The purposes of the current study were to compare the relative effectiveness of procedures emphasizing prompting versus feedback in the development of conditional discriminations, and to investigate whether prompting and feedback interact with stimulus discriminability on their effects on the development of conditional discriminations. The task involved learning 32 different conditional discriminations. For half of these conditional discriminations, an experimenter-designated correct pair of sample and comparison stimuli was presented immediately after the observing response but before the choice phase of the trial (prompting). For the other half of the conditional discriminations, an experimenter-designated correct pair of sample and comparison stimuli was presented after a participant selected a comparison stimulus (feedback). In addition, effects of discriminability of sample and comparison stimuli were investigated by presenting combinations of simple (one-element) and complex (three-element) sample and comparison stimuli. Test trials, run without programmed consequences, presented the 32 conditional discriminations trials without prompting or feedback. All participants learned the conditional discriminations through non-differential prompting and feedback, but the feedback condition produced slightly more accurate performance on the test trials. Stimulus discriminability affected the development of conditional discriminations, but the effects of prompting and feedback on the development of conditional discriminations were not altered by the discriminability of sample and comparison stimuli and vice versa.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes