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.


45th Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2019

Program by Invited Tutorials: Monday, May 27, 2019


Invited Tutorial #455
Best Practices in Treating Repetitive Behavior: From Stereotypy to Social Skills
Monday, May 27, 2019
10:00 AM–11:50 AM
Hyatt Regency East, Ballroom Level, Grand Ballroom EF
Area: PRA; Domain: Service Delivery
PSY/BACB/NASP CE Offered. CE Instructor: William Ahearn, Ph.D.
Chair: Cynthia M. Anderson (May Institute)
Presenting Authors: : WILLIAM AHEARN (New England Center for Children)

This tutorial will describe the best practices for treating automatically-reinforced repetitive behavior. Intensive behavior analytic intervention for children diagnosed with autism can produce large gains in social, cognitive, and language development. One critical area to address is repetitive behavior such as stereotypy. Some applied research on evaluating and treating stereotypic behavior will be reviewed with a focus on effective interventions for building core adaptive living and social skills, in addition to procedures for treating stereotypic behavior directly. Treatment strategies discussed will include Response Interruption and Redirection (RIRD; noted by The National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorder as one of 34 “best practice focused interventions”). A variety of redirection strategies that are contextually relevant in situations in which stereotypic behavior is interfering will be discussed. Additionally, verbal operant training and training social behavior in situations where stereotypy is problematic will be reviewed.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Target Audience:

ABA practitioners.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) describe the function of stereotypic behavior; (2) describe a variety of Response Interruption and Redirection (RIRD) procedures; (3) describe when RIRD procedures are NOT necessary; (4) describe procedures for supporting contextually appropriate behavior in situations in which stereotypy is problematic.
WILLIAM AHEARN (New England Center for Children)

William H. Ahearn, Ph.D., BCBA-D, LABA joined The New England Center for Children in August 1996, and serves as the Director of Research. He is also Adjunct Faculty in Western New England University's masters and doctoral programs and the UMass Medical School Department of Psychiatry. Bill was named the 2009 American Psychological Association - Division 25 awardee for Enduring Contributions to Applied Behavioral Research. His work has been published in the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, Behavioral Interventions, Behavior Modification, The Lancet, Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders and has written book chapters on teaching children with autism, pediatric feeding problems in children with autism, and the certification and licensure of behavior analysts. Bill is currently the Editor-in-Chief of Behavioral Interventions and serves on several Editorial Boards. He has also been a federally-funded researcher in collaboration with Bill Dube, Bill McIlvane, Tony Nevin, and others. Bill is a past-President of APBA and BABAT and serves as the chair of the board that licenses behavior analysts in MA being appointed by both a Democratic and Republican Governor.

Invited Tutorial #524
A Practitioner's Guide to Mitigating Treatment Relapse
Monday, May 27, 2019
3:00 PM–3:50 PM
Hyatt Regency East, Ballroom Level, Grand Ballroom EF
Area: PRA; Domain: Service Delivery
BACB/PSY/QABA CE Offered. CE Instructor: Wayne Fisher, Ph.D.
Chair: David Bicard (Great Leaps Learning Center)
Presenting Authors: : WAYNE FISHER (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center)

Treatment relapse is a common problem after destructive behavior has been successfully treated using differential reinforcement procedures, such as functional communication training (FCT). Three forms of treatment relapse are resurgence, renewal, and reinstatement. These forms of treatment relapse are much more common that previously thought. For example, a recent prevalence study from our research lab showed that resurgence of problem behavior occurred in 75% of cases during reinforcer schedule thinning with FCT. Researcher have identified a number of specific procedures that practitioners can incorporate into FCT treatment packages that can mitigate, and in some cases prevent, resurgence and other forms of treatment relapse. In this presentation, I will discuss translational research on treatment relapse and describe specific and practical treatment procedures that practitioners can readily integrate into their practice.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Target Audience:

Board certified behavior analysts; licensed psychologists; graduate students.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) define the three major forms of treatment relapse at the completion of this presentation; (2) describe the treatment procedure that reduces two of the three major forms of treatment relapse.
WAYNE FISHER (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center)
Wayne Fisher is the H.B. Munroe professor of behavioral research in the Munroe-Meyer Institute and the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. He is also the director of the Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders at the Munroe-Meyer Institute, a board certified behavior analyst at the doctoral level (BCBA-D), and a licensed psychologist. He was previously a professor of psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and served as executive director of the Neurobehavioral Programs at the Kennedy Krieger Institute and the Marcus Behavior Center at the Marcus Institute, where he built clinical-research programs in autism and developmental disabilities with international reputations for excellence. Fisher’s methodologically sophisticated research has focused on several intersecting lines, including preference, choice, and the assessment and treatment of autism and severe behavior disorders, that have been notable for the creative use of concurrent schedules of reinforcement, which have become more commonplace in clinical research primarily as a result of his influence. He has published over 180 peer-reviewed papers in over 30 different behavioral and/or medical journals, including: the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis; Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior; American Journal on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities; Pediatrics; and The Lancet. Fisher has had near-continuous federal grant support for his research for 19 years.  He is a past editor of the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, a past president of the Society for the Experimental Analysis of Behavior (SEAB), a fellow in the Association for Behavior Analysis International, and recipient of (a) the Bush Leadership Award; (b) the APA (Division 25) Award for Outstanding Contributions to Applied Behavioral Research; (c) the UNMC Distinguished Scientist Award; (d) the University of Nebraska system-wide Award for Outstanding Research and Creativity Activity; and (e) the SEAB, Don Hake Translational Research Award from APA (Division 25).



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