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.


33rd Annual Convention; San Diego, CA; 2007

Event Details

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Symposium #342
Further Developments in FCT: Acquisition and Maintenance of Mands
Monday, May 28, 2007
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
Ford AB
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Anjali Barretto (Gonzaga University)
Discussant: Stephanie M. Peterson (Idaho State University)
Abstract: In this symposium, we will present applications of functional communication training and discuss variables that affect the acquisition and maintenance of mands. David Wacker from The University of Iowa will present on the long-term maintenance of functional communication training. Lisa Winborn-Kemmerer from the University of Louisville will present an analysis of preferred mands during FCT. Finally Tonya Davis from the University of Texas will present on the influence of motivating operations on the acquisition, maintenance, and generalization. Following the presentations, Stephanie Peterson from Idaho State University will discuss the presentations.
Long-Term Maintenance of Functional Communication Training.
DAVID P. WACKER (University of Iowa), Wendy K. Berg (University of Iowa), Jay W. Harding (University of Iowa), John F. Lee (University of Iowa)
Abstract: We have completed 3 years of a 5-year NIH-funded project that is evaluating long-term maintenance associated with functional communication training. Approximately 15 children have been enrolled in the project. All children are 6 years of age or younger, have developmental disabilities, and display aberrant behavior such as self-injury. Parents conducted functional analysis and functional communication training session in their homes with weekly coaching from project investigators. Treatment sessions were videotaped and coded using a 6-sec partial-interval recording system. IOA was recorded for approximately 30% of all sessions. Treatment continued for up to 1 year for each participant. Throughout treatment probes of aberrant behavior, manding and task completion were conducted in which various components of the treatment package were eliminated (e.g., mand card) or changed (e.g., time in demands increased from 5 to 15 minutes). The purpose of these probes was to determine if aberrant behavior increased or adaptive behavior decreased when these components were altered . In this talk, I will present the results of these probes and will discuss the results relative to maintenance and response strength.
An Analysis of Extinction on Preferred Mands Used During Functional Communication Training.
LISA C. WINBORN-KEMMERER (University of Louisville)
Abstract: We evaluated the effects of placing preferred mands on extinction during functional communication training (FCT) for two boys with autism. During Experiment 1, a functional analysis and FCT was conducted to teach participants two mands to obtain positive reinforcement within a multielement design. A preferred mand was identified within a concurrent schedules design. The results demonstrated an increase in communication, a decrease in problem behavior, and the identification of a preferred mand. Experiment 2, conducted within a reversal design, alternated between placing the preferred and nonpreferred mand on extinction. The results of Experiment 2 were mixed. For one participant, the ability to alternate and use either mand was demonstrated and no problem behavior occurred. For the second participant, the ability to alternate between both mands was not observed and problem behavior increased. Interobserver agreement was 80% or higher.
A Systematic Analysis of the Influence of Motivating Operations on the Acquisition, Maintenance, and Generalization of Mands.
TONYA NICHOLE DAVIS (University of Texas, Austin), Mark O'Reilly (University of Texas, Austin), Jeffrey S. Sigafoos (University of Tasmania)
Abstract: In this three-phase study we examined the influence of motivating operations on the acquisition, generalization, and maintenance of mands for three children with autism who displayed challenging behavior. In the first phase of the study the consequences maintaining challenging behavior and their associated motivating operations were isolated. In phase 2 we taught replacement mands and systematically examined the influence of motivating operations (identified in phase 1) on the efficiency and effectiveness of the instructional process. Finally, we probed for generalization of these new mands across persons, settings, and activities while again systematically examining the influence of motivating operations on this generalization process. Interobserver agreement data was collected for 30% of all sessions across the three phases. Each phase had a mean score of 80% or higher. The results are discussed in terms of the importance of including motivating operations during functional communication training.



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