This study evaluated the effects of manipulating the type and order of presentation of transference tests. Twenty eight undergraduate students divided in 4 groups were exposed to a second order matching to sample procedure. The conditions of exposition were: ascending difficulty/ complexity order of the tests, descending order and two randomly assigned orders. Results are discussed in terms of percentages of effectiveness; additionally, the latency is proposed as an alternative measure sensitive to the level of difficulty of this kind of tasks. Findings showed heterogeneity in the velocity of acquisition of the conditional discriminations during the training phase, even though the conditions of the task were equal for all the subjects. The exposition to the ascending and descending order seemed to affect negatively the effective behavioral adjustment, whereas one of the randomly assigned sequences seemed to be the best condition. The order of exposition to transference tests, in interaction with a history of early acquisition in the training phase, served to understand the findings of this study and to discuss the necessity of a systematical evaluation of the factors implied in the transference tests. It is suggested to assess the validity of different kind of transference tests and the convenience of some of them to be use in the investigation of the phenomena related to the effective and variable behavior.
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|Published - Dec 1 2007