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.


32nd Annual Convention; Atlanta, GA; 2006

Event Details

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Symposium #353
Functional Behavioral Applications in Acquired Brain Injury: Assessment and Intervention
Monday, May 29, 2006
1:30 PM–2:50 PM
Area: CBM; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Yors A. Garcia (Southern Illinois University)
Discussant: Michael P. Mozzoni (Timber Ridge Group, Inc.)
Abstract: The symposium will address common behavioral issues encountered in post-acute settings for individuals with acquired brain injury (ABI). The information presented will detail applied behavioral assessment protocols and intervention in neurobehavioral treatment settings. The issues to be presented range from the utilization of functional assessment methodology to address bizarre vocalizations in the ABI population, to stimulus equivalence applications to address self-control and discrimination in the ABI population.
Racial Discrimination and Equivalence Relations: A Relational Account of Racial Bias in ABI.
JOHN M. GUERCIO (Center for Comprehensive Services), Angela R. Branon (Southern Illinois University, Carbondale), Holly L. Bihler (Southern Illinois University), Taylor Johnson (Southern Illinois University), Mark R. Dixon (Southern Illinois University)
Abstract: Then assessment and treatment of racial discrimination issues will be addressed in this paper. An adult with an acquired brain injury (ABI) residing in a neurobehavioral program will serve as the participant in this study. Pre and posttests will involve validated racial attitudes scale administration that assess the level of discriminatory attitudes that the participant holds. Physiological monitoring in the form of galvanic skin response (GSR) measures will also take place during the pre and post tests, as well as during presentation of the stimuli that will be used in the equivalence procedures that follow. The training component of the study will consist of arbitrary relational assessment and training of stimuli depicting the interaction of different races and accompanying assessments of these racial stimuli by the participant. Pre and post training data will be taken on the ultimate equivalence classes that will be trained. The physiological measures will also be taken during the pre and post tests to determine the efficacy of the training procedures in terms of physiological arousal to racial stimuli.
The Role of Derived Verbal Functions in the Development of Self-Control for Persons with Acquired Brain Injury.
JONAH D. MARTIN (Southern Illinois University), Mark R. Dixon (Southern Illinois University)
Abstract: The present study will examine the role that derived stimulus functions may play in altering choice responding between sooner smaller and larger later rewards for persons with acquired brain injury. First, four adult participants that suffered from an acquired brain injury (ABI) will be asked to complete a rehabilitation activity in the absence of any programmed reinforcement. Second, all participants will be asked to choose between a smaller immediate reinforcer or a larger delayed reinforcer contingent upon completion of the same daily living task at higher than baseline rates. Third, participants will complete training and testing procedures, which will involve making conditional discriminations between nine stimuli arranged to form 3-three member equivalence classes. Stimuli consists of novel objects, common words, and different colored rectangles. Following each participant reaching mastery criteria during training, they will be then re-exposed to the choice conditions between sooner smaller and larger delayed reinforcers. It is expected that derived stimulus functions will result in an increase in choice allocation for the larger delayed reinforcer. Implications for a rule-governed analysis of self-control, the matching law, and delay reduction theory are discussed.
Functional Analysis of Bizarre Vocalizations in ABI: Environmental Control of Verbal Behavior.
JOHN M. GUERCIO (Center for Comprehensive Services), Bethany A. Holton (Southern Illinois University), Holly L. Bihler (Southern Illinois University)
Abstract: The present study utilizes traditional functional analysis methodology to determine the function of inappropriate verbalizations in an adult with acquired brain injury (ABI). Traditional functional analysis protocols were used to identify the functions of bizarre, threatening verbalizations in an adult male with an ABI. All sessions were conducted in a room at the participant’s residential treatment facility. Occurrences of appropriate and inappropriate vocalizations were collected during 10-min sessions. The procedure consisted of a functional analysis in which the four conditions (attention, demand, alone, and control) were alternated in a multielement design. The intervention consisted of differential reinforcement of alternative behavior (DRA). The intervention was alternated with a baseline condition in a reversal design using the same experimenter across all conditions. The functional analysis was then utilized to construct a verbal treatment intervention whereby decreases in the inappropriate verbalizations of the participant with ABI could be observed through the use of the verbal intervention procedure. Results indicated that inappropriate verbal behavior was maintained by attention and that the DRA procedure was effective in reducing the number of inappropriate verbalizations. A concomitant increase in the frequency of the appropriate verbalizations was also displayed by the participant.



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