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.


31st Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2005

Event Details

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Poster Session #405
#405 Poster Session - TBA
Monday, May 30, 2005
5:30 PM–7:00 PM
Southwest Exhibit Hall (Lower Level)
134. Using the Ideal-free Distribution to Describe Human Group Behaviour: A Laboratory Demonstration
Area: TBA; Domain: Basic Research
MAREE J. HUNT (Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand), Natasha A. Buist (Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand), Anne C. Macaskill (Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand), Lincoln S. Hely (Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand), David N. Harper (Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand)
Abstract: A reliable finding in the ethology literature is that groups of animals in the wild distribute their numbers across different feeding patches according to the relative wealth of the patches. In the ethology field this behaviour is described in terms of optimal foraging, or more specifically the Ideal Free Distribution, a theory that shares many of the features of the optimisation theory of matching behaviour. Recently a generalised form of the Ideal Free Distribution has been found to describe human group choice and thus provides an ideal context in which to demonstrate concepts underlying generalised matching to senior undergraduate students. In the described laboratory a free operant group choice procedure was employed. The demonstration called “the treasure hunt, incorporated three features that we considered novel and contributed to the engagement of the students and the quality of the data obtained. These were the use of desirable, consumable reinforcers, the game context, and automated scheduling and data collection. Data derived from this exercise allowed class discussion of important phenomena and theoretical issues (e.g. undermatching, optimisation etc) as well providing a basis to demonstrate model-fitting.
135. The Effects of a ‘Game’ Format on Optional Study Group Attendance and Quiz Performance in a College Course
Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
TRACI M. CIHON (The Ohio State University), Gwen Dwiggins (The Ohio State University), Nancy A. Neef (The Ohio State University)
Abstract: We compared two formats for optional study sessions offered to students in two sections of a research methods course. Study sessions alternated between a game format (e.g., Behavioral Jeopardy, Who Wants to be a Behavioral Millionaire, etc.) and traditional student-question: teacher-response format, presented in counterbalanced order across the two sections. The alternating treatments design permitted analysis of (1) preference between the two formats as measured by attendance at the study sessions, and (2) the effects of participation in study sessions on subsequent quiz performance. Students’ performance on each post-study session quiz was compared with respect to (a) participation in games versus standard review, (b) participation versus nonparticipation in study sessions, and (c) performance on quizzes that preceded study sessions.
136. Differential Effects of Terminology on Caregiver Acceptability Rating: Conversational Versus Technical Explanations
Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
KELLI WHEELER (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Tina Sidener (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Peter Girolami (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Kellie Hilker (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
Abstract: Previous literature (e.g., Hyatt & Tingstrom, 1993; Rolider & Axelrod, 2005) has examined the general public’s understanding and acceptability of behavioral interventions. This research suggests that the terminology used to describe a behavioral intervention may be an important variable affecting caregiver acceptability of treatment procedures. Specifically, conversational or technical descriptions may be rated as differentially acceptable depending on the type of intervention being described. The present study examined conversational versus technical explanations on caregiver acceptability and comprehension ratings of procedures used in a feeding treatment program. In the current study, caregivers were randomly assigned to either technical or conversational treatment descriptions, and then completed an acceptability and comprehension questionnaire, based on the Treatment Evaluation Inventory- Short Form (TEI-SF; Kelley, Heffer, Gresham, & Elliott, 1989). Implications of results will be discussed in terms of best practices for parent training and potential avenues for future research.
137. SIDD Training: Behavioral Deficits and Excesses on Pre- and Post-Tests
Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
DARLENE E. CRONE-TODD (Delta State University), Alicia Satterfield (Delta State University), Marcie Desrochers (State University of New York, Brockport)
Abstract: Functional assessment is an essential treatment of severe problem behaviors for individuals with developmental disabilities/mental retardation. Successful treatment of severe problem behaviors requires that behavior analysts are able to develop testable functional hypotheses, and then develop an appropriate treatment plan. Participants (n = 14) were asked to complete 10 clinical cases in Simulations in Developmental Disabilities: SIDD software, which is designed to provide students and staff with the opportunity to acquire and practice skills in the area of behavioral psychology. Analyses of participants' pre- and post-test performance indicate that the number of cases completed in SIDD were related to an increase in the number of correct answers related to: (a) terminology, (b) correct functional hypotheses, and (c) appropriate treatment plans. In addition, following SIDD training errors of commission (behavioral excesses) were more likely to occur, compared to the pre-test, in which errors of omission (behavioral deficits) were more likely to occur.
138. Utilizing a Competency Validation System to Enhance the Performance of Practicum Students towards Temporary Limited Licensure to Practice Psychology
Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
JESSICA M. NORRIS (Western Michigan University), Megan M. Coatley (Western Michigan University), Alyssa Warshay (Western Michigan University), David Eisenhart (Western Michigan University), James Kaye (Western Michigan University)
Abstract: The Western Michigan University Professional Psychology Practicum requires that practicum students not only complete the required 500 hours of applied work, but also that they are deemed competent in the required core and elective competencies. The Competency Validation System (CVS) provides a way for practicum students to validate their skills, abilities, knowledge and experience required by the WMU practicum in order to obtain Michigan limited licensure in psychology. This validation system is based on the competency-based checklist utilized by the University of South Florida and has been adapted to fit the needs and goals of Western Michigan’s program. The CVS is made up of a variety of crucial behavior analytic techniques that are expected of graduating professional psychology students. In addition to these core required competencies, students are also encouraged to choose from a selection of electives. These elective competencies cover areas ranging from autism to emotional impairment and should reflect each student’s personal interests for additional practicum opportunities.
139. Teacher as Student: Self-Counts of a Student Teacher
Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
ELIZABETH A. SWATSKY (Pennsylvania State University)
Abstract: The author will present data collected from her student teaching experience. The behaviors of the author,student teacher, will consist of praise counts, student responses and counts of skills taught and goals met. Also, the data collected from the student teacher supervisor will be shared on similar behaviors.
140. The Use of Structured Observation in Feedback in Training Graduate Students
Area: TBA; Domain: Service Delivery
JOHN C. RANDALL (Charles River Industries), John Stokes (Melmark New England)
Abstract: We examined the effects that using a structured feed back system based off of research conducted by Reid would have on the performance of graduate student working toward meeting proficiency on the skill listed on the BCBA task list. Each section of the task list was broken down into a structured observation tool. Direct observation of performance was conducted on a weekly basis with feedback following. Performance on feedback tool on implementation of skills listed in the different areas of the task list resulted in high rates of performances and a shorter latency of proficiency that staff who were only provided with verbal training and literature on techniques. Inter-observer agreement was taken on 20% of observations for each graduate student. Data is displayed graphically.
141. Helping Students Study for the GRE and Apply to Graduate School
Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
JODYLEE M. MILLER (Western Michigan University), Cortney Osborn (Western Michigan University), Nicole Metzke (Western Michigan University), Richard W. Malott (Western Michigan University)
Abstract: Undergraduate students nearing the end of their studies often procrastinate on two activities: studying for the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and preparing for the graduate school application process. Procrastination while applying to graduate school and studying for the GRE can lead to: low GRE scores, lower quality admissions materials, failure to meet application deadlines, greater stress on student and not getting into graduate school. A one-credit independent study course was designed to help our students get and stay on the right track for the GRE and graduate school. This self-management class requires students to create their own individualized plans and then follow them.Each week students are required to: complete 4 hours worth of work, attend a 50 minute class/meeting, turn in a task verification form, graph the four hours they study each week and complete the assigned homework. Throughout the semester students are also required to: take a GRE pre-test and post-test using the GRE software provided on the GRE website, complete a vita and resume, take occasional quizzes and complete evaluations. In order to receive an ‘A’ in the class students must receive an ‘A’ in each of the following categories: attendance, homework, hours studying for the GRE, task verification form and graph.
142. 360 Honors, Super A
Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
ALLYSON L. HECK (Western Michigan University), Emily Helt (Western Michigan University), Amanda Norton (Western Michigan University), Lori Schroedter (Western Michigan University), Richard W. Malott (Western Michigan University)
Abstract: Psychology 597, Advanced Principles of Behavior Analysis, Super A Super A is a one credit course that one may elected to take in concurrence with Psychology 360, Principles of Behavior Analysis. The purpose of Super A is to train undergraduate students in goal setting and attainment, data graphing, and research experience in order to produce competent behavior analysts, so that future employers, professors, graduate schools, and clients can benefit from the students’ skills. In order to receive credit for Super A, each student must complete and document 50 hours of additional work in the area of behavior analysis and must also receive a grade of an “A” in Psychology 360. Students may elect to do a variety of work in behavior analysis including the completion of extra rat labs, attending departmental functions, implementing self-management projects, conducting or participating in research, writing answers to section questions, and attending weekly meetings.
143. BACC: Behavioral Academic and Career Counseling; a Supplemental Advisory System that Aids Undergraduates in Preparing for Future Academic and Career Goals
Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
ERIN ANDRES (Western Michigan University), Alison M. Betz (Western Michigan University), Katie Larkin (Western Michigan University), Morgan E. Aue (Western Michigan University), Richard W. Malott (Western Michigan University)
Abstract: The Behavioral Academic and Career Counseling (BACC) project is a system that provides undergraduate students with information regarding career opportunities and graduate study in psychology. BACC is an ongoing graduate research project conducted by students in Dr. Richard Malott’s Master’s Program in Behavior Analysis at Western Michigan University (WMU). Through interviewing, planning, and goal setting, BACC helps students achieve their desired goals, such as entrance into graduate school and employment in a psychology-related field. Throughout the academic year, BACC regularly recruits interested undergraduate students to attend an initial orientation to the BACC system. The project’s authors and their faculty advisor give a lecture describing the benefits of participation in the BACC program and providing contact information for making BACC appointments. The author of this project and his colleagues in Dr. Malott’s Masters program conduct the counseling appointments. The counseling sessions follow a one-to-one interview format. After the counselor collects academic information, the counselor surveys the student’s interests in psychology. The counselor then provides answers to any questions that the student may have. After the interview, the authors use a database program to track each student’s information, and then recall it later in order to schedule follow-up appointments. The author of this project supervises the quality of the appointments given by other psychology Masters students by providing 1) training seminar, 2) written job aids, 3) an instruction manual, and 4) a database. The ongoing development of these elements enhances the effectiveness of the BACC system, thereby creating a total performance system. The author intends to facilitate the development of more comprehensive and effective career counseling systems through their presentation of the BACC project at academic conferences.



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