Master's Theses

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Date of Award

Spring 1970

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)




James Ryabik


The experiment examined the effect of a darkness contingency upon cooperative and noncooperative play. The study was divided into four phases: first baseline, first experimental, extinction, and second experimental sessions. During the experimental sessions noncooperative play by the subjects, who were tow, four-year-old girls, resulted in the lights being turned off in the playroom. The lights out remained in effect for ten seconds beyond the cessation of noncooperative play and/or the initiation of silence. Cooperative play increased significantly during the treatment sessions. The results suggest that contingent darkness is an aversive stimulus, which may be an effective. Deceleration procedure when used in play therapy settings.


Copyright 1970 Donald H. Fast


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