Behaviour-modification techniques (Based on learning principles)

A number of behaviour-modification techniques have been developed based on the systematic application of learning principles.
Learning principle: Behaviour patterns are developed and established through repeated association with positive reinforcers.

Technique: Use of positive reinforcement to establish desired behaviour.

Learning principle: The repeated association of an established behaviour pattern with aversive stimuli results in avoidance behaviour.

Technique: Use of aversive stimuli to eliminate undesirable behaviour ( aversive conditioning ).

Learning principle: When an established behaviour pattern is no longer reinforced, it tends to be extinguished.

Technique: Withdrawal of reinforcement for undesirable behaviour.

Learning principle: Avoidance behaviour will be inhibited or reduced if the conditions that provoke it are repeatedly paired with positive stimuli.

Technique: Desensitization to conditions that elicite unreasonable fear or anxiety.

Learning principle: A specified behaviour can gradually be established if successive approximations of the behaviour are reinforced.

Technique: Shaping of desired behaviour.

Learning principle: Reinforcement can operate to modify covert behaviour (cognitions) as well as overt behaviour.

Technique: Cognitive restructuring.

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