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J Exp Anal Behav. Sep 1981; 36(2): 141–149.
PMCID: PMC1333063

Melioration, matching, and maximization

Abstract

Pigeons were studied in an experiment involving two concurrently available response keys. Conditions were such that in the first condition the predictions of melioration (Herrnstein & Vaughan, 1980), minimization of deviation from matching, and maximization were identical: relative time on the right key should have fallen between .125 and .25, which in fact occurred. In the second condition, melioration predicted a shift in relative time on the right to between .75 and .875, which would involve a transient deviation from matching as well as a substantial drop in rate of reinforcement. All three birds eventually shifted their distribution of behavior to within the range predicted by melioration.

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Selected References

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