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October 29, 2023




Before researching a behavior, it is important to first identify and define it. All experiments must have a behavior (dependent variable), at least one participant, and a setting where they take place. For this assignment, you will start writing the Introduction and the Methods section of your hypothetical behavior analytic study. Consider an area of research that interests you. Then, select a specific action, population, and setting for your hypothetical study.


Complete the following sections of your hypothetical behavior analytic study. Use the Hypothetical Behavior Analytic Study Template [DOCX] to complete this assignment. For each assignment you will add new sections.



Select and operationally define a dependent variable (action). Your operational definition should be brief (1¿2 sentences), objective, clear, and complete.

  • Objective refers to unambiguous description of the actions; void of mentalistic words. An operational definition that meets the objective criteria is one that is observable and measurable.
  • Clear refers to what a person says or does; the topography is clearly defined in such a manner that two observers will have a high agreement when the behavior is observed.
  • Complete refers to the boundaries of what is included and excluded. To discriminate the boundaries of the operational definition, include examples and nonexamples with minimal differences.

For more information about writing an operational definition, review the following information in your Applied Behavior Analysis text.

  • Hawkins and Dobes’s three characteristics (top of page 70).
  • Morris’s three criteria for testing a definition (page 70).

Discuss the social significance of the actions and why your research should address it.

Methods: Participants and Setting

Identify the participants that were targeted in the hypothetical study (diagnosis, age, other important information) and the setting where the study took place. This will be the start of the methods section (participants and setting).

Additional Requirements, Behavior

Your assignment should meet the following requirements:

  • Written communication: Writing is free of errors that detract from the overall message.
  • APA formatting: References and citations are formatted according to current APA style guidelines. Review Evidence and APA Links to an external site. For more information on how to cite your sources.
  • Resources: A sufficient number of scholarly or professional resources.
  • Length: 2–3 double-spaced pages, not including the title page or reference page.
  • Font and font size: Times New Roman, 12 points.

Competencies Measured, Behavior

By successfully completing this assignment, you will demonstrate your proficiency in the following course competencies and scoring guide criteria:

  • Competency 1: Apply techniques of behavioral measurement and data display.
    • Select and operationally define an appropriate action for a hypothetical behavior analytic study.
    • Explain the social significance of the behavior chosen.
    • Describe the participants and setting used in the hypothetical study.
  • Competency 4: Communicate in a manner that is scholarly and consistent with expectations for professionals in the field of psychology.
    • Demonstrate an academic writing style through well-organized prose that follows assignment guidelines.
    • Demonstrate compliance with current APA style, citation, and referencing guidelines. Use APA referencing style.