Negative reinforcement is a highly controversial, and sometimes misunderstood, quadrant of operant conditioning. Despite the image of negative reinforcement as a euphemism for positive punishment, there are a variety of techniques available to trainers that apply negative reinforcement in a force-free, humane manner specifically in situations involving fearful and aggressive behavior. In addition to outlining several humane negative reinforcement techniques, this presentation will provide information on when it is appropriate to use such techniques, and how best to ensure they are used in an animal-friendly manner.
Learning Objectives: 1. Identify humane applications of negative reinforcement 2. Distinguish situations in which humane negative reinforcement may be effective 3. Assess which humane negative reinforcement techniques are likely to yield the best results