The concept of the motivating operation (MO) has been subject to 3 criticisms: (a) the terms and concepts employed do not always overlap with traditional behavior-analytic verbal practices; (b) the dual nature of the MO is unclear; and (c) there is a lack of adequate contact with empirical data. We offer a more parsimonious approach to motivation, extending Skinner’s (1938, 1953) early work on this topic, and introduce two new key terms: consequence-valuing operation (CVO) and consequence-valuing process (CVP). Our account focuses on the value of the reinforcer in terms of the level of responding that occurs relative to some previously measured baseline. We suggest that the concepts of the CVO and CVP will facilitate the identification, analysis, and manipulation of motivational factors in the treatment of behavior disorders.
Whelan, Robert and Barnes-Holmes, Dermot
"Consequence Valuing as Operation and Process: A Parsimonious Analysis of Motivation,"
The Psychological Record:
2, Article 9.
Available at: http://opensiuc.lib.siu.edu/tpr/vol60/iss2/9