Progressive complexity and inclusiveness: some implications and empirical evidence in the case of contextual, supplementary, and selector functions

Mario Serrano


Procedural criterion and adjustment indexes for the experimental analysis and quantification of contextual (differentiallity index), supplementary (effectiveness index), and selector (precision index) functions recognized in Ribes and López (1985) taxonomic proposal are described. Preliminary data using rats as subjects and an open-field apparatus showed a high empirical correspondence between the taxonomic proposal’s progressive complexity and inclusiveness assumptions and the adjustment of behavior under three kinds of stimulus schedules of water delivery: non-contingent, contingent, and conditional-contingent. Specifically, differentiallity indexes were higher than effectiveness indexes, which were higher than precision indexes. Terminal differentiallity and effectiveness indexes also decreased with increases in the complexity of the schedules for water delivery.


interbehavioral psychology; stimulus schedules; open-field; lever pressing; rats

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Editor in Chief:

Dr. Carlos J. Flores-Aguirre

ISSN: 0185-4534

ISSN Electrónico: 2007-0802