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.


34th Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2008

Event Details

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Symposium #370
CE Offered: BACB
Literacy, Anxiety, and Video Modeling: Innovations in Behavior Analysis for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Monday, May 26, 2008
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Stevens 4
Area: AUT/EDC; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Jeannie A. Golden (East Carolina University)
Discussant: Scott C. Cross (Lovaas Institute)
CE Instructor: Jeannie A. Golden, Ph.D.

Traditionally, behavior analysts treat children with autism in more individualized, home-based settings using discrete trial methods. Only when these children with autism have learned all the prerequisite skills will traditional behavior analysts treat them in more group, school-based settings and then, usually with shadowing or structured adult-led interventions. The presenters in this symposium are treating children with autism in group, school-based settings using behavioral interventions. They are using techniques that are more innovative, such as video modeling and writing activities. Additionally, they are dealing with a variety of task domains: adaptive, such as self-help skills; academic, such as literacy; and emotional, such as dealing with anxiety. Each of the presenters in this symposium works with children with autism in real-life less-than-ideal conditions and indirectly by working with teachers and aids who are not specifically trained in behavioral methodology, yet have demonstrated positive outcomes for the children with autism who are being served.

A Comparison of Self, Other, and Subjective Video Models for Teaching Individuals with Autism.
TONI R. VAN LAARHOVEN (Northern Illinois University), Jesse W. Johnson (Northern Illinois University), Leslie Zurita (Drauden Point Middle School, Plainfield Consolidated School District), Kristin Grider (Northern Illinois University), Katie Grider (Northern Illinois University )
Abstract: Video technology is rapidly emerging as an effective medium for teaching various skills to individuals with developmental disabilities. One of the variables associated with video modeling that is in need of further study involves the type of model that is depicted in the video sequences. Some researchers have used self models (Buggey, 2005), peer models (Haring, et al., 1987), adult models (Alcantara, 1994), first person or “subjective viewpoint” (Schreibman, Whalen, & Stahmer, 2000), or a combination of models (Van Laarhoven & Van Laarhoven-Myers, 2005). The purpose of this study was to compare the effectiveness of self, other, and subjective video models for teaching daily living skills to three individuals with autism or developmental disabilities. Participants were taught three different skills; each with a different type of video model and the effects of the instructional conditions were evaluated and compared using an adapted alternating treatments design. Results indicated very little difference among the types of models in terms of their effects on independent correct responding, but did result in significant differences in relation to time needed to create the stimulus materials, with creation of self-modeling materials requiring almost twice as much time as the other- and subjective-modeling materials. Instructional implications will be discussed.
Increasing Academic Participation, Reducing Classroom Anxiety: Applying ABA with Students with Asperger’s Syndrome in Public Schools.
ROBERT K. ROSS (BEACON Services), Molly Griffin (BEACON Services)
Abstract: Many children with a diagnosis of Asperger’s syndrome demonstrate behavioral and emotional responses to academic challenges and non-preferred social conditions at school. The academic content areas where abstraction and conceptual complexity are greatest may result in students with Asperger’s demonstrating behavior that is often described as evidence of an anxiety or emotional reactions to these tasks. The current study describes the use of behavior analytic descriptions of the problem and behavioral interventions to address identified skill deficits. These descriptions and objective baseline data were used to establish teaching procedures designed to develop adaptive responses to academic and social challenges. The interventions were implemented by public school personnel with periodic consultation support from a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA). The data demonstrate a rapid reduction in “emotional” behavior, and dramatic increases in academic participation and acquisition of targeted academic and social content. The results are discussed both in terms of procedures implemented and effect on target behaviors as well as the process the team used to ensure effective staff training and reliable implementation across classroom teachers and school settings. Finally, parent satisfaction and home generalization issues will be reviewed.
Literacy in Children with Autism: Strategies That Facilitate Rather Than Sabotage Comprehension.
LORI STUART (Behavioral Consultation & Psychological Services)
Abstract: Many children with autism have been taught to read and write using traditional methods that are used with typical children. Although these children with autism do learn to read and write, they do so without comprehension. Children diagnosed with autism lack the inter-verbal communication skills of typical children. In the early stages of teaching typical children to read, strategies such as looking at pictures, copying words and sentences, and reading out loud facilitate comprehension. However, this teaches children with autism form without function, similar to echolalia. Therefore, unfortunately, when children diagnosed with autism are taught in this way, they fail to comprehend what they are reading and writing. This presenter will demonstrate strategies, such as receptive instruction reading, word association, filling-in blanks, writing mands, writing notes, and translating sentences, that increase comprehension and decrease obstacles to learning that have sabotaged the ability to comprehend in many children with autism.



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