Misconceptions of Negative Reinforcement

Misconceptions of Negative Reinforcement
Negative reinforcement is commonly misunderstood because of the term negative. Most people get it mixed up with punishment or think it refers to an unwanted behavior being reinforced. In the science of behavior analysis, the term negative refers to the fact that a stimulus is being removed after a behavior. Remember, reinforcement is used to increase behavior, so with negative reinforcement, a stimulus is removed following behavior to increase the frequency of the behavior in the future. For example, when you connect your seat belt to stop the annoying buzzing sound in your car, this is negative reinforcement (the behavior of wearing a seat belt increases to remove an aversive stimulus).

Explain the difference between the common misconception of the term negative reinforcement and how the science of behavior analysis defines it. Why do you think this misconception exists?
Provide three real-life examples of negative reinforcement that you have encountered.
Response Guidelines
Read the posts of your peers and respond to two. Your response should be substantive and demonstrate your understanding of the material. What aspects of the post do you like or agree with and why? Are there areas that are not clear? Did the post spark questions that you would like to ask your peer? In this, and in all of your courtroom posts, be sure to keep your tone scholarly, respectful, and professional.

Learning Components
This activity will help you achieve the following learning components:

Define negative reinforcement from a behavior analytic perspective.
Describe real-life examples of negative reinforcement.

Learner Guidelines for Evaluation of Discussion Contributions
All discussion contributions will be read by your instructor each week. The instructor will provide feedback to you regarding your discussion postings. Expecting that every discussion posting and response contain all of the attributes of an exemplary discussion posting is setting a high standard for both you and the instructor. This level of high performance is the standard expected of graduate learners at Capella.

Attributes of an Exemplary Discussion Contribution or Response:
The discussion contribution or response clearly addresses the content issue(s) presented by the question.
The discussion contribution or response includes the appropriate level(s) of critical analysis.
The discussion contribution or response includes pertinent course and disciplinary concepts, theories, or materials, and applies them correctly.
The discussion contribution or response provides validation and support by including relevant examples and supporting evidence, as appropriate.
The discussion contribution or response stimulates fellow learners to clarify, extend, and strengthen their dialogue.
The discussion contribution or response is concise, clearly organized, and well structured.
The discussion contribution or response uses grammar, usage, and mechanics expected of graduate level composition and expression.
All citations and references adhere to APA 6th edition style.
The discussion contribution or response fosters collaboration with fellow learners and communicates in a manner that respects the dignity and integrity of fellow learners and the instructor.
The discussion response meaningfully supplements and extends consideration of the topic by including one of more of the following: new information, questions, constructive or corrective feedback, or alternative viewpoints.