Differential Reinforcement of Other Behavior

Description of the Strategy

Differential reinforcement of other behavior (DRO) involves the delivery of reinforcement for periods of time during which a target behavior has been absent (e.g., John receives $1 for each day during which he does not hit someone). While this strategy was first used with animals in the early 1960s, it has grown in popularity in applied settings as an alternative to contingent punishment (e.g., time-out, response cost, restitution and overcorrection, and contingent work).

Clinically, there are a variety of ways that a DRO can be implemented. In a reset DRO, a “timer” is set for a specified period of time. If the person does not engage in the target behavior during this time, reinforcement is delivered. If the target ...

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