Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis InternationalĀ® (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.

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40th Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2014

Event Details


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Symposium #426a
CE Offered: BACB
Increasing Social Behaviors for Individuals Diagnosed with Autism Using ABA Based Strategies
Monday, May 26, 2014
3:00 PM–4:50 PM
W181c (McCormick Place Convention Center)
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Justin B. Leaf (Autism Partnership Foundation)
Discussant: Mitchell T. Taubman (Autism Partnership)
CE Instructor: Justin B. Leaf, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Individuals diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder have qualitative impairments in social behavior, which can range from withdrawing from others to a failure to develop meaningful friendships. These impairments in social behavior can lead to negative long term outcomes such as loneliness, depression, and, in the most extreme cases, thoughts or attempts of suicide. In this symposium, four papers will be presented that evaluated different interventions to improve the social behaviors for individuals diagnosed with autism. The first paper will describe a parent training program which helps increase overall parent-child quality interactions looking at both verbal and social behaviors. The second paper will describe the results of a social skills group that was implemented for children diagnosed with autism whom would be considered higher functioning. The third paper will provide results of a study that evaluated the cool versus not cool procedure implemented in a group instructional format. The final paper will provide a description and empirical support of teaching methods to teach a wide variety of social behaviors, within different areas of a social taxonomy, to individuals diagnosed with autism. Throughout the entire symposium, the authors and discussant will provide clinical recommendations and ideas for future research.

Keyword(s): cool-vs-not cool, parent training, social behaviors
 

Teaching Parents to DANCE: Increasing Parent Teaching Interactions Across Verbal and Social Behaviors of Children At-Risk for a Developmental Delay

DONNA TOWNLEY-COCHRAN (University of North Texas), Jacqueline R. Baker (University of North Texas), Shahla S. Ala'i-Rosales (University of North Texas), Tayla Cox (University of North Texas), Nina Hunt (University of North Texas)
Abstract:

Parent training programs have demonstrated success in teaching parents to interact more effectively with their children. For families who have children with autism, this usually involves teaching parents to teach their children communication skills or to reduce problematic behavior. Increasingly, the domains of training have expanded and recent data suggest that the quality of interactions changes with training. The purpose of this presentation is to describe two interventions designed to increase parental use of teaching interactions. The first study, employing a multiple baseline across skills and parents, successfully expanded verbal behavior. The second intervention incorporated a self-observation component; a multiple baseline across parent-child dyads was shown to increase social behavior. In both studies direct measures involved parent teaching episodes and child verbal and social skills. Parent-child engagement and indices of interest, affect, stress, and confidence were included as collateral measures. Both studies are discussed within the context of generalization, behavioral cusps, and family quality of life.

 

A Preliminary Description and Analysis of a Social Skills Group for Individuals with Autism

JEREMY ANDREW LEAF (Autism Partnership Foundation), Justin B. Leaf (Autism Partnership Foundation), Priscilla Claire Samuel (Autism Partnership Foundation ), Aditt Alcalay (Autism Partnership Foundation), Alyne Kuyumjian (Autism Partnership Foundation), Ronald Leaf (Autism Partnership Foundation), Mitchell T. Taubman (Autism Partnership), John James McEachin (Autism Partnership Foundation)
Abstract:

Today, there are several studies that have evaluated the effectiveness of social skills groups for "higher functioning" children with autism. Additionally, social skills groups are now commonly implemented to "higher functioning" children and adolescents diagnosed with autism as part of a comprehensive intervention plan. However, recent reviews and meta-analysis examining the effectiveness of social skills groups have questioned their effectiveness and have stated that more research is needed. The purpose of this presentation is to provide a description of a summer social skills group that was implemented to children diagnosed with autism who would be considered high functioning. The presenters will describe the curriculum that was utilized, the various teaching strategies that were implemented, and the reinforcement systems that were put in place. Additionally, empirical, clinical, and social validity data will be presented, which will demonstrate the effectiveness of the social skills group. Suggestions for future clinicians and steps to run successful social skills groups will be discussed, as well as areas for future research.

 

The Effectiveness of "Cool" Versus "Not Cool" Implemented in a Group Instructional Format

KATHLEEN H. TSUJI (Autism Partnership), Angel Au (Autism Partnership Hong Kong), Toby Mountjoy (Autism Partnership Hong Kong), Justin B. Leaf (Autism Partnership Foundation)
Abstract:

Recent research has shown that the cool versus not cool procedure can be effective in teaching a variety of social behaviors for individuals diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. However, what is not known is how effective the cool versus not cool procedure would be when implemented in a group instructional format. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the cool versus not cool procedure when implemented in a group instructional format. The authors taught three participants three different social skills and utilized a cool versus not cool procedure that consisted of both teacher demonstration and participants role-playing the behavior appropriately (cool). Skill acquisition was determined through naturalistic probes with the participants' peers. Using a multiple baseline design across behaviors and replicated across the participants, results indicated that the cool versus not cool procedure was effective in increasing social behavior for the participants, and resulted in long term maintenance and generalization of the skills. Clinical implications and ideas for future research will be discussed.

 

An Empirical Investigation on the Effectiveness of a Social Taxonomy for Children with Autism

STEPHANIE BLOOMFIELD (Autism Partnership Foundation), Justin B. Leaf (Autism Partnership Foundation), Jeremy Andrew Leaf (Autism Partnership Foundation), Aditt Alcalay (Autism Partnership Foundation), Alyne Kuyumjian (Autism Partnership Foundation), Mitchell T. Taubman (Autism Partnership), John James McEachin (Autism Partnership Foundation), Ronald Leaf (Autism Partnership Foundation)
Abstract:

Deficits in social skills are hallmarks of people diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders; therefore, one of the most critical elements of the treatment plan must emphasize teaching authentic social skills on multiple, complex levels. It is often difficult for clinicians and parents to know which social skills to teach and how to effectively teach these social skills to individuals diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. In this presentation we will provide an overview of a comprehensive social skills taxonomy consisting of five different social domains, which we have utilized clinically for over 15 years for individuals diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. We will also provide empirical data on different teaching strategies, which were utilized as part of a research study to teach social skills across each of these domains to a variety of children and adolescents diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. Finally, we will discuss clinical implications and ideas for future research.

 

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