Document Type



The purpose of the current experiment was to investigate the
role of private verbal behavior on the operant performances of
human adults, using a protocol analysis procedure with additional
methodological controls (the "silent dog" method). Twelve subjects
were exposed to fixed ratio 8 and differential reinforcement of low
rate 3-s schedules. For 6 subjects, verbal self-reports were
recorded concurrently during exposure to the reinforcement
schedules. Results showed a significant relationship between
certain types of rules and task performances, and especially
between counting and schedule-sensitive performance. A detailed
analysis also suggested that counting facilitated the discrimination
of programmed contingencies in the current task. Suggestions are
offered for further research involving the use of the protocol
analysis methodology.