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 #389
CE Offered: BACB
Technically Flexible: Using Basic Behavioral Procedures to Detect Areas of Psychological Flexibility and Inflexibility
Tuesday, May 31, 2016
8:00 AM–8:50 AM
Crystal Ballroom B, Hyatt Regency, Green West
Area: CBM/EAB; Domain: Translational
Chair: Victoria Diane Hutchinson (University of Mississippi)
Discussant: Michael Bordieri (Murray State University)
CE Instructor: Michael Bordieri, Ph.D.

Some clinical behavioral analysts have suggested that psychological flexibility may be a fundamental aspect of psychological well-being and a mechanism of change in clinical behavior analysis. A mid-level term, psychological flexibility is often defined in the clinical context as involving open, ongoing awareness to private events in such a way as to decrease avoidance and facilitate effective, values-based behavior. This symposium includes two papers that link mid-level conceptualizations of psychological flexibility with basic behavioral principles. Each explores potential methods of measuring psychological flexibility directly rather than relying on self-report measures. The first paper explores potential relationships between performance on two behavioral measures of body image flexibility the Body Image Flexibility Assessment Procedure (BIFAP) and the Body Image Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure (IRAP). The second paper explores qualities of derived relational responding as indicative of flexibility and inflexibility and investigates the IRAP as a tool for predicting inflexibility in certain domains of living.

Keyword(s): ACT, body image, IRAP, psychological flexibility

Assessing Body-Relevant Behavior: Examining Convergence Between Two Behavioral Measures of Body Image Flexibility

GARRET M CANTU (University of Louisiana at Lafayette), Nolan Williams (University of Louisiana at Lafayette), Jessica Auzenne (University of Louisiana at Lafayette), Grayson Butcher (University of Louisiana at Lafayette), Gina Boullion (University of Louisiana at Lafayette), Michael Bordieri (Murray State University), Emily Kennison Sandoz (University of Louisiana at Lafayette)

Body image flexibility has been described in the non-behavioral literature as the capacity to experience the body fully and intentionally while pursuing effective action in important life domains. Self-report measures of body image flexibility are psychometrically sound, but limited in their validity as they rely on the responders honesty and ability to tact their private experiences and reactions thereof. The current study aimed to explore potential relationships between performance on two behavioral measures of body image flexibility the Body Image Flexibility Assessment Procedure (BIFAP) and the Body Image Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure (IRAP). The BIFAP was designed to measure body image flexibility, while the IRAP was developed to measure brief immediate relational responses (a.k.a., implicit cognitions), and was adapted for this study to measure responses to body image. Responses on both tasks are considered in terms of response latencies, and rate of correct responses. Aspects of both divergence and convergence speak to the complexity of assessment of private events. Implications for assessment in clinical and research domains will be discussed.


Where Are You Stuck? Use of Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure Analyses to Identify Relative Flexibility and Inflexibility With Specific Verbal Stimuli

SARAH WILSON (University of Mississippi), Emmie Hebert (University of Mississippi), Karen Kate Kellum (University of Mississippi), Kelly G. Wilson (University of Mississippi)

The Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure (IRAP) has most often been used to examine differences between the performances of groups of people with a particular set of stimuli and between specific trial-types. The present study is a continuation of several previous studies that examine the possibility of using analyses of the IRAP to identify relatively strong verbal repertoires at the level of the individual. These repertoires may be clinically relevant for the participating individual or for his/her community. They may also be seen as areas of psychological inflexibility. This paper examines multiple methods for examining IRAP outputs. Undergraduate students who participated for course credit chose IRAPs from an array of topics that they viewed as being related to areas of difficulty and areas of ease. The participants showed marked variability in IRAP performance across IRAPs and trial types. The discussion focuses on the potential to predict and develop interventions for specific domains for individuals where high levels of bias, rigidity, or fusion are present.




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