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Review
, 22 (4), 529-47

Use of Noncontingent Reinforcement in the Treatment of Challenging Behavior. A Review and Clinical Guide

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Review

Use of Noncontingent Reinforcement in the Treatment of Challenging Behavior. A Review and Clinical Guide

M Tucker et al. Behav Modif.

Abstract

Recently, noncontingent reinforcement (NCR) has been used to reduce challenging behavior in persons with developmental disabilities. In this context, NCR involves reinforcement on a fixed-time schedule irrespective of behavior. The present article reviews studies involving NCR for the treatment of challenging behavior. Based on this review, a clinical guide for the implementation of NCR is delineated. NCR appears to depend on ensuring that reinforcement matches the function of the challenging behavior. Initially, noncontingent reinforcement should be provided on a continuous basis. The schedule can then be faded from continuous reinforcement to a more appropriate level in a number of ways. NCR can also be combined with additional educationally oriented interventions to promote skill development. Given its ease of implementation and other potential advantages, NCR would appear particularly relevant for applied settings. The clinical guide may offer some assistance to practitioners.

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