Kimberly C. Kirby, Susan A. Fowler, University of Illinois, Donald M. Baer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Reactivity refers to behavior change that occurs during self‐recording without specific programming of consequences. We analyzed the effects of obtrusiveness of recording procedure and peer comments on reactivity to self‐recording. Three first‐grade students in Experiment 1 completed math questions during a 5‐min work period. When we gave the children recording devices and told them to try to complete more questions than the highest number they had previously completed, math performance increased, as did the number of verbalizations about it. Two children showed more reactivity when they used the more obtrusive recording device. Because the increase in math performance corresponded closely to increases in peer comments, we manipulated peer comments directly in Experiment 2. Four second‐grade students completed a math task and an alphabet task. Three of the students showed increased math performance during periods when peer comments occurred compared to periods when peer comments did not occur. Although the data from the math task suggested that peer comments can enhance reactivity, we did not observe this relationship with the alphabet task. These results suggest that the conditions necessary to produce desirable results through self‐recording are complex and contextually specific. 1991 Society for the Experimental Analysis of Behavior

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)487-498
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Applied Behavior Analysis
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1991
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Philosophy
  • Applied Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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