A–16 The occurrence of behavior in a program is made more probable if the materials are
designed so that each frame makes the correct answers in the next frame more likely. The probability of success is increased by the use of formal hinting and coaching techniques based upon what we know about verbal behavior....
Putting the Student on His Own The next point is called “fading or vanishing.” Thus far it has been indicated that programming techniques utilize the principle of reinforcement, the principle of prompting. The next one we come to is the principle of fading or vanishing. This principle involves the gradual removal of prompts or cues, so that by the time the student has completed the lesson, he is responding only to the stimulus material which he will actually have available when he performs the “real task.” He is on his own, so to speak, and learning crutches have been eliminated. Fading can then be defined as the gradual withdrawal of stimulus support. The systematic progression of programmed learning is well set up to accomplish this. It is always to be kept in mind that these principles are quite in contrast to “rote learning” or drill. In rote learning, many wrong responses are permitted to occur, and the student eventually learns to develop his own prompts often to a relatively unrelated series of stimuli. Programmed learning, on the other hand, is designed to take advantage of the inherent organization of the subject matter or of the behavior of the subject in relation to the subject matter in shaping up the student’s learning. [all emphases in original]
[Ed. Note: The computer in 1999 is a sophisticated version of the teaching machine referred to in 1960.]