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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Paper Session #420
Reducing Stereotypy of Individuals With Autism
Monday, May 31, 2010
1:30 PM–2:50 PM
207AB (CC)
Area: AUT
Chair: Senny Schnell (The Ohio State University)
Stereotypic Behaviors and Young Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders: Early Identification and Intervention
Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Diane M. Sainato (The Ohio State University), SENNY SCHNELL (The Ohio State University)
Abstract: Research suggests that early intensive intervention is required to alter the trajectory of development for children diagnosed or at risk of diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Current research addresses early diagnostic criteria as well as early intervention for very young children with autism (Brian et al., 2008). Children with ASD exhibit a number of characteristic behaviors including stereotypy, aversion to touch, restricted interests, and fixation on certain objects. Researchers define stereotypic behavior as “repetitive motor and vocal responses” (Ahearn, Clark, MacDonald, & Chung, 2007). IN addition these children often have deficits in areas of joint attention, and response to name (Matson, Wilkins, Gonzalez, 2008). The purpose of this presentation is to review the existing literature with the goal of development of interventions to remediate and or prevent the development of stereotypic behavior. A primary focus will be the behavior of very young children with or at risk of diagnosis of ASD and related interventions for this population. Directions for future research will be discussed.
Use of Simplified Habit Reversal to Treat Thumb Sucking in an Adolescent Diagnosed With Autism
Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
AMY BARANEK (The May Institute), Bethany L. Condo (May Institute), James K. Luiselli (The May Institute), Hanna C. Rue (The May Institute)
Abstract: Simplified habitat reversal (SHR) is well documented in the behavioral literature. However few studies to date have examined its use with individuals with developmental disabilities. The purpose of this study was to use a modified SHR protocol to treat thumb sucking in an 18-year-old nonverbal male diagnosed with Autism and moderate intellectual disability. Functional assessment and a brief functional analysis were conducted in the classroom followed by extended analyses examining attention. Results indicated that SHR was a feasible treatment given that thumb sucking was maintained by automatic reinforcement and attention had a punishing effect. Three classroom teachers were trained to implement the SHR intervention. Treatment consisted of three components including awareness of behavior by tapping an icon, acquisition of a competing response by chewing/sucking sustainable edibles selected from a simultaneous presentation preference assessment, and social support from classroom teachers paired with a tangible. A withdrawal was used to assess the effectives of the modified SHR. Implementation of the SHR significantly decreased thumb sucking. Treatment gains were maintained over time and self-monitoring procedures were taught to support these gains.
Response Blocking and Response Redirection as a Treatment for Stereotypy
Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Abstract: Children with autism spectrum disorder exhibit stereotypic behaviors that interfere with skill acquisition. There is some evidence stating that stereotypy is controlled by multiple sources of reinforcement, including sensory consequence. The current study investigates the effects of Response Interruption and response redirection (RIRD) on motor and vocal stereotypic behaviors of two children with an autism spectrum disorder. Moto stereotypy is defined as instances of non-contextual or non-functional repetitive motor behaviors. Vocal stereotypy is defined as instances of non-contextual or non-functional repetitive speech and vocal behaviors. First, functional analyses were conducted to identify the functions of each child’s behaviors. Results indicated that their behaviors were likely maintained by automatic reinforcement. After the functional behavior analyses were completed. RIRD was implemented using a single-subject ABAB withdrawal design. Preliminary results indicate a significant decrease in both motor and vocal stereotypic behaviors when compared with baseline. Follow-up provides and anecdotal evidence indicate that the intervention was successful in the natural environments.



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