ABC Horse Library

Motivating Operations

An environmental variable that (a) alters (increases or decreases) the reinforcing effectiveness of some stimulus, object, or event; and (b) alters (increases or decreases) the current frequency of all behaviors that have been reinforced by that stimulus, object, or event (Cooper, Heron, and Heward, 2007). For example, some medications may increase the reinforcing effectiveness of food, while others may decrease it.