Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


36th Annual Convention; San Antonio, TX; 2010

Event Details

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Poster Session #478
OBM Poster Session 5
Monday, May 31, 2010
6:00 PM–7:30 PM
Exhibit Hall A (CC)
111. Effects of a Peer Review System on Program Book Completeness
Area: OBM; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
CHRISTINA MARIE BOYD-PICKARD (RCS Learning Center), Allison Genovese (RCS Learning Center)
Abstract: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a peer review system on the completeness of student program books. A multiple baseline design was utilized to evaluate the effectiveness of the procedure. Participants included three direct care staff employed at a private school for children diagnosed with developmental disabilities. Prior to baseline, participants had been instructed on data collection, graphing, and program book updates. During baseline, senior administration utilized a checklist to score each program book on completion. Participants were not informed that this checklist was being completed and were therefore, not informed of their scores. During intervention, each participant was assigned a peer to complete their program book checklists on a weekly basis. The peer was trained on checklist completion as well as how to provide anecdotal feedback. The participant was provided written feedback consisting of the score their program book received as well as anecdotal feedback on a weekly basis. Inter-observer reliability checks occurred throughout the intervention phase to ensure accuracy of feedback.
112. Behavior Change Through Reactivity: Assessing Effects of Covert Versus Overt Observation System on Staff Engagement
Area: OBM; Domain: Service Delivery
Lin Tang (University of Massachusetts Amherst), SHANNON KAY (May Institute), Erica Webster (May Institute)
Abstract: This study seeks to further break down the concept of reactivity through the implementation of a covert and overt observation system. Through the utilization of a changing criterion design, the DV of staff engagement levels during recess, an unstructured time with few demands placed on the staff was established in baseline. Subsequent phases of covert and overt observations were carried out wherein during the covert observation phase, the experimenter observed the staff members in an obvious manner but did not reveal to staff members the specifics of the observation. The overt observation phase included a school wide meeting where staff members were made aware of the details of the observation and the operational definitions of the dependent measure, thus the subject of the observations were no longer a mystery to staff members. Additional posting of the observation topics were made available to staff members through email. The engagement levels for all phases were measured and sustainability of behavior change was also examined.
113. Peer-Management as a Supervisory Strategy in Community-Based Residences
Area: OBM; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
JENNIFER DOHERTY (Evergreen Center), Jennifer M. Silber (Evergreen Center), Gordon A. DeFalco (Evergreen Center)
Abstract: Providing consistent supervision for direct care workers in community-based residential homes for people with developmental disabilities historically has been a problem. In this study peer management was evaluated as a supervision strategy to increase staff compliance with job requirements. Twelve direct care staff working in two community-based residences for adults and one for children participated in the study. Peer management involved having paired staff complete daily checklists of their matched peer on completion of specific job assignments and giving them the checklist as feedback on their performance. In addition, supervisors conducted weekly checks, which were then faded to every other week, to ensure completion of job assignments as well as completion of the checklist by the peer monitor. A multiple baseline design across residential homes was implemented to evaluate the experimental effects. Results showed that peer management can be an effective supervisory strategy, however, peer alliances or conflicts may affect the supervisory process and strategies should be evaluated in future studies to reduce this possible problem.
114. Improving Reliability of Staff Supervision; Development of an Agency Wide Plan
Area: OBM; Domain: Service Delivery
CHRISTIAN A. BENAVIDES (BEACON Services), Ann Filer (BEACON Services), Robert K. Ross (BEACON Services)
Abstract: One of the challenges of a de-centralized agency providing home-based services to children with autism is the delivery of consistently effective services. With staffing resources spread over a wide geographical area, collaboration between supervisors is limited. Well-defined and consistently implemented staff evaluation tools can help to bridge this gap between supervisors and increase the likelihood that effective services are provided on an agency-wide basis. However, the implementation of these tools may be inconsistent between supervisors, and thus result in poor reliability. The current study describes the development of a staff evaluation tool used in home-based environments. Throughout the tool’s development, operational definitions, recording systems, rating scales and data form compositions were modified to improve reliability. The overall reliability of the tool is measured across several iterations. In addition, the tool’s reliability in measuring several subsections of staff performance is measured as well. The resulting system is a model for broader implementation.
115. A Sustainable Pre-Referral Meeting System for Teachers: Bridging the Research-to-Practice Gap
Area: OBM; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
L. KEITH MILLER (University of Kansas), Constance Tieghi (University of Kansas), Nathaniel G. Smith (University of Kansas)
Abstract: Researchers have developed effective meeting systems but little is known about how to institutionalize these systems under non-research conditions. The present research was undertaken to bridge this research-to-practice gap for teacher meetings held to consider student's problem behavior. The current research was conducted over a seven year period in a Midwestern middle school of about 500 students. A meeting system was based on a scripted agenda that was read out loud by the meeting facilitator to prompt participants to complete a set of tasks. These included defining the problem behavior, observing and graphing it, assessing its function, identifying a desirable behavior with the same function, developing an intervention and a plan to implement it and evaluating its effectiveness. The experiment was conducted under simulated non-research conditions where the experimenter provided no supports for the system. During a one-year baseline 15% of meeting tasks were completed. During a one-year experiment 80% of tasks were completed with the agenda, 40% without it and 80% with it. During a 5 year follow up 80% of the tasks were completed. The results suggest that the very low effort scripted agenda may facilitate institutionalization and that results during simulated non-research conditions may predict sustainability.
116. The Experimental Analysis of the Effectiveness and Sustainability of a Teaching Chinese Program
Area: OBM; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
HANG WU (University of Kansas), L. Keith Miller (University of Kansas)
Abstract: This experiment investigated the effects of a teaching Chinese program on the acquisition of the pronunciation and translation of Mandarin Chinese characters by five classes of American college students for two years. It also investigated the effects of a training program on the teaching skills of four native Chinese teachers. The effects of the teaching package were analyzed using a multiple baseline design across classes. The average vocabulary test score for students before the teaching program was 70%. The average test score with the teaching program was 85%. During the follow up semester, the average test score was 83%. Before training, the average number of correct teaching trials by the teachers was 28. The average number of correct teaching trials after training was 68. Results suggested that the training produced an increase in correct teaching by the teachers, which in turn increased the students’ performance.
117. The Use of Feedback in the Management of Academic Tasks
Area: OBM; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
ROSSANA SOMALVICO (Iulm University - IESCUM), Francesco Pozzi (IESCUM), Giovambattista Presti (Libera Universita di Lingue e Comunicazion), Paolo Moderato (Libera Universita di Lingue e Communicasione)
Abstract: Several authors show the multiple functions that a feedback can take (Daniels, 1994; Komaki, 1978; Sulzer-Azaroff & Mayer, 1991; Agnew, 1998; Agnew & Redmon, 1992): eliciting stimulus, discriminative stimulus, reinforcing stimulus, punishing stimulus and establishing operations function. In this study, a multiple baseline across subjects is used to test the effect of feedback in academic tasks during a laboratory (independent variable) on the quantity and quality of performance and satisfaction for the work done (dependent variables). During the laboratory, the experimenter provides the students with instructions to perform tasks, and develops a checklist with the required form of the responses of each task. The checklist is used to define the correct and incorrect aspects of the task specified in the feedback message Students behavior observed by the experimenter is the written response (frequency and form) to the experimenter in the e-learning platform. The feedback is delivered verbally and graphically on the online course that supports the laboratory, after the students verbal responses. We hypothesize that, in this context, feedback has a reinforcing function. The results could be useful for planning a good management of academic laboratories, using verbal and graphical feedback.
118. In Search for a Better Research Environment: Improving Information Sharing of Applied Behavior Analysis Lab
Area: OBM; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
YUKA KOREMURA (Keio University), Mikimasa Omori (Keio University), Jun'ichi Yamamoto (Keio University, Japan)
Abstract: The current presentation shows behavior changes by arranging a research environment of an applied behavior analysis lab. In Organizational behavior management, it is critical to focus on worthy performance before changing behavior (Gilbert, 1978). In his book, Human Competence: Engineering worthy performance shows that the performance is a transaction of both behavior and its consequence. Therefore, it is necessary to first look at a performance, then evaluate whether the behavior of the performance is valuable enough to change. The research lab was analyzed from these perspectives for their performance improvement. The central concern was the information sharing performance at multiple levels (e.g., daily, experimental, and writing). Towards improvement on information sharing, we systematically asked questions using environment aspect of Gilbert’s (1982) the PROBE Model as a guide. Our solution was to implement object-oriented and functional database specifically designed for this lab so that the accumulated research data (dependent variables) as well as intervention programs and materials (independent variables) in this lab became highly accessible to the lab members. The current research indicated that organizing information required the needs of how users use them when designing a database.
119. A Staff Training, Feedback, and Contingency System for Early Childhood Interventionists
Area: OBM; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
REBECCA S. RAAS (The ABRITE Organization), Ginger R. Wilson (The ABRITE Organization), Janice Doney (The ABRITE Organization)
Abstract: A training package was utilized to initially train novel skills to recent hires, and to maintain these skills as current employees, or early childhood interventionists (ECIs). These ECIs provided early intensive behavioral intervention (EIBI) to children under the age of 3 years with speech delays or those on the autism spectrum. Training consisted of procedures to build rapport, establish verbal operants, and decrease undesirable behavior, among many other techniques commonly used in EIBI (e.g., discrete trial teaching, natural environment teaching). This training package consisted of: 1) demonstrating fluency of written material by passing quizzes with 80% accuracy or above, 2) engaging in role-play based on the written material, and 3) demonstrating all trained skills in the field. After training, a feedback component was implemented which consisted of: 1) weekly checklists providing feedback in relation to the skills targeted in training, 2) weekly feedback via e-mail, and 3) bi-weekly feedback via video. A contingency system was also implemented to serve as a reinforcer for contributing to the graduation of a child from EIBI.
120. Effects of Scorecards and Bonus Pay on Staff Turnover in an Applied Behavior Analysis Clinical Setting
Area: OBM; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
NATALIE HEAD (The Shape of Behavior), Domonique Y. Randall (The Shape of Behavior)
Abstract: This study investigates a performance management package on staff turnover in an applied behavior analysis (ABA) clinical setting. High staff turnover is a problem prevalent in special educational settings. Retention of staff is vital for any ABA clinic due to specialized training and supervision of staff. Organizational behavior management focuses on the supervision of work-related behavior and its relationship with environmental antecedents and consequences to enhance performance in the workplace. From an organizational behavior standpoint, an increase in performance and decrease in turnover is critical to sustain in any organization in order to produce the most effective and efficient treatment among patients. By using set balanced scorecards for each staff member, the overall goal is to ensure the organization and all subsystems (processes, departments, teams, employees) are working together in an optimum fashion to achieve the desired results. The author hypothesizes that the tools of organization behavior management decreases staff turnover in an ABA and autism setting.
121. The Effects of Success Story Training on Job Interviewing Skills in Mock In Vivo Interviews
Area: OBM; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
DEBRAH KITE (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology), Susan K. Malmquist (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology)
Abstract: Strong communication skills in a job interview are essential for increasing the likelihood one will be offered a position. One of the best ways to communicate a strong message is through the use of a “success story.” A success story involves highlighting a person’s strengths by telling the interviewer about a past experience or challenge the interviewee had to overcome in a narrative story format and how this experience has contributed to the individual’s current success. The purpose of the current study is to determine the effectiveness of success story training using a fluency-based approach on job interviewing skills. Participants will include ninth grade students at a general education charter school in the south side of Chicago that focuses on preparing inner-city youth for the workforce. A pre-in vivo interview and post- in vivo interview will be used to measure differences in job interviewing skills. Fluency based trainings will be used to teach and measure the participants’ skills in creating and communicating an effective success story. By focusing on smaller, component skills, it is expected that a fluency-based training approach will lead to improved interview performance.
122. Increasing Medicaid Dollars Billed for Services by School Psychologists Using a Performance Improvement Package
Area: OBM; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
MEGAN M. HYBZA (University of South Florida), Trevor F. Stokes (James Madison University), Marilee Stafford Hayman (Hillsborough County Public Schools), Tracy Schatzberg (Hillsborough County Public Schools)
Abstract: Organizational behavior management (OBM) is a subfield within the discipline of applied behavior analysis (ABA) involving the application of ABA principles and practices to organizational settings. One successful intervention used in OBM is the implementation of a performance improvement package. This approach has proven to be an effective problem solving strategy in a variety of settings, based on effective components such as goal-setting, prompting, and feedback. In this endeavor a performance improvement package was applied within an educational setting. In this school district, school psychologists are required to complete documentation for Medicaid reimbursement to the district, but were inconsistent in doing so. The purpose of this study was to improve the consistency of billing for Medicaid reimbursement by 74 school psychologists serving 102 schools. The school district is divided into seven different areas. A multiple baseline across three areas was used to assess the effectiveness of the intervention introduced in a sequential manner.
123. Integration and Efficiency: Managing the Safety of Your Clients, Employees, and Company
Area: OBM; Domain: Service Delivery
TIMOTHY D. CRIPPS (Behavioral Services of Tennessee), Carlos V. Gonzalez (Behavioral Services of Tennessee)
Abstract: What’s the problem with overtime? Everything. It may, on the surface, seem to be a boon to many workers, in that they get extra money at the end of the week at a higher rate (time and a half). However, the short term gains for individual employees will have the long term effect of sinking your company into the abyss. Behavioral Services of Tennessee conducted an internal study on the relationship between overtime and reportable incidents and crisis calls. These are incidents that may result in harm to a client, such as medical problems or incidents of abuse and neglect. The results of this internal study will be reviewed, along with behaviorally-based solutions to combat this common problem.



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