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Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)


Graduate Studies

First Advisor

Ron C. Katz

First Committee Member

Doug Matheson

Second Committee Member

Roseann Hannon


The effects of continuous vs. intermittent reinforcement using electromyographic (EMG) feedback as the reinforcer were compared in reducing frontalis muscle activity. Fourteen subjects were chosen from a group of 30 students who had expressed an interest in learning how to relax. Those students having the highest pre-experimental baseline scores were chosen. They were matched according to both those scores and sex and then randomly assigned to either a continuous biofeedback reinforcement group or a 30 sec. fixed interval biofeedback reinforcement group. The experiment consisted of nine sessions (three acquisition, two treatment, and four extinction) with integrated EMG activity from the frontalis muscle and time spent below criterion recorded as dependent variables. While results from the first variable were inconclusive as to the efficacy of using intermittent reinforcement over continuous reinforcement, time spent below criterion supported the hypothesis of the study that intermittent reinforcement does increase the durability of the response.