Title: Designing, Applying, and Evaluating a Self-Modification Program

Format and Length: The completed assignment will be in essay format with clear   
introductory and concluding paragraphs but no subheadings. It will be 6-7 double-spaced typed pages, font type is Times New Roman, including references (must be on one page), and appendix (tables, charts, etc.) pages.
Instructions: All of us have behaviours that we would like to change. We might want to
stop biting our nails, reduce the number of energy drinks we drink or study more. This assignment requires that you design, apply, and evaluate a self-modification program:
1) Begin by reading Personal Application: Achieving Self-Control Through Behaviour Modification appearing in chapter six of the Weiten & McCann text (p. 299-301);
2) Choose a behaviour that you would like to increase or decrease;
3) Follow the five steps outlined;
4) Write your essay covering all five steps;
5) Submit your paper to me personally.

Some possible behaviours for the project include:
• decreasing coffee, energy drink, or pop consumption(use this)

Essay Assignment (Fall, 2016): Purpose, Expectations, and Evaluation Criteria

Purpose: The essay topic was developed to accomplish a number of objectives,   
including: 1) to facilitate a better understanding of the terminology, key concepts, and processes of operant conditioning; 2) to demonstrate the practical applications of operant conditioning theory; 3) to provide students with an opportunity to change their own behaviour in a systematic, meaningful way; and 4) to allow students to evaluate the successes and challenges of self-modification.

Format: The completed assignment must be in essay format with no subheadings. It
will include: 1) a title page with the title of the essay, student’s name, course name, professor’s name, and due date; 2) an appendix page containing at least one graph clearly showing baseline data and program results (additional graphs, charts, or tables must be well-labeled and relevant); 3) a reference page with at least the Weiten & McCann textbook listing.

Preparation: You are expected to do the following in preparation for this essay:
• Review chapter 6 material on operant conditioning, p. 274-287.   
• Read Achieving self-control through behaviour modification, p. 299-301.
• Attend the lecture on Learning.
• Choose a behaviour that you would like to increase or decrease, making sure that this target behaviour is clearly defined, overt, and measurable.
• Gather baseline data by systematically observing and charting the target behaviour for at least four days.
• Note the antecedents that usually precede the target behaviour – what triggers the behaviour that you are trying to change? Under what conditions do you exhibit the undesirable behaviour? Or, under what conditions do you not exhibit the desirable behaviour?
• Note the consequences that follow the target behaviour – what you are getting out of it. Thus, you need to pinpoint the reinforcers that maintain the undesirable behaviour or the unfavorable outcomes that suppress a desirable behaviour.
• Plan the program. To increase a response, you must select a reinforcer that is right for you and decide how you will deliver it. On the other hand, to decrease a response, you must choose a viable strategy. Will you provide yourself with reinforcement for not emitting the behaviour or emitting it less frequently? Will you avoid certain antecedent? Will you employ some form of punishment? Or will you use a combination of these approaches?
• Execute your program and collect data for at least six days.
• Evaluate your program by indicating what went well, what was challenging, and what, in retrospect, you would change if you were to run the program over again.      

Content: The essay must begin with a clear introductory paragraph and go on to cover
all five of the self-modification program steps. Specifically, you must 1) identify the target behaviour and indicate why it was chosen; 2) describe the baseline data (noting behavioural antecedents, pre-program level of response, and behavioural consequences); 3) outline the program design; 4) discuss the implementation of the program and 5) critically evaluate the program upon completion.

2   -    for well-written introductory paragraph
1    -    Step 1: for selecting appropriate target behaviour and justifying selection
5    -    Step 2: for discussing level/frequency of pre-program target behaviour, with reference to the controlling antecedents and controlling consequences of the behaviour
4    -    Step 3: for designing a thoughtful self-modification program
3    -    Step 4: for discussing program execution
5    -    Step 5: for critically evaluating program, including discussion of successes and possible improvements
2   -    for well-written concluding paragraph
1    -   for clear, well-labeled graph(s), chart(s), and/or table(s)
2   -    Grammar, spelling and proper citations (APA format)

Please note: Your writing does not have to be polished, but it does have to be clear. Grammar and spelling are important simply because they are standard ways of communicating. When writers follow the conventions of grammar and spelling, it makes the job of the reader, which is to understand the writer’s intentions, much easier. And when writing, that is your goal: to communicate.

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These solutions may offer step-by-step problem-solving explanations or good writing examples that include modern styles of formatting and construction of bibliographies out of text citations and references. Students may use these solutions for personal skill-building and practice. Unethical use is strictly forbidden.

The operant conditioning notion has remained relevant theory in the study of human behavior. It refers to a form of learning in which a person’s behavior is controlled through the consequences. According to Weiten and McCann (2012, p. 274), at the core of operant conditioning are negative or positive reinforcement, as well as positive or negative punishment. In the present paper, I will present a problematic behavior that I am anticipating to change going into the future. I will then design a program that will potentially allow me to achieve my ambitions. On top of this, I will present succinct evaluation of the program, noting the differences that the program made to my life and the potential adjustments that ought to be integrated. While the program was characterized by some difficulties, I can rightly inform that it was hugely beneficial and that the adjustments that I made will allow me to experience a sustainable turnaround in my problematic behavior.

Over the past few years, I have been taking volumes of energy drinks. While this is the case, I have realized that the tendency of consuming excessive energy drinks is harming my life. For example, I have been having severe headaches especially when I go for prolonged periods without taking the drinks. Besides, I have been experiencing a high level of anxiety and confusion, which hinder me from concentrating even in my studies. Furthermore, I have realized that I have been having a poor quality of sleep over the past three weeks (Colman, 2003, p. 180). I wake up several times at night and tend to have weird dreams....

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