Title

The Effect of Verbal and Tangible Reinforcement on the Task Accuracy of Young Boys vs. Girls

Author(s)

Caroline M. Nassab

School Name

Heathwood Hall Episcopal School

Grade Level

11th Grade

Presentation Topic

Psychology and Sociology

Presentation Type

Non-Mentored

Oral Presentation Award

1st Place

Abstract

Encouraging children to behave is a skill that many parents and educators strive to achieve. The goal of behavioral reinforcement is to increase the frequency of positive behavior by rewarding children when it is exhibited. Little research has been done on the most effective reinforcement with respect to gender, thus the purpose of this experiment is to determine the effect of verbal and tangible reinforcement on the task accuracy of young boys vs. girls. It was hypothesized that if young boys and girls are rewarded through a verbal reward, a tangible reward, or no reward at all, the verbal and tangible reward will impact task accuracy. An equal number of boy and girl participants was obtained and placed into one of three groups: the control, verbal reinforcement, and tangible reinforcement. Participants were tested individually using the subprogram, Symbol Recognition, of the Biobytes Software. Participants took baseline, experimental, and post-treatment tests where they had to correctly identify the target letter 15 times. During the experimental trials, the control group received no reward, the verbal reinforcement group received positive verbal praise, and the tangible reinforcement group received a nickel for each correct response. Results from ANOVA tests show statistical significance (p<0.05) for the percent success rates of girls in the experimental tests between the verbal and tangible group, and the control and tangible group; statistical significance was also found among success rates for the girls in the tangible reinforcement group between the baseline and experimental tests and baseline and post-treatment tests.

Start Date

4-11-2015 11:00 AM

End Date

4-11-2015 11:15 AM

COinS
 
Apr 11th, 11:00 AM Apr 11th, 11:15 AM

The Effect of Verbal and Tangible Reinforcement on the Task Accuracy of Young Boys vs. Girls

Encouraging children to behave is a skill that many parents and educators strive to achieve. The goal of behavioral reinforcement is to increase the frequency of positive behavior by rewarding children when it is exhibited. Little research has been done on the most effective reinforcement with respect to gender, thus the purpose of this experiment is to determine the effect of verbal and tangible reinforcement on the task accuracy of young boys vs. girls. It was hypothesized that if young boys and girls are rewarded through a verbal reward, a tangible reward, or no reward at all, the verbal and tangible reward will impact task accuracy. An equal number of boy and girl participants was obtained and placed into one of three groups: the control, verbal reinforcement, and tangible reinforcement. Participants were tested individually using the subprogram, Symbol Recognition, of the Biobytes Software. Participants took baseline, experimental, and post-treatment tests where they had to correctly identify the target letter 15 times. During the experimental trials, the control group received no reward, the verbal reinforcement group received positive verbal praise, and the tangible reinforcement group received a nickel for each correct response. Results from ANOVA tests show statistical significance (p<0.05) for the percent success rates of girls in the experimental tests between the verbal and tangible group, and the control and tangible group; statistical significance was also found among success rates for the girls in the tangible reinforcement group between the baseline and experimental tests and baseline and post-treatment tests.