Lowe, S. E. (1978). The comparative effectiveness of ideal self, ideal person, and real self as models in covert modeling procedures. Dissertation Abstracts International, 39, 988B.

In covert behavior modification procedures it is often necessary to commence a program imaging a model other than the client. Important criteria for effective models are listed below.

  1. The model should be a person whom the observer has the capacity to emulate either in the present or in the future.
  2. The model should possess attributes which the observer admires.
  3. The model should be seen as competent or capable of becoming competent in regard to the behavior being demonstrated.
  4. The model should be similar to the observer in the initial response to the behavior being demonstrated.
  5. The model should be similar to the observer in age and sex.
  6. The model should display gradually increased coping behaviors relevant to the behavior being modified rather than display initial mastery.
  7. The model should be reinforced for displaying the desired behavior.

Implication. A model for initial stages of behavior modification should not be a mastery model. The closer it is to the observer's characteristics, the easier the observer will be able to empathize and identify with it.

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