Exchange schedules in token economies: A preliminary investigation of second-order schedule effects

Tracy Argueta, Yanerys Leon, Adam Brewer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Basic research shows that token-production and exchange-production schedules in token economies affect each other as second-order schedules (i.e., the exchange-production schedule's requirements affect responding toward the token-production schedule). This relationship has not been investigated with children in academic settings despite the widespread use of token economies in this context. This study compared the effects of fixed-ratio (FR) and variable-ratio (VR) exchange-production schedules of equal ratios (2, 5, and 10) on responding toward an FR 1 token-production schedule with a child diagnosed with autism. A concurrent chains assessment was also conducted to assess the participant's relative preference for FR and VR exchange-production schedule arrangements within her typical discrete trial training. Results showed no difference in response rate between the two schedule types. However, the concurrent chains assessment revealed an exclusive preference for the VR arrangement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)280-292
Number of pages13
JournalBehavioral Interventions
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • concurrent chains
  • conditioned reinforcement
  • second-order schedules
  • token economies
  • tokens

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


Dive into the research topics of 'Exchange schedules in token economies: A preliminary investigation of second-order schedule effects'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this