Negative and Positive Reinforcement

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  • Kate's mother said that if she studied, did her homework, and got and A on he test she could have her friends over on Friday night.
  • Kate loves hanging out with her friends so she began to study and do her homework. 
  • Kate went to school the next day to take her test and she got an A because she studied and did her homework. 
  • Friday came along and since Kate had passed her test her mom allowed her to have her friends over. This is an example of positive reinforcement.
  • Kate's mom made the same deal with her the next week, but this time Kate did not study and failed her test. As a result her mom said she could not go to her friends house. This is an example of negative reinforcement. 
  • Kate learned that by studying and doing well on tests she would be awarded with getting to see her friends. This is an example of operant conditioning because Kate's want to be able to see her friends reinforces her behavior so that she is more inclined to study for tests. 
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