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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31st Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2005

Program by Continuing Education Events: Sunday, May 29, 2005


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Invited Tutorial #126
CE Offered: BACB
2005 ABA Tutorial: Are We Ready to Explain and Modify Complex Social Behavior?
Sunday, May 29, 2005
9:00 AM–9:50 AM
International North (2nd floor)
Area: CSE; Domain: Theory
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Kurt Salzinger, Ph.D.
Chair: Janet Ellis (University of North Texas)
Presenting Authors: : KURT SALZINGER (Hofstra University)
Abstract:

Ever since Skinner (1938), early on after presenting an extensive study of the rat, invoked his Let him extrapolate who will, we have been hesitant to do so. It is, nevertheless, also true that just a few sentences before that fateful one, in the very same book, Skinner had said: The importance of a science of behavior derives largely from the possibility of an eventual extension to human affairs. In that sense, John Stoddard (2001) should not have been so surprised that Skinner engaged in what the former called premature extrapolation. As we well know, Skinner went on to engage in much-attacked extensive, not to say excessive, extrapolation and for that reason I will try for some more modest, but not too limited, extrapolation, examining how one could apply the basic reinforcement contingency paradigm to complex human behavior and thus (eventually) shed light on how to improve it. Beginning immodestly with some of my early work with conditioning of speech deficient children and flat-affect schizophrenic patients, I will try to elucidate human error, communication (all the while not ignoring the overlap of the latter two), and other human vagaries by means of behavior analysis most basic concepts.

 
KURT SALZINGER (Hofstra University)
Kurt Salzinger, Ph.D. is Senior Scholar in Residence at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y. since January 2003. He was Executive Director for Science at the American Psychological Association 2001 to 2003. He’s been President of the New York Academy of Sciences, has served on the Board of Directors of the APA, and been president of Divisions 1 (General Psychology) and 25 (Behavior Analysis), and of the American Association of Applied and Preventive Psychology. He also served as the first Chair of the Board of the Cambridge Center 1986 – 1988, subsequently as a member until 1991 and again a member of the Board since 2004. He is author or editor of 12 books and over 120 articles and book chapters. The most recent book was edited by Rieber, R.W., and Salzinger in 1998: Psychology: Theoretical-historical perspectives. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association. He has varied research interests, including behavior analysis applied to human beings, dogs, rats, and goldfish, schizophrenia, verbal behavior of children and adults and history of psychology. He has both given grants (when a program officer at the National Science Foundation) and received them (when professor of psychology at Hofstra University and Polytechnic University of New York and Principal Research Scientist at the New York State Psychiatric Institute) for his own research. He received the Sustained Superior Performance Award from the NSF, the Stratton Award from the American Psychopathological Association, and the Most Meritorious Article Award from the Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry. In 2002 he was Presidential Scholar for the Association for Behavior Analysis.
 
 
Panel #127
CE Offered: BACB
Int'l Panel - Developing and Maintaining Training Programs in Behavior Analysis: Lessons and Tips
Sunday, May 29, 2005
9:00 AM–9:50 AM
Lake Erie (8th floor)
Area: TBA/EDC; Domain: Applied Research
CE Instructor: Pamela G. Osnes, Ph.D.
Chair: Pamela G. Osnes (The Ohio State University)
PAMELA G. OSNES (The Ohio State University)
INGUNN SANDAKER (Akershus University College, Norway)
MICHAEL R. JOHNSTON (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract:

This panel will discuss training programs in behavior analysis from the perspectives of the developers, the implementers, and the consumers (the students who receive training). The panelists will discuss the development of new programs, as well as variables affecting the post-development maintenance and strengthening of programs. Mr. Johnston will provide the consumer's perspective, as well as a unique training model, the Satellite Master's Programs in Behavior Analysis offered by the University of Nevada-Reno. Dr. Sandaker will proffer the international perspective, describing the development of the newly-accredited program at the University of Akershus in Oslo, Norway. Dr. Osnes will offer information from the vantage point of a previous Program Director and as the Coordinator of ABA's Education Board. Audience participation will be encouraged throughout.

 
 
Symposium #131
CE Offered: BACB
Advances in Functional Analysis Methodology: Implications for Assessment and Treatment
Sunday, May 29, 2005
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
Stevens 1 (Lower Level)
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Michele D. Wallace (University of Nevada, Reno)
Discussant: Brian A. Iwata (University of Florida)
CE Instructor: Michele D. Wallace, Ph.D.
Abstract:

This symposium will include three presentations demonstrating advances in functional analysis methodology. The first paper will discuse the importance of familiar and unfamilar therapists and settings in identifying behavioral functions. The second paper will discuse the implications of conducting functional analyses on precursor behavior in order to develop effective treatment of severe problem behavior. The thrid paper will discuse the extenstion of functional analysis methodology tn school setting with children with emotional/behavioral disroders. Finally, comments relating to the implications of these three papers for research and clinical practice for evaluation and treating problem behavior will be addressed.

 
Correspondence of Functional Analyses Across Settings and Therapists
JESSICA L. THOMASON (University of Florida), Brian A. Iwata (University of Florida), Jennifer N. Fritz (University of Florida)
Abstract: Functional analyses (FA) are typically conducted in controlled environments to avoid potential confounds introduced by uncontrolled sources of reinforcement or stimulus control that may reduce both experimental control and the likelihood of obtaining clear results. However, one critisim of FA methodology is that analyeses conducted by unfamiliar individuals (therapists) in unfamiliar environments (clinics) might not provide accurate information about problem behavior that occurs with parents or caregivers in home, school, or day care settins. We evaluated correspondence between FAs conducted by therapists in clinics with FAs conducted by caregivers in the home. Study 1 consisted of caregiver training, during which direct instruction, video modeling, and feedback were used to teach correct Fa contingency implementation. In study 2, FAs were first conducted in a clinic by a therapist, followed by FAs conducted in children's homes by caregivers. Results of the two analyses were compared, and function was determined via visual analysis. If the analyses did not yield similar results, further FAs were conducted with combinations of familiar and unfamiliar therapists and settings. Results are discussed in terms of implications for research and clinical practice for evaluating problem behavior.
 
When Functional Analyses of Problem Behavior are Not Possible: An Evaluation of a Precursor Assessment
ALICIA N. MACALEESE (University of Nevada, Reno), Michele D. Wallace (University of Nevada, Reno), Adel C. Najdowski (University of Nevada, Reno), Carrie Ellsworth (University of Nevada, Reno), Jacki Cleveland (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract: Functional analyses have been repeatedly demonstrated to be an effective behavioral assessment methodology used to identify environmental variables maintaining problem behavior. However, there are inherent limitations in using functional analyses for severe behaviors or problem behaviors that cannot be provoked. The current study applied functional analysis methodology to precursor behaviors that preceded severe problem behaviors and devised treatments based upon the maintaining variables identified. Results indicated that not only did the assessment provide information with respect to maintaining functions, but lead to the implementation of successful interventions for all participants. Results will be discussed with respect to implications for research and clinical practice.
 
Functional Analysis and Intervention for Students with Emotional/Behavioral Disroders in a Public School Setting
THOMAS S. HIGBEE (Utah State University), Glenna Wright-Gallo (Utah State University)
Abstract: Federal special education law (IDEA) requires that functional assessments be completed for students exhibiting behavior problems in classroom settings. The law does not specify, however, what type of functional assessment is completed. Despite their demonstrated accuracy in determining behavioral function, experimental functional analyses usually not conducted in school settings, likely due to their perceived complexity and duration. To demonstrate the utility of experimental functional assessments ins school settings, we conducted a classroom-based experimental functional assessment with two students with emotional/behavioral (e/BD). To validate the functional analysis, we designed a DRA + extinction intervention for each student based on information gathered in the experimental functional analysis. Rates of aberrant behavior decreased for both students as a result of this intervention validating the results of the experimental functional assessment.
 
 
Symposium #132
CE Offered: BACB
Alterative Communication Systems for Individual with Developmental Disabilities: Comparisons of Acquisition, Generalization, and Response Strength
Sunday, May 29, 2005
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
Stevens 2 (Lower Level)
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Iser Guillermo DeLeon (Johns Hopkins University)
Discussant: David P. Wacker (University of Iowa)
CE Instructor: Iser Guillermo DeLeon, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Individuals with developmental disabilities frequently display serious deficits in verbal abilities. Researchers and clinicians have therefore adopted or developed various alternative/augmentative communication systems to strengthen or supplement the communicative abilities of these individuals. Popular forms of alternative communication include manual signs, pictures exchange systems (or PECS), and microswitch-activated devices. Each of these systems are associated with distinct relative advantages and disadvantages that make them more or less appropriate for use depending on individual circumstances. The present series of studies will explore the conceptual bases for, and applied implications of, differences among these systems. More specifically, these studies involved meaningful comparisons with regard to factors including the assessment of prerequisite skills, ease of acquisition of one form versus another, generalization to new settings and communicative partners, preference across modalities, and the effects of prompts. Collectively, the studies will provide valuable, evidence-based insights towards the selection and promotion of one system versus another.

 
Structured Assessment to Predict Ease of Acquisition for Manual Sign and Picture Exchange Communication Systems
MEAGAN GREGORY (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Iser Guillermo DeLeon (Johns Hopkins University), David M. Richman (University of Maryland, Baltimore County)
Abstract: Certain prerequisite skills are required for an individual to successfully acquire and use alternative and augmentative communication systems. For manual signing, these skills include (but are not limited to) motor imitation and gross and fine motor skills. For picture exchange systems, the skills necessary include identity matching and the ability to scan an array of pictures and discriminate among them. The purposes of the current investigation were to, first, design and implement a brief assessment battery to predict an individual’s success with an alternative communication system based on their prerequisite abilities and, second, to validate the predictions of the assessment by attempting to teach the participants 4 unrelated mands using both forms of alternative communication. Three individuals with developmental disabilities and extremely limited vocal verbal abilities participated. Assessment results suggested that two of the individuals would be able to rapidly acquire varied mand responses using both communication systems, whereas a third would have difficulty acquiring mand responses using either communication system. These predictions were subsequently validated during mand training. The results are discussed in terms of the relative advantages and disadvantages of the two communication systems and the need for evidence that the assessment has more specific discriminative validity.
 
An Evaluation of Communication Modality
TERRY S. FALCOMATA (University of Iowa), Joel Eric Ringdahl (University of Iowa), Eric Boelter (University of Iowa), Tory J. Christensen (University of Iowa)
Abstract: We conducted an assessment to determine the most effective modality for communication to be used by a woman with developmental and communication disabilities. Using a differential reinforcement schedule, three modalities of communication were evaluated separately (speech, picture exchange, and microswitch activation). In addition, we evaluated the effect of specific prompts on communicative behavior. Two conditions were conducted within each modality: prompt and no prompt. The final phase of the assessment consisted of an evaluation of choice of communication modality (i.e., each modality was available and under identical reinforcement schedules). Results of the assessment demonstrated a clear effect both modality and prompt presence. In addition, an apparent preference for one communication modality (microswitch actiation) was demonstated. Interobserver agreement was obtained during at least 20% of all sessions and averaged above 90% for all target responses.
 
Comparing the Acquisition, Generalization, and Emergence of Untrained Verbal Operants for Two Mand Forms in Adults with Severe Developmental Disabilities
MEGAN M. ZIOMEK (Southern Illinois University), Ruth Anne Rehfeldt (Southern Illinois University)
Abstract: We compared the number of training trials required to master mands for preferred items using PECS and manual sign in three adults with severe developmental disabilities. Generalization across settings and communicative partners was evaluated for both communication modalities. Next, in order to ensure that mands were truly under control of establishing operations and not multiply controlled by the presence of the preferred items, participants were taught to mand for several inaccessible items that were needed to complete one of several chained tasks, thus establishing control by transitive conditioned establishing operations. Finally, throughout all training phases, participants were probed for their ability to use PECS and manual sign to tact or answer questions about items that were used in mand training. Preliminary results suggest that participants acquired mands using both communication modalities, but mands using PECS were acquired within a shorter time period than mands using sign.
 
 
Symposium #135
CE Offered: BACB
Broadening Perspectives on Social Skills for Children with Autism: School, Family and Community
Sunday, May 29, 2005
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
Continental A (1st floor)
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Stephanie Lockshin (Institute for Child Development)
Discussant: Stephanie Lockshin (Institute for Child Development)
CE Instructor: Stephanie Lockshin, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Social impairment is one of the core deficits in autism. As such, much time is spent developing interventions to address social skills for children with autism. However, there can be a tendency to view socials skills from a narrow perspective of simply teaching greetings and simple games within the school environment. While these skills are useful, social behavior permeates all facets of a students life. As such, the importance of targeting social skills in the broader context of school, family and community must not be overlooked. Social skills instruction needs to be incorporated into every aspect of the curriculum. The current symposium presents some novel methods of integrating social skills instruction into everyday classroom routines, and emphasizes the importance of teaching skills at school that enhance participation in family and community activities.

 
Targeting Family- and Community-Friendly Social Skills: Social Skills at the Movies
ROSE F. EAGLE (Institute for Child Development, Binghamton University), Emily Huber (Institute for Child Development, Binghamton University), Sara White (State University of New York, Binghamton), Stephanie Lockshin (Institute for Child Development, Binghamton University)
Abstract: The current presentation describes an intervention conducted with at the Institute for Child Development at Binghamton University and provides some preliminary data on the effectiveness of the program. The intervention is an example of our model of partnership between the school program and families, wherein specific family-friendly skills are taught in school and generalized to home and community settings. The intervention was focused on decreasing maladaptive behaviors and increasing appropriate movie-watching behaviors in a simulated movie theater environment. A token economy system was developed for each child. Target behaviors for the token economy included sitting quietly and remaining seated. In addition, related movie-watching skills were addressed, including buying snacks and discussing the movie. Participant data indicate that the intervention may be effective in reducing maladaptive behaviors during movie-watching. In addition, data suggest that the program may be effective in promoting movie-related conversation, and collateral social initiations. This intervention is currently in progress. Future assessment will focus on the effectiveness of the program in the criterion environment (e.g. community movie theaters).
 
Programming for Social Behaviors in the Home Environment for Children with Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities
STEPHANIE LOCKSHIN (Institute for Child Development, Binghamton University)
Abstract: Our model of partnership between home and school emphasizes the importance of teaching social behaviors in the school environment and assisting parents in generalizing these skills to the home. The first step in this process involves discussion with family members to determine their needs and priorities regarding their child’s social development. Second, the family’s needs should be taken into consideration when selecting social and communication goals for the child. Areas frequently addressed include: leisure skills, self-control, social awareness, social communication, and social tolerance. Examples are given of specific interventions developed at our program that highlight collaboration between home and school.
 
Incorporating the Instruction of Social and Communication Skills into an Everyday Classroom Activity
EMILY HUBER (Institute for Child Development, Binghamton University), Rose F. Eagle (Institute for Child Development, Binghamton University), Tammy Hammond Natof (AMAC), Stephanie Lockshin (Institute for Child Development, Binghamton University)
Abstract: Social skills instruction is an important component of the curriculum for children with developmental disabilities. Educational providers and psychological professionals face the challenge of integrating the instruction of social skills naturally into the classroom environment. Social skills instructional contexts that are frequently overlooked include snack and mealtimes. Snack and mealtimes are often used to teach adaptive skills (such as using utensils). However, they also provide a natural context for teaching the appropriate use of social skills. The current presentation describes an intervention that was focused on changing a previously unstructured classroom activity (snack time) into an opportunity to practice social communication with peers, including greeting, inviting, requesting, and saying “thank you.” Preliminary data suggest that the intervention is successful in teaching preschool children with developmental delays social communicative behaviors such as greeting and requesting, as well as increasing collateral social interaction. Future directions for the intervention include generalizing the program to the home environment through parent training.
 
 
Invited Symposium #136
CE Offered: BACB
Cambridge Center Symposium: Unity of Purpose, Unity of Effort: Collective Response to the 9/11 Commission Report
Sunday, May 29, 2005
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
International South (2nd floor)
Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Mark P. Alavosius (Western Michigan University)
CE Instructor: Mark P. Alavosius, Ph.D.
Abstract:

The 9/11 Commission Report provides a detailed account of the nature and extent of terrorism facing us and recommendations for a global strategy to combat terrorism and build respect among cultures. Their recommended strategy includes a remarkable range of initiatives seeking a coalition of forces to build respect for cultures, tolerance for diversity, opportunities for the disadvantaged, defense of western values, and defeat of terrorism. Many of their recommendations pertain to restructuring the US governments systems for security and defense and will require wide scale organizational change. The challenges and complexity of this are enormous and the struggle will require a unity of purpose and effort perhaps unseen in our lifetimes. The 9/11 Commission has wisely called for an open dialogue on this process. In response, this symposium presents four papers by behavior analysts reacting to the 9/11 Commission report. Our purpose is to contribute to the dialogue needed to develop a coherent response to global terror and suggest contributions by behavioral scientists to this endeavor.

 
The Struggle Against Intolerance
JASON LILLIS (University of Nevada, Reno), Steven C. Hayes (University of Nevada, Reno), Akihiko Masuda (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract: The war on terrorism is at its core not so much a war on terrorism as it is a struggle against intolerance. It is not possible to overcome that struggle with bullets alone: we must also learn to how to change human prejudice. The usual view is that we are without prejudice until a sick culture pours it into us. While there is a seed of truth in that view, it misses the larger truth. Prejudice is built into humans beings through our ability to arbitrarily form verbal categories, give those categories attributes, to compare one category to another, and to do so in such a way that we end up on top at the expense of others. Because the human nervous system works by addition, not subtraction, we have little hope of getting rid of prejudicial categories once they are formed, as least as echoes of the past. We can, however, reduce or even eliminate the perverse role these categories play in human behavior. Evidence of the impact of acceptance, defusion, and values based methods on human prejudice will be presented.
Jason Lillis is a doctoral student of Clinical Psychology at the University of Nevada, Reno (UNR). He received his B.A. from Loyola College in Maryland and his M.A. in clinical psychology from UNR. His interests include Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) approaches for enhancing treatment compliance and outcomes in medical populations, and Relational Frame Theory (RFT) accounts of prejudice and discrimination.
 
Seeking Cooperation Post 911: A Behavior Analytic Account of Linked Contingencies
DWIGHT HARSHBARGER (Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies)
Abstract: Events like those of September 11, 2001 change political, economic, cultural, and psychological forces and powerfully influence how we live, work and play. Uncertainty, fear, economic instability, anger, patriotism are just some of the factors that influence our everyday behaviors. The complexity of these contingencies creates enormous challenges to those leaders seeking to maintain the stability, productivity, and security of populations under their span of influence, be they leaders of work organizations, communities, and nations. Some may find appeal to ‘faith-based’ initiatives that inform public policy and sustain a clash of opposing faiths; others can find guidance from a science of behavior that serves as a foundation for initiatives seeking to establish common ground among conflicting cultures. This presentation provides an overview of how behavior analysis contributes to understanding the complexity of socio political contexts under threat of terror and how consideration of contingency management, particularly linked contingencies, might assist efforts to enhance cultural awareness and renew communities, economies, businesses, and relations with other nations.
Dwight Harshbarger, Ph.D. is Executive Director and Senior Fellow of the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies. His interests are in strengthening human performance in organizations. Dwight has headed human resources in two corporations; as a corporate senior vice president for Reebok International, Ltd., and corporate vice president of Sealy, Inc. He served as a consultant in RHR International’s Chicago office and later as director of strategic consulting and vice president at Aubrey Daniels International. He heads The Browns Group, Inc., and has successfully implemented behavior-based performance improvement programs in the United States and Asia. Prior to entering corporate work, Dwight was a tenured professor of psychology at West Virginia University and later served as CEO of a community mental health center in the southern West Virginia coal fields. Dwight has edited and authored books and articles on organizational performance. He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association and American Psychological Society.
 
Verbal Networks in the Face of Terror
RAMONA HOUMANFAR (University of Nevada, Reno), Joe Rodrigues (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract: Environmental ambiguity is one factor affecting verbal networks in organizations and is the topic of this paper. Our analysis considers the investigative data offered by the 911 Commission Report particularly in terms of the complex verbal networks among security agencies. Our descriptive recount demonstrates the gaps and redundancies in verbal networking processes that appears to have contributed to the failure of the US government and military to thwart the attacks on September 11, 2001. The ambiguity associated with the chain of command and individuals’ roles are discussed particularly in regards to the ‘lack of imagination’ that the 9/11 Commissioners identified as underlying the systemic failure of our security forces. Process analysis occasions a number of behavior analytic interpretations of verbal events and their role in organizational effectiveness. We address the significance of the analysis of reciprocal relations among verbal networks and human performance in organizations by using data from a series of analog preparations that shed some light on the design of effective organizations operating in times of terror.
Dr. Houmanfar is an Assistant Professor, the Program Coordinator of the Behavior Analysis Program, and Director of Performance Systems Technology Program at the University of Nevada, Reno. Currently, Dr. Houmanfar is serving as the senior co-chair of the Association for Behavior Analysis, a trustee of the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies, editor of the Performance Systems Analysis of Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies, and an editorial board member of Journal of Organizational Behavior Management. In the area of improving human performance Dr. Houmanfar has published articles and chapters, delivered more than 100 presentations at regional, national, and international conferences, and has co-published a book, “Organizational Change” (available through Context Press).
 
Life in Wartime: Organizational Behavior, Systems Analysis, Private Sector Preparedness
MARK P. ALAVOSIUS (Western Michigan University)
Abstract: The publication of the 9/11 Commission Report provides a detailed accounting of the nature and extent of terrorism facing our culture. The report reviews extensive investigative data available on the 9/11 attack on the United States and recounts the evidence revealing al Queda as the perpetrator. The Commission report provides a vivid and unsettling assessment of the extent and sophistication of terrorists' threats to homeland security and the current limitations of our government's ability to detect and preempt future attacks. One stark assessment of the 9/11 Commission is that more attacks more terrible than those of September 11, 2001 will occur. This talk summarizes the report and offers considerations for behavioral science applications towards improving the private-sector’s prevention of and preparedness for future attacks.
Mark P. Alavosius, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor of psychology joining the faculty of Western Michigan University in August, 2003. Dr. Alavosius received his BA in psychology from Clark University in 1976 and earned his MS (1985) and Ph.D. (1987) in Psychology from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. His interests are in developing behavioral and instructional systems to improve work performance particularly in the areas of health and safety. Dr. Alavosius has a proven track record with NIOSH as a recipient of Small Business Innovations Research Grants to develop and test behavioral safety technologies. With over twenty years of experience in behavioral approaches to work performance and occupational safety, Dr. Alavosius has over 90 publications and conference presentations. As President of MPA & Associates, Inc., Dr. Alavosius works with specialists in instructional design, multi-media interactive systems, software development, business strategy, and performance management to develop and provide behavioral systems to improve performance in business and industry.
 
 
Symposium #143
CE Offered: BACB
New Developments in Peer Tutoring
Sunday, May 29, 2005
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
Williford B (3rd floor)
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Lloyd D. Peterson (Idaho State University)
Discussant: Debra M. Kamps (University of Kansas)
CE Instructor: Stephanie M. Peterson, Ph.D.
Abstract:

This symposium will consist of three presentations that describe experimental studies of the applications of peer tutoring to children with and without disabilities and how pre-service teachers can be prepared to implement classwide peer tutoring (CWPT). First, Lisa Bowman will describe how CWPT was implemented in secondary classrooms for children with emotional and behavioral disorders (EBD). Her data suggests that CWPT is useful for promoting both academic and behavioral performance in children with EBD. Next, Renee Van Norman will discuss how peer-tutoring procedures can be adapted when tutors do not have sufficient academic skills to provide accurate feedback to tutees. Her results show that adding pre-recorded answers to tutoring flashcards promoted more accurate feedback and error correction from tutors. Then, Larry Maheady will describe how general education pre-service teachers were trained to implement CWPT via a 2-hour workshop. Results indicated that pre-service teachers could quickly learn to implement the procedures, and their students demonstrated increased performance in the academic area in which peer tutoring was implemented. Finally, Deborah Kamps will summarize the findings of these studies and discuss how these findings could impact educational practice.

 
ClassWide Peer Tutoring as an Intervention for Middle and High School Students with E/BD in Alternative Education Classrooms
LISA J. BOWMAN (University of Kansas, Juniper Gardens Children's Project)
Abstract: This study was conducted in two high school and one middle school alternative education classrooms as an initial look at the effectiveness of ClassWide Peer Tutoring (CWPT) and CWPT with class-wide self-management (CWSM) on students' academic and behavioral outcomes. Nineteen 5th-12th grade students with E/BD in urban and suburban schools participated: 17 male, 2 female, 12 Caucasian, 6 African American, and 1 Hispanic. Students at the middle school were introduced to CWPT with CWSM; students at the high school received CWPT only. Students in all three classrooms who were lower academically made the greatest gains during CWPT versus teacher-led instruction. All students had fewer off-task behaviors during CWPT than teacher-led instruction. Fidelity of implementation and reliability measures and teacher and student satisfaction data were collected. Successes included (a) the use of praise between peers, (b) opportunities for students to work cooperatively, (c) frequent opportunities to respond and be actively engaged with academic content, and (d) reduction in off-task and inappropriate behaviors. Challenges included changes in school and student schedules, and student absenteeism. Results of this preliminary investigation of CWPT in alternative education settings suggest that CWPT is a viable academic and behavioral intervention.
 
If Only There Were a Mini-Me…The Effects of Pre-Recorded Sight Words on the Accuracy of Tutor Feedback
RENEE VAN NORMAN (The Ohio State University), Stephanie M. Peterson (Idaho State University), Wendy Swazuk (The Ohio State University)
Abstract: Reciprocal peer tutoring can be an effective means for students to learn new academic material, such as high frequency sight words. In peer tutoring, effective and efficient error correction is an integral part of peer tutoring success. To be effective, error correction must: 1) be accurate, 2) guide the student through the correct response, and 3) be immediate (Heward, 1997). However, when both learners of the peer tutoring dyad are identified as at-risk for potential reading difficulties, accurate error correction may not occur. This study investigated the effects of providing pre-recorded sight words on the accuracy of tutor feedback and word acquisition by tutees during peer tutoring sessions with kindergarten students identified as at-risk for reading difficulties. Specifically, following tutor training, a reversal design embedded within a multiple baseline experimental design was used to evaluate the accuracy of tutor error correction with and without the pre-recorded sight words. Results indicated that the pre-recorded sight words resulted in better error correction accuracy than when sight words were not pre-recorded. In addition, tutor and tutee word acquisition results will be discussed in relation to accurate error correction. Results will be discussed in terms of how accurate error correction leads to more effective stimulus control.
 
Preparing Preservice General Education Teachers to Implement Class Wide Peer Tutoring
LAWRENCE J. MAHEADY (State University of New York, Fredonia), Gregory F. Harper (State University of New York, Fredonia)
Abstract: This study describes how a small group of preservice general education teachers were prepared to use an evidence-based educational practice and what effects the practice had on their pupils' academic performance. Preservice general educators learned to use Juniper Gardens Children's Project's Class Wide Peer Tutoring (CWPT) program through a two-hour workshop and with in class assistance. The amount of time required for each preservice teacher to reach a pre-established training criterion was calculated and specific implementation comments and concerns were recorded. Academic effects on pupils' spelling test performance were assessed using weekly pre- and post-tests and social validity data were collected from all primary consumers. Findings indicated that: (a) preservice teachers could implement CWPT with a high degree of accuracy with about 60 minutes of in class assistance, (b) their use of CWPT resulted in high spelling grades on weekly post-tests for all pupils, (c) preservice and cooperating teachers and their pupils liked CWPT, and (d) some preservice teachers made procedural adaptations that appeared to be related to lower levels of pupil satisfaction. Findings are discussed in light of recent movements in the use of evidence based teaching practices, professional accountability, and preservice teacher preparation.
 
 
Symposium #144
CE Offered: BACB
Recent Research on Assessment in Organizational Behavior Management
Sunday, May 29, 2005
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
Marquette (3rd floor)
Area: OBM; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Byron J. Wine (Florida Institute of Technology)
Discussant: Thomas E. Boyce (Center for Behavioral Safety, LLC)
CE Instructor: David A. Wilder, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Three data-based papers will be presented on the role of assessment in organizational behavior management. The first paper describes a comparison of two methods of assessing preference among employees in organizations. The second paper describes an antecedent analysis and intervention of the conditions under which employees greet customers in a restaurant. The third paper describes the use of the Performance Diagnostic Checklist to identify an intervention to increase employee completion of tasks in a physical therapy clinic.

 
A Comparison of Methods for Assessing Preference Among Employees: A Reinforcer Survey Versus a Forced Choice Procedure
DAVID A. WILDER (Florida Institute of Technology), Kelly L. Therrien (Florida Institute of Technology), Byron J. Wine (Florida Institute of Technology)
Abstract: We compared two methods of assessing preference for items among four administrative assistant employees. A reinforcer survey was compared with a verbal forced choice procedure to determine which of the two would more accurately identify items as reinforcers. Results showed that the reinforcer survey was more accurate than the forced choice procedure.
 
Antecedent Analysis and Improvement of Customer Greeting in a Restaurant
BYRON J. WINE (Florida Institute of Technology), Kelly L. Therrien (Florida Institute of Technology), David A. Wilder (Florida Institute of Technology), Manuel A. Rodriguez (Florida Institute of Technology)
Abstract: We examined customer greeting by employees at one location of a sandwich restaurant chain. First, an antecedent or structural analysis was conducted to determine the conditions under which greeting a customer within 3 seconds of their entry into the restaurant did and did not occur. Results suggested that an appropriate customer greeting was most likely to occur when a door chime was used to indicate that a customer had entered the store and when the store manager was present behind the service counter. Next, a performance improvement intervention which consisted of the combination of the use of a door chime and manager presence was evaluated. Results showed that during baseline, a mean 6% of customers were greeted; during intervention a mean of 63% of customers were greeted. The addition of manager-delivered verbal and graphic group feedback resulted in 100% of customers being greeting across two consecutive sessions.
 
Use of the Performance Diagnostic Checklist to Assess and Improve Employee Task Completion in a Physical Therapy Clinic
MICHELLE J. VANWAGNER (Western Michigan University), Nicole E. Gravina (Western Michigan University), John Austin (Western Michigan University)
Abstract: The purpose of this study was to assess the effects of task clarification, graphic feedback, and minor work environment modification on employee completion of items on 2 behavioral checklists for morning preparation procedures at a physical therapy clinic. The study employed a multiple baseline design across checklists and areas. During baseline, the average percentage of completion for the therapy area checklist and the change area checklist was 18.4% and 56.5% respectively. A functional assessment was conducted to aid in the development of the treatment package. During the first intervention, the mean percentage of tasks completed in the therapy area increased to 82.1%, and the mean for changing area preparation tasks increased to 87.7%. During the supervisory feedback phase, task completion for the therapy checklist dropped 6.6% from the previous phase to a mean of 75.6% and change area task completion increased to a mean of 100%. The results of this study suggest that the package intervention was effective at increasing preparation task completion.
 
 
Symposium #147
CE Offered: BACB
Int'l Symposium - The Evolution of Verbal Behavior in Children
Sunday, May 29, 2005
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
Lake Michigan (8th floor)
Area: DEV; Domain: Theory
Chair: R. Douglas Greer (Teachers College and Graduate School, Columbia University)
Discussant: Olive Healy (CABAS Ireland)
CE Instructor: R. Douglas Greer, Ph.D.
Abstract:

There is growing evidence of a developmental trajectory for key verbal capabilities. The evidence comes from research guided by Skinners (1957) theory of verbal behavior and the accomplishment of schools based entirely on scientific practices. The broad verbal developmental factures identified include: listener, speaker, speaker-listener exchanges with others, speaker as own listener (self-talk, conversational units and naming), reader, writer, writer as own reader, and advanced verbal mediation. Many of the capabilities, and related subcomponents identified in this research, are higher order operants or relational frames. Our work in this area began when we first identified missing verbal capabilities in children, which, in turn, led to the identification and induction of pre and co-requisite repertoires. Once the missing verbal capabilities were induced, the children acquired repertories that had not been previously possible. We suggest that new evidence on the role of behavioral and cultural selection in the acquisition of verbal capabilities dismantles accounts of language as instinct. We shall present 2 papers on the evidence and related theories.

 
The Identification of Verbal Capabilities from A Verbal Behavior Analysis Perspective
DOLLEEN-DAY KEOHANE (Teachers College, Columbia University)
Abstract: Although Skinner’s work is often described as theory, there is now a body of research supporting and expanding the theory. There are over 88 experiments devoted to testing Skinner’s theory as well as a significant body of related work in relational frame theory. Much of our work has been devoted to identifying prerequisite or co-requisite repertoires and scientific tactics that provide ways for children to progress from one verbal capability to the next in a hierarch of verbal independence. We worked our way inductively toward identification of the components and subcomponents within the verbal capabilities suggested by Skinner. We propose that these verbal repertoires represent verbal milestones realized as developmental verbal capabilities.
 
The Roles of Behavioral and Cultural Selection in the Evolution or Induction of Verbal Capabilities
R. DOUGLAS GREER (Teachers College and Graduate School, Columbia University)
Abstract: I shall describe the evidence that supports the role of behavior selection in the mergence of generative verbal capabilities. The effects of behavior selection, together with the results of natural selection, on the emergence of these capabilities provide the processes that, in turn, allow the establishing operations called on by cultural functions to evoke new verbal capabilities. These explanations will then be contrasted with the prevailing notions of language as instinct. The current evidence no longer permits the linguistic community to ignore the significant roles of behavioral and cultural selection in the evolution of complex verbal behavior in the child or the species.
 
 
Symposium #149
CE Offered: BACB
Towards a Behavioral Analysis of Joint Attention in Young Children with Autism
Sunday, May 29, 2005
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
Continental B (1st floor)
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Rebecca P. F. MacDonald (New England Center for Children)
CE Instructor: Rebecca P. F. MacDonald, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Joint attention is recognized as one of the earliest forms of communication in young children. Joint attention involves the coordinated attention between a social partner and an object in the environment. For young children, episodes of joint attention provide the context for communication with others. These reciprocal interactions are characterized by glances and gestures and are viewed by many as critical to the development of symbolic language. It has been demonstrated that children with autism often manifest deficits in joint attention skills. The development of behavioral assessment procedures for identifying deficits in joint attention and effective teaching procedures to teach these skills is critical to our ability to provide effective treatment for these children. The purpose of this symposium is to describe several research projects in which the authors are using the principles of applied behavior analysis to develop protocols for evaluating joint attention in children with autism. The implications of these analyses will be discussed as they relate to a behavior analysis of this traditionally developmental phenomenon.

 
An Analysis of Responsiveness to Joint Attention Bids in Children with Autism
REBECCA P. F. MACDONALD (New England Center for Children), Gretchen O'Sullivan (New England Center for Children), William V. Dube (E.K. Shriver Center, University of Massachusetts Medical School), Jaime Cohen (New England Center for Children), Renee C. Mansfield (New England Center for Children), Jennifer L. Klein (New England Center for Children)
Abstract: This paper describes a highly structured assessment protocol with objective behavioral measures for evaluating children’s responsiveness to the joint attention of an adult. The assessment was administered to both children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders and typically developing children, aged 2 to 4 years. Interobserver agreement was high for all behavioral measures. Results showed that children with autism responded to joint attention bids when the object of interest was within their field of vision but showed deficits when these objects were outside this area. In addition, differences in performance were also seen between the structured assessment sessions and a more naturalistic assessment setting. Typically developing children showed high levels of responsiveness regardless of setting or position of stimuli. These results extend previous research and have implications for the behavioral treatment of joint attention.
 
Joint Attention and Socially Mediated Reinforcers in Children with Autism
WILLIAM V. DUBE (E.K. Shriver Center, University of Massachusetts Medical School), Rebecca P. F. MacDonald (New England Center for Children), Renee C. Mansfield (New England Center for Children)
Abstract: This paper will describe a contingency analysis of joint attention initiation in which the characteristic gaze shifts, gestures, vocalizations, and so forth are shaped and maintained by conditioned socially mediated reinforcers. According to this analysis, joint attention deficits in children with autism spectrum disorders may be related to failures of socially mediated consequences to function as conditioned reinforcers. This paper will present data from concurrent choice procedures that can be used determine the value of social reinforcers for the child. Applications for research and intervention will be discussed. Key words: autism, joint attention, social reinforcer
 
Teaching Children with Autism to Respond to Bids for Joint Attention
BRIDGET A. TAYLOR (Alpine Learning Group), Hannah Hoch (Alpine Learning Group)
Abstract: This study used a multiple baseline design across three children with autism to assess the effects of prompting procedures to teach the children to respond to an adult’s bid for joint attention. During five minute play sessions, an adult referenced a novel or interesting object in the environment by pointing and commenting. During play sessions, the children were taught to look in the direction of the point and to make a comment about the object referenced by the adult. Generalization was assessed to non-trained stimulus items and to novel environments. Data were collected on three responses: 1. looking in the direction of the adult’s point, 2. making an appropriate comment about the object, and 3. if the child initiated any bids for joint attention. Interobserver agreement data were collected by a second observer during 30% of the sessions. Results will be discussed in terms of the social relevance of teaching children with autism to respond to bids for joint attention and the effects of intervention procedures to teach these responses.
 
The Etiology of Infant Social Referencing: A Learning Paradigm
MARTHA PELAEZ (Florida International University)
Abstract: When human infants begin confronting ambiguous or uncertain situations, they also begin to search their mothers’ reactive facial expressions to cue their approach or avoidance responses in those contexts. This behavior pattern, in the literature observed for the most part in 9-to 13-month olds, is known in mainstream child psychology as social referencing. To date, conceptual and research work has focused on delineating the phenomenon, with the only theory advanced being that the underlying process is preformed – that infants are born able to understand the meanings of maternal facial emotional expressions. No attention has been given hereto fore to the possibility that the social referencing pattern is learned. Results from two experiments involving conditioning infants “reaching” responses to maternal facial cues will be summarized and discussed as they relate to an analysis of social referencing as a learned response pattern.
 
 
Invited Tutorial #179
CE Offered: BACB
2005 ABA Tutorial: One Behavioral Approach to College Teaching
Sunday, May 29, 2005
10:00 AM–10:50 AM
International North (2nd floor)
Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: John L. Michael, Ph.D.
Chair: Linda J. Parrott Hayes (University of Nevada, Reno)
Presenting Authors: : JOHN L. MICHAEL (Western Michigan University)
Abstract:

Many college courses have fairly clear goals related to a specific verbal content, and are taught by assigning text material, giving lectures, and assessing student repertoires with in-class exams. Some learning occurs during class attendance, but most results from out-of-class study. This tutorial will describe the evolution, rationale, and current status of the use of detailed study objectives and frequent exams as a way to produce highly effective out-of-class study, excellent student performance, and very good course evaluations. The approach does not require any resources other than those ordinarily available to an instructor, nor any special class-scheduling arrangements, and over time can result in a course that approaches programmed self-instruction in appearance and effectiveness.

 
JOHN L. MICHAEL (Western Michigan University)
ack L. Michael was born in 1926 in Los Angeles. He entered UCLA in 1943 as a chemistry major, served two years in the army, and returned to UCLA in 1946. He obtained a B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. at UCLA, finishing in 1955. As a graduate student his main interests were statistical methodology, physiological psychology, and learning theory. During his first teaching job (in the Psychology Department at Kansas University) he was much influenced by reading B. F. Skinner's Science and Human Behavior, and since then has been primarily involved in teaching behavioral psychology; at Kansas University, the University of Houston, Arizona State University, and Western Michigan University. At Houston in 1957 as a result of influence by the rehabilitation psychologist, Lee Meyerson, he began to apply Skinner's behavior analysis in the areas of mental retardation, mental illness, and physical disability. During the next several years behavior modification was in a period of rapid expansion and Michael contributed with his teaching, writing, and public presentations. At ASU as a result of contact with Fred S. Keller, he became interested in college instructional technology from a behavioral perspective. Most recently he has been concerned with the technical terminology of behavior analysis, basic theory regarding motivation, and verbal behavior. He contributed to the founding of the Association for Behavior Analysis in 1974 and served as president of that organization in 1979. In 2002 he received the ABA Award for Distinguished Service to Behavior Analysis, and the American Psychological Association Division 25 Don Hake Award for research that bridges the gap between experimental and applied behavior analysis. He is author of a laboratory manual and a number of articles and chapters dealing with basic and applied behavior analysis. He retired from WMU in 2003.
 
 
Symposium #160
CE Offered: BACB
Applications for Court Involved Youth and High School Students with Learning Disabilities
Sunday, May 29, 2005
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Williford B (3rd floor)
Area: EDC; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Diane Raymond (Simmons College)
Discussant: Michael J. Cameron (Simmons College)
CE Instructor: Susan Ainsleigh, Ed.D.
Abstract:

The purpose of this session is to demonstrate how the principles of applied behavior analysis can use used to effectively assess and treat individuals that are rarely represented in the extant literature. The first paper demonstrates how a modification in functional assessment procedures can result in the successful assessment of truant adolescents. The second paper demonstrates the relevance of a constructionalist approach for teaching critical content areas (e.g., math) to high school students with learning disabilities. And the final paper demonstrates how a word-picture association method was used to teach high school students with dyslexia to prepare for the Scholastic Aptitude Test.

 
Functional Assessment of Truant Behavior
TERRELL THEODULE (Simmons College), Michael J. Cameron (Simmons College)
Abstract: The majority of functional assessment guides available to behavioranalysts have been designed to develop a hypothesis about themotivating variables maintaining the aberrant behavior of people with developmental disabilities. Although these tools are valuable, they do notprovide guidance to behavior analysts who work with a substantially different population, such as adolescents under the care of the Departmentof Social Services (DSS) who has protracted truancy problems. The purpose of this presentation is to demonstrate how functional assessment procedures can be modified to extract critical information surrounding the issues of urban youth. The results from a modified functional assessment will be presented and a hypothesis-driven intervention will be reviewed.
 
Constructionalism: A Behavior Analytic Approach to Teaching High School Students
ROBERT DASILVA (Simmons College), Michael J. Cameron (Simmons College)
Abstract: Behavior analysts have been criticized for not demonstrating how behavioral principles can be applied in public school classrooms with non-disabled individuals. In fact, some authors have indicated that both typical and gifted students require a educational approach appreciably different from a behavior analytic approach to education. The purpose of this presentation is to demonstrate how a behavior analytic “constructionalist” approach can be used to teach high school students mathematics and on-task behavior.
 
Word-Picture Associations for Teaching Vocabulary Skills to High School Students with Dyslexia
CHRISTINE SPIGNESI (Simmons College), Michael J. Cameron (Simmons College), Susan Ainsleigh (Simmons College)
Abstract: The traditional approach for teaching vocabulary skills to high school students is the “find and define” method. This involves a high school student finding a word in a dictionary and then defining its meaning. Unfortunately, this method does not always work, especially when a student has a disability such as dyslexia. An alternative teaching method requires the teacher to pair pictures with vocabulary words. This method has been proven to be effective because pictures can serve as a thematic prompt during recall tests. The purpose of this study was to demonstrate, via an alternating treatments design the superiority of a word-picture association task for teaching vocabulary skills to high school students with dyslexia.
 
 
Symposium #162
CE Offered: BACB
Assessing Social Behavior of Preschoolers with Autism in Natural Settings
Sunday, May 29, 2005
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Continental B (1st floor)
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Sandra L. Harris (Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey)
Discussant: Gail G. McGee (Emory University)
CE Instructor: Lara M. Delmolino Gatley, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Social behavior deficits, while central to the diagnosis of Autism, remain an elusive behavioral target. In ABA, specific behaviors related to social functioning are often measured and targeted for treatment. Skills such as eye contact, intraverbals, or other specific responses are successfully developed through systematic instruction and programming for generalization. However, it remains much more difficult to define, assess, and target social competence as a more abstract concept. Agreement in the literature and clinical field as to what constitutes key social behavior and appropriate tools for direct measurement has not been established. Such agreement, to whatever extent possible, is necessary for more universal outcome research and comparison across individuals and interventions. This session will address a number of issues related to this central topic. The first paper will describe a series of pilot investigations developing a methodology for measuring social behavior in various settings. The second paper focuses on measuring social behavior in contrasting settings and over time as an instrument of assessing change and examining how setting and time interact. The final paper will examine the ways in which these systems are sensitive to change, with regard to other measures of social behavior. Future directions will be discussed.

 
Establishing Reliable Systems of Measurement for Social Behavior: Issues and Key Variables
MARY JANE WEISS (Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey)
Abstract: The abstract nature of social skills and qualitative aspects of social interaction and competence lead to significant issues in reliability and face validity. The current paper describes the development of a behavior code for assessing social behavior occurring during natural settings for preschoolers with autism, with specific attention to issues of reliability. A systematic process by which a series of behavior codes were developed and adapted from the literature will be described. Limitations of each pilot investigation will be discussed, highlighting the implications for each successive study. Data will be presented from multiple groups of preschool students (with and without autism/PDD) attending both segregated and integrated preschool settings. Data will be shared demonstrating significant and reliable differences among groups along measures of social behavior. Further, data will also be shared indicating greater difficulty in capturing to changes over time, attempts to increase the sensitivity of the code to such issues, and correspondence to subjective measures. Findings are related to published literature in this area with implications for future revisions and pilot investigations.
 
Assessing Improvement in Social Competence of Preschoolers with Autism: Changes in Structured Versus Unstructured Contexts
MEGAN P. MARTINS (Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey), Lara M. Delmolino Gatley (Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey), Mary Jane Weiss (Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey)
Abstract: Since social competence is a primary focus of autism intervention, it is essential to include assessments of social behavior change when evaluating comprehensive programs for children with autism. Preschoolers with autism attending an intensive treatment program using applied behavior analysis and comparison peers were repeatedly observed throughout an academic year. Using a behavior code previously demonstrated to be sensitive to social behavior change in children (McGee, Feldman, & Morrier, 1997), participants were observed during naturally occurring periods of structured and unstructured play. Structured play differed from unstructured play due to arrangements in the classroom such as introduction of games and materials that encourage social interaction, prearranged proximity to peers, and increased teacher facilitation of play. Data suggest that children with autism displayed fewer key social behaviors but that social behaviors change over time was noted for both groups of children. However, changes in key social variables (proximity to peers, receipt of social bids, and time spent focused on children) were more noticeable in structured play settings for children with autism. Findings will be discussed in terms of implications for assessing the effectiveness of autism intervention.
 
Direct Measurement of Social Behavior: Sensitivity and Relationship to Other Measures
LARA M. DELMOLINO GATLEY (Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey)
Abstract: There is very little agreement in the field of autism and developmental disabilities about the need for measurement of social behavior, as a means for identifying treatment targets and evaluating intervention outcomes. Predominant measurement of social behavior in treatment studies often involves subjective and indirect measurement. This is in contrast to the preferred methodology in Applied Behavior Analysis in which direct measurement is the procedure of choice. Previous studies have presented models for direct observation of social behavior of preschoolers with autism. The current paper explores the relationship between data gathered from direct observation and information from caregiver and teacher report on standardized survey instruments. Correspondence and differences between data gathered from these sources will be discussed in light of utility to longitudinal treatment outcome studies and generality of findings.
 
 
Symposium #164
CE Offered: BACB
Child Clinical Applications of Behavior Analysis
Sunday, May 29, 2005
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Williford A (3rd floor)
Area: CBM; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Teresa A. Rodgers (Florida Department of Children & Families)
CE Instructor: Jeannie A. Golden, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Children and adolescents can be treated effectively using functional behavioral assessment and behavioral interventions for social, emotional and medical difficulties in a variety of settings. These settings include: a hospital treating children for chronic or terminal illnesses, a permanent residence with a loving family, a group home specifically designed to treat adolescents with multiple diagnoses, and a regular public school. The speakers in this symposium will present research-based approaches from the behavioral literature, as well as techniques they have used in clinical case studies, that effectively deal with numerous social, emotional and medical difficulties in children. Diagnoses that have been given to the children in these case studies include: Cancer, Diabetes, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, Conduct Disorder, Moderate Mental Retardation, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, Motor Stereotypy, Depression, Psychosis, Learning Disability, School Phobia with Panic Attacks and Social Anxiety Disorder. In each of the case studies discussed, these children either: were able to be receive necessary medical treatments that were previously refused, had one or more of their diagnostic labels removed or were able to be served in a typical setting after previously being removed due to their behavioral, social and emotional difficulties.

 
Using Functional Behavioral Assessment to Identify Appropriate Treatment Strategies for Children in Hospital Settings
LYNN A. OLSON PAGE (Regent University)
Abstract: Children with chronic and acute medical conditions face a number of challenges, both medically and psychologically. Pediatric psychologists are often to assist with issues that arise during hospitalization. Concerns about patient functioning may revolve around the physical consequences of emotional or behavioral distress, emotional or behavioral symptoms resulting from the diagnosis, or psychological trauma (Kush & Campo, 1998). Often these difficulties require an individualized, problem-solving approach to address difficulties quickly. A functional behavioral assessment approach represents a feasible and effective means of addressing problems within the hospital setting, but there is a paucity of research documenting the use of functional behavioral assessment in the acute hospital setting. Three case examples are used to provide a model of functional behavioral assessment in the hospital setting to improve coping, increase exercise and physical activity, and decrease distress to a medical procedure.
 
Using Applied Behavior Analysis to Provide Stability in a Foster and Adoptive Home for a Child with Multiple Diagnoses
JEANNIE A. GOLDEN (East Carolina University)
Abstract: A five-and-a-half-year-old girl with diagnoses of ADHD, Depression & Psychoses was placed in foster care after having been removed from her biological home due to abuse and neglect, two other foster homes and several day care settings. The foster mother was a behavioral psychologist who used several behavioral interventions including: positive reinforcement, tokens, role-playing, feedback, coordinating of all adult caregivers, and consistent follow-through. The child was taken off of all medications within three weeks, was adopted two-and-a-half years later, and is currently eleven-and-a-half, in a regular six-grade class and has no diagnoses. There are some, however, behavior problems that the child and her parents are currently dealing with that require continued use of behavioral techniques.
 
Using Applied Behavior Analysis to Treat School Phobia with Panic Attacks & Social Anxiety Disorder
JEANNIE A. GOLDEN (East Carolina University), Adam A. Spencer (East Carolina University)
Abstract: A twelve-year-old boy who appeared to have been the victim of a traumatic event developed school phobia and was being home-schooled one hour a week due to his school avoidance. When attempting to return to school, he was told by the principal to return for a full day or he would be expelled from school. Working with another school principal who was willing to try a more gradual approach, the behavioral consultant was able to use systematic desensitization, shaping, token reinforcement, role playing, and feedback to return the child to full days at school. Comparison of several treatments from the research literature will be discussed, as well as the use of functional behavioral assessment to understand school avoidance.
 
Using a Variety of Behavioral Treatments to Reduce Inappropriate Social Behavior in an Adolescent Girl with Multiple Diagnoses
JEANNIE A. GOLDEN (East Carolina University), Jennifer Maness (East Carolina University)
Abstract: The present study investigated the effectiveness of using role-play, contracts, and progressive muscle relaxation training to decrease inappropriate social behaviors in a 15-year-old female with Moderate Mental Retardation, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, and Motor Stereotypy. The intervention was implemented in the adolescent’s group home facility. A changing conditions design with reversals was used to compare the effectiveness of multiple components on the percentage of one-hour intervals in which aggression, self-injury, throwing materials, disruptive running and screaming, and cursing and name-calling. Results indicate that the contract component of the intervention was more effective in decreasing the targeted inappropriate behaviors. During the final two treatment conditions (role-play + contract condition and role-play + relaxation training condition), the mean level of inappropriate behaviors decreased to 0% of intervals for all targeted inappropriate behaviors.
 
 
Symposium #167
CE Offered: BACB
Current Topics in Precision Teaching with Autism/Developmental Disabilities
Sunday, May 29, 2005
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Stevens 2 (Lower Level)
Area: DDA; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Alison L. Moors (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting)
CE Instructor: Alison L. Moors, M.A.
Abstract:

A rich body of literature now exists supporting the efficacy of implementing Precision Teaching methodologies within intervention practices for students with autism and related developmental disabilities. This symposium will highlight current and on-going research which uses Precision Teaching to document progress within specific educational programs

 
Teaching Peers to Conduct Functional Assessments for Inappropriate Behavior in a Classroom Setting
HOLLY C. ALMON-MORRIS (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting), Michael Fabrizio (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting), Kristin N. Schirmer (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting)
Abstract: This presentation illustrates the process of teaching peers of a child with autism to identify inappropriate behavior, conduct a quick assessment regarding the probable function of the inappropriate behavior, to label the inappropriate behavior for the child with autism, and to provide a more socially appropriate replacement behavior. A classroom of first through third graders were taught how to conduct this assessment, and measures were used to identify the effect of the treatment package on rate of specific feedback and replacement behaviors given by peers, in addition to the effect on the child with autism’s rate of inappropriate behavior. Generalization effects and social validity measures will also be discussed.
 
Teaching and Measuring "Pre-Attending" Skills in a Pre-school Child with Autism
ALISON L. MOORS (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting), Holly C. Almon-Morris (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting)
Abstract: Clinicians working with children with developmental disabilities often experience a lack of progress in what is often consider the most basic of skills; ie, compliance, imitation, and “instructional control” (reinforcement effectiveness). This paper will highlight a sequence of component skills lying before those basic skills. Data and video clips will be presented to highlight the effectiveness of programming for these “pre-attending” skills for a single subject.
 
Establishing Frequency Aims
KRISTIN N. SCHIRMER (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting), Sara Pahl (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting), Michael Fabrizio (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting), Alison L. Moors (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting)
Abstract: When building skills in learners with autism and related disabilities, certain outcomes are critical if the skills are to be useful to the learner. Those outcomes include skill retention, endurance, stability, and application. Given their importance, these outcomes can and should be measured before teaching ends. The application of measurement procedures from Precision Teaching allows clinicians to predict those outcomes by measuring learners’ performance rates and comparing them to frequency aims suggested within the extant literature. The current paper will document ongoing efforts to validate, through empirical testing, frequency aims used as performance benchmarks for children with autism. Data on the performance of more than 40 children and 350 individual student Standard Celeration Charts will be presented showing the frequency ranges of performance for each skill that predicted skill retention, endurance, stability, and application.
 
Teaching Children with Autism Independent Play Skills Using Precision Teaching
KRISTA ZAMBOLIN (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting), Heidi Calverly (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting), Kelly J. Ferris (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting)
Abstract: This paper will demonstrate how play skills were taught to three preschoolers with autism using the Standard Celeration Chart. Data will show generalization of independent play skills into functional living as well as scope and sequences of teaching procedures.
 
 
Symposium #169
CE Offered: BACB
Effects of Access to Stimuli During Stimulus Preference Assessments
Sunday, May 29, 2005
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Stevens 1 (Lower Level)
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Myrna E. Libby (New England Center for Children)
CE Instructor: Myrna E. Libby, Ph.D.
Abstract:

The four papers in this symposium discuss refinements in preference assessments for participants with developmental disabilities and autism. Articles present recent research regarding the impact of access to stimuli during systematic preference assessments on preference and reinforcer assessment results. The first paper compared preference and reinforcer assessments across two conditions (a vocal only condition and a vocal plus tangible condition). Reinforcer assessments indicated that the verbal plus tangible assessment more accurately identified reinforcers than the verbal assessment. In the second study, tangible, pictorial with access, and pictorial without access paired-stimulus preference assessments were conducted with 5 individuals with developmental disabilities. Although the tangible and pictorial with access assessments generated similar preference hierarchies, the pictorial without access assessment generated different preference hierarchies for some participants. The third paper investigated the effect of frequency of access during preference assessments on subsequent reinforcer assessments. Results suggested that the limited number of stimulus pairings in a typical paired-stimulus assessment might lead to inconsistent results in subsequent reinforcer assessments. The fourth presentation studied the effects of duration of access to the stimuli used in preference assessments on the outcome of reinforcer assessments; results suggested that duration measures were better predictors of preference than selection measures.

 
Comparison of Verbal Preference Assessments in the Presence and Absence of the Actual Stimuli
CINDY T. TERLONGE (Louisiana State University), David E. Kuhn (Johns Hopkins University), Iser Guillermo DeLeon (Johns Hopkins University)
Abstract: Stimulus preference assessments for individuals with developmental disabilities typically involve offering choices among tangible stimuli and providing immediate access to the chosen stimuli. Certain stimuli and activities have generally been excluded from preference assessment research because they are difficult to present in tangible form and often cannot be conveniently delivered immediately after a selection response. Researchers have explored the utility of presenting choices verbally, thereby obviating the need to present the choices in tangible form. However, these studies have nonetheless used easily presented items and/or have delivered them following selections, calling into question the generality of these procedures for use with stimuli that cannot be presented in this fashion. The current study compared preference assessment results for 3 participants in which either (a) the stimuli were presented and selections were made verbally, or (b) the stimuli were presented both verbally and in tangible form. Reinforcer assessments were conducted to test contradictory predictions of reinforcer efficacy made by the two methods. Comparisons between the two assessments yielded mixed correspondence across participants. Reinforcer assessment results suggested that the verbal plus tangible stimulus preference assessment more accurately predicted reinforcer strength, particularly with regard to non-tangible stimuli.
 
The Effect of Differential Consequences on Pictorial Preference Assessment Outcomes
MARK P. GROSKREUTZ (New England Center for Children), Richard B. Graff (New England Center for Children), Kelly K. Collins (New England Center for Children), Nicholas Chappell (New England Center for Children)
Abstract: Tangible, pictorial with access, and pictorial without access paired-stimulus preference assessments were compared with 5 individuals with developmental disabilities. During tangible (A) and pictorial with access preference assessments (B), the participant gained access to the stimulus approached or touched; during pictorial without access preference assessments (C), touching a photograph did not lead to the corresponding stimulus being delivered. In Phase 1, short blocks of trials of each assessment type were alternated. Percentages of approach responses were calculated, and preference hierarchies were generated for each assessment. Results indicated that all 3 assessments yielded similar preference hierarchies for all participants. Reinforcer assessments verified that items identified as highly preferred functioned as reinforcers for all participants. In Phase 2, all trials of the pictorial without access assessment were conducted first, followed by the tangible and pictorial with access assessments (2 participants experienced the assessments in CAB order, while the other 3 participants experienced the assessments in CBA order). Results of Phase 2 indicated that the 3 assessments yielded similar preference hierarchies for only 2 of 5 participants. Interobserver agreement data were collected in over 50% of preference and reinforcer assessment sessions and was above 99% for all participants.
 
Some Anomalous Findings from Paired-Stimulus Preference Assessments
LEAH KOEHLER (University of Florida), Liming Zhou (University of Florida), Brian A. Iwata (University of Florida), Natalie Rolider (University of Florida), Sarah E. Bloom (University of Florida)
Abstract: This study presents some unusual findings from preference assessments. The paired-stimulus assessment is a commonly used method for developing rank-ordered preference hierarchies. Although results of previous studies have shown that outcomes of this assessment accurately predict preference for high- versus low-ranked stimuli under a concurrent-reinforcement arrangement, there have been a few notable exceptions (e.g., Fisher et al., 1992; Roscoe, Iwata, & Kahng, 1999) in which individuals failed to show consistent preference for the high-ranked item. The reason for these anomalous findings is unclear but may be due to the fact that a given pair of items is presented only once or twice during assessment, resulting in a limited sample. We first conducted typical preference assessments for 30 individuals, in which items (9 or 16) were presented in pairs (each item was paired with every other item once or twice). We subsequently presented the highest and lowest ranked items repeatedly for 50 trials. Results indicated that, although the majority of participants showed consistent preference for the high-ranked stimulus, a number of the participants showed no preference. These findings suggest that the limited number of pairings in typical paired-stimulus preference assessments may lead to inconsistent results during subsequent tests for reinforcement effects.
 
Evaluation of Duration-Based Procedures for Assessing Leisure Item Preference
JODY M. STEINHILBER (New England Center for Children), Cammarie Johnson (New England Center for Children)
Abstract: The predictive value of selection- and duration-based measures of preference was evaluated. Two different types of MSWO preference assessments were conducted. In one MSWO condition (short), selected items were available for a brief duration (15 s); in the other MSWO condition (long), selected items were available for up to 15 min. Between 4 and 7 sessions of each condition were conducted using a multi-element design. Selection measures given the two assessment contexts yielded a difference of two or more rank orders for 2 or more stimuli for 2 of 3 participants. The duration measure yielded a difference of two or more rank orders relative to the selection measure (short MSWO) for 2 or more stimuli for 2 participants. Stimuli with the greatest rank order difference given selection and duration-based measures were then presented in a concurrent chain procedure for 2 participants. Comparisons of a higher preference stimulus given the selection measure (SHP) and the duration measure (DHP) were made. Results suggested that duration measures were better predictors of preference. Results are discussed in terms of the importance of context and dependent measure used in preference assessments.
 
 
Symposium #172
CE Offered: BACB
Increasing the Range of Reinforcers for Students with Autistic-Spectrum Disorders
Sunday, May 29, 2005
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Continental A (1st floor)
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Dana R. Reinecke (Room to Grow)
Discussant: Dana R. Reinecke (Room to Grow)
CE Instructor: Dana R. Reinecke, M.A.
Abstract:

This symposium will present empirical research studies examining procedures for encouraging students with autism to make varied choices of reinforcers. A general methodology has been developed and evaluated across three age groups and in different settings for students with autism. Generalization of the effectiveness of the procedures is examined and discussed.

 
Increasing the Number of Play Activities Chosen by Children with Autism: Effects of Exposure and Response-Independent Reinforcers
DANA R. REINECKE (Room to Grow), Nancy S. Hemmes (Queens College, City University of New York)
Abstract: Children with autism tend to choose the same activities repeatedly. In the present study, simple exposure to new activities was used to increase choices of activities as reinforcers during teaching sessions. In some conditions, exposure to activities was paired with preferred edible stimuli. Students tended to choose activities to which they had been previously exposed more often than when these activities were not exposed.
 
Generalization of the Exposure Effect within Categories of Activities
ERIC H. SHYMAN (East Meadow UFSD), Dana R. Reinecke (Room to Grow)
Abstract: Students with autism may choose activities more frequently when additional exposure to these activities is programmed. For three adolescent males with autism, choice of age- and socially-appropriate activities was encouraged through prior exposure to other activities within a given category.
 
Simple Exposure in the Development of New Reinforcers for Preschoolers with Autism
AMY GEWIRTZ (Room to Grow), Dana R. Reinecke (Room to Grow)
Abstract: Preschoolers with autism were exposed to new activities during regularly scheduled periods. Students chose these activities more frequently later on as reinforcers for other behavior. These activities remained durable reinforcers even when other, previously more preferred, activities were simultaneously available.
 
 
Symposium #173
CE Offered: BACB
Is Verbal Behavior Necessary to Understand Gambling?
Sunday, May 29, 2005
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
International South (2nd floor)
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
Chair: Beau Laughlin (Southern Illinois University)
Discussant: Steven R. Hursh (Johns Hopkins University)
CE Instructor: Mark R. Dixon, Ph.D.
Abstract:

This symposium will address how an understanding of verbal behavior can contribute to a behavior analytic account of gambling.

 
Toward an Animal Model of Gambling: Rats Playing a Slot Machine
JEFFREY N. WEATHERLY (University of North Dakota), Jeri Nurnberger (University of North Dakota), Carla J. Demaine (University of North Dakota)
Abstract: Although gambling behavior in people can be studied in the laboratory, it is sometimes impossible to manipulate variables (e.g., debt) that likely contribute to that behavior. Thus, it may be worthwhile to develop an animal model of gambling because it may become possible to manipulate such variables. The present study was an initial step toward developing an animal model of gambling. Rats were trained to press a lever on a fixed-ratio (FR) schedule. Upon completion of the FR, stimulus lights in a 3 X 3 grid flashed for 5 s. At certain probabilities, the left column of lights (small win, 0.05 ml of 5% sucrose), middle column (medium win, 0.2 ml of 5% sucrose), right column (big win, food pellet), or diagonal pattern (loss, nothing) resulted. The behavior of rats on this mock slot-machine procedure was compared to control rats responding on a similar procedure minus the stimulus lights. Results demonstrated that the “gambling” rats behaved differently than controls. Perhaps more importantly, their behavior was also similar to that of humans playing a slot machine. The results are discussed in the context of how additional research using this model may advance our understanding of gambling behavior in people.
 
Biasing Response Allocations on Concurrently Available Slot Machines via Rule Governed Behavior
ASHTON J. ROBINSON (Southern Illinois University), Mark R. Dixon (Southern Illinois University)
Abstract: Though slot machines are the most popular form of gambling behavior, a complete analysis of slot machine play is lacking from a behavioral analysis perspective. Because investigating slot machine play in the natural casino environment is not feasible, it is logical to create analog simulations to study this behavior. Visual Basic.NET provides flexibility for creating realistic slot simulations that allow for control over every aspect of play. This presentation will focus on two experiments that were designed to examine common variables occurring during slot play and assess relative impacts on preference. In the first experiment reinforcer magnitude and density were manipulated at various unit prices. Results showed that for most subjects, preference across the two machines was sensitive to altering these variables, yet deviations could be readily produced via in introduction of various classes of rules (tracks, plys, and augments). In the second experiment, the proportion of trials that were close to winning, or “near-misses” was manipulated along with the establishment of conditioned non-gambling stimulus functions. Obtained results suggest that topography of the near miss is not as important as its derived psychological function. Such derived functions are the product of verbal behavior, understood only with a post-Skinnerian analysis.
 
Verbal Relations Contribution to the Behavioral Economics of Gambling
MARK R. DIXON (Southern Illinois University)
Abstract: Although most gambling opportunities expose the subject to random-ratio schedule contingencies, these contingencies alone are insufficient to explain resulting behavior. This paper will describe the neglected role of verbal behavior research and how limited advances of Skinner’s analysis of verbal behavior have hindered a behavioral understanding of gambling. Data will be presented illustrating the impact of verbal rules, self-generated and experimenter presented, on a behavioral economic analysis of gambling. The role of verbal stimuli as complements, substitutes, and commodities that alter demand elasticity will be highlighted using subjects playing the table games of roulette and craps. Implications for future basic research, applied treatments, and conceptual analyses of risk taking and gambling will be presented.
 
 
Invited Paper Session #182
CE Offered: BACB

Theory of Mind: A Behavior Analytic Perspective

Sunday, May 29, 2005
11:00 AM–11:50 AM
Waldorf (3rd floor)
Area: TPC; Domain: Theory
CE Instructor: T. V. Joe Layng, Ph.D.
Chair: David C. Palmer (Smith College)
T. V. JOE LAYNG (Headsprout)
Joe Layng co-founded Headsprout, and serves as the company's Senior Scientist where he led the scientific team that developed Headsprout’s patented Generative Learning Technology. This technology forms the basis of the company’s Headsprout Early Reading program, for which Joe was the chief architect. Joe has over 25 years of experience in the experimental analysis of behavior and the learning sciences both in the laboratory and in applied settings. Joe earned a Ph.D. in Behavioral Science (Biopsychology) from The University of Chicago, where he conducted basic research on animal models of psychopathology. Specifically, he, in collaboration with P. T. Andronis and I. Goldiamond, investigated the recurrence of chronic, un-reinforced, self-injurious behavior (SIB – head-banging by pigeons) as a function of past selection contingencies for SIB, and current selection contingencies which maintained a different class of behavior (key-pecking). He also collaborated with P. T. Andronis and I. Goldiamond on research investigating the adduction of untrained complex symbolic social-behavior, which led to the key elements upon which the Headsprout Generative Learning Technology is based. From 1991 to 1996, Joe was the Director of the Academic Support Center, and then Dean of Public Agency and Special Training Programs at Malcolm X College in Chicago.
Abstract:

In the past few years there has been growing interest in what some investigators have come to call Theory of Mind. Catalyzed by work with Chimpanzees by David Premack and his colleagues, it has been postulated that certain animals, particularly humans, develop a model for what another may be thinking. This model is used in turn to guide how the organism responds in various social situations. In essence, an individual generates a theory concerning the mind of another, and uses that theory to help maximize his or her own social effectiveness. Where such ability is lacking, social effectiveness is said to diminish. Recently, it has been suggested that such diminished capacity may be at the root of Autism. This presentation explores some of the data, both behavioral and from brain imaging studies, which are used to support some of the theory of mind hypotheses. Further, it suggests a behavioral alternative based on Skinners (1957) analysis of Verbal Behavior, with particular emphasis on autoclitic responses, and the steps behavior analysts might take to further explore this interesting area of animal and human research.

 
 
Invited Tutorial #369
CE Offered: BACB
2005 ABA Tutorial: Professional Development Series: Disseminating Research Findings through Peer-Review Publication
Sunday, May 29, 2005
11:00 AM–11:50 AM
International North (2nd floor)
Domain: Applied Research
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Brian A. Iwata, Ph.D.
Chair: Rachel S. F. Tarbox (Center for Autism and Related Disorders)
Presenting Authors: : BRIAN A. IWATA (University of Florida)
Abstract:

Although a common mechanism for disseminating research findings is the conference presentation, the standard for determining quality in scientific communication is publication in a peer-reviewed journal. However, traditional thesis and dissertation requirements, and the way in which these requirements are met, typically fail to produce research competence that survives the peer-review process. My presentation will focus on strategies for acquiring general research skills, formulating research questions, generating publishable data, and learning the ins and outs of the peer-review process.

 
BRIAN A. IWATA (University of Florida)
Brian Iwata received his Ph.D. in Clinical and School Psychology from Florida State University as a student of Jon Bailey. He subsequently held faculty appointments at Western Michigan University and at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and he is currently Professor of Psychology and Psychiatry at the University of Florida, where he directs research programs on self-injurious behavior, the Prader-Willi syndrome, and autism. Brian’s primary areas of interest are research methodology, developmental disabilities, functional analysis of severe behavior disorders, and program evaluation. He has published over 200 articles and chapters on these topics and has received over $5 million in research grants to support that work. Brian is the former editor of JABA and past president of ABA, APA Division 33, FABA, SABA, and SEAB. He has chaired study sections for both NIH and NIMH and is a fellow in AAMR, ABA, APA, and APS. Brian has received a number of significant awards for his work, including the D.F. Hake Award for Contributions to Basic and Applied Research as well as the Award for Applied Research from APA, the Award for Distinguished Contributions to Service from ABA, and the R. B. Dillard Award for Excellence in Research from AAMR. Brian is just as much a teacher of researchers as he is a researcher: Half of the recipients of the B.F. Skinner Award (APA Division 25) have been his former Ph.D. students.
 
 
Invited Paper Session #191
CE Offered: BACB

ABA and Autism: An Unfinished Agenda

Sunday, May 29, 2005
1:30 PM–2:20 PM
Continental B (1st floor)
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
CE Instructor: Jack Scott, Ph.D.
Chair: Jack Scott (Florida Atlantic University)
WILLIAM H. AHEARN (New England Center for Children), Rebecca P. F. MacDonald (New England Center for Children)
William H. Ahearn is Board Certified Behavior Analyst who serves as the Director of Research at the New England Center for Children and a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Masters in Applied Behavior Analysis (MABA) Program at Northeastern University. He is also Past-President of the Berkshire Association for Behavior Analysis and Therapy (BABAT). Bill received his doctorate at Temple University in 1992 and subsequently completed a post-doctoral fellowship in the Department of Behavioral Psychology at the Kennedy Krieger Institute and Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Dr. Ahearn then served as Program Manager for the Inpatient Pediatric Feeding Program at the Children’s Seashore House in Philadelphia before moving to the New England Center for Children in 1996. Bill has published studies that have appeared in the Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, Behavior Modification, Animal Learning and Behavior, The Lancet, Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry, The Behavior Analyst, and Behavioral Interventions. Dr. Ahearn currently serves on the Board of Editors for the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis and Behavioral Interventions and provides service to the Behavior Analyst Certification Board and the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies.
Abstract:

The success behavior analysts have had in treating individuals with autism has had a substantial impact on our membership and has led to a much wider profile for our discipline. However, many challenges and obstacles face us that we have either not met or that we choose to ignore. Though agencies, such as the National Institute of Mental Health, acknowledge ABA as an empirically based effective intervention, they also state that there is no single best treatment option for children with autism. Prominent members of the autism community often criticize ABA as; not addressing social functioning, failing to establish dramatic play skills, incapable of establishing a theory of mind, and of creating children with robotic responding that lacks spontaneity. Other more practical critiques state that it is unclear what the effective components of ABA are, how many hours of service delivery are necessary to achieve gains, and what setting ABA services should be delivered in. The main purpose of this presentation is to describe what is necessary for ABA to address these criticisms. Among the recommended courses of action we will describe the importance of local, regional, and national advocacy and public relations.

 
 
Invited Paper Session #192
CE Offered: BACB

Addressing the Complex and Dynamic Nature of Organizations

Sunday, May 29, 2005
1:30 PM–2:20 PM
Marquette (3rd floor)
Area: OBM; Domain: Applied Research
CE Instructor: Maria E. Malott, Ph.D.
Chair: Ramona Houmanfar (University of Nevada, Reno)
MARIA E. MALOTT (Malott and Associates)
Dr. Maria E. Malott received her Ph.D. in applied behavior analysis from Western Michigan University in 1987. She has worked in process improvement and organizational management for nearly two decades in a variety of industries, including service, manufacturing, retail, education, and government. She has done organizational management work in public administration, the private sector and for educational systems in several Latin-American countries, including Mexico, Colombia, Uruguay, Peru, and Venezuela. Dr. Malott has served as the Executive Director of the Association for Behavior Analysis and Secretary-Treasurer of the Society for the Advancement of Behavior Analysis since 1993. She is an adjunct faculty member at five universities and has collaborated with 33 universities around the world. She has presented over 150 papers and nearly 50 workshops in 17 countries.
Abstract:

Organizations are complicated entities: They incorporate constant, countless dynamic interconnections among behavioral contingencies of many individuals, and yet each configuration of interconnections is unique and temporary. In this context, linear approaches are insufficient to account for and manage organizational change. This presentation will address the complex, transient dynamics within organizations and propose methodological considerations for successful organizational change.

 
 
Invited Paper Session #196
CE Offered: BACB

Sources of Novel Behavior: Implications for the Development of Verbal Behavior

Sunday, May 29, 2005
1:30 PM–2:20 PM
Lake Michigan (8th floor)
Area: DEV; Domain: Theory
CE Instructor: Jacob L. Gewirtz, Ph.D.
Chair: Jacob L. Gewirtz (Florida International University)
A. CHARLES CATANIA (University of Maryland, Baltimore County)
A. Charles Catania began his career in behavior analysis in Fall 1954, when he enrolled in Fred Keller’s course in introductory psychology at Columbia. That course included a weekly laboratory on the behavior of rats, and Catania continued working with rats and pigeons and other nonhuman organisms over subsequent decades. In Spring 2004, having closed down his pigeon laboratory the previous summer, he celebrated his half century of animal lab activity with a classroom rat demonstration in a learning course that he had shared for many years with his late colleague, Eliot Shimoff. He regards the study of nonhuman behavior as essential to our understanding of verbal behavior, because verbal behavior is necessarily supported by a nonverbal scaffolding. That lesson too came from Columbia, where, as a senior, Catania took a seminar on verbal behavior jointly taught by Fred Keller, Nat Schoenfeld and Ralph Hefferline. Ever since, Catania has been addicted to the field of verbal behavior, teaching courses in it whenever possible. One function of his text, “Learning,” is to integrate the topics of nonverbal and verbal behavior, which have too often been given separate treatments.
Abstract:

Among the criticisms of B. F. Skinners analysis of verbal behavior is Noam Chomskys claim that it had nothing useful to say about productivity, the generation of novel grammatical utterances. Yet the behavior analytic armamentarium includes a variety of sources of novel behavior, including shaping, fading, adduction, the direct reinforcement of novelty, and the emergence of novel instances of higher order classes. This presentation will consider the implications of such sources for the development of productive verbal behavior and will address Chomskian arguments such as the argument from the poverty of the stimulus. In so doing, it will examine semantic as well as syntactic novelty, as when verbal behavior allows the creation of novel entities such as angels and demons.This address is dedicated to Eliot Shimoff

 
 
Symposium #197
CE Offered: BACB
A Celebration of Ogden R. Lindsley: The History of Precision Teaching and the Standard Celeration Chart
Sunday, May 29, 2005
1:30 PM–2:50 PM
Waldorf (3rd floor)
Area: TPC; Domain: Theory
Chair: Michael Fabrizio (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting)
Discussant: Michael Fabrizio (Fabrizio/Moors Consulting)
CE Instructor: Michael Fabrizio, M.A.
Abstract:

This symposium, part of a three-symposia series celebrating Ogden Lindsley, will present an historical analysis of the important life events that shaped Ogdens repertoire and led to the development of one of his most important contributionsthe Standard Celeration Chart (SCC). Starting their analyses with Ogdens early work and moving through major contributions that punctuate Precision Teachings history to date, the authors of the symposiums papers will tell the story of the SCC and the man behind it.

 
Where Did the Standard Celeration Chart Come From?
JULIE S. VARGAS (B.F. Skinner Foundation)
Abstract: This paper traces some of the factors that led to Ogden Lindsley’s development of the Standard Celeration Chart. Among the influences were his engineering background, his graduate work with B. F. Skinner at Harvard University, and his experiences running the first behavior therapy program with patients at Metropolitan State Hospital.
 
The Standard Celeration Chart: Its Development and Uses
ABIGAIL B. CALKIN (Calkin Learning Center)
Abstract: From the lessons of Skinner, Lindsley took frequency from the animal laboratory to human behavior, developing the Standard Celeration Chart in the mid-1960s. With the use of a 1-min timing, precision teachers developed frequency aims for fluent performance. In the early 1970s, came the development of celeration, the measurement of the growth of learning.
 
Past into Future: Lindsley's Enduring Legacy of Standard Celeration
JOHN W. ESHLEMAN (Optimal Instructional Systems)
Abstract: Ogden R. Lindsley may become best remembered for contributing to how we measure and view change in behavior frequency over time. Lindsley named this measure "celeration," and defined it as count per minute per week. On a chart developed by a team headed by Lindsley, we depict celeration as a straight-line slope. The steeper the slope, up or down, the more rapidly frequency changes over time. Celeration lines on the standard celeration chart form a powerful measure of behavior change: you can monitor frequency trends over time, make straight line projections into the future, compare concurrent celerations, and compare consecutive celerations to determine independent variable effects on trend, and to determine improvement and make discoveries about learning. This paper projects various Precision Teaching trends on yearly standard celeration charts, and closes with Lindsley's own predictions, warnings, and hopes about the future from his 1985 ABA Presidential Address, from his 1979 "Rate of Response Futures" address, from his 1997 "Do Times Two Then Go for Four or More" address, and from his final conversation to me in September 2004 about celeration and agility.
 
 
Symposium #199
CE Offered: BACB
Analysis and Treatment of Problem Behavior in School Settings
Sunday, May 29, 2005
1:30 PM–2:50 PM
Williford B (3rd floor)
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Michael M. Mueller (May South)
Discussant: T. Steuart Watson (University of Miami of Ohio)
CE Instructor: Bryan J. Davey, M.Ed.
Abstract:

The symposium will highlight the application of functional analyses methodology in a variety of school settings. The session will begin with a review of current literature on functional behavioral assessments that include experimental analyses conducted in public schools. The review will present collective data from 42 empirical studies. Population characteristics, educational placement, functional behavior assessment methodologies and outcomes, and treatment selection and outcomes will be presented. The literature review will be followed by two data-based presentations. The presentations will present multiple data sets depicting traditional and innovative functional analyses conditions conducted in school settings for a variety of problem behaviors. Additionally, outcomes from functional analyses based interventions will be presented. The presentations address analyses and interventions responsive to the dynamic environment of public school settings. A synthesis of the presentations and general comments regarding the current state of analysis and treatment of problem behavior in schools settings will conclude the symposium.

 
Functional Behavioral Assessments Including Experimental Manipulations in Public School Settings for Students with Mild, Moderate and Severe Disabilities
BRYAN J. DAVEY (Utah State University)
Abstract: The presentation examines the research literature on functional behavioral assessments that included experimental manipulations (e.g., functional analyses) conducted in special education settings within public schools. While it is true that the majority of published research that utilizes such analyses is conducted in hospitals and institutional settings (see Hanley, Iwata, & McCord, 2003), a growing literature base is evolving on functional behavioral assessment that included experimental manipulations within special education settings within public schools. The investigators sought a better understanding of the methodologies used to asses target behaviors, intervention selection, and intervention outcomes. The purpose of this presentation is to examine experimental analyses conducted in public school, special education settings. This review examined participants receiving FBA services, their educational placements, target behaviors which lead to assessment, and practitioners/researchers conducting assessments within public schools. Data were collected on population characteristics such as disability category, educational placement, functional behavior assessment methodologies and outcomes. Additionally, data were collected, when provided, on treatment selection and outcomes. Results are discussed in terms of current trends in the literature, and areas in which future research is necessary.
 
Innovative Approaches to Functional Analysis and Treatment of Severe Problem Behavior in School Settings
MICHAEL M. MUELLER (May South)
Abstract: Functional analysis has been demonstrated as an effective assessment procedure used to determine the reinforcers for severe problem behavior. Iwata, Dorsey, Slifer, Bauman, and Richman (1982) described for the first time what has become typical conditions used in functional analyses. Given the dynamic and often changing environment of public school settings, procedures can, and should, be modified to fit those instances when the referral environment differs from typical functional analysis conditions. Some of those changes include shortening or lengthening the duration of functional analysis conditions, including atypical reinforcers in test conditions, testing abnormal school behaviors, using other professional as therapists, etc. When functional analyses yield specific results that identify reinforcers, treatments are often created that incorporate the functional reinforcers. Creating easy to use, nonaversive, effective, and acceptable interventions should be the goal of behavior analysts in the schools. The proposed data-based presentation will present multiple data sets depicting innovative functional analyses and effective interventions based on those results. All data sets identified reinforcers for severe behavior in school settings and all interventions were based on those results and conducted in school settings.
 
Using Functional Analysis to Design Intervention Plans to Facilitate Inclusion
DEBORAH A. NAPOLITANO (University of Rochester), Tasha C. Geiger (University of Rochester), Caroline I. Magyar (University of Rochester), Amy R. Leo (University of Rochester)
Abstract: Problem behavior can be disruptive to classrooms and a barrier to placement in least-restrictive settings. Although analogue-functional analyses are effective in identifying the function of problem behavior leading to appropriate intervention plans, teachers familiar with this assessment procedure often report difficulty in school implementation. This is due to time constraints and teachers’ lack of training to successfully conduct functional analysis. Despite these issues, use of functional analysis in schools is increasing. The purpose of this study was to conduct functional analyses in various school settings to design function-based intervention plans for three participants with autism. These intervention plans facilitated a successful transition to the next grade level, decreased the restrictiveness of student placement, or maintained a fully inclusive placement. Functional analyses were designed to be conducted in school environments and each student’s intervention was designed to be implemented within their school by school staff. Functional analyses were conducted by general and special education teachers and 1:1 aides. Data collected from these functional analyses were used to develop classroom intervention plans. Strategies for decreasing resistance to conducting functional analyses by school professionals, the clinical importance of conducting analogue-functional analyses in school settings and directions for future research will be discussed.
 
 
Symposium #203
CE Offered: BACB
Enhancing the Direct Care Professional's Ability to Implement Effective Behavior Supports
Sunday, May 29, 2005
1:30 PM–2:50 PM
Stevens 1 (Lower Level)
Area: DDA; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Richard W. Powell (Shelby Residential & Vocational Services)
CE Instructor: John J. Pokrzywinski, M.A.
Abstract:

The papers in this symposium examine positive behavior support procedures that emphasize identifying and manipulating contextual or antecedent variables related to problem behaviors in individuals with developmental disabilities. Variables examined include staff and supervisor training, the role of choice making, setting events and discriminative stimuli, and the inclusion of direct support staff in the development and implementation of positive behavior support plans. The effects of these different strategies are examined and discussed in terms of changes in the trends of problem behaviors, changes in staff behavior, and changes in the acceptability of behavior support plans.

 
Using Feedback to Improve Direct Support Staff and Supervisor Performance
IRFA KARMALI (Shelby Residential & Vocational Services), Richard W. Powell (Shelby Residential & Vocational Services), John J. Pokrzywinski (Arlington Developmental Center)
Abstract: A supervisor’s primary job is to make sure that the quality of staff performance is at a level satisfactory to provide the support needed by agency consumers. When staff work is not up to par, it is the supervisor’s job to ensure that performance rises to adequate criteria. When the staffs’ performance is good, a supervisor’s job is to see that the staff continues to do a good quality work. Selected training modules from a standardized positive behavior support curriculum were used to teach supervisors three basic supervisory skills. Supervisors were taught to describe four guidelines for obtaining information about staff performance, and how to conduct an observation in a manner likely to be acceptable to direct support staff. Next, supervisors were trained on the use of performance checklists for observing job duty in the work environment. Finally, supervisors were trained to use verbal and written feedback as a practical and effective means of training and motivating direct support staff. This included a seven-step feedback protocol. The effects of these interventions are discussed by examining changes in target behavior trends, and changes in staff performance. Direct support staff performance was assessed by changes in individualized performance checklists, absenteeism, and agency performance evaluations. Supervisors were also rated for changes in the ability to conduct observations, complete performance checklists, and provide effective feedback.
 
Identifying Contextual Variables to Improve Preventative Procedures in Behavior Support Plans
JOHN J. POKRZYWINSKI (Arlington Developmental Center), Richard W. Powell (Shelby Residential & Vocational Services), Irfa Karmali (Shelby Residential & Vocational Services), Tandra S. Hicks (Shelby Residential & Vocational Services)
Abstract: The purpose of the contextual assessment is to identify situations that are likely to lead to problem behavior. There are two types of factors that increase the chances of problem behavior: setting events and discriminative stimuli. Contextual assessment refers to focusing on whole events and facilitating understanding a person’s behavior within a historical and situational context. Sensitivity to the role of context in understanding the nature and function of an event focuses on the implicit consequences of an on-going action. A firm grasp on a pragmatic truth criterion focuses on what works and what does not work. Applied behavior analysis strategies usually consist of: setting event strategies, predictor strategies, teaching strategies, and consequence strategies. This study examines the first two strategies as potential antecedent preventive procedures. These antecedents are setting events, establishing operations, discriminative stimuli, and discriminative punishers. Potential ecological/setting events examined included: medications, medical or physical problems, sleep cycles, eating routines and diet, daily schedule, numbers of people, and staffing patterns and interactions. Immediate antecedents events examined included: time of day; physical setting; behaviors that occur more consistently in the presence of particular people; and specific activities related to problem behaviors.
 
Using Enhanced Direct Support Participation to Increase the Proficient Implementation and Integrity of Behavior Support Plans
ANGELIQUE DILWORTH (Shelby Residential & Vocational Services), Richard W. Powell (Shelby Residential & Vocational Services), Irfa Karmali (Shelby Residential & Vocational Services), John J. Pokrzywinski (Arlington Developmental Center)
Abstract: Current systems theory looks at methods to increase the proficiency with which direct support professionals implement and carry out behavior support plans. One frequently recommended technique is to involve these staff in the planning and development of positive behavior support interventions. Little data, however, has been presented evaluating this technique. The purpose of this study is to investigate how involving staff in the planning of the behavior support plan improves the proficient implementation and integrity of the procedures. During this study direct support professionals attended planning sessions to construct a behavior support plan for an individual under their care. The staff participating received standard training and had worked with their person for at least six months before being involved in this process. During the baseline weekly data and treatment reliability/implementation checks were conducted. Also, monthly follow up sessions were conducted to discuss changes in behavior. Prior to and at the completion of the study, staff members were asked to complete several assessments scoring plan acceptability. Their ratings and implementation data were be compared with similar staff members who supervise similar individuals who had not had this experience.
 
Teaching Staff to Neutralize Problem Behaviors Through Identifying and Increasing Choice-Making Opportunities
TANDRA S. HICKS (Shelby Residential & Vocational Services), Irfa Karmali (Shelby Residential & Vocational Services), Richard W. Powell (Shelby Residential & Vocational Services), John J. Pokrzywinski (Arlington Developmental Center)
Abstract: Many adults with developmental disabilities are rarely allowed to make reasonable choices about everyday issues such as what to wear, what to do during free time, whom to sit with, what time to go to bed, etc. The consequences of limiting choices lead to protests in inappropriate ways when his or her preferences are not reflected in these decisions. Such aberrant behaviors are observed primarily in individuals whose communication skills are extremely limited. Among a series of behaviors, non-compliance being the least severe response to a series of inevitable events, could be avoided by encouraging the individual to make choices that reflect his or her preferences and what happens to him or her on a daily basis. Checklists were used to assess the opportunities that individuals had to make to make choices in their daily routine. Additionally, the individuals’ current behavior plans were assessed to identify whether choices were part of the plan. If choices were not an identified objective in the behavior plan, an addendum was developed to add the additional objective for the purpose of measuring outcomes for this study. Using a component of a standardized positive behavior support curriculum, direct support staff members were then trained to: identify the importance of making choice for enjoying life; demonstrate how to provide a choice to individuals who do talk; identify when to give choices; and identify positive outcomes of giving choices. The effects of these interventions are discussed by analyzing the results of the data collected on target behaviors, changes in choice making opportunities, and changes in ratings of behavior support plan acceptability.
 
 
Symposium #211
CE Offered: BACB
Recent Research on Functional Analysis and Function-Based Interventions
Sunday, May 29, 2005
1:30 PM–2:50 PM
Williford A (3rd floor)
Area: CBM; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Julie Atwell (Florida Institute of Technology)
Discussant: Michele D. Wallace (University of Nevada, Reno)
CE Instructor: David A. Wilder, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Three recent studies on functional analysis and function-based interventions will be presented. In the first study, a brief functional analysis was conducted to identify a treatment for tantrums associated with transitions in typically developing preschool children. The second study describes a functional analysis and treatment for food refusal maintained by multiple sources of reinforcement. The third study describes a functional analysis of feeding problems and evaluates a novel negative reinforcement-based intervention.

 
Brief Functional Analysis and Treatment of Tantrums Associated with Transitions in Preschool Children
DAVID A. WILDER (Florida Institute of Technology), Liyu Chen (Florida Institute of Technology), Julie Atwell (Florida Institute of Technology), Joshua K. Pritchard (Florida Institute of Technology), Phil A. Weinstein (Florida Institute of Technology)
Abstract: We examined tantrums associated with transitions from one activity to another exhibited by two preschool children. First, preference assessments and informal interviews were used to identify activities and tasks to which participants were exposed during an analysis of tantrums associated with transitions. Next, a brief functional analysis examined the influence of termination of prechange activities and initiation of postchange activities on tantrums. Results showed that for one participant, tantrums were maintained by access to certain (pre-transition) activities. For a second participant, tantrums were maintained by avoidance of certain task initiations. Finally, results of a treatment consisting of advanced notice of an upcoming transition showed that the procedure was ineffective; a treatment consisting of differential reinforcement of alternative behavior (DRA) plus extinction was effective for both participants
 
A Systematic Evaluation and Treatment of Multiply Controlled Inappropriate Mealtime Behaviors
MELANIE H. BACHMEYER (Marcus Autism Center), Cathleen C. Piazza (Marcus Autism Center), Gregory K. Reed (Marcus Autism Center), Stephanie Bethke (Marcus Autism Center), Sam Maddox (Marcus Autism Center), Amanda Bosch (Marcus Autism Center)
Abstract: Prior research has demonstrated that analogue functional analyses may be useful in identifying the environmental events that play a role in feeding disorders. The results of this research has suggested that even though negative reinforcement (in the form of escape from bites of food) may play a primary role in the maintenance of feeding problems, a significant number of children with feeding disorders also may be sensitive to other sources of reinforcement (e.g., access to adult attention). However, no studies to our knowledge have systematically evaluated function-based treatments for multiply controlled feeding problems. Thus, in the present study, we conducted functional analyses of inappropriate mealtime behaviors to identify children whose inappropriate mealtime behaviors were maintained by both negative and positive reinforcement (in the form of access to adult attention). Then, treatments matched directly to each maintaining variable were evaluated. Specifically, various extinction, differential reinforcement, and punishment procedures were evaluated. Two independent observers achieved over 80% agreement on over 25% of sessions. Results will be discussed in terms of the relative contribution of secondary functions in the development and efficacy of treatments for multiply controlled food refusal. Areas for further study will also be discussed.
 
Function-Based Treatment of Feeding Problems in the Absence of Escape Extinction
ANGELA PRUETT (Marcus Autism Center), Cathleen C. Piazza (Marcus Autism Center), Gregory K. Reed (Marcus Autism Center), Melanie H. Bachmeyer (Marcus Autism Center), Stephanie Bethke (Marcus Autism Center), Barbara S. Wimberly (Marcus Autism Center), Percy Milligan (Marcus Autism Center)
Abstract: Prior research on the assessment and treatment of feeding problems has produced two major findings: (a) negative reinforcement in the form of escape from the feeding situation is often primarily responsible for maintaining refusal behavior, and (b) negative reinforcement-based interventions such as escape extinction (EE) are highly effective for treating feeding problems. Largely, research examining the effects of positive reinforcement-based interventions for feeding problems has suggested that feeding problems can be highly resistant to positive reinforcement in the absence of EE. However, few studies have evaluated the efficacy of negative reinforcement-based alternatives to EE, and research on the specific conditions under which positive reinforcement can be effective remains in need. The purpose of the current study was to evaluate the efficacy of positive and negative reinforcement-based interventions for treating food selectivity without EE. Specifically, we conducted functional analyses of each child’s feeding problem, and then systematically evaluated the efficacy of positive (access to high preferred stimuli) and negative (avoidance of low preferred foods) reinforcement contingencies for increasing food consumption. Independent observers achieved over 80% agreement on 25% of sessions. Results will be discussed in terms of the utility of function-based treatments for feeding problems, particularly with regard to negative reinforcement-based alternatives to EE
 
 
Symposium #215
CE Offered: BACB
Treatment Interventions for Children with Autism: Expanding the Toolbox
Sunday, May 29, 2005
1:30 PM–2:50 PM
Continental A (1st floor)
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Robert K. Ross (Beacon ABA Services)
Discussant: David M. Corcoran (Beacon ABA Services)
CE Instructor: Robert K. Ross, M.S.
Abstract:

This symposium will present outcome data from the use of instructional methods and formats that may not be widely used in programs for children with autism. Given the challenges that these learners present, it is imperative that behavior analysts make efforts to ensure be aware of and fluent in newer procedures that have data demonstrating efficacy. These procedures represent skills that can enhance the repertoires of practitioners and thus enhance learning outcomes for children with autism. The procedure to be reviewed include; video modeling procedures to teach play skills, the use of photographic activity schedules to increase food repertoires in selective eaters, and a comparison of rates of acquisition of the most commonly used methods for increasing the production of expressive language in children with autism.

 
Using Video Modeling to Teach Play Skills and Language to a Five-Year-Old with Autism
JOSEPH M. VEDORA (Beacon ABA Services), BethAnne Miles (Beacon ABA Services)
Abstract: Video modeling is a technique often used to teach children with autism. To date, video modeling has been used to teach a variety of social, play, academic and self-help skills. The present study used video modeling to increase play skills and accompanying play language with a 5 year old boy with autism. Specifically, the student viewed videos of his older sister engaging in familiar play routines while modeling the language of the activity. Prior to the intervention the student engaged in appropriate but non-verbal play. The results showed a rapid increase in appropriate play language. These results replicate previous research on teaching play and language skills.
 
Expanding Food Preferences with a Photographic Activity Schedule
KELLY KELM (Beacon ABA Services), Joseph M. Vedora (Beacon ABA Services), Robert K. Ross (Beacon ABA Services)
Abstract: Photographic activity schedules have been used to teach a variety of independent play, social, self-help, and academic skills in children with autism. In the present study, the use of an activity schedule was expanded to increase food preferences for a 3 year old boy with autism. The participant rapidly learned to follow a 3-5 item photographic activity schedule consisting of preferred and non-preferred play activities. Next non-preferred foods were introduced as a snack in the context of the activity schedule. Once successful with preferred foods, non-preferred foods were introduced. Results demonstrate that this student learned to accept previously non-preferred foods in the context of a photographic activity schedule. Additionally, the family noted significant improvements in behavior during the presentation of foods that historically evoked highly emotional responses. This study extends previous research in the use of activity schedules and offers a novel approach to expanding food preferences in children with autism.
 
Acquisition of Intraverbal Behavior for Two Young Children with Autism: A Systematic Replication
LAURA MEUNIER (Beacon ABA Services), Robert K. Ross (Beacon ABA Services)
Abstract: This study compared the effects of echoic prompts and textual prompts on acquisition of question answering for a 4-year-old boy and a 5 year-old boy with Autism. The authors taught the responses to 10 questions (e.g., what do you do with a phone?) using each type of prompt. For example in the echoic prompt condition, the teacher said “talk”, the child then imitated the statement. In the textual prompt condition, the typewritten words were presented to prompt the response and the student read the response. In both conditions a progressive time delay was used to fade the prompts. The data are discussed in terms of rate of acquisition and occurrence of spontaneous productions. Data indicate that more rapid acquisition and spontaneous production were seen in the textual prompt condition for both subjects. These results are consistent with previous research.
 
 
Panel #221
CE Offered: BACB
Int'l Panel - Discussion of Dr. A. Charles Catanias Invited Address: Sources of Novel Behavior: Implications for the Development of Verbal Behavior
Sunday, May 29, 2005
2:30 PM–3:20 PM
Lake Michigan (8th floor)
Area: DEV/EDC; Domain: Theory
CE Instructor: A. Charles Catania, Ph.D.
Chair: Martha Pelaez (Florida International University)
MARTHA PELAEZ (Florida International University)
A. CHARLES CATANIA (University of Maryland, Baltimore County)
PER HOLTH (Randstone University)
MARGARET VAUGHN (Salem State College)
Abstract:

A discussion of Dr. A. Charles Catanias Invited Address: Sources of Novel Behavior: Implications for the Development of Verbal Behavior

 
 
Panel #224
CE Offered: BACB
Optimizing Applied Behavior Analysts' Functional Effectiveness in Educational Programs for Youngsters with Special Needs
Sunday, May 29, 2005
2:30 PM–3:50 PM
Marquette (3rd floor)
Area: OBM/AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
CE Instructor: Beth Sulzer-Azaroff, Ph.D.
Chair: Beth Sulzer-Azaroff (The Browns Group of Naples)
STEVEN LUCE (Melmark)
KATHLEEN DYER (The River Street School at Coltsville)
SAUL AXELROD (Temple University)
ROBERT F. LITTLETON JR. (Beacon ABA Services)
Abstract:

Federal legislation, public policies and humanitarian concerns have led to a worldwide increase in the demand for capable behavior analysts to provide services in educational programs for children with special needs. Those trained and certified as meeting standards of competence in ABA bring a breadth of knowledge and skills to those programs. Included are functional, reinforcer and environmental assessment, methods of shaping social and educational performance, techniques for monitoring, recording, graphing and analyzing data and much more. Satisfying everyone simultaneously by meeting managerial, staff and parental priorities generally is not feasible. How behavior analysts in these setting are most efficiently and effectively to apportion and prioritize their time and effort becomes a real challenge. We shall address this issue, emphasizing 1) behavior analysts' performance functions in such settings and 2) tactics for setting long and short-term priorities and 3) for effectively managing that performance. Panelists and audience members are invited to share their own most successful strategies and materials.

 
 
Symposium #228
CE Offered: BACB
Applying Behavioral Economic Theory in Providing Services to Individuals with Developmental Disabilities
Sunday, May 29, 2005
3:00 PM–4:20 PM
Stevens 1 (Lower Level)
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: William H. Ahearn (New England Center for Children)
CE Instructor: William H. Ahearn, Ph.D.
Abstract:

This symposium was developed with the intention of bringing to clinicians some research influenced by economic analyses of behavior that might have a significant impact on providing clinical and educational programming to individuals with skill deficits and/or problem behavior. In behavioral economics, reinforcers are treated as commodities, and the environmental contingencies that govern access to those commodities as the price or effort necessary to access a commodity. One indication of the value of behavioral economic principles is the range of topics that they have been applied to. Though the most impressive demonstrations of the utility of behavioral economics have come in the area of drug abuse, it has also been recently applied in two distinct lines of investigation. The first line of research is in establishing more effective reinforcer assessment strategies while the other involves analyzing problem behavior and functional alternatives as substitutes for one and other. The present symposium will discuss the attempts by three groups to translate behavioral economic theory into practical application. Presentations, delivered by William H. Ahearn, Henry S. Roane, and Iser G. DeLeon, will detail several investigations conducted with individuals with developmental disabilities in attempts to translate behavioral economic theory into practical applications.

 
Applications of Behavioral Economics to Enhancing Performance and Skill Acquisition
WILLIAM H. AHEARN (New England Center for Children), Ruth M. DeBar (New England Center for Children), Christine M. Florentino (New England Center for Children), Kelly K. Collins (New England Center for Children), Kathleen M. Clark (New England Center for Children), William V. Dube (E.K. Shriver Center, University of Massachusetts Medical School)
Abstract: Behavioral economics views behavior as a transaction between the supply of a functional consequence and the demand for that functional consequence. This transaction occurs in an environmental context whereby the amount of reinforcer accessed per unit of time is analyzed with respect to the responding that was emitted for that access. Hursh (1980) presented a comparison of discrepant results from similar studies of responding under schedules of reinforcement. He showed that similar studies obtained different results because of differences in how access to the experimental reinforcers was controlled. When access to reinforcers occurred only during experimental sessions, a closed economy, responding persisted in the face of increases in work requirement. This presentation will describe the effects of closed and open economic conditions on both performance and learning. In two studies, mastered tasks were presented to students with developmental disabilities under both open and closed economic conditions. Generally more responding was observed during the closed economy but exceptions were observed. A third study involved teaching novel leisure skills to children via behavioral chaining. Skill acquisition was more rapid during the closed economic conditions. These results and a brief discussion of the concept of demand will be included in the presentation.Keywords: behavioral economics, supply, reinforcer assessment, skill acquisition
 
Analysis of Unit Price Within the Context of Reinforcement-Based Programs for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities
HENRY S. ROANE (Marcus Autism Center), Terry S. Falcomata (University of Iowa), Ashley C. Glover (Marcus Autism Center), Robert-Ryan S. Pabico (Marcus Autism Center)
Abstract: Previous research has shown that choice responding is often influenced by the number of responses required to access a reinforcer and by the magnitude of that reinforcer. Within the context of behavioral economics, the ratio of response requirements to reinforcer magnitude is referred to as unit price. Results of several basic and clinical investigations have shown that changes in the unit price of different reinforcers may affect choice responding. In this presentation, we will present data for several on-going lines of research in which unit price modifications have altered response allocation. All analyses were conducted within the context of positive reinforcement-based treatments for problem behavior displayed by individuals with developmental disabilities. The first analysis shows the relative effects of unit price adjustments when identifying highly preferred reinforcers. The second illustrates the influence of price ratios self-control and impulsive responding. The final dataset is an examination of using unit price adjustment to facility the thinning of a differential reinforcement procedure. These results will be discussed in terms of the importance of conducting translational research that examines clinical applications of economic principles.
 
Functional Similarity, Reinforcer Substitutability, and Elasticity of Demand: Paradoxical Implications for the Treatment of Behavior Disorders?
ISER GUILLERMO DELEON (Johns Hopkins University), Stephanie A. Contrucci Kuhn (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Meagan Gregory (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Lynn G. Bowman (Johns Hopkins University), Melissa Shuleeta (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
Abstract: Function-based interventions for the problem behavior of individuals with developmental disabilities typically involve promoting alternative behaviors that produce reinforcers that are identical or functionally similar to those that maintain the problem behavior. However, some studies have revealed that the effects of these interventions may wane during schedule thinning as the ratio of responses to reinforcers is increased. In behavioral economic analyses, demand for a commodity (reinforcer) is often shown to be a joint function of its price (the number of responses required to produce that reinforcer) and the extent to which concurrently available alternatives are substitutable. Demand is more elastic (e.g., more sensitive to increases in price) when concurrently available commodities are more substitutable. We present a series of preliminary behavioral economic analyses with individuals with developmental disabilities suggesting that (1) demand is more elastic when functionally similar reinforcers are concurrently available (i.e., functionally similar reinforcers are more substitutable), and (2) this may translate into more durable treatment effects when reinforcers that are less substitutable for that which maintains the problem behavior are used during schedule thinning. Thus, under certain conditions, exclusive provision of the functional reinforcer contingent upon an alternative behavior may not always be the best treatment option.
 
 
Symposium #231
CE Offered: BACB
Experimental Analyses of Behavioral Processes Relevant to Applied Behavior Analysis
Sunday, May 29, 2005
3:00 PM–4:20 PM
International North (2nd floor)
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
Chair: Craig H. Kennedy (Vanderbilt University)
CE Instructor: Craig H. Kennedy, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Decades of laboratory research has yielded functional relations that have been useful for improving peoples living conditions. Historically, the basic to applied research model has been largely unidirectional. However, with the increased interest in basic behavioral processes among applied behavior analysts, there is an emerging focus on studying applied issues in the laboratory. This symposium will feature research from rodent laboratories at the University of Florida and Vanderbilt University. A range of schedule-oriented analyses and pharmacological manipulations will be presented that relate to issues of interest to applied behavior analysts.

 
An Evaluation of Response Persistence and Response Suppression under Time-Based Schedules of Food Presentation
JOHN C. BORRERO (University of the Pacific), Timothy R. Vollmer (University of Florida), Andrew Samaha (University of Florida)
Abstract: Fixed-time (FT) schedules are commonly implemented as interventions to decrease severe problem behavior in applied settings. However, in some circumstances, FT schedules may be implemented to maintain appropriate responding. In our prior research, FT schedules produced persistent responding among rats, when alternated with a response-dependent condition and extinction in the context of mixed, or multiple schedule arrangements. In the present experiment, rats were exposed to a FI 60-s baseline followed by a FT condition. For all subjects response rates decreased under FT conditions. Following reversals of the FI 60-s and FT conditions, subjects were exposed to an interspersal test condition in which FT sessions were conducted until the rate of responding decreased by 10% or more of the mean response rate during the last 6 sessions from the previous FI 60-s condition. When response rates in the FT schedule decreased by 10% of the baseline mean, a FI 60-s session was conducted. The purpose of this condition was to determine the proportion of FI sessions required to maintain responding under FT schedules. Results suggested that intermittent introduction of response-dependent sessions produced response persistence under FT conditions. Results will be discussed in terms of potential applications to socially significant behavior.
 
Access to Aggression as Positive Reinforcement under Various Time and Ratio Schedule Requirements in Mice
MICHAEL E. MAY (Vanderbilt University), Maria H. Couppis (Vanderbilt University), Craig H. Kennedy (Vanderbilt University)
Abstract: Violent behaviors, such as aggression, appear in most phyla and seem to serve an adaptive function (Scott, 1958). However, the appearance of these behaviors in human beings can be associated with a range of detrimental societal outcomes (Reiss et al., 1994). For people with developmental disabilities, the occurrence of aggression is associated with placement in more restrictive residential and educational settings and a diminished quality of life. Although a great deal of preclinical research has been done on the neurobiology of aggression, little is known about the operant characteristics of these behaviors and the neurobiology that might underlie their occurrence. It is plausible that a better understanding of possible reward mechanisms related to aggression may lead to improved behavioral and/or pharmacological treatments. An important first step in pursuit of this goal is to isolate aggression as an operant response that can be studied in its own right. In this poster, we present data on aggression as a positive reinforcer for an arbitrary response (i.e., nose poking) in mice. The experiments used Male Swiss-Webster mice in the resident-intruder paradigm. Initially, mice were taught to nose poke as an operant response to earn liquid. Once stable patterns of responding were established, the liquid was withdrawn as a consequence and a novel intruder mouse was introduced when the response contingency was met. We obtained response patterns characteristic of fixed-ratio, fixed-interval, and DRL reinforcement schedules suggesting that access to aggression functioned as a positive reinforcer. Tests using a progressive-ratio reinforcement schedule showed a “break point” significantly lower than for liquid reinforcement, suggesting that access to aggression was a lesser valence stimulus than liquid. Our findings provide a potential model system and experimental paradigm for analyzing the neurobiology of aggression within the context of its stimulus properties as a positive reinforcer.
 
Some Effects of Contingency Manipulations on Responding with Rats
ANDREW SAMAHA (University of Florida), Timothy R. Vollmer (University of Florida), Laura E. O'Steen (University of Florida)
Abstract: Effects of positive and negative contingencies were examined in two experiments. A positive contingency was programmed by arranging a higher probability of pellet delivery following periods with lever presses than following periods without lever presses. Negative contingencies followed the opposite pattern. In Experiment 1, responding was acquired and maintained under a positive contingency but not under a negative contingency. In Experiment 2, the contingency was gradually shifted from positive to negative across several sessions. Results are presented in terms of responding under various contingency values and applied implications with respect to treatment integrity are discussed.
 
Behavioral Pharmacology of Aggression in Mice Lacking the Tailless Gene
PABLO JUAREZ (Vanderbilt University), Maria G. Valdovinos (Vanderbilt University), Maria H. Couppis (Vanderbilt University), Michael E. May (Vanderbilt University), Craig H. Kennedy (Vanderbilt University)
Abstract: Aggressive behaviors are of great concern to people who care for, provide services to, and with developmental disabilities. A number of studies examine the neurogenomics of aggression in animal models such as the tailless (tlx) mouse. The tlx gene belongs to a superfamily of genes that encode transcription factors for ligand-activated receptors expressed in the brain. Tlx gene deficiency results in telencephalon, corpus collosum, amygdala, and hippocampus reduction, and leads to visual, olfactory, and loco-motor deficits. Tlx mice exhibit behavior during testing that indicate decreased inhibition to tasks which control mice typically do not engage in readily (e.g. time spent distally on open arms of an elevated maze). The present study utilizes a resident/intruder model, in which wildtype mice are introduced to the tlx resident cage for 10m sessions. Measurements of latency to first attack, total duration of aggression, locomotion, and grooming are taken. During intervention, clozapine, a borad spectrum antagonist for multiple receptor types is injected at graduated levels from 0.1 mg/kg to 1.5 mg/kg. In general, aggression in the intervention is lower than in baseline with the levels of grooming and locomotion remaining stable across conditions. This indicates that decreased aggression is not a result of sedation.
 
 
Symposium #233
CE Offered: BACB
Implementing Behavior Analytic Models in Mobile Robots: Where the Rubber Meets the Road (Literally)
Sunday, May 29, 2005
3:00 PM–4:20 PM
Waldorf (3rd floor)
Area: TPC; Domain: Theory
Chair: Betsy J. Constantine (Context Systems)
CE Instructor: William R. Hutchison, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Science fiction has presented many futuristic images of robots that behave and learn like animals and humans. Behavior analysis is the scientific discipline most able to engineer the processes that would be involved in such an artificial learning organism, but behavioral engineering has been applied to animals and humans rather than robots. The papers in this symposium will describe research by Hutchison and Constantine in which computer models of behavior analytic formulations have been implemented in robots. The three papers will describe the practical and conceptual challenges that must be solved to fill the gaps between the environment and behavioral processes; how the behavior of robots can illustrate basic behavior analytic principles such as primary reinforcement, conditioned reinforcement, punishment, stimulus control, transfer of stimulus control, etc.; the value of such work for behavior analysis and practical applications; and major theoretical and philosophical issues raised by this work. Live demonstrations of this work with a research robot will be shown in the second paper.

 
Implementing a Behavior Analytic Model in a Mobile Robot
WILLIAM R. HUTCHISON (Behavior Systems)
Abstract: This paper will describe some of the issues that arise in implementing a quantitative behavior analytic model in a robot, especially sensory, motor, and consequence issues that do not arise when working with animals. Raw sensory data are far removed from the conceptual level at which behavior analysts typically describe “stimuli”, and the same is true of “responses” that in robots consist of motor movements. We must also look at the basic meaning of “reinforcement” to implement primary and secondary reinforcement in a mechanical being. Solutions to these issues will be described in a complete working computer model of operant learning?the Seventh Generation system?that is currently being used to control robots.
 
Practical Demonstration of a Mobile Robot Controlled by a Behavior Analytic Model
BETSY J. CONSTANTINE (Context Systems), William R. Hutchison (Behavior Systems)
Abstract: This paper will describe how a robotic implementation of operant behavior can illustrate some of the basic behavioral processes that have been extensively studied with animals. The paper will present one or two cases with detailed descriptions of the sensory, motor, and reinforcement processes involved. The descriptions will be illustrated by live demonstrations with a research robot.
 
Implications of Developing Behavior Analytic Models in Robots
WILLIAM R. HUTCHISON (Behavior Systems), David C. Palmer (Smith College), Betsy J. Constantine (Context Systems)
Abstract: The implications of implementing behavioral models in robots range from stimulating basic behavior analytic research to the thorny social issue of creating artificial creatures. Complete models of behavior in computer simulations are more useful than isolated equations as a medium for describing the complex set of relationships between organisms and environment. But only when implemented in robots can those detailed models be put to the ultimate tests of sufficiency and accuracy. By studying the design and operation of an operant model in a robot, researchers have an opportunity to reexamine some basic behavior analytic principles, such as primary reinforcement, conditioned reinforcement, punishment, stimulus control, transfer of stimulus control, etc. at a level of detail that is not possible with animal subjects. Developing robots that may become smarter, stronger, faster, etc., than humans raises issues that can no longer be dismissed as hypothetical. Behavior analysts are essential participants in this complex emerging social issue.
 
 
Symposium #240
CE Offered: BACB
Teaching Social Skills to Children with Autism with Empirically Validated Procedures
Sunday, May 29, 2005
3:00 PM–4:20 PM
Continental A (1st floor)
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Marjorie Charlop-Christy (Claremont McKenna College)
Discussant: Chris A. LaBelle (University of Florida)
CE Instructor: Marjorie Charlop-Christy, Ph.D.
Abstract:

This symposium addresses social skills training procedures for children with autism. Empirically validated training procedures for a wide range of social behaviors from specific behaviors such as joint attention to more abstract social behaviors such as social perspective-taking will be presented. Implications for design and implementation of social skills training packages and future directions of research will be discussed.

 
The Generalization and Maintenance of Affective Perspective-Taking Skills of Children with Autism
DEBRA BERRY MALMBERG (Claremont Graduate University), Marjorie Charlop-Christy (Claremont McKenna College)
Abstract: The generalization and maintenance of skills is an important concern for treatment providers. This study focused on the generalization and maintenance of affective perspective-taking skills on a long-term basis. An Affective Perspective-Taking (APT) task was designed to teach children to take the perspective of another person in an emotional situation. This training package used multiple exemplar training in a match-to-sample format. The APT training was an effective protocol for teaching these skills to children with autism (IOA = 100%; Procedural integrity = 99%). Children generalized skills to additional people and across settings. Skills maintained at high frequencies at post-treatment follow-up. These results have implications for the design of social skills intervention packages to promote generalization and maintenance of these important social behaviors.
 
Increasing Coordinated Joint Attention in Children with Autism Using Naturalistic Teaching Strategies (NaTS)
KATHERINE K. BYRD (Claremont Graduate University), H. Michael Carpenter (Claremont Graduate University), Marjorie H. Charlop-Christy (Claremont McKenna College)
Abstract: Children with autism display social/communication difficulties in the form of deficits in joint attentional skills. In this study, a multiple baseline design across participants was used to examine the acquisition of coordinated joint attention skills in three children with autism using Naturalistic Teaching Strategies (NaTS). In addition, the study examined the relationship between nonverbal social/communication development and speech. It was hypothesized that children would show an increase in coordinated joint attention and speech after treatment and that this effect would generalize across persons, settings, and stimuli. Coordinated joint attention was defined as a child looking at a person, shifting gaze at a desired item, and then returning gaze to the person within 10 seconds of the presentation of the stimulus. The average interobserver agreement across the target behavior for each child was between 85% and 89%. Results indicated that all three children met learning criterion for the acquisition of coordinated joint attention and showed generalization. Ancillary data demonstrated that after treatment all children showed increases in speech and verbalizations as compared with baseline levels. Ancillary gains were also associated with a shift from supported joint attention behavior to more complex coordinated joint attention behavior for all children.
 
The Effects of Naturalistic Teaching Strategies (NaTS) on Acquisition of Gestures and Subsequent Increases in Speech in Children with Autism
KARI BERQUIST (Claremont Graduate University), H. Michael Carpenter (Claremont Graduate University), Marjorie H. Charlop-Christy (Claremont McKenna College)
Abstract: This study examined the acquisition of gestures and its effect upon later subsequent speech development in three children with autism. Children were taught instrumental gesturing (pointing and tapping) to request desired items, thus promoting overt functional communication. Naturalistic Teaching Strategies (NaTS) were used to increase children’s motivation for learning, maintaining and generalizing gestures. It was hypothesized that children with autism would show increases in the use of gestures after treatment was implemented and a subsequent increase in speech development after the nonverbal behavior was taught. A multiple baseline design across participants was used. Interobserver agreement was between 81% and 91% for each child. Results demonstrated that all three children met criterion for the target behavior; however, generalization and maintenance varied with each child. In addition, ancillary gains in spontaneous speech were observed in two of the three children.
 
 
Invited Paper Session #245
CE Offered: BACB

How Does Stimulus Control Develop with Automatic Reinforcement?

Sunday, May 29, 2005
3:30 PM–4:20 PM
Stevens 3 (Lower Level)
Area: VRB; Domain: Theory
CE Instructor: Mark L. Sundberg, Ph.D.
Chair: Robert G. Vreeland (Behavior Analysis & Intervention Services)
MARK L. SUNDBERG (Behavior Analysts, Inc.)
Mark L. Sundberg received his doctorate degree in Applied Behavior Analysis from Western Michigan University (1980), under the direction of Dr. Jack Michael. Dr. Sundberg is a Licensed Psychologist and Board Certified Behavior Analyst who has been conducting language research with children with autism for over 30 years. He is the founder and past editor of the journal The Analysis of Verbal Behavior, and is the co-author (with James W. Partington) of the books Teaching Language to Children with Autism or Other Developmental Disabilities, The Assessment of Basic Language and Learning Skills: The ABLLS, and (with Jack Michael) A Collection of Reprints on Verbal Behavior. He has published over 40 professional papers, given over 350 conference presentations and workshops, and taught over 70 college courses on behavior analysis, verbal behavior, sign language, and child development. Dr. Sundberg received the 2001 “Distinguished Psychology Department Alumnus Award” from Western Michigan University.
Abstract:

Behavior that is automatically reinforced must come under some type of stimulus control. However, the development of stimulus control is not discussed much by Skinner (1957), or by others who have since written about automatic reinforcement. The current presentation will briefly describe the concept of automatic reinforcement, its applications, and then suggest how stimulus control develops when behavior is automatically reinforced. The analysis may help to explain behavior such as delayed echolalia, self-stimulation, and verbal perseverations. In addition, techniques to evoke desirable behavior (e.g., infant babbling) related to a history of automatic reinforcement will be presented.

 
 
Symposium #246
CE Offered: BACB
Int'l Symposium - Implementing Quality Assurance In An Organization Providing Home-Based Early Intensive Behavior Intervention
Sunday, May 29, 2005
3:30 PM–4:20 PM
Continental B (1st floor)
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Joel P. Hundert (Behaviour Institute)
CE Instructor: Joel P. Hundert, Ph.D.
Abstract:

One of the challenges in providing home-based early intensive behavior intervention (EIBI) is to put into place mechanisms to ensure the quality of the services. This is particularly challenging in home-based services where staff and the children are not physically in a center. This symposium will present a series of papers describing quality assurance mechanism in an agency delivering early intensive behavior intervention for young children with autism in their homes. Each of the presenters will describe an aspect of quality assurance, discuss evidence of its impact, how it is used and case examples to illustrate its use

 
A System of Evaluation and Feedback on Therapist’s Skills in Implementing EIBI
NICOLE WALTON-ALLEN (Behaviour Institute)
Abstract: The continued skill development of therapists working with young children with autism in EIBI programs requires a system monitoring their skills and providing corrective feedback. This paper will present a system that consists of observing a therapist’s performance either in live situation or on videotape. The system consists of rating the correctness of components of EIBI trial by trial. The results are summarized into a percent score and feedback is given to the individual therapists. A description of how staff feedback is provided and its use in staff compensation and promotion will be described
 
System To Assess Skill Level of Children With Autism And Select Instructional Targets
MIRANDA SIM (Behaviour Institute)
Abstract: Typically, the day-to-day data of a child’s progress in a EIBI program is kept at the child’s home where therapy is being provided. This presents a challenge of how to monitor the child’s progress when it is difficult to get direct access to the child’s data. A system will be described of summarizing the data by tracking the number of data points (typically results of a set of 10 items). The presentation will illustrate the use of this data summary to make decisions about the child’s progress and identify performance problems in particular programs. Results on the reliability of this data summary systems and its use within an organization will be discussed.
 
System To Assess Skill Level Of Children With Autism And Select Instructional Targets
DONNA C. CHANEY (Behaviour Institute)
Abstract: No matter how well therapists are implementing EIBI programs, significant gains in a child’s development are unlikely to occur unless those programs are targeting relevant areas for development for the child. This paper will describe three tools used to select appropriate instructional targets initially when the child first begins service and also to select targets as the child progresses over time. These tools are: a) a system to probe a child initially against curriculum; b) a system to visually monitor programs the child has mastered, is currently receiving, waiting to use as well as adjustment of long-term goals; and, c) a tool to periodically assess a child against key areas of a curriculum.
 

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