Transformation of functions has also been found with stimuli that bear a comparison relation
, such as larger than or smaller than: "larger" stimuli exhibit a stronger function and "smaller" stimuli exhibit a weaker function (Dougher, Hamilton, Fink, & Harrington, 2007; Dymond & Barnes, 1995; Whelan, Barnes-Holmes, & Dymond, 2006).
However, when the comparison relation
becomes arbitrarily applicable (e.g., in the context of value) this person may respond to a dime as greater than a nickel (i.e., a dime is of greater arbitrary value).
By extension, the performances of the 4 subjects in Experiments 1 and 2 who saw two comparisons (S3, S4, S5, and S6) and received feedback for choosing thematic selections can not be said to be controlled by the thematic relation either because they could have responded to each configuration therein by determining the sample/taxonomic comparison relation
and then choosing the comparison that was not the taxonomic comparison (i.e., the controlling relation could have been exclusion).
In response, even though the training / testing stimuli used in these procedures did indeed vary in terms of size and quantity, and participants were sometimes (i.e., in the presence of the 'opposite' cue), required to choose comparisons that were either bigger / smaller or more / less than the sample, the patterns of responding they showed were always more consistent with opposite than comparison relations
at a functional level because on such trials they were always required to choose from amongst several comparisons that were all either more or bigger than the sample or less or smaller than the sample and the correct response always involved choosing the comparison farthest away from the sample in size.
The participants received positive feedback for selecting X1 when given any of three AB compounds representing sample-correct comparison relations
(A1B1, A2B2, A3B3), and for selecting X2 when given any of the six compounds representing sample-incorrect comparison relations
(e.g., A2B1, A1B3).