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.


40th Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2014

Event Details

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Symposium #430
Training Teachers to Use Evidence Based Practices: From Early Childhood to Middle School
Monday, May 26, 2014
3:00 PM–4:50 PM
W195 (McCormick Place Convention Center)
Area: EDC/DDA; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Sheila R. Alber-Morgan (The Ohio State University)
Discussant: Ronnie Detrich (The Wing Institute)

The No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement (IDEA) both mandate that teachers use evidence-based practices when making instructional decisions. Efficacy research has facilitated the identification of a multitude of academic and behavioral interventions that have been demonstrated to be effective; yet the passive process through which teachers are commonly exposed to these practices does not result in accurate classroom application (Fixen & Blas, 2009; Fixen, Naoom, Blas, Friedman, & Wallace, 2005; Kretlow, Cooke, & Wood, 2012). Implementation of empirically driven strategies is vital to the success and advancement of all learners, particularly those with special needs. In order to progress toward closing the achievement gap for these learners, it is imperative to not only equip teachers with techniques that are known to be effective, but to also foster generalization and maintenance of skills in applied settings. This symposium will present four research studies examining the effects of training teachers to use evidence based teaching practices. These studies were conducted in a preschool classroom, an elementary school classroom, and two middle school classrooms.


Effects of Behavioral Skills Training and Instructional Coaching on Teachers’ Implementation of Evidence Based Practices

MARY SAWYER (The Ohio State University), Sheila R. Alber-Morgan (The Ohio State University), Melissa Boggs (The Ohio State University ), Eliseo D. Jimenez (The Ohio State University), Katie Roslovic (The Ohio State University)

Efficacy research has empirically established numerous academic and behavioral interventions suitable for alleviating common classroom ailments; yet the passive process through which teachers are commonly exposed to these practices does not result in accurate classroom application (Fixen & Blasé, 2009; Fixen, Naoom, Blasé, Friedman, & Wallace, 2005; Kretlow, Cooke, & Wood, 2012). Researchers have come to recognize that training alone will not result in the implementation of evidence based practices (Sheridan, Edwards, Marvin, & Knoche, 2009; Zaslow, 2009; Zaslow et al., 2010).There is evidence pointing to a longer-term, multilevel model of professional development that includes performance-based training and coaching (i.e., the provision of behavioral modeling, practice, praise, and corrective feedback) (Fixsen et al., 2005; Klinger, 2004; Odom, 2008). In the current study, a multiple baseline across skills design was used to examine the effects of behavioral skills training and instructional coaching on a student teacher’s use of evidence based practices within a response to intervention (RTI) framework, and to support high levels of treatment fidelity in a classroom setting. After the student teacher met mastery criteria, maintenance data are collected and used to make decisions concerning the provision of continued support (i.e., coaching). IOA and procedural integrity were above 95%.


Coaching Early Educators for Implementation Fidelity: Practice-Based Coaching

SHELLEY CLARKE (University of South Florida), Lise Fox (University of South Florida), Denise Binder (University of South Florida)

The use of coaching as a professional development strategy has gained visibility as a key component in ensuring fidelity of implementation of evidence-based practices (Sheridan, Edwards, Marvin, & Knoche, 2009; Snyder et al., 2012; Wasik & Hindman, 2011; Zaslow, Tout, Halle, Whitaker, & Lavelle, 2010). While research on the use of coaching and other implementation supports provides evidence that these activities improve practice implementation; the research is lacking in detail on the active ingredients of those supports. In this presentation, key components of coaching will be shared within the context of a collaborative partnership and includes: (1) planning goals and action steps; (2) engaging in focused observation; and (3) reflecting on and sharing feedback about teaching practices. The session will offer a description of practice-based coaching to promote the implementation of evidence-based practices within early childhood classrooms. The presenter will also share data related to implementation, child outcomes, and coaching from an efficacy study that examines evidence based behavioral intervention strategies within early childhood classrooms. Resources for the implementation of practice-based coaching for early childhood will be shared.


The Effects of Three Jars on Middle School Students' Homework Completion and Accuracy

LAWRENCE J. MAHEADY (State University of New York Fredonia), Kaitlin Landy (State University of New York Fredonia), Michael Jabot (State University of New York Fredonia)

Homework is a teaching strategy used to reinforce concepts and skills taught in class and to promote student mastery through practice. It has positive yet moderated effects on pupil achievement across grade levels, content areas, and student abilities (Hattie, 2009). Unfortunately, many students fail to complete homework or do so with low levels of accuracy; two outcomes that adversely affect learning. This paper describes the effects of Three Jars, an intervention package comprised of interdependent and dependent group contingencies with randomized components (i.e., target behaviors, criteria, subjects, and rewards), on the math homework completion and accuracy rates of 20 (10F, 10M), 7th grade students, including 12 with IEPs, in a rural setting. Using an A-B-A-B design, the researcher found that the Three Jars intervention produced immediate and noticeable improvements in the class completion and accuracy rates (see Figure 1 for accuracy data). The class math average improved by almost four letter grades (F to B+) when three jars were in effect. Individual analyses indicated that all 20 students also completed more homework at higher accuracy levels while the intervention was in effect. Implications for future research and practice are discussed.


Effects of a Self-Administered Math Fact Fluency Intervention for Elementary Students Identified as At-Risk

LISA RAFFERTY (State University of New York Buffalo), Peter Fichter (State University of New York Buffalo), Molly Long (State University of New York Buffalo), Ashley Craig (State University of New York Buffalo)

Students who have difficulties in math often lack the skills to fluently recall basic math facts, which if not remediated typically impede their ability to master higher level mathematical concepts (National Mathematics Advisory Panel, 2008). Unfortunately, many of the evidence based interventions currently available to teachers to remediate this deficit area are teacher-led or do not include instructional components identified to be best practices when implementing targeted instruction (Burns, VanDerHeyden, & Boice, 2008; Hulac, Dejong, & Benson, 2012). The purpose of the current study was to investigate the effects of the self-administered folding-in technique (SAFI; Hulac et al., 2012) on the math fact fluency skills of three, third-grade students, who were identified by their teacher as being at-risk for math disabilities. Using a multiple-baseline across participants design, the teacher and researchers evaluated the effects of the intervention on students multiplication fact fluency skills. Results suggest that the students growth rates were higher during the intervention phase when compared to baseline growth rates. Additionally, social validity data suggest that the students and teacher perceive the technique as easy to implement and effective. Limitations, implications of the results, and suggestions for future research are discussed




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