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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Poster Session #204
EDC Sun noon
Sunday, May 25, 2014
12:00 PM–2:00 PM
W375a-d (McCormick Place Convention Center)
37. Brief Experimental Analysis of Modeling Interventions for Oral Reading Fluency: Results From a Summer Program
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
MELISSA COOLONG-CHAFFIN (University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire), Michael I. Axelrod (University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire), Reese Butterfuss (University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire), Arianna Brown (University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire), Nicole Fogarty (University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire), Hannah Kalmon (University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire), Jordan Simpson (University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire)
Abstract: Brief experimental analysis (BEA) is an important tool used to guide intervention selection for learners who have failed to respond to standard reading instruction (Reschly, Coolong-Chaffin, Christenson & Gutkin, 2007). The purpose of this project was to examine how BEA procedures could be used to identify a potentially effective oral reading fluency intervention involving different types of modeling combined with practice. Participants were three elementary students who attended a summer reading program. An extended analysis examined the effectiveness of the indicated intervention over time when used within the context of a comprehensive reading instructional package. Results indicated that a promising intervention was identified for each participant and the effectiveness of each intervention varied by participant. The selected intervention led to large gains in words read correctly per minute across the reading program for the two participants who attended the majority of the sessions. The participant who attended fewer than half of the sessions did not make gains. These results extend the literature on BEA by comparing interventions that utilized different types of modeling combined with practice. The results also demonstrate how BEA-indicated interventions can be used within the context of a comprehensive instructional package for struggling readers over the summer.
38. Using a Prompt Fading Procedure to Teach Self-Questioning to Fifth Graders With Learning Disabilities: Effects on Reading Comprehension
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
CHRISTINA A. ROUSE (The Ohio State University), Sheila R. Alber-Morgan (The Ohio State University), Jennifer Cullen (Ball State University), Mary Sawyer (The Ohio State University)
Abstract: Students with learning disabilities, who often struggle with reading comprehension, can benefit from instruction on how to read strategically. One reading strategy that has been demonstrated to increase reading comprehension across a range of age and ability levels is self-questioning. Self-questioning enables students to be actively engaged in monitoring their reading comprehension by asking themselves questions about key elements of the text. In this study, two fifth graders with learning disabilities were taught to self-generate questions using a systematic prompt fading procedure. Specifically, the students were provided with expository reading passages with embedded questions. As each student demonstrated proficiency with answering the embedded questions correctly, the embedded questions were systematically faded and replaced with a prompt for the students to generate their own questions. A multiple-baseline across participants design demonstrated that the self-questioning intervention was functionally related to increased reading comprehension. Additionally, the students demonstrated maintenance and generalization outcomes.
39. Effects of Basic Elements to Improve the Rate of Reading of Corrective Readers
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
SHEILA HABARAD (Morningside Academy), Geoff Martin (Morningside Academy)
Abstract: Abstract An educational system places an unintentional ceiling on a student’s ability to advance to more challenging academic environments when reading instruction is mainly based on sight word training. Basic Elements is a unique program designed to ameliorate a reading repertoire compromised of sight words by teaching sounds in the form of nonsense words, emphasizing fluent decoding skills rather than memorization. Building the tool skills to fluently read nonsense words will not only improve decoding skills but it has also been proven to predict reading abilities. (Johnson and Street, 2013). Students, aging from 10-11 came to Morningside Academy with significant reading challenges due to a lack of decoding skills. The students, each placed into introductory reading instruction, continued to make errors across the first semester of school due to an inability to decode. The Basic Elements program was taught with group responding to maximize individual student responses as well as Precision Teaching to build fluency. It is predicted that this small addition to the students’ daily teaching block will not only result in a significant rate of reading with minimal errors but will also open up the doors to higher education.
40. Utilizing Student Performance to Select Appropriate Interventions for Reading Fluency and Comprehension
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
LAUREN MCKINLEY (University of Cincinnati)
Abstract: When students are referred for reading problems, brief experimental analysis has shown to be an effective method for selecting interventions directly related to assessment results (Daly; VanAuken, Chafouleas, Bradley, & Martens, 2002; Jones, Wickstrom, & Daly, 2008), rather than interventions chosen at random. A brief experimental analysis of fluency and comprehension was conducted using easier material and a comprehension strategy. Participants were second grade children who were identified as being below critical benchmarks according to DIBELS progress monitoring scores. Materials consisted of Curriculum based measurement Passages. Visual Analysis of each condition lead to distinctly different student profiles that indicated: (a) no problem, (b) fluency problem, and (c) comprehension problem. This method may enhance further understanding of the basis of individual students’ reading comprehension problems. This type of assessment may lead to selection of interventions that are individualized, more effective, and less intrusive.
41. Using a Cover Copy Compare Study Strategy to Improve Spelling Performance
Area: EDC; Domain: Service Delivery
TERYN BRUNI (Central Michigan University ), Heidi Fisher (Central Michigan University), Michael D. Hixson (Central Michigan University)
Abstract: Using a parent consultation model, a spelling intervention was implemented to improve spelling test performance of a 4th grade boy. Before implementation of the intervention, performance on classroom spelling assessments ranged from 20% to 60% correct. Strategies used prior to intervention included home practice that involved the student rewriting the words five times each. To increase spelling accuracy, a study strategy was introduced which required the student to look at the word, copy the word, cover the word, and then try to write the word without a model present. This strategy is known as cover-copy-compare (CCC) and has strong efficacy as an effective study strategy. Results show that the CCC procedure immediately improved spelling test performance. A natural withdrawal of intervention occurred (due to student illness) where performance immediately returned to baseline levels. After reinstating the CCC procedure, the student’s performance improved once again to above 90% accuracy on classroom assessments. Overall CCC was a successful intervention for improving spelling performance.
42. The Effect of Colored Overlay Versus No Overlay on Reading Fluency in Individuals With Dyslexia
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
TIFFANY FREEZE DENTON (The University of Memphis), James Nicholson Meindl (The University of Memphis)
Abstract: Colored filters are used in classrooms and homes to alleviate reading difficulties that are a result of learning disabilities including dyslexia. Colored overlays, one type of tinted filter, are plastic reading sheets tinted with color and placed over text (Wilkins, 2003) that are claimed to eliminate or alleviate a wide range of reading difficulties such as low reading rate, accuracy, and comprehension. Colored overlays were investigated in this study via a multielement design measuring correct words read per minute and errors across Overlay and No Overlay conditions. Undifferentiated responding resulted across two participants suggesting that colored overlays were not effective, and slight differentiated responding resulted in one participant suggesting that colored overlays decreased reading fluency for this individual. As a result, empirically validated reading techniques were implemented across individuals. These findings are discussed and recommendations are made in regards to the use of research-based reading interventions.
43. A Gadgeteer Goes to the Classroom: The History of Skinners Teaching Machines
Area: EDC; Domain: Theory
ROGELIO ESCOBAR (National Autonomous University of Mexico), Kennon Andy Lattal (West Virginia University)
Abstract: A teaching machine is an automatic device that presents a unit of information, provides a mean for the learner to respond to the information, and provides feedback about the correctness of the response. Although Skinner did not invent the teaching machine, his machines incorporated innovative aspects that were crucial for developing a technology of education based on the principles of operant conditioning. An important aspect was that Skinner emphasized on designing machines that could teach new materials instead of only testing previously learned materials. This was achieved by presenting the material to be learned in units of gradually increasing difficulty, providing the means to construct a response, rather than just selecting one, and presenting feedback immediately after the response. Skinner designed a series of devices that gradually fulfilled his own requirements. This poster will show Skinners teaching machines, from the first devices designed during 1953 and 1954 that were home-made and simple in design, to the more complex machines intended to be commercialized by IBM and Rheem. Even though Skinners machines were not a commercial success, they originated the golden-age of teaching machines during the 1960s, and could inspire the creation of new instructional programs taking advantage of recent technology.
44. A Comparison of a Singular Exemplar Correction Versus a Multiple Exemplar Correction Procedure on the Number of Untaught Arabic Number Textual Responses.
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
CAROLINE MARY LOUISE CROSBIE (Teachers College, Columbia University), Timothy Michael Yeager (Teachers College, Columbia University), Derek Jacob Shanman (Teachers College, Columbia University)
Abstract: Multiple exemplar instruction has been demonstrated as an effective teaching method leading to the emergence of untaught responses and the induction of missing verbal behavior developmental cusps and capabilities. Multiple exemplar procedures ask students to identify the correct stimulus among positive and negative exemplars. According to Greer and Ross (2008), general case instruction is one application of multiple exemplar instruction where "in order to teach a subset of a concept such that the abstraction to untaught examples occurs." The current study assessed two general case instructional methods, one with a singular exemplar correction and the other with a multiple exemplar correction procedure. In a multiple probe design, four participants received either multiple exemplar correction or a singular correction procedure, with intervention subsets of four stimuli of two-digit Arabic numbers within the range of 21-99, not including numbers ending in 0. The dependent variable was the participant's correct untaught textual responses to Arabic numbers 21-99. Both instructional procures led to participants emitting untaught textual responses, however the multiple exemplar correction procedure led to a greater number of untaught responses across all tens groups, whereas the singular exemplar correction procedure led to untaught responses confined to the tens category targeted in the intervention set.
45. Elementary Education in Mexico: Sequenced Conditions vs Random Conditions
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
CHRISTIAN CRUZ (Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico (UNAM)), Veronica Luna Hernandez (Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico (UNAM)), Alejandro Ceron Martínez (Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico (UNAM)), Leslie Valeria Briseno Zamora (Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico (UNAM))

The formal education in Mexico has a structure that understands the gradual and progressive students performance. Apparently this approach promotes satisfactory results for the students, however, in the same conditions to which they are exposed students is possible to analyze the factors favoring sufficient or insufficient performance, in terms of problem solving. Hence in the present study the interest was focused on preparing different training conditions for elementary school students, the aim was evaluate the effects of implement conditions organized in sequence vs conditions organized in random order. Under the conditions organized in sequence, students had to move from the development of a skill to another, considering an increase in the level of complexity. Meanwhile, conditions organized in random order, students transiting from skill development to another, participating in varying levels of complexity. The results were discussed in terms of the potential benefits offered by the implementation of conditions organized in sequence and conditions organized in random order to formal education in Mexico.

46. Teachers as Tutors of a Computerized Program to Teach Reading to Hearing Impaired Children
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
JACQUELINE P TENORIO (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Raquel Melo Golfeto (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Deisy das Graças De Souza (Universidade Federal de Sao Carlos)
Abstract: This research aimed to evaluate the performance of hearing impaired children in a computerized teaching program designed to teach rudimentary reading and writing (de Rose et al., 1996). The program was accessed through the Internet. The students used hearing aids or cochlear implant. A FM system connected to the computer transmitted the instructions directly to the student’s hearing aid. Each of three teachers supervised two students. A second objective was to evaluate the supervision. The teachers received instructions on the FM system and on the teaching program. The application of the program was checked weekly and teachers received additional instructions if necessary. Students’ scores on a reading pre-test were lower than 20%. Posttests were conducted after each teaching unit (1, 2, and final) and evaluated the words taught and novel words. All students improved their scores on reading and dictation-taking using CRMTS, but not handwriting; for some students, dictation taking improved more than reading, probably due to their difficulties in word pronunciation. The students’ pace was low, but it is premature to attribute this result to the population or to the supervision system. The teachers requested help concerning technical problems with the computer/Internet, difficulties in decision-making and in recording data.
47. Hawaii Preschool Positive Engagement Project: Parent Perceptions
Area: EDC; Domain: Service Delivery
CARLA T. SCHMIDT (University of Hawaii at Manoa), Charlye Ramsey (University of Hawaii at Manoa), Jean Johnson (University of Hawaii at Manoa), Naomi Romboao (University of Hawaii at Manoa), Camille Rockett Rockett (University of Hawaii at Manoa), Matthew Schmidt (University of Hawaii at Manoa)
Abstract: Children who experience family stress in their preschool years are more aggressive, anxious, and less socially competent in Kindergarten compared to their peers who experience less family stress. The Hawaii Preschool Positive Engagement Project (HPPEP) is based on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support with a modified Check-In Check-Out classroom intervention and First Step to Success homeBase+ parent intervention. The HPPEP aims to address the following objectives 1) Improve early learning outcomes for at-risk preschool students, 2) Build protective factors of families by facilitating parental positive engagement, 3) Address the professional development needs of Early Childhood Education by building knowledge of behavior management strategies. The First Step to Success homeBase curriculum is a six-week family centered intervention that promotes parents in teaching their children school readiness skills. In homeBase+, Project Coaches facilitate one-hour parent groups located at participating schools. Pre and post data from the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire are presented for 30 participants and results for the Parent Satisfaction Report are presented for 30 participants. Participant outcomes revealed a significant decrease in parent perception of their childs total difficulties and all parents reported high levels of satisfaction with the homeBase+ component of the HPPEP.
48. An Evaluation of the Effects of Task Preference on the Value of Choice in Typically Developing Preschool Children
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
ROCIO CUEVAS (Penn State Harrisburg), Julie Spengler (Penn State Harrisburg), Tyler Loy (Penn State Harrisburg), Julie A. Ackerlund Brandt (Penn State Harrisburg)
Abstract: Providing choices has been a successful intervention for increasing appropriate and decreasing inappropriate behaviors in work and classroom settings; however, the mechanism responsible for this success is unknown. Choice may be a preferred condition, in and of itself, and that preference may decrease the how aversive an individual may find a work environment. If this is true, the opportunity to choose may be more valuable in situations in which less-preferred tasks are available. The current study replicated and extended previous research on the reinforcing value of choice by evaluating the effects of task preference in isolation to determine if there is an effect on participant’s preference for making choices. Results suggest that when the tasks presented are of moderate- and low-preference, the participant selected the child-choice option at a high frequency and at a more moderate frequency when the tasks presented were high-preferred. This indicates that although being given the opportunity to choose is a reinforcer across contexts, it may be more valuable in situations in which the tasks are less-preferred.
50. Using an Incremental Rehearsal Technique to Teach Letter Names to a Typically-Developing Three Year Old
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
AMANDA L. YURICK (Cleveland State University)
Abstract: Incremental rehearsal has been shown to be an effective technique to teach young children letter recognition (Bunn, Burns, Hoffman, & Newman, 2005). Additionally, continuous reinforcement shcedules have been shown to strengthen behaviors, particularly in the acquisition phase (Cooper, Heron, & Heward, 2007). In initial stages of learning, the optimal ratio of knowns to unknowns in conjunction with the leanest, but most effective reinforcement schedule remains an empirical question. This study evaluates these two variables across a letter naming task for a typically-developing three year old with no prior letter name knowledge. An alternating treatments design was used to evaluate the rate of letter naming acquisition among three levels of known to unknown ratios with three different reinforcement schedules. Sets were introduced in a counterbalanced fashion. Preliminary results indicate that the continuous reinforcement schedule in conjunction with the 4:1 ratio of knowns to unknowns yields the most efficient learning trajectory. However, additional phases of the study will investigate the juxtaposition of different ratios with different schedules. Implications for early literacy pedagogy will be discussed.
51. A Comparison of the Reinforcing Effectiveness of Different Types of Attention on Skill Acquisition in Typically Developing Preschool Children
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
VALERIE LACERRA (Penn State Harrisburg), Brandi Shives (Penn State Harrisburg), Julie A. Ackerlund Brandt (Penn State Harrisburg)
Abstract: Previous research on problem behavior has shown that different types of attention may be more effective reinforcers than other types. This is an important consideration for teaching new behaviors. Different types of attention (i.e., praise, conversation, or physical touch) may have varying levels of reinforcing efficacy for different children. The efficacy of these types of attention has been evaluated with regard to maintenance tasks, and shown a consistent differentiation of the efficacy of the different types; but little research has focused on their varying effect with regard to skill acquisition. The present study evaluated the reinforcing efficacy of three types of attention when delivered for an acquisition task. A multielement design was used in which three attention-type conditions (i.e., praise, conversation, or physical touch) were alternated in a quasi-random order to teach sight-word reading. Results showed that, all three types of attention functioned as a reinforcer, and that physical attention (e.g., high-fives and tickles) was most effective for both participants. These results indicate that physical attention, and not praise or conversation, should be used with these children to maximize skill acquisition.
Keyword(s): poster session



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