The Premack Principle describes how activities can be used as reinforcers for behavior that is less probable in an individual. In this lesson. Español: Un boceto del aparato utilizado por David Premack en para un experimento de comportamiento para demostrar el principio de. principio de maduración anticipatoria principio (т) Пе maduración Prägnanz principle principio (т) Пе Premack – Premack’s principle principio (т) Пе primacía .

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Experimenters observe the extent to which an individual is deprived of, or prevented from performing, the behavior that is later made contingent on the second behavior.

Retrieved from ” https: In effect, the subject must subsequently increase responding to make up for the “deprivation” of the contingent response. Views Read Edit View history. In one procedure, eating was the reinforcing response, and playing pinball served as the instrumental premck that is, the children had to play pinball in order to eat candy.

An example is a mother who says “You have to finish your vegetables low frequency before you can eat any ice cream high frequency “. That is, only children who preferred playing pinball over eating candy showed a reinforcement effect. Premack’s principle may be violated if a situation or schedule of reinforcement provides much more of the high-probability behavior than of the low-probability behavior.


Reinforcement occurs only when the situation is set up so that access to the contingent response has been reduced relative to its baseline level.

File:Premack’s apparatus.png

More desirable behaviors are those that individuals spend more time doing if permitted; less desirable behaviors are those that individuals eo less time doing when free to act. The results were consistent with the Premack principle: Just as “reward” was commonly used to alter behavior long before “reinforcement” was studied experimentally, prinvipio Premack principle has long been informally understood and used in a wide variety of circumstances. Several subsequent experiments have supported this alternative to the Premack principle.

Some of the children preferred one activity, some the other. This study, among others, helps to confirm the Premack principle in showing that a high-probability activity can be an effective reinforcer for an activity that the subject is less likely to perform.

File:Diagrama del experimento de – Wikimedia Commons

The Premack principle was derived from a study of Cebus monkeys by Professor David Premackbut it has explanatory and predictive power when applied to humans, and it has been used by therapists practicing applied behavior analysis. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Stated objectively, if high-probability behaviors more desirable behaviors are made contingent upon lower-probability behaviors less premsck behaviorsthen the lower-probability behaviors are more likely to occur.

The roles of responses were reversed in the second test, with corresponding results.

File:Premack’s – Wikimedia Commons

An individual will be more motivated to perform a particular activity if he knows that he will partake in a more desirable activity as a consequence. In the second phase of the experiment, the children were tested with one of two procedures. By using this site, you agree to the Prinxipio of Use and Privacy Policy. Such observations led the team of Timberlake and Allison to propose the Response Deprivation hypothesis.


One of the earliest studies was conducted with young children.

File:Diagrama del experimento de Premack.png

This page was last edited on 22 Marchat Premack gave the children two response alternatives, eating candy or playing a pinball machine, and determined which of these behaviors was more probable for each child. David Premack and his colleagues, and others, have conducted a number of experiments to test the effectiveness of the Premack principle in humans.

Premack’s principleor the relativity theory of reinforcementstates that more probable behaviors will reinforce less probable behaviors.

All articles with unsourced statements Articles with unsourced statements from March Premack’s principle suggests that if a person wants to perform a given activity, the person will perform a less desirable activity to get at the more desirable activity; that is, activities may themselves be reinforcers.