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.


42nd Annual Convention; Downtown Chicago, IL; 2016

Event Details

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Symposium #448
CE Offered: BACB
Assessment and Treatment of Compliance Problems in Children
Tuesday, May 31, 2016
10:00 AM–11:50 AM
Crystal Ballroom A, Hyatt Regency, Green West
Area: DEV; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Jeanne M. Donaldson (Texas Tech University)
Discussant: David A. Wilder (Florida Institute of Technology)
CE Instructor: Jeanne M. Donaldson, Ph.D.
Abstract: Compliance with instructions is an essential skill for children to be successful at school. Refusal to comply with instructions, or noncompliance, at a young age is correlated with later diagnosis of oppositional defiant disorder. This symposium includes four presentations of research related to assessing and treating compliance-related problems in children. Stephanie Liollio will present a systematic replication of the Luczynski and Hanley (2013) Preschool Life Skills program. Emily Weaver will present an assessment and treatment of noncompliance related to academic demands. Joshua Lipschultz will present a comparison of the effects of the high-probability instructional sequence on refusal to relinquish a preferred item and completion of a non-preferred task. Katie Wiskow will present an assessment and treatment of noncompliance across three different types of instructions: gross motor tasks, academic tasks requiring gestural responses, and academic tasks requiring vocal responses. Finally, Dr. David Wilder will discuss the presentations and make suggestions for future research in the area of noncompliance.
Keyword(s): compliance, functional analysis, noncompliance

Evaluation of the Preschool Life Skills Project in an Urban Preschool Setting

GRACIE ALLEN BEAVERS (Georgia State University), Stephanie Liollio (Georgia State University), Erin Sweeney (Georgia State University)

The purpose of the current study was to replicate and extend the findings from Luczynski and Hanley (2013) by evaluating the effects of implementing the Preschool Life Skills program to increase communication skills and decrease problem behavior in 17 boys and girls ranging from 3 to 5 years old. During baseline sessions, all behavior was reinforced. During Preschool Life Skills training, children were taught appropriate communication skills using a combination of modeling and social reinforcement. A concurrent, multiple-probe, multiple baseline design was used in combination with a between groups design to analyze the effects of the Preschool Life Skills training on both childrens performance of skills and occurrences of problem behavior. Results show improvements for all participants once Preschool Life Skills training was implemented. These results, as well as modifications required to implement the Preschool Life Skills training program with these participants, will be discussed in terms of applied practice and recommendations for future research.

Integrating the Assessment and Treatment of Academic Noncompliance in Small Group Instruction
EMILY WEAVER (Vanderbilt University), Blair Lloyd (Vanderbilt University), Johanna Staubitz (Vanderbilt University), Claire Diekman (Vanderbilt University)
Abstract: Noncompliance is a common barrier to effective instruction and has been associated with poor school and post-school outcomes for students with disabilities. Perhaps due to challenges related to targeting the absence of a behavior, the functional analysis and treatment of noncompliance is a relatively understudied area. This is especially true for noncompliance to academic prompts. In this study, we trained and coached a special education teacher to systematically manipulate the consequences of academic compliance and noncompliance for a student with intellectual disability in the context of small group instruction. We used successive alternating treatments designs (i.e., pair-wise analyses) to compare levels of compliance under a series of test and control conditions. Results indicated that contingent access to preferred items was the most effective reinforcer for compliance. Though this study reports data from a single participant, the model of embedding assessment and treatment analyses in ongoing instruction may represent a promising avenue for future research.

The Effect of Types of Instructions on Compliance During Use of the High-Probability Instructional Sequence

JOSHUA LIPSCHULTZ (Florida Institute of Technology), David A. Wilder (Florida Institute of Technology), Amy Enderli (Florida Institute of Technology)

Previous research has shown that both fixed-time reinforcement delivery and the high-probability (high-p) sequence can be effective to increase compliance. However, previous studies on these topics have used two different topographies of instructions: compliance with relinquishing a preferred item, and compliance to completing a non-preferred task. Previous research has shown that fixed-time reinforcement delivery may only be effective with the latter type of instruction. The purpose of the current study was to examine the effectiveness of the fixed-time delivery of reinforcement and the high-p sequence on both topographies of instruction using reversal designs. Results show that neither a fixed-time reinforcement schedule nor the high-p sequence was effective at increasing compliance with either topography of instructions, which is inconsistent with previous research on noncompliance. Differential reinforcement of compliance was effective to increase compliance with the low-p instruction. Implications and suggestions for future research with regard to the different topographies of instructions are discussed.


Assessment and Treatment of Noncompliance Across Response Topographies

KATIE WISKOW (Texas Tech University), Jeanne M. Donaldson (Texas Tech University), Ashley Matter (Texas Tech University)

Noncompliance is reported to be a major problem by parents and teachers. To date, functional analyses of noncompliance and subsequent treatment procedures have been restricted to single response topographies (e.g., cleanup or matching task). The current study evaluated a modified functional analysis of noncompliance consisting of attention, escape, and control conditions across multiple response topographies (i.e., physical, gestural, and vocal) with three 6-year-old children with autism. Subsequently, an additive intervention consisting of (a) tokens and (b) guided compliance or time-out was implemented systematically across the response topographies to measure generalization within and across response types. Results showed that the function of noncompliance was consistent across response topographies within participants but varied across participants. Additionally, generalization within response types and across (to the vocal response type) was observed with 2 of the 3 participants without direct intervention when the intervention was applied to physical and gestural response types; however, no generalization occurred with the third participant. These findings suggest that for some individuals compliance may be a response class and offer an efficient method for increasing compliance to multiple response types.




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