that quality in a planned way to encourage desirable behavior (correct clicking).
Each game is labelled according to the nature of the planned consequence and begins with a brief definition of each. When you are finished, study how effectively the comments embody the definitions. Feel free to click among the various games and try to identify the differences among the evaluative statements. You have to look across games to understand the differences in the consequences. Make notes on your record sheet about what happens for a correct and an incorrect choice.
Record the type (if any) of evaluative statement you receive using + and - signs. The nature of the comments or the flashing may affect your emotional reaction to the particular game. Make note of how you feel on the record sheet.
Warning: Some of the conditions have statements that are intended to be unpleasant. This is necessary to demonstrate the principles. Remember that this is an exercise for demonstration purposes and does not reflect on your true capacities or abilities. Enter at your own risk. And learn how it feels to be a recipient of some of these methods and choose to personally use them more wisely in the future.
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