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.

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  • AAB: Applied Animal Behavior

    AUT: Autism

    CBM: Clinical/Family/Behavioral Medicine

    CSE: Community Interventions, Social and Ethical Issues

    DDA: Developmental Disabilities

    DEV: Behavioral Development

    EAB: Experimental Analysis of Behavior

    EDC: Education

    OBM: Organizational Behavior Management

    PRA: Practice

    TBA: Teaching Behavior Analysis

    TPC: Theoretical, Philosophical, and Conceptual Issues

    VRB: Verbal Behavior

    NON: NONE

Ninth Annual Autism Conference; Las Vegas, NV; 2015

Event Details


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Poster Session #2
Poster Session #1
Friday, January 23, 2015
6:00 PM–8:00 PM
Marquis Ballroom
1. A Rapid Coaching Intervention for Teaching Naturalistic Strategies to Parents of Young Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JUSTIN LANE (University of Kentucky), Jennifer Ledford (Vanderbilt University), Kevin Ayres (University of Georgia), Alicia Davis (University of Georgia)
Abstract: This poster will present outcomes of an intervention to teach parents of young children with autism spectrum disorder to implement naturalistic teaching strategies in the context of a play setting. Parents who participated in the intervention were provided instruction on how to use the target behaviors of narration, imitation, and environmental arrangement/responding to promote social-communication skills. Parents were then asked to use these strategies during play sessions with their child. An instructional coach was present during play sessions to provide in-vivo feedback on the parents implementation of strategies. Immediately following the session, the instructional coach and parent met briefly to view video examples of the parent implementing strategies during that days session and to discuss additional ways to use the strategies. A multiple baseline across behaviors design was used to evaluate the effectiveness of the intervention. Data for the first parent participant indicate that she engaged in target behaviors at or above criterion levels immediately following instruction and maintained those behaviors across most sessions. Concurrent increases in the child participants vocal communicative responses and initiations were observed following parent training. This submission includes data for the first parent-child dyad. Intervention with a second dyad is in progress.
 
2. Development of a Device to Measure Frustrative Autonomic Arousal in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Manpreet Kaur Hora (Virginia Tech), ANGELA SCARPA (Virginia Tech), Deanna Swain (Virginia Tech), Brennon Bortz (Virginia Tech), Isabel Bradburn (Virginia Tech), Martha Ann Bell (Virginia Tech), R. Benjamin Knapp (Virginia Tech)
Abstract: Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) may react to emotional stimuli with aggression, self-injury, or tantrums as a result of emotion dysregulation. Strengthening capacity to manage their emotions may improve behavior and socioemotional functioning. Because early intervention is critical, it is important to teach emotion regulation to young children (age 3-6 years) with ASD. We propose a novel device with a feedback loop to enable children to identify and monitor their physiological reactions during a frustrating event, hear the strength of their arousal level reflected in a sound, and use that information to self-soothe. Feasibility of the framework was tested first by pilot studies in nine typically developing children (age 3-6 years). The children were exposed to frustrating and non-frustrating events while electrodermal activity (EDA) and heart rate measures were obtained. The children also listened to different auditory stimuli while EDA and behavioral orienting was assessed. The attention capturing capacity of the auditory stimuli was tested, and an arousal profile system was developed. 76.74% of the audio representations elicited attention and the arousal profiles distinguished frustrating and non-frustrating events with an average accuracy of 83.37%. Results support feasibility of this device for our next study in children with ASD.
 
3.

The Use of Contingent Exercise (CE) to Reduce Aggression in a School-Aged Male With Severe Autism: A Two-and-a-Half Year Data Analysis

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
ASHLEY RATLIFF (Highlands Center for Autism), Shelli Deskins (Highlands Center for Autism), Heather Bevins (Highlands Center for Autism)
Abstract:

This poster reviews over 2� years of data examining the effects of contingent exercise (CE) in decreasing aggressive behavior in a 9 year old, male with severe autism. At the time of baseline, the child displayed an average daily rate of 110 episodes of aggression, with a range of 26-301 episodes per day. Experimental FA results suggested the behavior was maintained by negative reinforcement. Initially, aggression was elicited by specific demands and a reduction in aggression was observed with a differential reinforcement plan, but not to an acceptable level (average 54 per day). A contingent exercise plan paired with escape extinction was implemented and successfully dropped aggression to zero or near zero rates for 130 sessions (a six month period). During the protocol fade, aggressive behaviors increased in frequency and began to occur in response to circumscribed sets of demands. This and the display of a number of other behaviors during treatment indicated a compulsive component to his aggression. The CE plan was continued during trials of SSRI medication which proved successful. This case provides support for a CE plan paired with a SSRI in treating aggression that may have a compulsive component.

 
4. Multiple Troubleshooting Techniques Used to Teach Simple Motor Imitation to a Toddler With Severe Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
ASHLEY RATLIFF (Highlands Center for Autism), Heather Bevins (Highlands Center for Autism), Shelli Deskins (Highlands Center for Autism)
Abstract: This poster will review the process of combining several troubleshooting techniques for teaching imitation skills to a 2 year old, female attending a comprehensive center-based program. At entry, she was unable to imitate simple gross motor movements in isolation and scores remained near zero for approximately 20 sessions. Troubleshoots, such as a target change and video modeling proved unsuccessful despite sessions including over 200 trials. After implementing additional troubleshooting techniques, scores improved and she was able to master the initial two targets six sessions later (total 26 sessions). Introduction of a third target dropped scores to 10-20%. Re-introduction of former troubleshoots and the addition of a new technique was initiated. The third target required 23 sessions to master (49 sessions total). She was able to master an additional 12 novel targets over the next 31 sessions (total 80 sessions), demonstrating a generalized imitative repertoire.
 
5.

Using Acceptance and Commitment Therapy Approaches to Treat Children With Autism and Emotional Behavior Disorders

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
ASHLEY SHAYTER (Southern Illinois University), Mark R. Dixon (Southern Illinois University), Rachel Enoch (Southern Illinois University), Keely D. Sabaini (Region III Special Education Cooperative - Journey)
Abstract:

Approximately 70% of youths in the juvenile justice system have been diagnosed with at least one mental health condition. As more children are being diagnosed with high-functioning autism, a greater emphasis is being placed on teaching these individuals social skills and strategies for coping with distressing situations. While contingency management strategies alone may provide some support, the inclusion of approaches utilized by clinical behavior analysts may prove fruitful. One such approach, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), focuses on decreasing avoidance and escape of unpleasant situations while building repertoires related to observing one's environment and verbal behavior, identifying and establishing reinforcing outcomes, and making choices that lead to those outcomes. The purpose of this study was to examine the use of an ACT approach to treating children with autism and other emotional behavioral disorders. Nine students from a school utilizing a specialized ACT curriculum andnine students from a behavior disorder classroom (control) participated in this study. The ACT school was provided with 180 days of ACT-based lessons and included a contingency-based token economy while the control classroom continued treatment as usual. Each school recorded the GPA, attendance, and self-report scores on the AAQ-II and AAQ-K for each student. Results indicated that students in the ACT group increased their scores of psychological flexibility, attendance, and GPA over that of the control group. Implications for the field and directions for future research will be discussed.

 
6. Improving Functional Communication Training by Mitigating the Resurgence of Problem Behavior
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
ASHLEY NIEBAUER (University of Nebraska Medical Center's Munroe-Mey), Wayne W. Fisher (University of Nebraska Medical Center's Munroe-Meyer Institute), Brian D. Greer (University of Nebraska Medical Center's Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Abstract: Functional Communication Training (FCT) combines differential reinforcement and extinction procedures to decrease problem behavior. Despite being proven successful as a treatment for reducing problem behavior, FCT does not address what happens to problem behavior during times in which functional communication responses go unreinforced. Previous research has shown that periods of extinction following FCT produce resurgence of problem behavior (Mace, et al., 2010; Volkert, Lerman, Call, & Trosclair-Lasserre, 2009). Unfortunately, such extinction periods are likely when caregivers implement FCT. The current study evaluated whether establishing strict discriminative control over the FCR with the use of a multiple schedule mitigates the resurgence of problem behavior. With three children who engaged in problem behavior, the effects of a multiple-schedule FCT intervention was evaluated when discriminative stimuli were present or absent during a rigorous extinction challenge developed from Nevin and Shahan’s (2011) Equation 7 of behavioral momentum theory. Results are discussed in terms of how stimulus control can offset resurgence of problem behavior during periods of extinction.
 
7. An Assessment to Inform Selection of Multiple-Schedule or Response-Restriction Treatments During Functional Communication Training
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
DANIEL R. MITTEER (University of Nebraska Medical Center's Munroe-Meyer Institute), Brian D. Greer (University of Nebraska Medical Center's Munroe-Meyer Institute), Wayne W. Fisher (University of Nebraska Medical Center's Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Abstract: Multiple (mult) schedules of reinforcement can be used to thin the schedule of reinforcement during functional communication training (FCT; Hanley, Iwata, & Thompson, 2001). However, the efficacy of Mult FCT may be limited if individuals are unable to discriminate between the components of the multiple schedule (Betz, Fisher, Roane, Mintz, & Owen, 2013). Response restriction (RR) FCT, or removing access to communication materials during periods of extinction, can reduce high levels of requesting while treating problem behavior when individuals lack the discrimination skills required for Mult FCT (Fisher, Greer, Querim, & DeRosa, 2014). We evaluated three children’s successive- and simultaneous-discrimination abilities prior to evaluating Mult FCT or RR FCT. For one child, we conducted Mult FCT and RR FCT concurrently, albeit in separate contexts, and found the assessment accurately predicted discrimination performance during each treatment. For the other two children, we used the discrimination test results to guide the selection of RR FCT to quickly teach the simultaneous discrimination and reduce problem behavior to near-zero levels. Results are discussed in terms of how selecting treatments matched to each individual’s skills may be advantageous when selecting treatments for problem behavior.
 
8.

Parent Training in Pivotal Response Treatment: A Comparison Between English- and Spanish-Speaking Groups

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
BRITTANI HARRIS (Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center), Nicole Matthews (Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center), Beatriz Conti (Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center), Carlos Nuño (Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center)
Abstract:

JumpStart is a parent empowerment and education program, conducted in both English and Spanish, for families of children diagnosed or at risk for Autism Spectrum Disorder under the age of six. JumpStart includes in-vivo coaching in pivotal response treatment (PRT) and guided observations of interventionist-child sessions. This study looks at the change in parent Fidelity of Implementation (FOI) and child responsivity of multiple 4-week JumpStart sessions with both English-speaking groups and Spanish-speaking groups. This study also looks at the differences between those changes in parent FOI and child responsivity with English-speaking groups receiving both in-vivo coaching and guided observation and Spanish-speaking groups only receiving guided observation. Pilot data have looked at the differences between Spanish-speaking intervention sessions conducted in English and guided observation conducted in Spanish (i.e., guide translating the interventionist-child interactions) and Spanish-speaking intervention sessions being conducted entirely in Spanish (Matthews et al., 2013). This study will not only include Spanish-speaking sessions conducted entirely in Spanish, but it will also include more participants. Current results have suggested that the English-speaking groups, participating in both guided observation and in-vivo coaching, had no significant difference in FOI and child responsivity compared to the Spanish-groups, participating only in the guided observation.

 
10. Exposure and Knowledge of Autism Spectrum Disorder and Its Potential Role in Decreasing Stigmatization
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
CHRISTINE C. CUKAR-CAPIZZI (University of Hartford), Ashley Del Guercio (University of Hartford), Cara Wallace (University of Hartford)
Abstract: Individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) demonstrate social deficits that may lead to stigmatization. Previous research has shown a relationship between knowledge of mental illness and stigmatization as well as a relationship between degree of exposure and stigmatization of individuals with ASD. The current study examined knowledge of ASD and degree of exposure as they relate to stigmatization of individuals with ASD. 83 introductory psychology students completed measures assessing their knowledge of autism, degree of exposure to an individual with ASD, and amount of stigmatization towards as individual with ASD. The data was analyzed using a chi squared analyses, one-way ANOVA analyses, and correlational analyses. Although greater stigmatization was reported towards individuals with ASD than typically developing individuals, knowledge of autism and degree of exposure were not found to relate to stigmatization.
 
11. Treatment of Persistent SIB Within an Outpatient Clinic
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
DAVID E. KUHN (Columbia University)
Abstract: Some research has shown that Self-injurious behavior (SIB) is demonstrated by an estimated 22% of individuals diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) living in community settings (Alvarez, 2006). Beyond the associated it can cause, SIB can also significantly interfere with functioning in home, community and school settings. While research has demonstrated escape from instruction to be the most prevalent function of SIB (Iwata, et al., 1994), treatment of SIB maintained by the automatic reinforcement is often the most challenging. In the current study, a 13 year old girl diagnosed with ASD was referred to an outpatient clinic for the assessment and treatment of persistent hand and arm-biting behaviors. A functional analysis confirmed that these behaviors persisted independent of social consequences. The identification and provision of alternative sources of stimulation alone to compete with that associated with SIB was ineffective. However, the addition of a response-reduction procedure produced significant reductions. Next, to account for the feasibility of implementing this procedure throughout the day, stimulus control was obtained to signal when SIB would and would not result in the procedure. Results of this study support previous findings, and are discussed within the context and limitations of an outpatient service delivery model.
 
12.

Individualized Use of Technology at the Judge Rotenberg Center to Promote Educational and Behavioral Progress

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
JASON CODERRE (Judge Rotenberg Educational Center), Maryellen Newman (Judge Rotenberg Educational Center), Nick Lowther (Judge Rotenberg Educational Center)
Abstract:

Many students of the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center (JRC) arrive to JRC with a history of refractory and severe aggression or self-injurious behavior as well as behavior that interferes with educational instruction and community integration. Treating these dangerous behaviors in the least intrusive manner possible places significant demands upon the behavior analyst's skills and ingenuity. We will present cases where the use of JRC-created technology proved to be helpful in augmenting effective treatment of dangerous and interfering behavior. With the help of JRCs Electronics Department, behavior analysts have created unique devices to help decrease students/clients most problematic behaviors, in combination with their behavioral intervention plan. Such JRC-created technology includes: academic completion token operated television, sensor-connected music devices, multicolored lighted discrimitive stimuli to address vocal behavior (volume), in-seat behavior and delayed access to identified reinforcers. Each students behavior data displayed on a standard celebration chart and treatment technology will be presented.

 
13. Treatment to Reduce Packing in a Child With a Feeding and Autism Spectrum Disorder
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JASON R. ZELENY (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Valerie M. Volkert (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Cathleen C. Piazza (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center)
Abstract: Despite the high prevalence of feeding disorders in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), surprisingly few studies have examined the effectiveness of treatment specifically with these children. Children with feeding disorders also often display packing (holding or pocketing food without swallowing). Researchers have evaluated procedures in the general pediatric population to treat packing, and some have found that a combination of procedures is needed to establish an effective treatment. Although researchers have evaluated re-distribution, swallow facilitation, and chasers in the past, these procedures have not been evaluated specifically with children with ASD. Prior to the current investigation, we successfully used a nonremoval procedure to increase acceptance of purees and table foods and decrease the inappropriate mealtime behavior of a child diagnosed with ASD and feeding problems. However, packing emerged during initial treatment with purees and we used a combination of re-distribution, swallow facilitation, and a chaser to decrease packing. Packing continued during treatment for chewing table food, which was the focus of the current study. We then used a similar multi-component treatment to decrease packing of masticated food.
 
14. Comparing the Teaching Interaction Procedure to Social Stories: A Replication Study
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
ALYNE KUYUMJIAN (Autism Partnership), Justin B. Leaf (Autism Partnership Foundation), Jeremy Andrew Leaf (Autism Partnership), Kathleen H. Tsuji (Autism Partnership), Misty Oppenheim-Leaf (Behavior Therapy and Learning Center), Mitchell T. Taubman (Autism Partnership), John James McEachin (Autism Partnership), Ronald Leaf (Autism Partnership Foundation )
Abstract: This study compared the teaching interaction procedure to social stories implemented in the context of a social skills group to teach three social skills to three children diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. The researchers taught each participant one social skill with the teaching interaction procedure, one social skill with the social story procedure, and one social skill was assigned to a no intervention control condition. The teaching interaction procedure consisted of labeling and identifying the behavior, providing a meaningful rationale, breaking the targeted skill into smaller behavioral components, the teacher demonstrating the behavior, and the participants role-playing the targeted behavior. The social story procedure consisted of reading a book and answering comprehension questions. The researchers measured participants performances during performance probes, responses to comprehension questions, and responding during role-plays. The results indicated that the teaching interaction procedure was more efficacious than the social story procedure across all three participants.
 
15. Animal Assisted Therapy: Interaction Between Dogs and Autistic Children
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
PATRICIA MUNOZ (Instituto de Psicologia Universidade de São Paulo), Marie Odile Chelini (Instituto de Psicologia Universidade de São Paulo), Renata Paula Silva Roma (Universidade de São Paulo), Carolina Faria Pires Gama Rocha (Universidade de São Paulo), Emma Otta (Instituto de Psicologia, Universidade de São Paulo)
Abstract: There are many anecdotal reports of successful cases in therapy for children with autism, where a dog was inserted as co-therapist. In addition to these reports a few studies support the effectiveness of Animal Assisted Therapy (AAT) to improve social skills of people with autism. This work is part of a study of the benefits of introducing a dog in the therapy of autistic children. We observed interactions between children with severe autism (4 boys and 2 girls from 8-14 years old) and dogs during TAA structured free-operant procedure, with interest in the start and end of contact. Twenty (20) sessions were conducted in blocks with and without the dog. All sessions were video taped. We analyzed the recordings of the first and last sessions with the dog (session 7 and session 20) evaluating: the frequency of approach and the length of time close (within arm's reach), length of time away from physical contact, smiles and vocalizations. We used an index developed by the ethologist Robert Hinde: % of Approach due to the Child (ApC ) - % of distancing due to the Child (AfC). The dog remained close to the children during most of the time (81% in the first session and 99% in the last one). There was a change in the tolerance of children who have not become approachable, however less distant (ApC % - % AfC: -12 % in the first session to -1% in the last one). There was also a decrease in negative contact to the dog by the child and the emergence of the behavior of engaging in proposed activities. The dogs, deserving the title Canis empathicus, seem to perceive clues on how to behave in a session, remaining available to the children even when they do not respond nor encourage them. Changes in the children's behavior may be due to positive emotions raised by the dog. Especially notable was the change in the behavior of L.S., who during the first sessions stood with its back to the therapist, in a corner of the room, and at the end played with the dog and the therapist. Our results may be a clue to the relative success of the inclusion of a dog in Animal Assisted Therapy for individuals with autistic disorder: a window of opportunities for learning was opened.
 
16. Treatment Generalization Following Sequential-Oral-Sensory Therapy for Food Selectivity in Children With Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
RONALD CLARK (Munroe-Meyer Institute; University of Nebraska Med), Kathryn M. Peterson (University of Nebraska Medical Center), Cathleen C. Piazza (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Valerie M. Volkert (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center)
Abstract: Many children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) display food selectivity (consumption of a limited variety of foods; Schreck, Williams, & Smith, 2004). Currently, treatments for pediatric feeding disorders based on applied behavior-analytic (ABA) research have the most empirical support (Volkert & Piazza, 2012); however, the Sequential-Oral-Sensory (SOS) approach is widely practiced, despite the fact that empirical support does not exist. In the current study, we evaluated SOS in the treatment of food selectivity in two children with ASD using a multiple baseline across foods design. When acceptance of target foods did not increase during SOS, we implemented ABA treatment, which resulted in high levels of acceptance. Interestingly, once we implemented ABA treatment with the first food, both children began accepting bites of the other two foods that were not in treatment (i.e., generalization). Thus, the children were eating in an age-typical manner (i.e., without treatment). Generalization did not occur during an additional assessment (for participant 1) when ABA was implemented with three foods that had not been exposed to SOS. These findings suggest that although SOS was not effective, implementation of SOS prior to ABA produced more robust effects.
 
17. Salivary Cortisol Levels and Challenging Behaviour in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder
Area: AUT; Domain: Basic Research
SINÉAD LYDON (Trinity College Dublin), Olive Healy (Trinity College Dublin), Michelle Roche (National University of Ireland, Galway), Rebecca Henry (National University of Ireland, Galway), Teresa Mulhern (National University of Ireland, Galway), Brian Hughes (National University of Ireland, Galway)
Abstract: A relationship between stress and challenging behavior in individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) has been theorized but infrequently examined empirically. The current study sought to examine the relationship between parent-reported stress, a physiological measure of stress (diurnal salivary cortisol), and various topographies of challenging behavior among 61 children and adolescents diagnosed with ASD between the ages of 3 and 18 years. Significant differences in cortisol levels between those engaging in high and low levels of stereotyped behavior were observed such that higher levels of stereotypy appeared an overt manifestation of higher levels of stress. A comparison between a subset of participants with ASD and typically developing peers matched on age, gender, and pubertal status failed to yield any differences in diurnal cortisol levels or cortisol variability between the two groups. The results of the current study suggest that similar levels of stress may exist among children with autism and their typically developing peers, but that for a subset of individuals with ASD, stereotyped behavior may be an indicator of elevated cortisol levels.
 
18. Assessing Maintenance and Generalization of Parent Treatment Fidelity Following Parent Training
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
STEPHANIE GEROW (Texas A&M University), Mandy J. Rispoli (Texas A &M University), Leslie Neely (Texas A&M University)
Abstract: The poster will present a case study assessing the generalization and maintenance of parent treatment fidelity following parent training. One parent-child dyad participated in the study. A 4-year-old female with autism and her mother participated. The case study consisted of an AB design, with the baseline (A) phase consisting of typical parent-child interactions. Next, the parent was trained on procedures to increase requesting (mands). The training consisted of written instructions, verbal instructions, and answering questions. During the performance feedback (B) phase, the parent received immediate performance feedback in a clinic setting. Generalization to the home setting was assessed during the A and B phases. No parent training was conducted in the home setting. Results indicated that parent treatment fidelity and child requests increased following parent training, generalized to the home setting, and maintained after three weeks. These data suggest that parents may be able to generalize the implementation of an intervention from the training setting to the home setting. However, these results need to be replicated using a multiple baseline design with other participants. Data collection is ongoing and more participants are being recruited.
 
19. South Side Successes: Delivering Individualized Instruction at an Inner City Child Care Facility
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
TRACY MCKINNEY (Georgia State University), Shaden Kassar (Southern Illinois University )
Abstract: The National Research Council (2001) makes recommendations when it comes to educating individuals with autism. They suggest that individuals with autism receive early intensive intervention that is equivalent to a full school day. They propose using short increments of planned teaching opportunities, with sufficient amounts of one-on-one or small group instruction. However, The State of New York Health Department (1999) and The United States Surgeon General support the use of ABA for students with autism. Explore our road to providing individualized instruction to young children in an inner city daycare on the South side of Chicago. Hear more about our experiences as we work diligently to meet parents where they are and provide quality education to their children. Through obstacles and triumphs we are making a difference in the lives of children who may otherwise not receive any other early intervention services supervised by a Board Certified Behavior Anaylst.
 
20.

The Relationship Between Motor Performance and Emotion Recognition in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Area: AUT; Domain: Basic Research
CHRISTOPHER PRICKETT (Texas State University), Ting Liu (Texas State University ), Reiko Graham (Texas State University)
Abstract:

Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have delays in both motor development and the recognition of non-verbal expressions of emotion. The objective of this study was to examine emotion recognition in ASD using emotional nonverbal body postures, body and facial expression combinations, and simple and complex facial expressions. Relationships between motor skills and emotion recognition ability were also examined. Thirty children with ASD (M = 110.27 months) completed three computerized, forced-choice matching experiments that assessed their recognition accuracy of emotional expressions from bodies (match a sample body expression to a target body expression), faces (match a facial expression to its textual label), or combinations of faces and bodies (match a sample facial expression to a target body posture). The MABC-2 was used to assess motor performance. MABC-2 standard scores were significantly correlated with body expression recognition, r = .589, p < .01; with combined facial and bodily expression recognition, r = .607, p < .01; and with complex facial expression recognition, r = .622, p < .01. These findings suggest that a relationship exists between motor performance and emotion recognition across modalities, which could guide future researchers for designing early intervention treatment programs for children with ASD.

 
24.

The Effects of Response Effort on Preferences of Young Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
GREGORY R. MANCIL (Louisiana Tech University)
Abstract:

Several research studies have demonstrated the success of using preferences as reinforcement for children with autism and other developmental disabilities (Roane, et. al., 1998). However, children with autism often become obsessed with just one or small set of items, which can relate to higher levels of challenging behaviors (Mancil, 2009). Thus, the purpose of this study was to examine the effects of manipulating levels of response effort on choosing between most preferred and less preferred items. A multi-element design was used to test five levels of response effort that considered amount of force and difficulty to access preferred items. Data was collected via iPad® during 1-hour sessions. Prior to manipulating levels of response effort, preference assessments were conducted keeping response effort levels equal across items to obtain a ranked order of items. Assessments were conducted for each of the response effort conditions also. The amount of response effort was systematically manipulated across preferences rankings of items. Results indicate that participants chose less preferred items when response effort was increased for more preferred items. In addition, the change in response effort did not have to be a large change. Minimum increases resulted in a move to a lesser preferred item. This study potentially impacts planning for more complex systems and natural environments considering the complexities within any given behavioral economic system.

 
25.

Measuring Outcomes of Parents Teaching Functional Skills to Their Son With Autism Using the Assessment of Functional Living Skills (AFLS)

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JAMES W. PARTINGTON (Partington Behavior Analysts), Lisa Squadere-Watson (Project LINK)
Abstract:

Children with a diagnosis of autism frequently have major deficits in their ability to perform a wide range of skills necessary for routine daily activities. These deficits in functional living skills often limit the individual's options to participate in many family and community activities. The present study demonstrates the effectiveness of a parent-based intervention to teach functional living skills to a 10-year-old boy diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. Data were collected on the Basic Living Skills, Home Skills and Community Participation Skills protocols of the AFLS assessment. The boys' parents then implemented a teaching program to develop their sons' skills in each of those areas. Data are presented following 12 and 24 months of intervention. The data demonstrate that the boy made significant progress in many skill areas of the assessment. Follow-up data will also be presented that will demonstrate that those new skills were maintained and that additional functional skills continue to be acquired.

 
27. Applications of Modeling: Reducing Self-Injury and Aggression Through Video Modeling and Self-Management
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JESSICA ZAWACKI (Preparing Adolescents and Adults for Life), Eric Shindledecker (Preparing Adolescents and Adults for Life)
Abstract: This study looked to determine if using a video model depicting the clients target behaviors for change and using a self-monitoring checklist would decrease problem behavior and increase awareness of antecedent triggers and consequences while increasing replacement behaviors. The client was an eighteen-year-old male diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder in a community-based program. The client engaged in self-injurious and aggressive behavior with maintaining functions of escape, access, and automatic. Each behavior frequently was preceded by clear antecedents including specific vocalizations, phrases, and instances of exaggerated facial expressions and forced laughter. Video models were created using two familiar staff members (one acting as the staff one as the client) displaying the client engaging in the target behaviors under environmental conditions in which the behavior frequently occurs. Three videos were created each displaying one of the three target functions of behavior. The client reviewed the video, and was asked a series of questions in order to teach the client to identify triggers, antecedents, target behaviors, and consequences. Phase two consisted of three videos displaying the same environmental contexts and addressing the same functions with an embedded coping strategy (help, break, and redirection to preferred subjects). The client reviewed these videos and also identified triggers, antecedents, target behaviors, and consequences. Results indicated that the client was able to engage in the appropriate replacement behavior following antecedent triggers and both aggression and self-injury decreased across environmental contexts and functions.
 
28. The Use of Response Interruption to Reduce Self-Injurious Behavior
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
KAITLIN ROSS (Preparing Adolescents and Adults for Life), Lena Handley (Preparing Adolescents and Adults for Life)
Abstract: This study looked to decrease the self-injurious behavior of an adolescent with Autism who exhibited clear antecedent scripts prior to engaging in the self-injurious behavior. Direct care staff and clinicians were asked to list all potential antecedent scripts and preferred items. Any script or item that was identified by at least two staff members were included in the operational definitions. On the onset of any antecedent script, the client was asked to tact the preferred items using pictures for 30 consecutive seconds, and any subsequent script to tact one item. Results indicated that when the response interruption was initiated by staff at the onset of an antecedent script the occurrence of self-injury significantly decreased indicating that response interruption was successful in decreasing self-injury.
 
29. Assessment and Treatment of Problem Behavior in a Home Setting: A Systematic Replication
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
KIMBERLY DIGGS (TACT), Kevin J. Schlichenmeyer (TACT), Kara LaCroix (TACT)
Abstract: Few studies have illustrated the behavior analytic assessment and treatment process from start to finish (Hanley, Jin, Vanselow, & Hanratty, 2014). We conducted a systematic replication of the process outlined by Hanley et al. (2014) to treat screaming exhibited by a young male with an autism spectrum disorder in a home setting. First, a single-function test consisted of alternation between test and control conditions. During test conditions, screaming produced 30s access to tangible items (e.g., ipad). During control conditions, we provided non-contingent access to tangible items. Functional analysis results suggested screaming was maintained by positive reinforcement in the form of tangible delivery. Treatment consisted of differential reinforcement of an increasingly complex functional communication response, denial training, and subsequent parent training and parent implementation. Results were similar to those reported by Hanley et al. (2014) such that substantial reductions in problem behavior were observed concurrent with establishing appropriate alternative responses not observed in baseline. Inter-observer agreement data were collected for 36 percent of sessions and exceeded 83 percent.
 
30.

All Work and No Play: Can Affect be Better Increased Through Systematic Exposure or Pairing to Increase Leisure Repertoires for Adolescents With Autism

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
LAUREN ERION (Preparing Adolescents for Adult Life (PAAL)), Patrick Johnson (Preparing Adolescents for Adult Life (PAAL))
Abstract:

The present study assessed the duration of functional engagement for several novel low-affect rated independent leisure activities taught to two adolescent boys with Autism with limited communication skills. Initially 10 randomly selected independent leisure activities were introduced and indices of happiness were rated on an affect scale. Three leisure activities, considered to be low-affect items based on the ratings assigned on the affect scale, were chosen for instructional targets. Systematic exposures were conducted followed by a second affect rating to determine if familiarity increased affect independent of pairing. Items that did not reach high affect criteria were paired systematically in a fading procedure to increase duration of functional engagement and increase affect. A forced choice preference assessment was given at the start and conclusion of the study for utilizing the same items and the results were compared to the ranking from the affect scale to determine if indices of happiness or unhappiness correlate to preference based on choice-making. Results indicated that the target items rated as low-affect when paired with the high-affect items were systematically shaped by demonstrating a significant increase in affect in the post assessment. Forced choice assessment results indicated that the three low affect items that were initially frequently not selected were selected more frequently in post assessment.

 
31. The Use of Video Modeling and Least to Most Prompting to Establish Response Chains: A Comparison of Procedures
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
LEAH EMMONS (University of Saint Joseph), John D. Molteni (University of Saint Joseph)
Abstract: Video modeling and least-to-most prompting procedures were examined for effectiveness in the acquisition of steps in a response chain for a leisure skill for individuals with developmental disabilities. The purpose of the study was to systematically replicate and extend upon research conducted by Murzynski and Bourret (2007). The researchers found that video modeling and least-to-most prompting were effective methods for teaching activities of daily living. However, least-to-most prompting alone was less effective. In the current study, each procedure was examined in isolation as well as in combination with each other.
 
32.

Prevalence, Evaluation, Intervention and Training on Challenging Behavior in Young Children With ASD

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
MELINA RIVARD (University of Quebec at Montreal), Amélie Terroux (Centre de réadaptation Montérégie Est), Diane Morin (Universite du Quebec a Montreal), Jacques Forget (UQAM)
Abstract:

Few univocal data is available in studies on Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) on the proportion of children who also present challenging behaviors (CB). However, those behaviors seem to be an obstacle to optimal efficacy of early intervention. The current study concerns the assessment and the intervention on CB in young children with ASD and includes four objectives: 1) Carry out a valid French adaptation and establish norms for the Developmental Behavior Checklist Under-4 for children between two and five years old (group of 480 children), 2) Describe the percentage of children with ASD who present CB before having early intervention and study factors that may be linked with those behaviors (group of 150 children), 3) Follow the trajectories of children on CB during four years, 4) Evaluate the effects of a model of supervision (training, coaching on functional evaluation and positive behavior support) on public rehabilitation centers that deliver EIBI in community settings. This poster presents the preliminary data for objectiveone andtwo on approximately 200 children.

 
33. Evaluating the Long-Term Maintenance of Treatment When Parents Implement FCT Within Their Homes With Coaching Provided via Telehealth
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
ALYSSA N. SUESS (The University of Iowa), David P. Wacker (The University of Iowa), Patrick Romani (The University of Iowa), John F. Lee (The University of Iowa), Scott D. Lindgren (The University of Iowa), Todd G. Kopelman (The University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics)
Abstract: Evaluating long-term treatment maintenance is relevant to any treatment program, but especially when evaluating the use of telehealth to deliver behavior analytic services. As part of a federally funded project, we evaluated the long-term maintenance of functional communication training (FCT) with three children with autism. Parents conducted all procedures within their homes with coaching provided via telehealth by behavior analysts in a hospital located on average 134 miles from the participants homes. Results from functional analyses suggested the participants problem behavior was maintained, at least in part, by negative reinforcement. FCT was implemented within a noncurrent multiple baseline design across participants. FCT reduced problem behavior on average by 98% from baseline across participants. Maintenance probes were collected on a monthly basis following treatment. Maintenance probes involved the parents submitting video recordings of them conducting the treatment procedures independent of coaching. Problem behavior remained at or near zero for all participants across the maintenance probes. Treatment effects maintained at six months post treatment when parents conducted treatment procedures with the behavior analysts observing via telehealth. These results suggest that behavior analysts can use telehealth to implement FCT to achieve substantial reductions in childrens problem behavior and acceptable long-term treatment maintenance.
 
34. Incorporating Special Interests into Video-Based Intervention for a Student With Autism Spectrum Disorder
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
AYAKA TAKAHASHI (University of Okayama), Yoshihisa Ohtake (University of Okayama)
Abstract: This study investigated effects of video-based intervention on the performance of a participant whose favorite hero (special interests) modeled and praised his target behaviors. An elementary-aged male student with autism spectrum disorder participated in this study. His target behaviors included bathroom-related skills of drying hands, arranging shoes, covering himself, and tucking in his shirt. The participants hero was identified by his teachers, with the help of an Attitudes towards Hero Questionnaire (AHQ), which the authors developed to evaluate the participants degree of preoccupancy with the hero. The intervention consisted of two phases. In the video hero modeling (VHM) phase, the hero served as a model engaging in the target behaviors. The video hero praising (VHP) phase was introduced after the VHM phase to ensure his performance was maintained. In this phase, the hero appeared in the video and praised the participant engaging in the target behaviors. The participant watched the video immediately before being required to exhibit each target behavior. The multiple-probe design across behaviors demonstrated that the VHM intervention improved the four target behaviors. However, for one target behavior, the VHP intervention seemed to be necessary to evoke the correct response in a stable manner.
 
35.

Evaluating Preference and Reinforcer Effectiveness of iPad® Apps: Paired Stimulus Assessment and Concurrent Operants Paradigm

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
CHRISTINA SIMMONS (University of Georgia), Sally B Shepley (The University of Georgia), Kevin Ayres (University of Georgia), Sarah Kroll (University of Georgia), Kathleen Cook (University of Georgia Special Education Department- PhD Student)
Abstract:

Identifying potential reinforcers is common practice in working with clients. An iPad® is frequently identified as a preferred stimulus; however, relative preference and reinforcer effectiveness of different applications within the iPad® have not been systematically evaluated. A paired stimulus assessment is being conducted, following procedures identical to those described by Fisher et al. (1992), with a 12-year-old female with autism spectrum disorder and moderate intellectual disability. A list of 16 free apps that do not require internet was generated using information gathered from a structured interview with caregivers, the Reinforcer Assessment for Individuals with Severe Disabilities (Fisher et al., 1996). Caregivers and therapists familiar with the client rank-ordered these apps according to predicted client preference. Currently 37.5% of pairs (i.e., 45 of 120) have been evaluated, measuring participant selection and consumption. A concurrent operants paradigm, following procedures outlined by Piazza et al. (1996), will be conducted to evaluate the reinforcing effects of the high-, middle-, and low-preferred apps identified by the preference assessment. These procedures have been shown to predict the relative reinforcing effectiveness of stimuli identified by a forced-choice stimulus preference assessment. This adaptation permits practitioners to systematically evaluate different mobile applications in a model that parallels established practice.

 
36.

Breaking Through Barriers and Overcoming Parental Resistance

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
DERIC E. TONEY (University of Nevada, Reno), Linda J. Parrott Hayes (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract:

For practitioners in Applied Behavior Analysis, one of the greatest barriers to effective practice is parental resistance. Resistance is described as failure or hesitation to implement the strategies suggested by the practitioner. In most settings, the exposure the behavior analyst has with the client is limited; meaning that implementation is dependent on those with more frequent contact. Regardless of how effective a behavior analyst's strategies could potentially be, without proper support and implementation of others, particularly parents, optimal behavior change will not occur. Despite the common nature of this issue, behavior analysts may not readily address the parents' behavior of resistance, as they would the behavioral concerns of the client. Resistance may be due to a number of a variables such as complexity of the intervention, the available time and resources of the parents, response effort, and the absence of contingencies to support the behavior, all of which behavior analysts commonly address with their clients. In this poster, the author will elaborate upon the issues of parental resistance and provide potential solutions in terms of common behavioral practices.

 
37.

Effect of a Polyherbal Gut Therapy Protocol in Changes to Gut and Behavioral Symptoms of Antibiotic Induced Dysbiosis of Autistic Babies

Area: AUT; Domain: Basic Research
DINESH KARAYIL SUBRAHMANIAN (Vaidyaratnam P S Varier Ayurveda College, Kottakka  )
Abstract:

Autism is the most prevalent of a subset of the disorders organized under the umbrella of pervasive developmental disorders. After the publication of Andrew Wakefield's paper in lancet, many critiques deny this connection even without looking in to the matter. The British Medical Journal even put an editorial regarding this issue. BMJ 2010; 340:c1807. But ayurveda has ample of evidences to believe this connectivity. Dysbiosis, yeast growth of the gut, nutritional deficiencies, enzyme deficiencies, essential fatty acid deficiencies, Gastro esophageal reflux disease, indigestion, inflammatory bowel, chronic constipation & its cascade are few of them to note. The purpose of this paper is to present the observed changes in the behavioural symptoms of autistic babies after a gut management protocol which is a usual programme of our autism treatment plan especially after dysbiotic changes after antibiotic administration. Is there any correlation between changes (if significant) in gut symptoms and behavioral problems of autistic babies especially after a dysbiosis induced by antibiotics. Retrospective analysis of the case sheets of autistic patients admitted in Vaidyaratnam P.S. Varier Ayurveda College hospital, kottakkal, kerala, india from September 2010 are taken for the data processing. Autistic patients are used to come to this hospital as a part of their usual course of treatment. We investigated 40 cases diagnosed as autistic by clinical psychologists from different institutions who had dysbiosis induced by antibiotics. Significant change in gut symptoms before and after treatment p<0.05 in most of its components Significant change in behavioral symptoms before and after treatments p<0.05 in most of the components Correlation between gut symptoms change and behavioral symptoms changes after treatment is + 0.86 Conclusion Selected Polyherbal Ayurveda treatment has significant role to play to make changes abnormal behaviors in autistic babies and has a positive correlation with changes in gut symptoms induced by dysbiosis of antibiotic intake.

 
38. The Effects of Music as Noncontingent Reinforcement for the Treatment of Feeding Related Problem Behaviors
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
EMERALD MINOR (Graduate Student), Hallie Smith (Mississippi State University ), Tuan Ho (Mississippi State University), Daniel L Gadke (Mississippi State University), Carmen Resiener (Mississippi State University )
Abstract: Previous research has shown that children with severe feeding problems often have histories of aversive experiences involving the mouth, nose, throat, and esophagus, (e.g., Benoit & Coolbear, 1998). These aversive experiences have been shown to result in inappropriate meal-time behaviors (Cornwell, Kelly, & Austin, 2010). Feeding problems are particularly prevalent among children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (Kozlowski, Matson, Belva, & Rieske, 2012). The child in this study, a 4-year-old diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder, was referred for concerns with food refusal and failure to thrive. This child received a behavioral feeding intervention for 13 weeks. The primary purpose of the project was to examine the effects of noncontingent reinforcement with escape extinction (i.e., non-removal of the cup) during the acquisition phase of feeding treatment. An A-B-C-B reversal design was used to compare levels of acceptance, inappropriate mealtime behavior, and negative vocalizations in each phase of the intervention. The results indicated consumption increased only when NCR (music) and EE were implemented in conjunction. Further, the addition of NCR with EE during feeding sessions was associated with a decrease in negative vocalizations, coughing, gagging, and disruptive behavior when compared to EE alone. References Benoit, D. & Coolbear, J. (1998). Posttraumatic feeding disorders in infancy: Behaviors predicting treatment outcome. Infant Mental Health Journal, 19, 409-421. Cornwell, S. L., Kelly, K., & Austin L. (2010). Pediatric feeding disorders: Effectiveness of multidisciplinary inpatient treatment of gastronomy tube dependent children. Children’s Health Care, 39, 214-231. Kozlowski, A.M., Matson, J.L.; Belva, B., Rieske, R. (2012). Feeding and sleep difficulties in toddlers with autism spectrum disorder. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 6(1), 385-390.
 
39.

Increasing Child Compliance With Essential Healthcare Routines: From Acquisition to Generalization

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
KIMBERLEY L. M. ZONNEVELD (Brock University), Kelley L. Harrison (University of Kansas), Pamela L. Neidert (The University of Kansas), Courtney Moore (The University of Kansas)
Abstract:

Noncompliance with essential healthcare routines (e.g., hair cuts, dental visits) is a widely reported problem in children with intellectual and developmental disabilities (Allen, Stanley, & McPherson, 1990). This problem is exacerbated when essential healthcare routines involve the use of sharp objects (e.g., scissors, dental scrappers) that have the potential to cause physical injury to children who exhibit noncompliance or avoidant behaviors during the procedure. Two studies were conducted to (a) assess the prevalence of noncompliance with essential healthcare routines in an early childhood education program and (b) evaluate the effects of reinforcement-based procedures on the acquisition, maintenance, and generalization of compliance with essential healthcare routines with seven children. Whereas treatment was necessary to produce increases in compliance for five children, mere exposure to a simulated environment increased compliance for two children. Although generalization of compliance in the actual healthcare environment was only observed for two children, decreases in negative vocalizations, problem behavior, and the use of physical restraint in the actual setting was observed across all subjects.

 
41.

Designing a Center for Autism Treatment and Research

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
R. WAYNE FUQUA (Western Michigan University), Neil Deochand (Western Michigan University)
Abstract:

There has been growing interest in designing supportive environments for individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities, specifically Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Increased awareness of the needs of individuals with behavioral challenges allow interventions to begin when designing a supportive environment. Additionally the right to effective treatment comprises creating centers that focus on least to most restrictive strategies, so that a continuum of behaviors can be addressed. Sharing the architectural and behavioral decision making processes which have led to environmental manipulations that successfully assist clients and staff can circumvent trial and error that could otherwise occur. Decisions to cut-costs may be fiscally successful in the short term, but increasing durability by investing in higher quality materials or improved design, can reduce future costs in the long term. This poster outlines the design changes in the intensive treatment wing of a center for inpatient ASD treatment and research. After these factors were outlined key stakeholders at the center, such as staff, administrators and architects were surveyed to evaluate what features of the design they believe are effective in assisting the behavioral treatment plans. Additional investigation should supplement this emergent research area so that more rigorous quantitative methods of analyses can be utilized.

 
42.

Nevada Association for Behavior Analysis

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
BRIAN JAMES FEENEY (Complete Behavior Health, LLC), Gwen Dwiggins (Accelerated Learning Clinic), Lauren Diane Brown (University of Nevada, Reno), Christina M. Peters (University of Nevada, Reno), Rebecca K. Arvans-Feeney (Kaplan University), Justin N. Kyriannis (Achievable Behavior Strategies, LLC), Janie Gunther (University of Nevada, Reno ), Kathryn M. Roose (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract:

The Nevada Association for Behavior Analysis (NABA) hosts an annual conference in October which focuses on the diversity of behavior analysis with presentations in experimental, applied, and theoretical areas. The conference offers continuing education credits for BACB credentialed individuals as well an ethics workshop and poster session. The conference has established a reputation for providing an intimate, single-track experience for speakers and attendees alike. In addition to the conference, NABA is active in legislative affairs that affect our behavior analytic training sites (e.g., UNR, UNLV), practicing professionals, and consumers of our services. NABA has filled a void in voicing issues that affect our field at a regional level. We are proud to say that we have accomplished a great deal in furthering our commitment to quality education and practice in our state. Our overall mission is to promote intellectual exchange and professional development in the field of behavior analysis.

 
43. Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) Billing Codes for Autism and Related Conditions
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
TRAVIS THOMPSON (University of Minnesota), Wayne W. Fisher (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center)
Abstract: July 2014 the American Medical Association approved new billing procedures for using Applied Behavior Analysis procedures in serving individuals with autism and other similar conditions of children and youth. This initiative was undertaken several years ago by the ABAI and approved with support from the American Psychological Assn, the Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and other organisations. Three new Evaluation Codes and Seven new Treatment Codes were approved, meaning for the first time in history, the AMA has recognised ABA methods as efficacious evidence based treatments for any disorder or disability. Thus, insurers can no longer claim ABA methods to be experimental. The new codes are provisional Level I codes meaning that they are temporary and will be converted to permanent billing codes after sufficient evidence is gathered by insurers of their appropriate use. This poster will present the essential elements of the new CPT Codes and provide information about supportive resources for training partitioners.
 
44. Teaching Mands Related to Positive and Negative Reinforcement to a Child With Autism Using Systematic Instruction and an iPad-Based Speech-Generating Device
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
AMARIE CARNETT (Victoria University of Wellington), Laura Roche (Victoria University of Wellington), Hannah Waddington (Victoria University of Wellington), Michelle Stevens (Victoria University of Wellington), Donna Achmadi (Victoria University of Wellington), Jeffrey S. Sigafoos (Victoria University of Wellington)
Abstract: Skinner (1957) noted that requesting a preferred object could be seen as a sub-class of the mand that involves positive reinforcement. Requesting a break from a learning task could be seen as another sub-class of the mand, involving negative reinforcement. In this study, we aimed to teach an 8-year-old boy with autism and no speech to (a) request a preferred object and (b) request a break from a learning task. The child was taught to use an iPad-based speech-generating device to make these two requests. Intervention involving, progressive time delay, response prompting, prompt fading, and differential reinforcement was applied across these two types of requests in a multiple-baseline design. During baseline, no correct responses were observed. With intervention, the child acquired both requesting responses. On addition, conditional use of the requesting a break response was developed by requiring progressively longer on-task behavior. These data suggest an effective approach for teaching two types of mands.
 
45.

Teaching Complex Verbal Responses to Children With Autism Using PEAK

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JORDAN BELISLE (Southern Illinois University), Mark R. Dixon (Southern Illinois University), Jacqueline Peach (Southern Illinois University), Jacob H. Daar (Southern Illinois University )
Abstract:

Three children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder were initially exposed to a baseline assessment that evaluated their ability to emit autoclitic mands, distorted tacts, and generate creative textual behavior. Using a multiple baseline design across behaviors within participants and then replicated across participants, each child was provided with differential reinforcement for correct responses of a subset of stimuli, while others were simply probed for emergent generalization. Each child was subsequently capable of demonstrating the emission of the targeted directly reinforced behaviors independently following most-least prompting procedures, and eventually produced generalization to the non-reinforced tested stimulus exemplars. These data support the utility of teaching complex forms of verbal operants to children with autism, and suggest that future research begin to establish repertoires that incorporate the subtle nuances of language that are common among most members of the verbal community

 
46. Referent-Based Instruction for Children With Autism and Other Language Disorders
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
STEPHANIE CURTIS (The University of Texas at San Antonio), Lee L. Mason (The University of Texas at San Antonio), Alonzo Andrews (The University of Texas at San Antonio)
Abstract: Skinners (1957) analysis of verbal behavior deconstructed language according to stimulus control. Al- though the functional independence of these verbal operants has been empirically demonstrated, more commonly, a speakers verbal behavior is induced by a convergence of controlling stimuli. However, circumscribed stimulus control may inhibit the development of complex verbal repertoires for some individuals, including those with autism spectrum dis- orders. For this reason, in the current paper, we propose a behavior analytic intervention with the overarching goal of establishing multiple control over verbal behavior through the conditioning of referent stimuli. Thirteen children received referent-based teaching at a university-based center for applied behavior analysis. Each participant received 90 minutes of referent-based instruction four days a week for 13 weeks. Instruction was individualized to the needs of the participant, but focused on the four primary verbal operants: mands, echoics, tacts, and sequelics. Using the Verbal Behavior Milestones Assessment and Placement Program (VB-MAPP; Sundberg, 2008) as a pre- and post-test, we analyzed the effects of RBT. A Wilcoxon Signed-ranks test indicated that, after one semester of RBT, participants scored significantly higher on the VB-MAPP post-test (Mdn = 65.5) than when initially assessed on the VB-MAPP pre-test (Mdn = 32.5), Z = -3.18, p = .001, r = .62. The results of this study will be discussed within the context of the limitations. Overall, however, referent-based teaching appears to be an effective method for increasing the language of children with autism.
 
47. Description of EIBI Services in Qubec
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
CARMEN DIONNE (Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières), Myriam Rousseau (CRDITED Mauricie Centre-du-Québec Institut universitaire), Annie Paquet (Universite du Quebec a Trois-Rivieres), Jacques Joly (Universite de Sherbrooke), Melina Rivard (University of Quebec at Montreal)
Abstract: In Qubec, 15 rehabilitation centers (RC) offer specialized services for children with ASD. In 2003, Ministry of Health and Social Services recommended the implementation of EIBI services and the importance of social inclusion (MSSS, 2003). But no specific treatment models or evidence-based practices were described at the time. Due to lack of precisions, RC chose a variety of programs and their components. Ten years after the beginning of EIBI implementation in Qubec, a better description is needed to evaluate the implementation of the services across the province. This description is the first phase of a research project concerning the outcomes of EIBI offered by RC. Method : 15 RC completed a questionnaire (translation and adaptation of Love & al., (2009) and adaptation of Gamache & al., (2010). Written documents with procedures and curriculum content used by each RC were collected and analyze to describe multiple dimensions of comprehensive treatment models (CTM). The categorization used by Odom and al., (2010) was employed. Results: 18 program services were described. The majority of RC used at least 1 published curriculum and most of them used more than one. The curriculum more often identified are Maurice et al. (1996), Lovaas (2003), Lovaas (1981), Sundberg & Partington (1998) and Prizant et al. (2006). About assessing tools, the majority used more than one on a regular basis. The most popular was PEP-R/PEP-III. About evidence-based practices, a diversity of intervention procedures was observed (DTT, shading, prompting, modeling, social narratives, naturalistic intervention, picture exchange communication, etc.). Concerning CTM, a majority of RC adopted a model based on an applied behavior analysis framework but we could observe the development of a mixed model based on ABA and development or relationship-based model.
 
48.

Self-Reported Knowledge and Ability to Use Specific Intervention Procedures by Practitioners Within the Context of Community-Based EIBI programs

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
ANNIE PAQUET (Universite du Quebec a Trois-Rivieres), Suzie McKinnon (Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières)
Abstract:

In Qubec (Canada), rehabilitation centers for persons with intellectual disabilities or autism are mandated to provide EIBI services for young children with autism spectrum disorders (MSSS, 2003). These services were implemented quickly (Dionne & al., 2014). Different strategies, including university education and practice guidelines (FQCRDITED, 2010), have been deployed to support the implementation of these services. Few studies have reported information on the implementation of these services (Gamache et al, 2011; Mercier & al., 2010; Dionne & al, 2014). It seems that a great number of children are receiving those services in mainstream childcare settings and that different intervention strategies based on applied behavior analysis are used in this context (Dionne & al., 2014; Gamache & al., 2011). Since the program has been in place for more than a decade, it was of interest to examine some aspect of the implementation of these EIBI services offered in mainstream childcare. This communication will focus on the perceptions of practitioners about their own knowledge and ability to use specific intervention procedures during EIBI session in childcare settings. Those data are part of a larger research project. Method: A total of 67 respondents were recruited in three rehabilitation centers providing EIBI to young children with ASD. They completed a questionnaire about their self-perceived knowledge of ASD characteristics and their knowledge and ability to use intervention procedures. Results: Respondents report having a good knowledge of ASD characteristics. They also report having a good knowledge of several of the proposed intervention strategies: DTT, visual strategies, PECS, modeling, social stories, positive behavioral support, peer modeling, task analysis, shaping. Results concerning their ability to apply the procedures are linked to their knowledge of these interventions. Finally, they consider themselves competent to use those intervention procedures in different childcare contexts: one on one, group, during lunchtime, snack or outside activities.

 
49.

Randomized, Controlled Trial of an Low Intensity Intervention for Toddlers With Autism: The Early Start Denver Model

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
THIAGO LOPES (Universite du Quebec a Montreal), Melina Rivard (University of Quebec at Montreal)
Abstract:

Begin intervention early in life is one of the main factors that contribute to the success of the intervention for children with autism. There is now a great deal of knowledge about how to identify toddlers with autism by the age of 2. Despite the importance of early diagnosis, this new context is imposing a great pressure over services in Quebec, and many children with autism receive no or very little service before entering school. To reduce the number of children in the waiting list for EIBI and provide initial services for families, some public agencies have implemented an education program for parents of children with autism with a frequency of 1 hour per week, offered during the year that precedes the intensive services. However, this local intervention has shown little effects over the intellectual functioning and adaptive behaviour of young children with autism. The current study provided an alternative intervention using naturalistic therapeutic techniques from the Early Start Denver Model (ESDM). Seventeen children from age 2-5 to 3-5 were randomly assigned to the ESDM experimental group or to the control group, in which toddlers received a local intervention. Both groups received 1 hour of intervention per week for a year. The interventions were applied by special educators provided by a public agency, and parents received training to continue intervention along the week. Results demonstrated that toddlers that received the ESDM improved significantly more than the control group. On average, toddlers from the ESDM group gained 11.4 points of IQ and children at the control group lost on average 1.62 points of IQ. Differences were also found on adaptive and problem behaviors.

 
51. Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD): State of Service Provision and Support for Children With Autism in Ethiopia
Area: AUT; Domain: Basic Research
WAGANESH ZELEKE (Duquesne University )
Abstract: Autism is a childhood disorder that has received a lot of attention in most developed countries. Our understanding about autism has improved in a great way based on research in the medical and social science, even though there are still many unanswered questions about epidemiology, diagnosis, and treatment of autism worldwide. There is also a clear imbalance of knowledge about autism worldwide. Despite a flurry of research characterizing the field of autism over the past years there is still a dearth of research about autism in developing countries.; this is despite the fact that 90% of the worlds children are born in countries which are considered low income or developing (Tomilson & Swartz, 2003). Africa is one of the biggest continents where most of the countries are considered low-income and highly populated. Using intensive literature review and document analysis, the current presentation provides data on the process of symptom recognition, help seeking, initial diagnosis, treatment situation , and service provisions of children with autism and health providers' perceptions towards autism services in Ethiopia, one of the most developing country in Africa. The findings suggest that the social stigma attached to mental health found to be a risk factor for late diagnoses and treatment even in a situation where parents detect the symptoms at early stage. A significant difference also found among health providers on their understandings of the nature and treatment of autism, and the type of service provision needed to children with autism. Environmental, cultural, and socioeconomic factors have also found to be associated with parents understanding of autism and their help seeking behavior for different type of services. Implication for parents, service providers, and policy makers for awareness, knowledge, and increased accuracy of diagnosis and treatment are discussed.
 
52. The Effects of Behavioral Skills Training and Graphic Feedback on Staff Implementation of Pre-session Pairing
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
ASHLEY LUGO (Munroe Meyer Institute), Melissa L. King (University of Nebraska Medical Center), Laura L. Needelman (Munroe Meyer Institute), Therese L. Mathews (UNMC)
Abstract: Pre-session pairing is a procedure designed to promote interactions between a therapist and client. Recommended procedures have included a therapist delivering preferred tangible items and/or activities to a client prior to introducing demands. Literature on the verbal behavior approach to teaching language suggests using pre-session pairing at the onset of treatment (Barbera, 2007; Sundberg & Partington, 1998). However, no known study to date has developed or evaluated the procedure for pre-session pairing. The current study developed a task analysis of pre-session pairing adapted from existing literature on behavioral parent training and the verbal behavior approach (McMahon & Forehand, 2003; Barbera, 2007; Sundberg & Partington, 1998). Behavioral skills training was used to teach staff to correctly implement steps of pre-session pairing. Additionally, performance feedback was used to increase and/or maintain frequency of the skills used. Results indicated that participants were able to acquire some pre-session pairing skills with the use of a baseline checklist. However, participants required behavioral skills training and performance feedback to meet implementation criteria.
 
53. Establishing Praise as a Reinforcer Using the Operant Discrimination Training Procedure
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
ASHLEY LUGO (Munroe-Meyer Institute), Therese L. Mathews (UNMC), Ana M Cathcart (UNO/UNMC), Melissa L. King (University of Nebraska Medical Center), John Lamphere (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center )
Abstract: Social deficits are a hallmark of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Socially mediated consequences, such as praise, may not function as a reinforcer for individuals with ASD. Given the frequency with which praise is used as a programmed consequence in empirical research and in clinical practice, it is necessary to explore procedures that could condition praise to function as reinforcers. Operant Discrimination Training (ODT) has emerged as a promising procedure to condition stimuli to acquire reinforcing properties. Four children diagnosed with ASD participated in this study. A nonconcurrent multiple baseline design across participants was used to evaluate the ODT procedure in conditioning praise as a reinforcer. Results indicated that the ODT procedure can demonstrate immediate effects on behavior, but extinguish within 3-5 sessions. Implications for future research and conceptual issues surrounding stimulus pairing will be discussed.
 
54. Identifying Different Groups of Children With ASD Deemed Not Eligible for Intensive Behavioural Intervention (IBI) Utilizing Cluster Analysis
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JO-ANN M. REITZEL (McMaster Children's Hospital, McMaster Universi), Colin Andrew Campbell (McGill University), Jane Summers (Centre for Addiction and Mental Health), Peter Szatmari (University of Toronto), Lonnie Zwaigenbaum (Alberta Health Services), Stelios Georgiadis (McMaster University), Eric Duku (McMaster University)
Abstract: Background: Only some children with ASD benefit from IBI (Makrygiani & Reed, 2010). The Ontario Autism Intervention Program Guidelines state that individuals with the most severe forms of ASD up to age 18 are eligible for IBI, but little is known about the children deemed ineligible. (Ministry of Children and Youth Services, 2006). Aim: This study identifies groups of children with ASD who are ineligible for IBI in a community sample from the Hamilton-Niagara Regional Autism Intervention Program (Summers, Reitzel and Szatmari, 2013) using cluster analysis. Method: 353 children with an independent diagnosis of ASD (mean age 74.67 months) deemed ineligible for IBI participated. Vineland Adaptive Behaviour Scales and Childhood Autism Rating Scales scores, sex and age at assessment were analysed using a 2 step cluster analysis. Results: There were 3 clusters: 1) Female group of younger, less severe symptoms, higher functioning children; 2) Mostly male group of older, more severe symptoms, lower functioning children; 3) Male group of younger, less severe symptoms, higher functioning children. Clusters were validated. Girls were deemed ineligible due to being either higher or lower in adaptive functioning and in symptom severity in similar proportions as ASD diagnosis sex ratio. Discussion: While these results need to be replicated with another sample, there are indications that 1) interventions for ineligible individuals based on assessed abilities and needs as well as 2) evidence-informed consistent eligibility criteria need to be developed. References: Makrygianni, M. K., & Reed, P. (2010). A meta-analytic review of the effectiveness of behavioural early intervention programs for children with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 4, 577-593. Ministry of Child and Youth Services. (2006). Autism Intervention Program Guideline Revision. Retrieved from the Ontario Ministry of Child and Youth Services website: http://www.children.gov.on.ca/htdocs/English/topics/specialneeds/autism/guidelines/guidelines.aspx#foot Summers J, Reitzel J, Szatmari P. (2013). Regional autism intervention program and related research activities at McMaster Childrens Hospital in Ontario. In: Doehring P (Ed.), Autism Services Across America. Baltimore, MD: Paul H. Brookes Publishing, 195-205.
 
55. Effects of Video Modeling on a Visual Communication System (VCS) to Teach Manding Acquisition for a Young Child With ASD
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
KASSIE PARNOW (University of West Florida), D. Reed Bechtel (University of West Florida), Sue Heatter (University of West Florida), Leasha Barry (University of West Florida)
Abstract: Acquisition of independent manding skills is a primary concern for many individuals on the autism spectrum. An alternating treatment design with baseline was used to compare the acquisition of manding skills between a visual communication system (VCS) alone versus video modeling (VM) plus VCS. One nonverbal, five year old male diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) participated in the study. All sessions were conducted in the parent's house as part of in home ABA services. The participant's older sister served as the video model. All manding activities utilized the same VCS components. An iPad was present only in the VM + VCS sessions to show a short video of the model correctly demonstrating independent manding via the same VCS system used in the VCS alone condition. The iPad was not used as a speech generating device and was present only in the initial part of the VM + VCS sessions to show the brief video. While both interventions eventually produced 100% correct responding, results indicated VM plus VCS was more efficient in producing mand acquisition than the VCS alone thus extending the previous video modeling research Parental feedback regarding application of the interventions in a home setting also was assessed and discussed.
 
56. The Utility of Preferences in Transferring Mands to Receptive Identification Among Children With Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JENNIFER NINCI (Texas A&M University), Samantha Guz (Texas A&M University), Leslie Neely (Texas A&M University), Kristi Morin (Texas A&M University), Mandy J. Rispoli (Texas A&M University)
Abstract: Motivation plays a pivotal role in the development of language, particularly for individuals with significant language delays. This study assesses the use of preferences in facilitating the transfer of mands to receptive identification targets. Specifically, preferred versus non-preferred but functional targets were compared on the speed of receptive identification acquisition within an alternating treatments with repeated acquisitions design. Participants were three children with autism spectrum disorder who communicated through picture exchange and exhibited no prior receptive identification abilities. Picture exchange manding sessions took place with high and low preferred targeted items available and exchanges were paired with the corresponding vocalized word by the instructor. Receptive identification targets were subsequently probed and taught using a research-based teaching package. Additionally, generalization to multiple exemplars was empirically assessed and taught using the transfer-of-stimulus-control procedure. One participant only acquired and generalized preferred targets, one participant acquired both sets of targets but only generalized preferred targets, and one participant demonstrated no improvement across targets. Implications for teaching the skill of receptive identification to individuals with autism will be discussed.
 
57.

Using Activity Schedules During Recess to Increase Appropriate Engagement of Students With ASD

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Lauren Estrain (Montgomery County Maryland Public Schools), ANDREW EGEL (University of Maryland College Park), Jennifer Lee (University of Maryland College Park), Fayez Maajeeny (University of Maryland College Park)
Abstract:

A multiple-baseline across four students with ASD was implemented to determine the effects of activity schedules on appropriate engagement. During baseline, an adult said ?Go play.? The investigators followed the participant for a duration of six minutes and no consequences were provided for the presence or absence of appropriate engagement. During the intervention phase of this study, each participant followed the activity schedule that was housed in a binder. The classroom teacher began the intervention by stating, ?It?s time to do your schedule.? After the classroom teacher provided the instruction, the participant opened the binder to the first page and walked to the first piece of equipment that was pictured. Once the participant completed the activity with the specified playground equipment, the participant turned the page in the binder to see the next piece of equipment that was photographed. The participant then traveled to the designated area and completed the activity with the specified playground equipment. This cycle continued for six activities with different equipment until the completion of the activity schedule. All four students exhibited low levels of appropriate engagement during baseline. Introduction of the activity schedules resulted in immediate changes in levels of appropriate engagement.

 
58.

The Effectiveness of PowerPoint in Teaching Individuals With Autism Sight Words

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
FAYEZ MAAJEENY (Univeristy of Maryland-College Park)
Abstract:

A multiple baseline design across students was used to investigate the effectiveness of using PowerPoint to teach sight words. Three students diagnosed with autism, who attending a public elementary school located in Montgomery County Public Schools, participated in this study. Flash cards were used as a pretest/baseline phase. After a couple sessions of teaching using PowerPoint, a post-test were conducted to investigate the effectiveness of PowerPoint. Ten sight words were selected based on each student's IEP, and they never learned these words before. Results showed that using PowerPoint aided students greatly in improving their reading sight words.

 
59. The Effects of a Self-Management Intervention on Academic Engagement for High School Students With Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
GARRETT ROBERTS (The University Texas at Austin), Min Kyung Kim (East Tennessee State University), Colleen Reutebuch (The University of Texas at Austin)
Abstract: The benefits of self-management can include improved student behavior across settings with minimal teacher management. Yet in a synthesis by Southall and Gast (2011) the efficacy of self-management was reviewed for students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and Pervasive Developmental Disorder, and only one study investigated self-management in high school age participants in a public education setting. This current study aims to further investigate self-management for high school students by using an ABAB withdrawal design to investigate the research question of: what is the effect of a multi-component self-management intervention on academic engaged time (AET) for two high school students with ASD? Results showed that during the intervention phases there was an increase in level, positive change in slope, decrease in variability, the presence of an immediacy of effect, as well as positive social validity findings. Results suggested that using self-management strategies may be beneficial in improving high school students with ASDs academic engaged time, with further research being warranted to investigate the generalities of self-management interventions across settings and content areas for high school students with autism.
 
60. Functional Analysis Conducted in Public School: Creating a Plan for Student Success
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
Jessica Piazza (Collaborative Autism Resources & Education), JANET A. SCHAEFER (Collaborative Autism Resources & Education )
Abstract: A consultant worked with the public school team in a rural area to conduct a functional analysis as part of a functional behavior assessment for a student diagnosed with Down's Syndrome and Autism. The student has had a long history of exhibiting severe physical aggression directed towards adults. He also displayed significant delays across all developmental domains, which limited his access to general education peers in the least restrictive environment and hindered his ability to increase pro-social behaviors. The team determined that the function of his problematic behavior to was to escape non-preferred demands being placed upon him by adults. The team developed functionally equivalent replacement behaviors that were systematically taught to the student and then trained other team members how to successfully implement the interventions chosen, as well as track the student's progress with fidelity. Data will show that the student's functional communication skills have increased and that there has been a significant decrease in physical aggression directed towards adults. He has increased his overall independence and now has opportunities to participate in the least restrictive environment with his peers. Follow up data will be provided about maintenance and generalization of learned skills.
 
61. The Effects of I-Connect on Student Engagement With Two Students With Autism in a Public School Setting
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
LACHELLE CLEMONS (Missouri State University), Alexandra Beckman (Missouri State University), Linda G. Garrison-Kane (Missouri State University), Howard P. Wills (Juniper Gardens Children's Project), Ben A Mason (Juniper Gardens Children's Project, The University of Kansas), Wayne Mitchell (Missouri State University)
Abstract: Due to the increase in the prevalence of autism, the need to train teacher educators how to utilize research-based instructional strategies is imperative. This study employed a single-subject, ABAB design to evaluate the effectiveness of I-Connect self-monitoring intervention on the on-task behavior of two students in the public school settings. The I-Connect self-monitoring intervention is a technology application downloaded to a tablet device with wireless internet capability. Students monitor their behavior and record responses. This study employed by teacher educators assessed the effects of the I-Connect application with one student in the general education setting and with one student in a self-contained classroom setting. Both students with autism demonstrated an increase in their on-task behaviors when utilizing the I-Connect device during the intervention phases of this study, indicating that the use of the self-management technology was an effective strategy to increase on-task behavior for these two students with autism. Participant one demonstrated an increase from an average of 58% on-task during baseline to an average of 97.4% during intervention phases. Participant two demonstrated an increase from an average of 40.6% on-task during baseline to 95% on-task during intervention phases.
 
62.

Increasing Rates of Specific Praise and Opportunities to Respond (OTR) Provided by Para-Educators in Special Education Classrooms

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JORDAN POLITTE (Missouri State University), Mary Elizabeth Daniels (Missouri State University), Linda G. Garrison-Kane (Missouri State University), Joseph H. Wehby (Vanderbilt University), David Wayne Mitchell (Missouri State University), Michael Goeringer (Missouri State University)
Abstract:

Increasing behavior specific praise and opportunities to respond (OTR) in a classroom increases the likelihood that students will engage in learning activities and socially appropriate behavior (Sutherland, Wehby, & Copeland 2000). This study focused on increasing para-educators use of positive praise and OTR in small group reading lessons. A single-subject ABAB study was completed in three sites, which included students with a diagnosis of autism, grades K-4. Para-educators self-recorded their praise and OTR by listening to an audio recording. Researchers recorded the frequency of behavior-specific praise statements and OTR for each reading session across all phases. Participants on-task behavior was recorded using 10-second momentary time sampling across all phases, using video recording. Results indicate that para-educators increased praise and OTR. Results indicate a successful intervention, with a mean increase of para-educators academic praise from .5 in A1 to 27.4 in B2, social praise from 0 in A1 to 20.7 in B2 and OTR from 34.5 in A1 to 57 in B2. Students on-task behavior increased from 58.8 in A1 to 69.95 in B2

 
63.

Implementing Brief Functional Analysis and NCR for a Student With Autism in an Inclusive Setting

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
MAUD DOGOE (St Cloud State University)
Abstract:

In this study, a reversal design was used to examine the effects of NCR with positive reinforcement on attention maintained aberrant behaviors in a school-aged child with autism in an inclusion setting. A brief functional analysis indicated that the behaviors were found to be primarily maintained by attention. The intervention comprised the presentation of preferred edible items and specific praise on a fixed time schedule that was gradually faded. The results indicate that the intervention was effective in reducing attention maintained behaviors in the form of elopement and/noncompliance and off-task behaviors. Implications for practice have been discussed.

 
64.

Effectiveness of Video Modeling to Teach Community-Based Requesting Behavior Using Speech Generating Devices in Adolescents With Autism

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
MEGAN AMENG (SDSU), Bonnie Kraemer (San Diego State University), Hillary Whiteside (The Institute for Effective Education)
Abstract:

This study evaluated the effectiveness of using video modeling to teach adolescents with autism to purchase a smoothie using speech generating devices. A non-concurrent baseline design acrossthree participants was utilized. A point-of-view video model depicted the participant navigating to the correct page on their speech generating device (SGD), entering the restaurant, and completing all components of the task-analysis before exiting the store. After viewing the video model while in the community, the participants were given a direction from their teacher to buy a smoothie. Data collected during baseline revealed that the participants completed an average of 35% of components in the task analysis for buying a smoothie at a chain restaurant independently. Following intervention, allthree participants successfully acquired the skill to use a speech generating device to order and purchase a smoothie by completing an average of 88% of components independently. Additionally, all participants maintained this skill without viewing the video model before purchasing a smoothie by completing an average of 93% of components independently.

 
65. Comparing Picture and Text Stimuli to Teach Vocabulary Words to Children With ASD Who Are English Language Learners
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JENNIFER BISHOP (California State University, Los Angeles), Jennifer B.G. Symon (California State University), Mitch Fryling (California State University, Los Angeles), Gabriela Simon-Cereijido (California State University, Los Angeles)
Abstract: Deficits in language and communication are common among children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Moreover, children who have ASD and are also English Language Learners may face unique struggles, and evidence-based strategies aimed at improving language and communication among this population are sorely needed. The present study compared the extent to which picture and word stimuli differentially increased sight word acquisition with four children aged 5-7 with ASD who were also English Language Learners. Alternating treatments designs were used with each participant, and, generally, there were no differences found among the rate at which vocabulary words were mastered across the two conditions. The results of the study challenge the popular idea that visuals are needed with learners with ASD, and add to our knowledge about interventions for children with ASD who are also English Language Learners. While preliminary in nature, the current study provides some direction for future research and practice with children with ASD who are also English Language Learners.
 
67. Comparing Different Methods of Teaching Addition to Children With Autism in a Clinical Setting
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
TAMLA LEE (Applied Behavior Analyst), Rachael Judice (Applied Behavior Analyst), Ashley Schaff (University of Louisiana at Lafayette), Justin James Daigle (Therapy Center of Acadiana)
Abstract: Math skills, particularly addition, are important for basic life skills and thus, are an important area of instruction for children with autism. In the present study, four different math strategies were taught to three pre-school-age children across multiple sessions within a social learning environment. These strategies: finger counting, counting pictures, counting tangible objects, and counting on a number line, were all accompanied by a song and instructor lead demonstration. Although the primary goal of the social learning environment is to teach age-appropriate social skills, the center also strived to introduce observational learning by teaching pre-kindergarten skills as identified by the states requirements. The chart displays the results from the month spent on teaching addition during the observational learning portion of the social learning groups. The results indicate that counting tangible objects was the most effective strategy in teaching addition skills. Success in this study is represented by the strategy that yielded the highest percentage of correct spontaneous self-identified responses. The retention session also supports the initial findings of counting tangible objects being the most successful way to teach adding to children with autism, but it also showed growth in counting fingers and using a number line not originally seen in the experimental phase.
 
68.

Enhancing Social Engagement and Independent Walking by Operationalizing Expectations

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
TERRE J. GLAHN (Fun and Functional Services, Inc.), Roberta Jackson (Eastern Washington University)
Abstract:

Enhanced social engagement in children with autism has been demonstrated to correspond with improvement in diversified skill areas including communication, play and academic performance (Hobson & Lee, 1998; Lee, Odom & Loflin, 2007). Specifically, social engagement has been directly linked to the introduction of motivating variables such as independence, context and transition (Joosten, Bundy & Einfield, 2012). This study focused on evaluating context and transition as motivating operations to increase independent walking from the bus to school building in children with Autism. Capitalizing on the potentially strong impact of children walking from less preferred departure from buses with their hands being held by instructors, an instructional component was systematically added to determine the effect of researcher presence, who delivered one instruction, "do not hold their hands, if you feel they will not be at risk". An AB design across instructions was utilized. Baseline measures yielded 22% independent walking and 78% dependent walking. Within two weeks of the treatment phase, after instruction to allow independent walking, independent walking rose to 86% of the children with 14% of the children requiring handholds. Data will be graphically presented based on collection of 2 to 3 times per week for 2 months.

 
69. Blending the Medical and ABA Educational Model in Treating Children Diagnosed With Autism Spectrum Disorders: A Collaboration Between a Public School System and a National Healthcare Organization
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
TRAVIS HAYCOOK (Cleveland Clinic Children's), Amy Coyne (Clark County School District), Becky Pike (Clark County School District), Jason Fico (Clark County School District)
Abstract: Cleveland Clinic Children's and Clark County School District partnered to create multiple classrooms for children with autism in a public school in Las Vegas, Nevada, based in Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). The project was started to increase the effectiveness of the educational organization, in terms of autism treatment. The project was a collaboration between Cleveland Clinic Children's, a top rated international healthcare institution, and Clark County School District, the 5th largest school system in the United States. The collaboration between Cleveland Clinic Children’s and Clark County School District administration was unique. The difficulties of taking a model from a private healthcare facility to a public education organization were recognized at the educational intervention level and at the behavioral treatment intervention level. Barriers ranged from previous levels of intervention that had led to challenging behaviors from the patients to the need for close coordination of training for district personnel of differing education background. The project introduced a new method of service delivery that took time for district personnel to implement, having been accustomed to other forms of intervention prior to the project. This model was introduced to CCSD in January 2013. Piloted in three classrooms during the 2012/2013 school year, the project was expanded to include the remaining autism designated classrooms during the 2013/2014 school year. The project served 83 children with autism. During the project, 128 district staff members were extensively trained in the principles of ABA. The patient population of the project rose from 42 to 83 in 5 months; representing a 99.40% increase, due to program success. Assistance calls due to behavioral outbursts by the patients dropped from 1.67 per day to 0.47 per day, representing a 77.94% reduction. Employee engagement score increased by 31.04%. Rates of challenging behaviors demonstrated by the patients were reduced by 98.96%.
 
70. An Alternative Prompting Modality for Teaching Academic Skills to Preschoolers With Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
BRIAN KELLY (The Institute of Professional Practice Inc.), Trina Sarah Deguia Dizon (The Institute of Professional Practice, Inc.)
Abstract: Video modeling is an instructional procedure with an abundance of empirical evidence throughout the behavior analytic literature demonstrating its efficacy. The majority of these studies have focused on using video modeling to teach a variety of social and behavioral skills to a broad spectrum of learners. There are relatively few existing studies that examine the use of video modeling as a prompting procedure to teach discrimination tasks common to discrete trial teaching protocols. In this study, we investigated the differential effects that video modeling had on correct responding, compared to in-vivo modeling regarding the performance of receptive discrimination tasks. We assessed the rate of correct imitative responses to receptively identify targeted stimuli within academic domains using these different instructional modalities. A combined alternating treatments and delayed multiple baseline design was implemented across three academic programs (e.g. number identification, letter identification, and color identification) for one preschooler with an educational diagnosis of autism. Results showed that the student consistently responded more accurately to the video model prompting procedure versus in-vivo modeling across all academic programs. Future research should assess appropriate fading techniques for the video model to promote acquisition and maintenance, and for which cohort of students video modeling for academics skills would be most successful.
 
71.

A Preliminary Analysis of a Procedure for Overcoming Restricted Stimulus Control When Teaching Tacting as a Conditional Discrimination

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JESSICA NIEMEIER (UNMC Munroe- Meyer Institute), Amber R. Paden (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Nicole M. Rodriguez (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Victoria Smith (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Kari J. Adolf (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Sydney Beran (Munroe-Meyer Institute, Univerisity of Nebraska Medical Center)
Abstract:

We evaluated a procedure for bringing tacting under convergent control of both a visual stimulus (e.g., a picture of a red square) and an auditory stimulus (e.g., "What color?" or "What shape?"). We conducted two differential reinforcement baselines in which a visual stimulus with multiple components was presented (e.g., red square or yellow triangle) and one of two auditory stimuli were provided as either (a) an expressive task or (b) a receptive task (with color cards and outlines of shapes presented as comparison stimuli). Responding during both baselines suggested that the tact or selection response was initially under restricted stimulus control. Next, a differential observing response (DOR) was used to establish correct responding within the receptive identification task. However, convergent control was not transferred to the expressive task despite the inclusion of the DOR. Thus, we returned to the receptive identification task; however, this time the participant was prompted to tact the comparison stimulus as he handed the therapist the card. Stimulus control was then transferred from the receptive task to an expressive task (e.g., "Hand me the shape" to "What shape?") and correct responding maintained in the absence of any prompts. Convergent control was also demonstrated across new colors and shapes as well as items when differential reinforcement was in place for correct responding.

 
72. Motivating Undergraduate Interest in ABA Autism Intervention With the Model for Undergraduate Semester-Long Experiences (MUSE)
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
KRISTINE TURKO (University of Mount Union)
Abstract: There is a growing need for trained professionals in the field of autism intervention. However, undergraduate students rarely have the chance to pursue interests in this area until they have completed their undergraduate degree. In an effort to promote effective intervention training, highly motivated undergraduate students interest can be supported through semester-long experiences that combine clinical and academic work. The Model for Undergraduate Semester-long Experiences (MUSE) provides a framework for effective partnerships between clinical sites and academic institutions. MUSE includes guidelines for: helping clinical sites define their support needs and internship positions, establishing semester objectives and goals, and facilitating student-intern selection and placement (i.e., applications, screening, and housing). The implementation of this model supports staffing needs at clinical sites, while providing meaningful experiences to undergraduate students. In addition, MUSE supports undergraduate education on the following topics: characteristics and incidence of autism, the implications of autism on learning and behavior, and best practices for autism assessment and intervention. In sum, MUSE provides a framework for the effective training of autism intervention specialists.
 
73.

Systematic Reviews of ASD Intervention Literature: A Comparison

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
HANNA C. RUE (National Autism Center), Maria Knox (National Autism Center)
Abstract:

During the last 12 months, there have been several updates to systematic reviews evaluating the autism spectrum disorder (ASD) intervention literature. The National Autism Center (NAC) just completed the second iteration of the National Standards Project (NSPII). The National Professional Development Center (NPDC) and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) each completed a follow up systematic review. Each of the systematic reviews evaluated the quality of group design and single-case design studies using unique methodologies. Additionally, the reviews determined the presence or absence of beneficial intervention effects on participants. The three systematic reviews varied in inclusion and exclusion criteria. For example, the AHRQ did not include single-case studies with fewer than 10 participants. Despite methodological differences, common findings included identification of interventions derived from applied behavior analysis. The current presentation provides a summary and comparison of the systematic reviews and the possible impact such reviews have on evidence-based practice for ASD.

 
74.

Food Selectivity in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Non-Aversive Treatment Package

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
AMY E. TANNER (Florida Institute of Technology), Bianca Andreone (Monarch House Autsim Centre)
Abstract:

Food selectivity or picky eating is often seen in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and can lead to severe nutritional deficiencies along with various food refusal behaviors. Food selectivity can be specific to food texture, color, shape, presentation, type, brand, or container. Often food selectivity is treated using escape extinction, which is considered an aversive procedure. A preference assessment and parent interview determined the child?s food repertoire consisted offour different foods in total (beefaroni, fish crackers, dry cereal, and yogurt) and the child was selective by brand and texture. A treatment package involving non-aversive procedures included shaping, systematic desensitization, paired choice and social praise was then implemented. After 9 months of treatment, the child's food repertoire increased fromfour items to more than 50 items, and the child is readily accepting more than 10 different dinnertime meals. Additionally, food refusal behavior decreased to rates of 0 during intervention and significantly decreased during meal times at home. The importance of a non-aversive, interdisciplinary approach for treating food selectivity in children with autism spectrum disorder will be highlighted.

 
75. Effects of Verbal Reprimands on Targeted and Untargeted Stereotypy
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JENNIFER LYNN COOK (Monarch House), John T. Rapp (Auburn University), Lindsey Anne Gomes (Monarch House), Tammy Frazer (On Solid Ground), Tracie L. Lindblad (Monarch House)
Abstract: Results of brief functional analyses indicated that motor and vocal stereotypy persisted in the absence of social consequences for 5 participants diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Subsequently, effects of a stimulus control procedure involving contingent reprimands for each participant’s higher probability (targeted) stereotypy were evaluated. Results indicated that contingent verbal reprimands (a) decreased the targeted stereotypy for all 5 participants, (b) decreased the untargeted stereotypy for 2 of 5 participants, and (c) increased the untargeted stereotypy for 1 of 5 participants. Although response suppression was not achieved for any participant, 3 participants maintained low levels of the target stereotypy with one or two reprimands during 5-min sessions. Furthermore, 2 of those participants maintained near-zero levels of motor and vocal stereotypy during 10-min sessions. These findings suggest that signaled verbal reprimands may be a practical intervention for reducing stereotypy in some children with ASD. Some limitations of the findings and areas of future research are briefly discussed.
 
76. Graduated Exposure and Differential Negative Reinforcement of Other Behaviour to Increase Compliance With Wearing a Medical Alert Bracelet
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JENNIFER LYNN COOK (Monarch House), Tammy Frazer (On Solid Ground), Kimberly A. Schulze (St. Cloud State University), Lindsey Anne Gomes (Monarch House)
Abstract: A young boy with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and limited communication skills engaged in extreme problem behaviour and was noncompliant with wearing a Medical Alert bracelet required for his safety in the community. As a result, a graduated exposure procedure using Differential Reinforcement of Other Behaviour (DNRO) was introduced. Results show that over 33 sessions, the participant advanced from wearing the bracelet for 5 s to an entire day (7 hr). In addition, as the duration intervals of acceptance increased, problem behaviour conversely decreased. Furthermore, direct and observable measures were be used to gauge fear and anxiety responses for this study, rather than using less-reliable measurement systems such as fear inventories, rating scales, or checklists. The findings of this study indicate a DNRO procedure may be a highly effective strategy to gradually expose an individuals contact with an aversive stimulus. These results also underscore the need to evaluate the use of maintaining contingencies versus reinforcers selected arbitrarily in graduated exposure procedures. Limitations of these findings, as well as future areas for study, are briefly discussed.
 
77. The Influences of Game-Play Experiences and Cultural Background on Playing a Game
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Chun-Chia Hsu (Lunghwa University of Science and Technology), Kai-Hsiang Chuang (Lunghwa University of Science and Technology), JI-LIANG DOONG (Lunghwa University of Science and Technology)
Abstract: Game products should be globalized to attract more players with various experiences and background. Understanding the factors that influence the behaviours of players when they are in the games can improve the game designs. The purpose of the present study is to investigate the behaviours differences of players, who have different game experiences and culture background, when they are in the game. Twenty-one college students, from Malaysia and Taiwan, were participated the present study. A game experience questionnaire, a gamer dedication level questionnaire, and an eye tracker were used to collected study data. The results indicated when the players are more immersed in the game world and are being less tension in their gameplay experiences, they will have higher performances in the tested game. In addition, the different areas players may have different game performances, but, it depends on the factors such as the gamer dedication level of the tested game in the present study. Unexpectedly, the game scores were decreased by the gamer dedication levels. By further analysis the eye tracker data, it revealed their different play behaviours.
 
78.

Optimizing the Learning Environment in the Natural Setting by Manipulating Pre-Session Motivating Operation

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
OFELIA TIPU (Behavioral Learning Center, Inc), Chaturi Edrisinha (Oakland University), Mark O'Reilly (The University of Texas at Austin), Russell Lang (Texas State University-San Marcos)
Abstract:

Many factors can contribute to the development and maintenance of challenging behaviors such as aggression and self-injurious behavior. However, a primary factor that relates to challenging behaviors in children with developmental disabilities is language deficits. This study evaluated the effects of language acquisition on challenging behavior on children with disabilities. This study looked at decreasing challenging behavior and increase language acquisition by manipulating the relevant motivating operations. Children in this study were assessed to identify the environmental conditions under which challenging behaviors were observed by conducting a functional analysis. A three phase process was developed to verify the relevant motivating operations. Thereafter, an individualized intervention was developed and implemented to address the challenging behavior exhibited by each child and replace it with the relevant communication. Treatment was evaluated using a multi-element design. Results indicated that pre-session manipulation of MOs decreased challenging behaviors, improved language acquisition and created an effective learning environment.

 
79. Theory of Mind Validation Study
Area: AUT; Domain: Theory
MILA A. AMERINE DICKENS (Central Valley Autism Project, Inc.), Chanti Fritzsching Waters (Holdsambeck), Mieke San Julian (Unknown), Cor Meesters (University of Maastricht, Netherlands), Pim Steerneman (Sevagarm)
Abstract: Behavior analysts have developed numerous effective strategies using the principles of applied behavior analysis to teach a variety of behaviors across skill domains to individuals with autism. A variety of standardized measures exist to assess for developmental levels across language, cognitive, and adaptive behavior repertoires. Meanwhile, theory of mind, commonly referred to as one’s ability to attribute thoughts, beliefs, and intentions to oneself and others, is an area of significant deficit for many individuals with autism. However, there are few objective ways to determine present levels. Behavior analysts working with this population strive to operationally define behaviors associated with theory of mind in an effort to increase behavioral repertoires necessary to develop and sustain social relationships. The Theory of Mind Test is a measure, originally developed in Holland and studied with Dutch and Belgian children (Muris, Steerneman, Meesters, Merckelbach, Horselenberg, Hogen, & Dongen, 1999). The measure assesses for a developmental progression of theory of mind skills, grouped in three categories, in children ages 4 through 12 and was found to assess for perspective taking deficits commonly observed in children with autism. Since the original publication, the test was revised with input from the present researchers from the United States and is now labeled the ToM-R (revised). The intent of the present study is to norm the measure using English speaking children in the United States and to validate the test in this country so that practitioners may have a standardized measure to assess for behaviors associated with theory of mind. Preliminary data reflect a developmental progression of theory of mind skills in typically developing children assessed, indicates good test-retest reliability and inter-rater reliability, and the regression analysis shows that a diagnosis of autism is a stronger predictor of performance on the ToM test-R than IQ, age, or gender.
 
 

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