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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36th Annual Convention; San Antonio, TX; 2010

Program by Continuing Education Events: Monday, May 31, 2010


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Symposium #348
CE Offered: BACB
Extreme Makeover: The Sustained Outplacement of a Chronically Institutionalized Individual—What Is Making It Work?
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
206AB (CC)
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Deena Holmes (ASAP-Autism and Support Programs)
Discussant: Catherine A. Demis Gill (Behavioral Consulting, Inc.)
CE Instructor: Catherine Demis Gill, M.A.
Abstract: This presentation will focus on the necessary components in providing effective treatment in a community based setting for individuals who have been previously institutionalized. This clinical case study will provide an overview of a nineteen year old man diagnosed with autism who has been institutionalized since the age of ten due to severe and chronic self-injury. Safety had only previously been maintained by the use of habituated mechanical restraint which greatly limits his range of motion and hence his ability to engage in meaningful activities. Procedures that have effectively lowered maladaptive behaviors combine a number of interventions including functional communication training, DRO and limiting use of physical restraint while fading the highly desired and sought after mechanical restraint. In addition, components affecting successful treatment in group home settings will be discussed. These will include values, philosophy, treatment fidelity, coordination of services and durability of trouble shooting. Data indicate a decrease of self-injurious behavior with a simultaneous increase of time free of mechanical restraint. The development of reinforcement assessment methods and rationale for the use of that method may reduce future use of mechanical restraints will aslo be presented. Additional data will be collected and presented.
 
A Mother's Eye: A Review of the Social Validity of Programming Across the Years
JUDY CLARK (ASAP-Autism and Support Programs), Catherine A. Demis Gill (Behavioral Consulting, Inc.), Ruth M. Hurst (University of North Carolina, Wilmington)
Abstract: This presentation is important because the social validation of programs used by behavior analysts is rarely formally assessed. The parent will provide an overview of her reactions to the types of programs that have been used over the years for a nineteen year old young man with mental retardation and autism who engages in severe self injurious behavior and aggression. This discussion will encompass programs used during and after institutional placement. The parent’s perspective on behavioral program content and effectiveness will be discussed in light of family values and long term goals for the client. There will be a particular emphasis on the severity of the problem behaviors emitted by the young man and the high degree of restrictiveness (continual mechanical restraint) of programming procedures that he has undergone over the last eight years. The effects of this client’s behavior and programs on the emotional health and wellbeing of the client’s family will be shared. The parent will provide summary statements about the degree of social validity perceived to be present in his behavioral programming over the course of treatment.
 
A Behavioral Package for a Recently Deinstitutionalized Man With Autism for the Treatment of Self-Injurious Behavior
CATHERINE A. DEMIS GILL (Behavioral Consulting, Inc.), Ruth M. Hurst (University of North Carolina, Wilmington), Deena Holmes (ASAP-Autism and Support Programs), Chris Mitchell (ASAP-Autism and Support Programs), Emily L. Baxter (University of North Carolina, Wilmington), Janeal Guy (ASAP-Autism and Support Programs)
Abstract: This clinical case study will provide an overview of a 19-year-old man diagnosed with autism who was institutionalized between ages 10 and 18 due to severe, chronic self-injury and who now requires continual mechanical restraint for protection from self-injurious behavior (SIB). The focus of this presentation will be on behavioral programming since deinstitutionalization. The use of restraint was begun at the institution following an episode of high rate SIB which resulted in severe and multiple hematomas to the face and head. Following this episode, safety began to be maintained by the continual use of mechanical restraint which not only limited his range of motion but also limited his ability to engage in meaningful activities. Further, less severe forms of SIB continued to occur even when restrained. The restraint became a highly valued and sought after stimulus and remains so. In the client’s new setting, continual restraint persists. However, a combination of functional communication training, schedules, schedules of reinforcement for appropriate behavior and DRO have effectively lowered the rate of self-injurious behavior, and these data will be presented. Data to be collected will demonstrate the continued effects of this behavioral package and modifications to it, including possible fading of restraint.
 
Restraint Versus Reese’s: Strengthening Reinforcer Assessment by Assessing response strength
EMILY L. BAXTER (University of North Carolina, Wilmington), Ruth M. Hurst (University of North Carolina, Wilmington)
Abstract: This talk will provide the rationale for development of a new reinforcer assessment method and its relevance to a 19-year-old deinstitutionalized male with mental retardation and autism who engages in self injurious behavior (SIB) managed with constantly worn mechanical restraint. The development of this assessment may be particularly important in general and helpful in this case where there is a long standing history of severe SIB accompanied by an apparent high preference for restraint and a historic use of restraint contingent on SIB. The assessment is being designed so that it will include procedures compatible with those used in the assessment of behavioral momentum. This will include assessing reinforcer preference and choice under schedules of reinforcement as well as behavioral strength under behavioral challenges such as extinction and satiation. The proposed assessment methods will be presented and discussed with special attention to how they may be implemented and useful in cases such as the one described above. Hypothetical outcomes will also be discussed along with how they might influence programming decisions that could lead to a reduction in restraint use.
 
 
Symposium #349
CE Offered: BACB
Increasing Social Performance of Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders via Randomized Clinical Trials and Manualized Protocols
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
204AB (CC)
Area: AUT/DDA; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Stephen R. Anderson (Summit Educational Resources)
CE Instructor: Dana Reinecke, Ph.D.
Abstract: There is a significant need for comprehensive social interventions for children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), yet highly-controlled studies are scarce. Recent reviews of social treatment studies have identified a number of weaknesses including small samples and lack of random assignment, control groups, treatment manuals, and fidelity measures. A NIMH working group proposed a four-phase model to serve as a guide for conducting psychosocial intervention research. The four phases progress from development and systematic testing of new techniques, to manualized protocols, to randomized clinical trials, and finally community-based effectiveness studies. Following this four phase model, researcher from Summit Educational Resources, Canisius College and the University at Buffalo have developed and tested manualized protocols designed to increase social performance of children with ASDs. The research team has conducted four studies including (1) two RCTs of a manualized summer socialization program for children with HFASDs (RCT and replication RCT), (2) a RCT of a manualized social skills curriculum for more severely impaired center-based children with autism, (3) a pilot study teaching emotion recognition(ER) to children with HFASDs, and (4) a RCT of the manualized summer socialization program with ER instruction. This symposium will report outcomes for these studies.
 
Randomized Clinical Trials of a Manualized Social Treatment for High-Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorders
Christopher Lopata (Institute for Autism Research at Canisius College), MARCUS LUCAS THOMEER (Institute for Autism Research at Canisius College), Martin Volker (University at Buffalo), Jennifer Toomey (Summit Educational Resources)
Abstract: Two randomized clinical trials (RCTs) examined the efficacy of a manualized social intervention for children with high-functioning autism spectrum disorders (HFASD). Each RCT included 36 children ages 7-12 diagnosed with a HFASD. Participants were randomly assigned to the treatment or wait-list control condition. Treatment included intensive instruction and therapeutic activities targeting social skills, face-emotion recognition, interest expansion, and interpretation of non-literal language. A response-cost behavioral program was applied to reduce problem behaviors and foster acquisition and maintenance of social skills. Pre-post efficacy measures were administered; results of the repeated measures ANOVAs/ANCOVAs for the initial RCT indicated significant treatment gains for 14 of the 17 outcome measures. These findings were replicated in the replication RCT. Standardized effect size estimates in both RCTs were generally medium to large for the treatment groups. Both studies reported high parent, child, and staff satisfaction and treatment fidelity was > 94%. Results of the initial and replication RCTs strongly supported the validity of the intervention for improving social functioning of children with HFASDs.
 
Evaluation of a Manualized Social Skills Curriculum for 72 Center-Based Children With Autism and Related Disorders
Marcus Lucas Thomeer (Institute for Autism Research at Canisius College), JENNIFER TOOMEY (Summit Educational Resources), Rebekah Lindamer (Summit Educational Resources), Christopher Lopata (Institute for Autism Research at Canisius College), Stephen R. Anderson (Summit Educational Resources), Christin A. Crossman (Summit Educational Resources), Martin Volker (University at Buffalo)
Abstract: This study evaluated a manualized social skills curriculum (MSSC) for 72 lower-functioning children, ages 5-12 years, with autism and related disorders. Implementation of treatment was staggered across three 6-month intervals allowing for waitlist controls in the first two 6-month intervals. Treatment consisted of daily direct instruction in two of six skill sets followed by three 10-15 minute sessions conducted during the school day which allowed each student to practice skill(s) taught. Children in the waitlist conditions received social intervention as it was typically offered in their school programming (i.e., “business as usual”). Stratified random cluster sampling was used to assign classrooms. Teacher and parent ratings were collected prior to and at the end of each treatment interval. All ratings were analyzed using repeated measures ANOVAs. Direct observations of participants in both structured and unstructured settings were collected at predetermined points throughout the study. Findings and implications for research and practice will be discussed.
 
Pilot Evaluation of a Manualized Protocol to Teach Emotion Recognition in Children With High-Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorders
Marcus Lucas Thomeer (Institute for Autism Research at Canisius College), Jonathan D. Rodgers (University at Buffalo), CHRISTIN A. CROSSMAN (Summit Educational Resources), Jennifer Toomey (Summit Educational Resources), Christopher Lopata (Institute for Autism Research at Canisius College), Martin Volker (University at Buffalo), Rebekah Lindamer (Summit Educational Resources)
Abstract: Impairment in social communication is a central characteristic of high-functioning children with autism spectrum disorders including deficits in recognizing basic and complex emotions in facial expressions, disorganized scanning of faces, and reduced attention to core facial features. While research is limited, attempts to increase emotion recognition of children with high-functioning autism spectrum disorders (HFASD) using traditional instructional techniques have produced mixed results. Computer-based interventions have been proposed as a way to increase emotion recognition. This pilot study evaluated a manualized administration of Mind Reading (MR) for its effect on emotion recognition and social behaviors of 11 children with HFASDs, as well as its overall feasibility. Following 12 sessions of MR over 7 weeks, emotion recognition and display skills were rated significantly higher than pretest. Significant reductions were also found on ratings of problem social behaviors (i.e., autism-associated symptoms) on a standardized rating scale. Assessment of feasibility (i.e., fidelity and satisfaction) indicated high levels of treatment fidelity and high levels of parent and child satisfaction. Effect size estimates were medium to large for scales on which significant changes were observed. Implications for future studies are proposed.
 
Randomized Clinical Trial Teaching Emotion Recognition to Children With High-Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorders in a Manualized Summer Program
Christopher Lopata (Institute for Autism Research at Canisius College), Marcus Lucas Thomeer (Institute for Autism Research at Canisius College), JONATHAN D. RODGERS (University at Buffalo), Christin A. Crossman (Summit Educational Resources), Rachael Smith (University at Buffalo), Gaetano Gullo (University at Buffalo), Jennifer Toomey (Summit Educational Resources), Martin Volker (University at Buffalo)
Abstract: One technique for teaching decoding skills and emotion recognition is the mind reading (MR) interactive software program. Two recently conducted uncontrolled studies found MR produced significant increases in decoding of facial and vocal emotions for children with high-functioning autism spectrum disorders (HFASD). This current RCT included 24 children ages 7-12 with a HFASD. Participants were randomly assigned to the treatment (MR + Manualized Summer Program) or control condition (Manualized Summer Program Only). All participants were participating in a manualized five-week summer social development program that included intensive instruction and therapeutic activities targeting three core areas: social skills, interest expansion, and interpretation of non-literal language. Additionally all children’s prosocial and inappropriate social behaviors were monitored via a response cost system. Children in the MR condition received 17 ½ hours of instruction using the MR program. Control children practiced previously learned social skills while the other children received MR instruction. Pre-post staff, parent and child data is being analyzed via repeated measures ANOVAs. Results of satisfaction ratings and treatment fidelity will also be reported. Results, implications, and limitations will be discussed.
 
 
Symposium #350
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
Functional Analyses and Treatment Analyses in School- and Home-Based Settings
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
203AB (CC)
Area: AUT/DDA; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Donald M. Stenhoff (BISTA Autism Center)
Discussant: Thomas S. Higbee (Utah State University)
CE Instructor: Frank Bird, M.Ed.
Abstract: When working with individuals in applied settings it is often necessary to conduct experimental analyses in the setting in which the behavior occurs. Natural settings for individuals may include home and school environments. Experimental analyses conducted in these settings may capture relevant antecedent or consequence stimuli affecting an individual’s behavior. This information is important as behavior analysts develop effective treatment plans for students or clients. Function-based interventions that are derived from experimental analyses are typically more effective than interventions that are based on other assessments. Thus, it is imperative that a function derived from experimental analyses is used to inform the behavior analyst’s treatment design. In this symposium, three studies will be presented that include individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities. Two of the studies were conducted in a school environment, and one of the studies was conducted in a home and clinical environment. The outcomes of the studies indicated that DNRA, DRA, and the use of a parent as an intervention agent were successful in changing the participants’ behaviors.
 
A Functional Analysis on the Aggressive and Destructive Behavior of a Boy With Autism in the Context of Parent Child Communication Patterns
MARIA F. WYNNE (STAR, Inc.), Douglas Moes (STAR, Inc.)
Abstract: Best practices and recent changes to entitlement services (i.e., Lanterman Act) require that parents actively participate in the assessment and intervention process when addressing the needs of children with autism who exhibit challenging behavior. These conditions necessitate effective parent and non-public agency collaboration. Within this collaboration, key components that are necessary to ensure resolution of severe problem behaviors are (1) the development of a technically sound and contextually relevant behavioral intervention plan, and (2) parent implementation of the behavior intervention plan within typical parent-child interactions. In this study, an alternating treatments design was utilized to evaluate the effects of parent implementation of a behavior intervention plan derived from a functional analysis conducted in both the home and in a clinical setting. Responsibility for implementation of the BIP was assumed by the parent using an active learner model that monitored fidelity of implementation over time. Results are discussed in terms of achieving meaningful improvements in the quality of parent-child interactions for this family.
 
Functional Analysis and Treatment of Self-Injury and Aggression in a Private Day School
CHRISTINA BAROSKY (ACCEL), Bryan J. Davey (ACCEL), Rebecca Renee Wiskirchen (ACCEL)
Abstract: This study addresses the efficacy of a comprehensive functional analysis and treatment of self-injury and aggression at a private day school. The descriptive assessment indicated that both self-injury and aggression were being maintained by positive reinforcement in the form of attention and negative reinforcement in the form of escape. Due to the severity of the self-injurious behavior, the decision was made to assess this behavior. Functional analysis results showed higher rates of self-injury during the escape condition. While the functional analysis did not specifically address aggression, data showed that aggression also occurred at a higher rate during the escape condition. Treatment was implemented across two therapists and two settings. The systematic use of functional communication training (FCT), 3-step prompting, and differential negative reinforcement of alternative behavior (DNRA) where selected based on the functional analysis outcome. Treatment analysis results indicated the treatment package reduced self-injury and aggression across both therapists and settings.
 
Functional Analysis of Inappropriate Behavior in a Classroom Setting During Preferred and Nonpreferred Activities
REBECCA RENEE WISKIRCHEN (ACCEL), Christina Barosky (ACCEL), Bryan J. Davey (ACCEL)
Abstract: The current study addresses results obtained from a classroom-based functional analysis of inappropriate behavior during preferred and non-preferred activities at a private special education school. Both functional analyses included an escape, attention, and free-play (control) condition. The initial functional analysis was conducted during a non-preferred activity (morning meeting). Combined inappropriates (aggression and elopement) were highest during the escape condition, indicating that combined inappropriates were negatively reinforced during a non-preferred activity. It was hypothesized that during a preferred activity, combined inappropriates would be highest during the attention condition. However, in the second functional analysis conducted during a preferred activity (Arts and Crafts/Play Time), inappropriate behavior was highest during the escape condition. Results from the functional analysis and direct assessment data were used to develop a treatment plan that included a differential negative reinforcement of alterative behaviors (DNRA) as well as differential reinforcement of alternative behaviors (DRA) using a token economy to increase intervals between play breaks. Treatment results were positive. Discussion points will include the analysis of the treatment package as well as the use of booster sessions prior to treatment sessions to train the token economy. Issues surrounding classroom based functional analyses will also be discussed.
 
 
Symposium #351
CE Offered: BACB
Using Video Modeling to Teach Children With Autism: Examining Procedural Variations
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
201 (CC)
Area: AUT/DDA; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Rebecca P. F. MacDonald (New England Center for Children)
Discussant: Jane S. Howard (California State University, Stanislaus)
CE Instructor: Dwight Harshbarger, Ph.D.
Abstract: Video modeling has been demonstrated to be an effective procedure to teach a variety of skills to individuals with autism. In this session we will describe studies demonstrating the use of video modeling to teach social skills. Over the years we have found that some children have difficulty learning using video instruction. We will present data from approximately 40 children with autism on a pre-assessment battery of skills that identifies the prerequisites necessary for learning using video instruction. We will present a study that examines rates of acquisition using commercial videos compared to teacher constructed videos to teach pretend play. We will examine the use of a generalization matrix model to construct pretend play scripts and present data recombinative play using video modeling. We will also discuss the implications for these procedural variations on the acquisition of play in children with autism
 
Prerequisite Skills for Learning Through Video Modeling: Role of Delayed Imitation and Delayed Matching
MEGHAN E. ROBINSON (New England Center for Children), Chata A. Dickson (New England Center for Children), Rebecca P. F. MacDonald (New England Center for Children), William H. Ahearn (The New England Center for Children)
Abstract: In the current study, over 40 preschool students diagnosed with autism were tested with 14 different assessments in order to determine if low performance on delayed match-to-sample (DMTS) and delayed imitation were correlated to low performance of a video modeling tasks. The fourteen assessments included video modeling and a variety of immediate and delayed discrimination tasks. Results showed three types of responders. Group one demonstrated mastery of all assessments including video modeling. Group two did not demonstrate immediate imitation, simultaneous matching or learning through video. Group three did not demonstrate DMTS, delayed imitation or learning through video. Initial findings showed a significant correlation between DMTS accuracy and video modeling performance (r=0.74, p<.01). That is, participants who performed better on the DMTS subtest, also tended to perform better on the video modeling performance subtests. Statistical analysis also revealed a correlation between delayed imitation performance on video modeling tasks.
 
A Comparison of Play Skill Acquisition Using Teacher-Created Video Models and Commercially Available Video Formats
GAIL D. PALECHKA (The Kolburne School), Rebecca P. F. MacDonald (New England Center for Children)
Abstract: The purpose of the current study was to compare the rate of acquisition of play skills following the viewing of an instructor-created video model to the rate of acquisition of play skills following the viewing of a corresponding commercially available children’s video. The study included three children with autism who received educational and clinical services in a preschool setting. Each participant was exposed to one video of each type and the number of actions and vocalizations was measured. Two participants learned more rapidly using the instructor-created video format and the third participant showed no difference in rate of acquisition. Additionally, probe data were taken to further examine the participants’ attending to video and toys across the two video formats. Participants were found to attend less to the video and more to the toys as they mastered the video modeling script.
 
Video Modeling and Matrix Training to Teach Pretend Play in Children With Autism
CORMAC MACMANUS (University of Ulster), Rebecca P. F. MacDonald (New England Center for Children)
Abstract: Video modeling has been shown to result in rapid acquisition of scripted pretend play however the emergence of play variations has been limited. The purpose of the present study is to combine video modeling and matrix training, a generative instruction approach to teaching where skills are taught and others emerge without direct training, in order to teach children with autism to engage in long sequences of play and to generalize and recombine the scripts across previously unlearned combinations of figurines and objects in related toy play sets. Results of the first participant showed that after training on two of three video modeling scripts, the participant was able to recombine learned vocals and actions across previously unlearned combinations of materials. Probes after training on a the third video modeling script resulted in further recombinations of learned vocals and actions, and the emergence of novel play that was unseen in baseline sessions.
 
 
Symposium #352
CE Offered: BACB
Sensory Integration: What Is the Emperor Wearing and Why Does Everybody Think He Looks Great?
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
202AB (CC)
Area: AUT/DDA; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Ann Filer (BEACON Services)
Discussant: David M. Corcoran (BEACON Services)
CE Instructor: James Boscoe, M.A.
Abstract: Despite and absence of empirical support for the etiology of sensory integration (SI) theory or evidence for the effectiveness of SI therapy, the practice of an SI approach is popular if not predominant in autism treatment. This widespread and often unquestioned acceptance of SI contrasts with the skeptical reception (if not outright rejection) of the educational community to applied behavior analysis based interventions. This symposium will examine SI from three perspectives. First a review of the research on SI will be conducted highlighting the lack of empirical support for the effectiveness of SI interventions will be conducted. The second presentation will focus on the common practices of SI treatment with a focus on procedural descriptions of treatments implemented and how the common SI practices often do not address basic standards of treatment. The final presentation will be a look at three studies involving SI treatments that were conducted with experimental controls in place.
 
Sensory Integration: What Does the Research Say, and Does It Matter?
JOSEPH M. VEDORA (BEACON Services), Robert K. Ross (BEACON Services)
Abstract: Among the most commonly implemented interventions for children with a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder are procedures purported to address “sensory issues”. These interventions are predicated on the hypothesized existence of a condition described as sensory integration dysfunction (Ayres, 1986). According to a review conducted by sensory integration advocates (Ayres sensory integration), “over 80 studies have been published on evidence in the effectiveness of sensory integration methods sensory integration, many have methodological flaws. Most do not report fidelity and those that do have minimally adhered to the fidelity principles that define Ayres Sensory Integration”. The fact that a large number of studies have been conducted and that the evidence in support of sensory integration (SI) procedures is still missing has been largely ignored. Proponents of SI as well as the administrators of educational settings where SI interventions are typically implemented do not appear to view this absence of support as problematic. This presentation will review some potential reasons for this reality and its implications for the acceptance of applied behavior analysis based treatments.
 
Implementation Practices in Sensory Integration Treatment: What Are the Standards?
KIM KLEMEK (BEACON Services), Robert K. Ross (BEACON Services)
Abstract: Many students diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are also often described as having “sensory processing dysfunction” or “sensory Integration issues”. As a result many of these children receive recommendations for sensory integration (SI) therapy. The current presentation is an empirical review of the methods of identifying SI issues, treatment recommendations, and procedures to implement SI interventions in a sample of over 50 children with ASD. A review of the treatment records of these individuals indicated that over 40% have been identified as having SI issues. The data on how SI issues were identified (formal assessment protocols versus informal methods) will be presented. Additionally, data on the specific treatment recommendations will be reviewed. This review will consider the presence or absence of specified treatment goals and defined treatment procedures, and whether or not baseline levels of the behaviors in question were established. These data clearly indicate that basic treatment standards are typically not met for the individuals receiving these forms of treatment in the records reviewed in this sample. Recommendations for minimum requirements of SI procedures will be described.
 
Implementation of Sensory Integration Procedures: Outcome Data
DAVID ROBERT DILLEY (BEACON Services)
Abstract: Despite the fact that many students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are treated with interventions for hypothesized “sensory integration” (SI) issues. The effectiveness of protocols implemented to address these conditions remain largely unsubstantiated. Unlike other unsupported treatments for children with autism such as Secretin injections, facilitated communication, etc., SI Therapies enjoy unprecedented acceptance in early childhood educational settings. A recent review of 50 randomly chosen individualized education programs (IEP) of children with ASD receiving applied behavior analytic services found that over 40% had sensory issues identified and or SI goals included in the IEP. The current presentation is a review of the outcomes of four research projects where SI treatments were recommended by certified occupational therapists. These data indicate that the SI treatments had little to no effect on the target behavior. A discussion of why SI treatments continue to be widely accepted despite the absence of efficacy data and what applied behavior analysis practitioners can do to highlight the cost in resources to implement such treatments.
 
 
Invited Symposium #355
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
A Range of Disciplines, a Range of Evidence, and Can We Nurture Our Enviroment Through Behavioral Science
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
103AB (CC)
Area: CSE/OBM; Domain: Theory
Chair: Michael Weinberg (Orlando Behavior Health Services, LLC)
Discussant: Michael Weinberg (Orlando Behavior Health Services, LLC)
CE Instructor: Patrick McGreevy, Ph.D.
Abstract: This is an 80-minute symposiusm for a group of two separate invited events.
 
A Range of Disciplines, a Range of Evidence: Behavioral Practices in Multiple Disciplines
PHILIP N. CHASE (Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies)
Abstract: Many opportunities are afforded behaviorists today because people respond positively to our science. Managers and workers recognize the importance of behavioral safety. Parents, pediatricians, and teachers opt for behavioral treatment plans for people with autism and developmental disabilities. Zoos and pet owners hire behaviorists to solve problems related to human interaction with other animals. But as Neuringer (1991) warned, we need to be humble about what we know and do not know, and part of this humility involves being as skeptical of our own work as we are of others (Chase, 1991). Behaviorists’ skepticism comes naturally from our research traditions: we are skeptical of practices that are not evidence-based. But evidence is not sufficient, we need to collect evidence on outcomes the culture values. After all, behaviorists are pragmatists, seeking practices that work successfully. This pragmatism extends to the kinds of evidence we collect, and if our evidence is not valued by the culture, the practices they support will not survive. Because the evidence that is valued varies from discipline to discipline (e.g., what works in autism may not work in health), we need to prepare ourselves with the tools of evidence used by the variety of disciplines we hope to influence. The integration of these tools is critical to our success in the world at large.
Dr. Chase has a Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Massachusetts -Amherst, where he studied with Beth Sulzer-Azaroff, and John Donahoe, and was influenced by a host of UMASS behavior analysts. He has conducted research on the basic environmental processes that facilitate problem solving and conceptual behavior. He has applied behavioral findings to the design of curricula for learning mathematics and other problem-solving repertoires. He has served as an editor, associate editor, and reviewer for many journals, including a three-year stint as Editor of The Behavior Analyst. He has co-organized a number of international scientific conferences, and reviewed grants for four US federal agencies. Dr. Chase received a Fulbright Scholarship to study rule governance in Italy and a Benedum Distinguished Scholar Award from West Virginia University. He is currently employed as the Executive Director of the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies.
 
Nurturing Environments: A Framework for Comprehensive Cultural Change
ANTHONY BIGLAN (Oregon Research Institute)
Abstract: Epidemiological and prevention research has helped to pinpoint a small number of basic conditions that are essential in ensuring young people’s successful development and preventing diverse psychological and behavioral problems. It is useful to label these conditions "nurturing environments," both for the purpose of further research and in enhancing efforts to improve human wellbeing. Nurturing environments (a) minimize toxic biological and psychological conditions, (b) richly reinforce prosocial behavior, (c) teach and promote prosocial skills and values, (d) limit prompts and opportunities for problem behavior, and (e) promote psychological flexibility. I will briefly review the prevention and epidemiological research that supports these assertions. The analysis will provide a framework for focusing further behavioral science research on increasing the prevalence of nurturing family, school, workplace, and neighborhood environments. I will describe how a concerted public health effort can achieve this type of cultural evolution. I will use the Promise Neighborhood Consortium as an example. The goal of this recently funded consortium is to assist the nation’s high-poverty communities in establishing effective prevention practices.
Dr. Biglan has conducted numerous experimental evaluations of interventions to prevent tobacco use both through school-based programs and community-wide interventions. He has also done experimental evaluations of school- and family-focused interventions to prevent aggressive social behavior and reading failure, as well as clinical interventions to prevent high-risk sexual behavior. During the 2000-2001 school year, Dr. Biglan led a team of scholars in a review of current knowledge about the development and prevention of multiple problem behaviors of adolescence (Biglan, Brennan, Foster, & Holder, 2004). He is the author of the 1995 book, Changing Cultural Practices: A contextualist framework for intervention research, published by Context Press. His current work focuses on fostering the beneficial evolution of societal practices using behavioral science knowledge.
 
 
Symposium #356
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
Advances in Precursor Analyses to Identify the Operant Functions of Behavior Disorders
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
217A (CC)
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Richard G. Smith (University of North Texas)
Discussant: Brian A. Iwata (University of Florida)
CE Instructor: Carin Thompson, M.Ed.
Abstract: A recent extension of functional analysis methodology is precursor assessment (e.g., Smith & Churchill, 2002), in which the operant function of severe behavior disorders is inferred based on the outcomes of a functional analysis of milder forms of behavior that are observed to occur just prior to the severe behavior. The papers in this symposium address issues related to the identification of precursor behaviors, the relationship between precursor and more severe behavior, and the utility of clinic-based precursor assessment for developing treatments that can be implemented and evaluated in natural environments.
 
Formal and Functional Characteristics of Precursors to Problem Behavior
TARA A. FAHMIE (University of Florida), Brian A. Iwata (University of Florida)
Abstract: Several studies have examined the relation between precursor and problem behavior in the context of assessment and treatment. Research has shown that precursor and more severe problem behaviors often are members of the same response class (e.g., Smith & Churchill, 2002) and that precursor responses may be substituted for high-risk severe behaviors in a functional analysis. The purpose of this study was to examine the relation between precursor and severe problem behavior along two dimensions: response topography and response function. Theoretical and practical implications, along with potential areas of future research, will be discussed.
 
Evaluation of Precursor Selection Methods During Structured Assessment
JENNIFER N. FRITZ (University of Houston-Clear Lake), Carly Compagnari (University of Houston-Clear Lake), Daniel LeSage (University of Houston-Clear Lake)
Abstract: Previous studies have shown that severe problem behavior often is preceded by relatively milder forms of behavior, and these “precursors” are often part of the same response class as the more severe behaviors. Precursors have been identified through descriptive analyses (DA), but this typically requires numerous occurrences of severe problem behavior before the response-response relationship is determined. Furthermore, initial descriptions and definitions of precursors assessed in DAs have largely relied on caregiver report or informal observation. Only one study to date has empirically identified precursors using a trial-based assessment. The trial-based assessment was able to accurately identify precursors that were in the same response class as the more severe problem behavior, as shown in subsequent functional analyses (FA), while minimizing risks posed by the severe behaviors. One limitation of that study, however, was that not all precursors initially identified during the trial-based assessment were observed during the subsequent FA. Therefore, the purpose of the current study was to evaluate different data analysis methods in order to identify precursors likely to occur during the FA. To date, three individuals diagnosed with developmental disabilities have participated and the various methods have yielded different results. Additional data will be collected.
 
Progressing From Functional Analysis of Precursor Behavior to Treatment of Self-Injury
JOSEPH DRACOBLY (University of North Texas), Richard G. Smith (University of North Texas), Nathan Lyon (University of North Texas), Claire Anderson (University of North Texas), Christine Marie Mosso (University of North Texas)
Abstract: An evaluation of the utility of assessing and treating severe problem behavior through precursor functional analysis was completed. Previous research has suggested that the analysis of precursor behaviors may be an effective, albeit indirect method of assessing severe problem behavior. However, previous studies have not included ongoing measurement of the problem behavior in the natural environment, which permits a direct evaluation of the effectiveness of precursor-based interventions to treat problem behavior. In the current study, ongoing measurement of problem behavior in two settings in the participant’s natural environment was conducted for the duration of the study. A precursor to self-injurious behavior was identified using descriptive assessment and conditional probability analyses. An analogue precursor functional analysis was then conducted. Subsequently, a treatment in which precursor behavior produced the maintaining variable identified in precursor assessment was implemented in the natural environment. Treatment was implemented in one of the natural settings, resulting in increases in measures the precursor behavior and decreases in self-injury in both the treatment setting as well as the second setting in which observations occurred.
 
 
Symposium #357
CE Offered: BACB
Procedural Extensions of the Functional Analysis Methodology
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
217D (CC)
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Robert LaRue (Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey)
CE Instructor: Maranda Trahan, M.S.
Abstract: Functional analysis represents a state of the art model for the assessment of the function of problem behavior. These general procedures are considered to be best practice for the assessment of problem behavior and the development of function-based treatments. Since the publication of the seminal study by Iwata, Dorsey, Slifer, Bauman & Richman (1982/1994), these procedures have become more refined and applicable to novel applied issues. The current symposium reviews several different procedures extensions of the functional analysis literature. Presentations in the current symposium include modifications of traditional models of analysis to account for problem behavior that occurs outside of traditional settings, such as elopement and the assessment of problem behavior that occurs in the context of transitions. Another presentation will evaluate procedures for refining the session construction for demand conditions in functional analyses. Specifically the authors will provide a model for selecting items to use in the demand condition in functional analyses. The final presentation will evaluate data about the effects of functional analysis on out-of-session maladaptive behavior.
 
Effects of Functional Analysis on the Rates of Problem Behavior Outside the Functional Analysis Setting
KELLY MCKNIGHT (The Marcus Autism Center), Nathan A. Call (Marcus Autism Center), Addie Jane Findley (Louisiana State University)
Abstract: Functional analysis (FA) methodology typically involves the reinforcement of problem behavior on an FR 1 schedule (Iwata, Dorsey, Slifer, Bauman, & Richman, 1982/84). It has been suggested that one side effect of reinforcing problem behavior on such a dense schedule is a potential increase in problem behavior outside of the FA sessions (Carr, 1977). There are, however, few investigations that evaluate the effects of reinforcing problem behavior during a FA on problem behavior outside of the assessment setting. In the current study, we assessed the likelihood of generalization of problem behavior outside of the FA setting with 11 participants. Baseline data were collected outside the FA assessment prior to and during the FA and were evaluated in a multiple baseline design. Interobserver agreement was assessed during at least 20% of all sessions and always exceeded 80% agreement. Results suggested that increases in problem behavior outside of the FA context occurred only very rarely.
 
A Comparison of Methods for Assessing Demands as Potential Negative Reinforcers
NATALIE A. PARKS (Marcus Autism Center), Nathan A. Call (Marcus Autism Center), Robert S. Pabico (Center for Behavior Analysis and Language Developm)
Abstract: An extensive body of research exists on the methods for identifying highly preferred items and activities to be used as potential reinforcers for behavior maintained by positive reinforcement (DeLeon & Iwata, 1996; Hagopian, Long, & Rush, 2004; Piazza, Fisher, & Hagopian, 1996). One application of these methods is to identify potential positive reinforcers to include in functional analyses. However, identification of demands for inclusion in functional analyses is typically accomplished via caregiver report. Call, Pabico, & Lomas (2009) presented a method for identifying demands based on direct observations using the latency of onset to problem behavior for each demand as the dependent measure. Demands with shorter latencies to problem behavior were shown to be more likely to produce an escape function in functional analysis than demands with longer latencies. The current study used an alternative method to assess demands based on a concurrent operants design similar to the model used by Fisher et al. (1992) to identify preferred items. For 5 participants demands that were chosen rarely (i.e., “less preferred”) were more likely to result in the identification of an escape function when included in a functional analysis than more preferred demands. Results of the concurrent operants demand assessment were also compared directly to those of the latency-based demand assessment described by Call et al., with results showing a moderate correlation between results of the two methodologies. Finally, the relative clinical advantages and disadvantages (e.g., length of assessment, amount of problem behavior observed, etc.) of each method is discussed.
 
Assessment and Treatment of Elopement Utilizing a Trial-by-Trial Format
CHRIS A. TULLIS (Marcus Autism Center), Nathan A. Call (Marcus Autism Center), Robert S. Pabico (Center for Behavior Analysis and Language Developm)
Abstract: Previous research has demonstrated the effectiveness of functional analysis (FA) methodology for identifying the reinforcers that maintain elopement (Piazza, et al., 1997; Tarbox, Wallace, & Williams, 2003). One challenge of assessing the function of elopement is that, due to safety reasons, the individual must be retrieved, generally immediately, which can make it difficult to determine the effects of attention on elopement. Piazza et al. (1997) used a modified FA in a clinic setting that was arranged to allow elopement to occur without requiring immediate retrieval. However, in some cases the Piazza et al. methodology may be untenable because it may preclude the inclusion of certain highly preferred leisure activities that may function as positive reinforcers that maintain elopement, such as playing on playground equipment. In the current investigation a trial-by-trial FA was conducted in the natural environment that included access to a preferred leisure activity that could not be included in the clinic setting (i.e., an elevator) while still controlling for the delivery of attention. Results demonstrated that elopement was maintained by positive reinforcement in the form of access to preferred activities and treatments based on the assessment results successfully reduced elopement.
 
Assessment and Treatment of Problem Behavior Evoked by Transitions in Learners With Autism
JILL A. SZALONY (Douglass Developmental Disabilities Centers, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey), Robert LaRue (Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey), Kimberly Sloman (Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey), Mary Jane Weiss (Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey), Todd Frischmann (Rutgers University), Tina Rivera (Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey), Christopher Manente (Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey), James Maraventano (Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey)
Abstract: Transitions are defined as changes from one activity or setting to another (Archer & Hosley, 1969; Newman et al., 1995). Difficulties with transitions are common for individuals with pervasive developmental disorder (PDD). Several studies have documented that transitions frequently evoke problem behavior in this population. To date, relatively little research has evaluated assessment and treatment models designed to address problem behavior occasioned by transitions. This dearth in the literature is likely due to the fact that transitions involve complex relationships between activities and settings. Transitions have at least three different components that need to be accounted for during assessment: the interruption of the initial activity, the physical movement to another setting, and the start of a different activity. As problem behavior can be occasioned by any component of a transition, assessment procedures need to be developed to identify which components are problematic to design effective function-based treatments. The purpose of the current investigation is to evaluate a model for assessing the function of challenging behavior occurring in the context of transitions. After the assessment, the impact of function-based treatment based on the results, such as warnings, replacement skills (e.g., requesting additional time), behavioral momentum, video priming, and differential reinforcement, will be evaluated.
 
 
Symposium #358
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
Reducing Restraint: Some Practical Strategies for Children With Severe Challenging Behavior
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
217B (CC)
Area: DDA/EDC; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Jonathan Seaver (The New England Center for Children)
CE Instructor: Kathleen McCabe-Odri, Ed.D.
Abstract: Physical restrain is often used to safely manage dangerous aggressive and self-injurious behavior exhibited by some children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Although physical restraints may be effective in many cases, they are not without risk and are subject to abuse. Safely and effectively reducing or eliminating the use of physical restraints, however, can present considerable practical challenges. This symposium contains four papaers. One paper discusses the elimination of physical restrain through the use of an alternative intervention. The second paper discusses the gradual fading and elimination of physical restraints. The third paper discusses the reduction of the use of physical restraints through behavioral programming and medication. The final paper discuses the elimination of restraint through simply not doing it. Each paper discusses the considerations involved in each approach to eliminating or reducing physical restraints, as well as the risks and benefits. Case studies are used to illustrate successful implementation of each approach. Overall, these papers demonstrate that physical restraint can be safely reduced or eliminated even in cases involving difficult to treat dangerous behavior, but not without risks and costs.
 
Reducing Physical Restraint Through the Use of Alternative Interventions
JONATHAN SEAVER (The New England Center for Children)
Abstract: Physical restraint is often used as an intervention for children who engage in severe self-injury. Fading or eliminating physical restraint may be especially difficult in these cases as (a) physical restraint may function as a reinforcer for some children, (b) physical restraint may be a functional replacement for self-restraint, and (c) alternatives to physical restraint may expose the children to significant risks of injury from their own behavior. The use of equipment may reduce the self-injurious behavior and thereby reduce the frequency of physical restraint. In this paper, data on physical restraint and self-injury are presented from several cases involving the use of arm splints to reduce self-injury. Procedures for using the splints are reviewed and risks and benefits are discussed.
 
Reducing Physical Restraint Through Systematic Fading
KELLY L MCCONNELL (New England Center for Children), Leah L Bean (New England Center for Children), Paula Ribeiro Braga-Kenyon (New England Center for Children)
Abstract: Although physical restraint is used to safely manage aggressive and self-injurious behavior, even under the best circumstances physical restraint carries the risk of harming those it is used to protect. For this reason as well as others, the reduction or elimination of physical restraint is a common goal for schools and agencies using such measures. One method for reducing and eventually eliminating restraint is to systematically fade dimensions of the restraint. The intrusiveness of a physical restraint may be faded by reducing the form of restraint and/or the number of people implementing the restraint, as well as by reducing the duration of the restraint. In this paper, data from several cases on the systematic fading of restraint is reviewed. Procedures for determining how and when to fade are reviewed, and the risks and benefits of this procedure are discussed.
 
Reducing Physical Restraint Through Behavioral Programming and Medication
MAEVE G. MEANY (The New England Center for Children), Allen J. Karsina (The New England Center for Children)
Abstract: Severe aggressive and self-injurious behavior can result in life-long injuries, social isolation, reduced opportunities, and lower quality of life for the individuals who exhibit such behavior. When the use of applied behavior analytic techniques alone do not eliminate or significantly reduce dangerous behavior, the use of behavioral medication may be warranted, especially if physical restraints are necessary to protect the individual and/or his or her care-givers. In this paper, several cases in which behavioral programming and medications have been correlated with a significant decrease in dangerous behavior and physical restraint are presented. The risks and benefits of the use of medication are reviewed, and future directions for research are discussed.
 
Reducing Physical Restraint Through Simply Not Doing It: Risks and Benefits
SORREL RYAN (The New England Center for Children), Shawn E. Kenyon (New England Center for Children), Myrna E. Libby (New England Center for Children)
Abstract: Schools and agencies are faced with increasing pressure to reduce or eliminate the use of physical restraints to manage dangerous aggressive or self-injurious behavior. However, there is very little empirical guidance for how these schools and agencies should best proceed. In some cases, it may be that criteria for restraint is too conservative, resulting in unnecessary restraints. In these cases, the criteria can be adjusted so that implementation of restraint becomes rare or non-existent. In this paper, considerations for determining appropriate criteria for restraint are examined, and several such cases are presented. The risks and benefits of this procedure are discussed.
 
 
Symposium #359
CE Offered: BACB
Recent Research on Child Behavior Management
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
Travis A/B (Grand Hyatt)
Area: DEV/CBM; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: David A. Wilder (Florida Institute of Technology)
Discussant: Matthew P. Normand (University of the Pacific)
CE Instructor: Jennifer Austin, Ph.D.
Abstract: Three studies on recent advances in managing the behavior of young children will be presented. In the first study, a timeout procedure was evaluated to decrease problem behavior and increase compliance to the timeout demand in five preschool children. In the second study, advance notice was evaluated as a method of increasing compliance among three preschool children. Finally, in the third study, a human operant preparation was used to examine resurgence of problem behavior during treatment integrity failures and extinction. This was then examined in a young child with autism.
 
Evaluating a Timeout Procedure to Decrease Problem Behavior and Increase Compliance to the Timeout Demand
JEANNE DONALDSON (University of Florida), Timothy R. Vollmer (University of Florida), Theresa Marie Yakich (University of Florida), Carole M. Van Camp (University of North Carolina, Wilmington)
Abstract: Timeout is a commonly used intervention to decrease inappropriate behavior. Some children refuse to go to timeout when asked, making timeout more difficult for parents and teachers to implement. This study evaluated a timeout procedure designed to decrease inappropriate behavior during free time (either on the playground or at home) and increase compliance to the timeout demand. Participants were 5 typically developing preschool children between the ages of 4 and 5. A reversal combined with a multielement design was used to evaluate and compare the effectiveness of two timeout procedures. The timeout procedure designed to increase compliance to the timeout demand allowed the child to serve a 1 min timeout if he or she went to timeout within 10 s of being asked, but required the child to stay in timeout for 4 min if he or she did not comply within 10 s. The comparison timeout procedure required the child to stay in timeout for 4 min regardless of compliance. Both timeout procedures were effective at decreasing inappropriate behavior of the participants thus far, but the effects on compliance have been mixed.
 
An Evaluation of Advance Notice to Increase Compliance Among Preschoolers
JANELLE ALLISON (Florida Institute of Technology), David A. Wilder (Florida Institute of Technology), Katie A. Nicholson (Florida Institute of Technology)
Abstract: Advance notice of an upcoming instruction was evaluated to increase compliance among three 4- to 5-year-old children who exhibited noncompliance. The procedure was ineffective for all three participants and extinction was necessary to increase compliance. Problem behavior was most common in the advance notice condition for two of the three participants.
 
Resurgence of Problem Behavior During Treatment Integrity Failures and Extinction
TONYA M. MARSTELLER (West Virginia University), Claire St. Peter Pipkin (West Virginia University), Casey Kanala (West Virginia University)
Abstract: We conducted two experiments to assess the extent to which resurgence would occur when reinforcement of an alternative response was reduced or discontinued. First, we used a human operant preparation to compare response rates during baseline, differential reinforcement of alternative behavior, omission errors (some earned reinforcers for alternative behavior omitted), and extinction of both responses (as a traditional test for resurgence) with 5 participants. Resurgence of problem behavior occurred during extinction of the alternative response in all of the participants, and during omission errors of the alternative response with 4 of the participants. However, rates of problem behavior were higher during extinction than during omission errors in each of the 4 participants. The second study was a replication with a child diagnosed with autism, who engaged in problem behavior maintained by escape from adult attention. Resurgence of problem behavior occurred during extinction of the alternative response and during omission errors. The rate of responding was higher during extinction than omission errors. The results of both experiments suggest that resurgence occurs during extinction of an alternative response and during one type of treatment integrity failure (omission errors), but that the effect is more robust during extinction.
 
 
Symposium #360
CE Offered: BACB
The Sense and Nonsense of Implicit Testing in Behavior Analysis
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
Lone Star Ballroom Salon F (Grand Hyatt)
Area: EAB/VRB; Domain: Experimental Analysis
Chair: Bryan T. Roche (National University of Ireland, Maynooth)
CE Instructor: Linda LeBlanc, Ph.D.
Abstract: In recent years psychology has witnessed what has been described as an “unstoppable juggernaut” of research interest in a form of “implicit testing” known as the implicit association test (IAT). Researchers claim that the IAT can reveal unconscious processes, such as prejudice, and can serve as an indicator of behavioral probability. If these claims can be substantiated in laboratory research then the IAT represents one of the most useful psychological tools ever developed. However, while the advent of this test represents one of the most talked about developments in psychology’s recent history, little is known about how this test actually functions. Surprisingly, however, the test and functionally similar variants, are now being used by behavior analysts to assess behavioral history and probability in the absence of a satisfactory program of research into the test’s core processes. The current session presents a series of experiments designed to develop and test a behavior-analytic model of the IAT. The session will also illustrate the role of several procedural and data-analytic artifacts that contribute to the IAT test effect. Cautionary advice will be offered to researchers who employ implicit test methods in behavior analytic research.
 
Establishing and Eliminating Implicit Association Test Effects in the Laboratory: Extending a Behavioral Model of the IAT
BRYAN T. ROCHE (National University of Ireland, Maynooth), Iseult Ridgeway (National University of Ireland, Maynooth), Amanda Gavin (University of Tesside), Maria R. Ruiz (Rollins College)
Abstract: In previous research, Gavin, Roche & Ruiz (2008) demonstrated that implicit association test (IAT) effects can be modeled in the laboratory in the form of a test that establishes competing contingencies for derived relational responding. The current study replicates and extends this finding by firstly establishing a laboratory-controlled IAT effect using nonsense syllables as stimuli, and then eliminating that effect with a simple experimental intervention. Eleven subjects were exposed to an equivalence training procedure that led to the formation of two three-member equivalence relations each containing three nonsense syllables. Subjects were then exposed to a word-picture association training phase in which one member of each of the equivalence relations, printed in blue or red font, was paired with either plant or animal images, respectively. Subjects were then exposed to an IAT whose outcome was successfully controlled by the organization of the trained relations. Following a stimulus equivalence re-training procedure that reorganized the stimulus equivalence relations, the IAT effect was eliminated or reversed for five of the six subjects who showed reorganization of the equivalence class and the associated derived transfer of functions. These findings lend additional support to a behavior-analytic account of the IAT.
 
The Generalization of Implicit Association Test Practice Effects Across Semantic Categories: Testing a Key Prediction of a Behavioral Model of the IAT
ANTHONY O'REILLY (National University of Ireland, Maynooth), Claire Bedford (National University of Ireland, Maynooth), Bryan T. Roche (National University of Ireland, Maynooth), Maria R. Ruiz (Rollins College)
Abstract: The current paper reports on a study designed to test a key prediction of the behavioral model of the implicit association test (IAT). According to the behavioral model, the IAT measures the relative fluency of relational responding to various related and unrelated stimulus pairs. In effect, the IAT is a measure of relative stimulus class strengths that have been established in the history of the subject. Consequently, learning effects established with a given stimulus set should generalize to related stimulus class members. The current paper reports on a study designed to test this idea. Subjects were exposed to an IAT for racial bias, after which they were provided with extensive practice on that test. Practice resulted in the erosion of the very fluency differences across task-types on which the IAT depends. Subjects were then exposed to another IAT using synonyms for the target verbal stimuli employed in the first test. The results showed that IAT effects were absent due to near perfect fluency levels in relating the novel but related stimuli. Practice effects did not generalize to a novel IAT employing semantically unrelated stimuli.
 
How Corrective is Corrective Feedback in the Implicit Association Test?
MARIA R. RUIZ (Rollins College), Micah Purdy (Rollins College), Ingrid Atiles (Rollins College), Anthony O'Reilly (National University of Ireland, Maynooth), Bryan T. Roche (National University of Ireland, Maynooth), James McFarlane (National University of Ireland, Maynooth)
Abstract: The implicit association test (IAT) employs a curious corrective feedback procedure in which only erroneous responses are consequated by feedback and a response observation requirement. From a behavior-analytic perspective this procedure is replete with experimental artifacts and has serious implications for the way in which responses are coded. In addition, it is unclear if corrective feedback on the IAT is even reinforcing in the first instance. This paper describes an experiment designed to examine the effects of feedback delivery in the IAT on response fluency. Specifically, a non-contingent response observation requirement without reinforcing properties was developed to mimic the delivery of feedback in the IAT. The requirement to make the non-reinforcing observation response was imposed on one quarter of trials during each of the two main testing blocks of an IAT across two experimental conditions. A third condition involved the delivery of an IAT in the absence of both corrective feedback or response observation requirements. Results indicated that the delivery of corrective feedback in the IAT may have a punishing, rather than a reinforcing effect. The paper will explain how such an effect enhances rather than detracts from reported IAT effect sizes.
 
The Implicit Association Test Measures Relational Responding Fluency, Not Attitudes! Empirical Evidence From the Laboratory
INGRID ATILES (Rollins College), Maria R. Ruiz (Rollins College), Bryan T. Roche (National University of Ireland, Maynooth), Micah Purdy (Rollins College)
Abstract: A behavioral model of the implicit association test (IAT) suggests that the IAT works by comparing the relative fluencies in responding to related and unrelated pairs of stimuli. The current study tested this idea. Two groups of subjects were exposed to an equivalence training procedure that led to the formation of two three-member equivalence relations each containing three nonsense syllables. One group was trained using a strict fluency criterion that required responses to be produced within 3s on every trial of the stimulus equivalence training and testing phases. Both groups were exposed to a word-picture association training phase in which one member of each of the equivalence relations, printed in blue or red font, was paired with either plant or animal images, respectively. All subjects were subsequently exposed to an Implicit Association Test whose outcome was predicted and controlled by the organization of the trained relations. However, the relative fluencies in relating pairs of related and unrelated stimuli during the IAT were more different for subjects from the "high fluency" condition. Consequently, larger IAT effects were calculated for this group, thereby supporting a key prediction of a behavioral model of the IAT.
 
 
Symposium #361
CE Offered: BACB
Task Presentation and Reinforcement Schedule Manipulations in Facilitating Skill Acquisition
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
Texas Ballroom Salon A (Grand Hyatt)
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Natalie Rolider (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
CE Instructor: David Wilder, Ph.D.
Abstract: Four papers describing manipulations to task presentation and reinforcement schedules and their effects on skill acquisition will be presented. The first study compared the effects of massed and interspersed trials on sight-word reading in typically developing preschool children. In addition, the authors examined whether reinforcement and error correction procedures were necessary for skill acquisition and participants’ preferences for the training procedures. The second study examined the effects of pictures paired with associated words on performance of sight-word recognition in three children with autism. The blocking effect typically observed under these preparations was further examined with the inclusion of both familiar and unfamiliar pictures during training. The third study evaluated the effects of differential reinforcement of independent versus prompted responses in reducing prompt dependency and facilitating sight-word to picture discriminations. Two children with autism received a highly-preferred reinforcer following correct, independent responses and either a) a highly-preferred reinforcer, b) a moderately-preferred reinforcer, or c) no reinforcement following correct, prompted responses. The fourth study examined rates of task completion during token- and exchange-production schedule thinning conditions. Two participants with mental retardation showed different sensitivities to schedule thinning with token-reinforced behavior.
 
Massed Versus Interspersed Training: An Evaluation of the Variables That Affect Response Acquisition
ERICA SEVERTSON (University of Kansas), Claudia L. Dozier (University of Kansas), Pamela L. Neidert (University of Kansas), Brooke Ashley Jones (University of Kansas), Amy Harper (University of Kansas)
Abstract: When evaluating the effectiveness of teaching strategies, one important variable is the order and composition of training trials which are presented. Several researchers have shown that interspersal of previously acquired (maintenance) tasks among new (acquisition) tasks is a superior training procedure as compared to a massed-trial procedure (Dunlap, 1984; Neef, Iwata, & Page, 1977; Schroeder & Baer, 1972), but the mechanism(s) by which interspersing previously mastered items with acquisition items has not been systematically assessed. The purposes of the current study are to (a) compare the effects of a massed- vs. interspersed-trial training for teaching sight-word reading to typically developing preschool children , (b) determine the necessity of reinforcement and error correction procedures for skill acquisition under massed and interspersed training conditions, and (c) determine child preference for these training procedures. Results of the study suggest (a) massed-trial training is equally effective to interspersed-trial training for teaching sight-word reading to typical preschool children, (b) acquisition under both conditions occurs in the absence of reinforcement (i.e., when error correction alone is delivered), and (c) most participants have shown a preference for interspersed- over massed-trial training procedures regardless of whether reinforcers are delivered.
 
Further Analysis of Blocking When Teaching Word Recognition to Children With Autism
LAURA HARPER-DITTLINGER (Texana Behavior Treatment & Training Center), Dorothea C. Lerman (University of Houston-Clear Lake)
Abstract: Previous research indicates that pairing pictures with associated words when teaching sight-word reading may hinder acquisition (e.g., Didden, Prinsen, & Sigafoos, 2000; Singh & Solman, 1990; Solman & Singh, 1993). However, little is known about the mechanism(s) responsible for this phenomenon. In the current study, three children with autism were taught to recognize words that were presented alone or paired with pictures that the participants either could or could not identify prior to training. All participants learned the words more quickly when they were presented alone rather than with pictures, regardless of the participants’ prior learning history with respect to pictures representing the words. This finding is consistent with the phenomenon of overshadowing. Nonetheless, consistent with blocking, all participants also acquired the words presented alone more quickly if the participants could not identify the associated pictures prior to training. Together, these findings have important implications for using prompts when teaching skills to individuals with developmental disabilities.
 
Differential Reinforcement of Prompted and Independent Responses: An Alternative Procedure to Decrease Prompt Dependency
CATIA CIVIDINI-MOTTA CIVIDINI (New England Center for Children), Tala Williford (New England Center for Children), Kathleen M. Clark (The New England Center For Children), William H. Ahearn (The New England Center for Children)
Abstract: This study attempted to identify a procedure which would be effective at decreasing prompt dependency and facilitating acquisition of sight word to picture discrimination. Several assessments were conducted to determine the most effective and most preferred reinforcer for each of the two participants while also identifying another stimulus which had moderately reinforcing effects. Three sets of three sight words were then taught to each of the participants using three reinforcement procedures. Reinforcement for independent and correct responses was the same across all three procedures, the highest preference stimulus; however, these conditions differed in that reinforcement for correct, prompted responses was either the same (noDR), was a moderate reinforcer (DR1), or reinforcement was not provided (DR2). Interobserver agreement (IOA) and procedural integrity (PI) data were collected over 33% of the sessions across both the reinforcer and the training phases and averaged over 90% agreement. The results of this study suggest that providing the most effective and preferred reinforcer following independent and correct responses while delivering a moderate reinforcer contingent on prompted and correct response was the most effective reinforcement procedure.
 
Production Ratios and Schedule Thinning in Token Reinforcement
KATHRYN JANN (Kennedy Krieger Institute), SungWoo Kahng (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Nicole Lynn Hausman (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Barbara Tomlian (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Mariana I. Castillo Irazabal (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
Abstract: Token economies are second-order schedules commonly implemented to increase task completion in school and vocational settings. Basic research shows that token-reinforced behavior is affected by token- and exchange-production ratios (Bullock & Hackenberg, 2006; Foster & Hackenberg, 2004; Kelleher, 1957; Webb & Malgodi, 1978). Analogue clinical studies are needed to assess responding while thinning token reinforcement. During the current study, rates of task completion and pre-ratio pauses exhibited by 2 individuals diagnosed with mental retardation were assessed under a free-operant arrangement. Task completion was assessed during two conditions in which either the token- or exchange-production schedule was thinned. During baseline in both conditions, task completion resulted in no programmed consequence. Following token training, one production schedule was thinned in each condition while the other schedule was held constant at FR1. Idiosyncratic responding was observed across participants during reinforcement thinning. For example, Oliver’s response rates decreased and were sensitive to changes in token-production. His pre-ratio pauses increased and were sensitive to changes in exchange-production. Overall, Mari’s response rates increased and her pre-ratio pauses decreased with more sensitivity to token-production. These findings build upon basic and applied research by providing information on methods of thinning token-reinforced task completion.
 
 
Symposium #367
CE Offered: BACB
A Multi-State Discussion of Legislation, Licensure and Certification
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
213B (CC)
Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Kenneth MacAleese (Advanced Child Behavior Solutions, LLC)
CE Instructor: Christopher Perrin, M.S.Ed.
Abstract: Behavior analysis is emerging into an era in which third party funding for behavioral treatment for children with autism and other individuals with developmental delays. While some behavior analysts have hired professional lobbyists, others have attempted the legislative game on their own. This symposium brings together behavior analysts from four different states to tell their story of legislative advocacy, its successes, or lack thereof, and what lessons they have learned and wish to pass on.
 
Florida: Misinformation, Missteps, and Mischief in Our Pursuit of Licensure for Behavior Analysts
JON S. BAILEY (Florida State University)
Abstract: Over 15 years ago two naïve but eager young behavior analysts inserted themselves into the legislative process, were pummeled by the politicos, and emerged wiser and more wary than ever of “the real world.” We subsequently worked with the FABA Board, hired a lobbyst, wrote a bill, got a sponsor, and entered the fray again. Now, many years later we still bear the scars, and the fears; in this presentation I will attempt to tell our story for the edification and amusement of others who may be seeking licensure in this new, perhaps more progressive, era.
 
Nevada: A Case Study in Licensure of Behavior Analysts
KENNETH MACALEESE (Advanced Child Behavior Solutions, LLC), Josh Pritchard (University of Nevada, Reno), Kimberly Nix Berens (Center for Advanced Learning, Inc.), Erick M. Dubuque (University of Nevada, Reno), Molly L. Dubuque (Advanced Child Behavior Solutions, LLC)
Abstract: Nevada was the 11th state to pass legislation to mandate insurance companies to cover behavior analytic treatments for children diagnosed with Autism. In the development of Assembly Bill 162 (AB 162), legislators and representatives of the insurance industry required licensure for behavior analysts practicing in Nevada. Once the bill became law, the Nevada State Board of Psychological Examiners (NSBPE) received the task of developing the details of governance of the behavior analytic profession as it related to autism treatments. A small group of professional behavior analysts in Nevada organized and attended the NSBPE subcommittee meetings to provide insight and guidance while these rules were created. This paper discusses the various triumphs and tribulations experienced during the creation of the licensing language with the NSBPE and will examine the rationale behind the language proposed. A contingency analysis of the exam board’s motivating factors will be discussed that enabled a positive and productive dialogue between behavior analysts and the NSBPE.
 
Texas: The Development of Funding for Applied Behavior Analysis
JEFFREY C. ENZINNA (Texana Center)
Abstract: This presentation describes the activities over the past several years directed toward obtaining funding for services provided by board certified behavior analysts in Texas. The outcomes include changes to state regulations which now include BCBAs as eligible providers in three Medicaid Waiver programs and in the state-funded services for people with developmental disabilities. Also achieved was the passing and subsequent expansion of legislation mandating insurance reimbursement for services for children with autism, including applied behavior analysis services provided by BCBAs. Strategies used to accomplish these outcomes will be described including methods used to gain support and language used in legislation. The results described have enabled expansion of behavior analytic services for people with developmental disabilities in Texas. These results have also enabled agencies to employ BCBAs to provide services which were previously either unfunded or funded only when delivered by licensed psychologists. It has enabled BCBAs in private practice to be reimbursed by sources in addition to private pay. These outcomes have enabled expansion of the number of BCBAs in Texas.
 
Missouri: The Path to Insurance Coverage for Applied Behavior Analysis
TODD M. STREFF (Great Strides Behavioral Consulting, Inc)
Abstract: Many parents, providers, and Senators are pushing the insurance companies to pass insurance coverage for therapies related to autism treatment. In early 2009, SB167 was proposed to provide ABA services to individuals with Autism under the age of 18 years old. It passed through the house on a 29-2 vote but was not taken up by the House before the session expired. In that proposal, individuals were required to be either certified by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board or under the supervision of someone with that certification. A revised bill is currently being discussed that will be filed in December for the 2010 session. During testimony for the 2010 bill, the insurance companies are proposing language for state licensure of Behavior Analysts. This push for licensure brings forth many questions and concerns regarding the benefits of licensure versus certification for providers of ABA services and for the families receiving those services across the state. These issues will be discussed and the rationales for both will be identified.
 
 
Panel #369
CE Offered: BACB
Behavioral Interpretations of "Ideas Worth Spreading"
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
Bonham B (Grand Hyatt)
Area: TPC; Domain: Theory
CE Instructor: Allen Karsina, M.S.
Chair: Janet S. Twyman (Headsprout)
DAVID C. PALMER (Smith College)
HENRY D. SCHLINGER (California State University, Los Angeles)
GREG STIKELEATHER (Palo Alto, California)
JANET S. TWYMAN (Headsprout)
Abstract: Since 1984, the nonprofit organization TED has been hosting conferences devoted to “Ideas Worth Spreading” in technology, entertainment, and design (see TED.com). Over the years its scope has broadened to include talks on science, politics, education, culture, and psychology. More than 500 talks have been viewed online over 100 million times by more than 15 million people around the world. Some talks quickly become shared experiences, with the premise presented gaining widespread cultural appeal. Many TED speakers discuss phenomena directly in the behavioral domain, such as Philip Zimbardo on how people become heroes (or monsters), Barry Schwartz on the paradox of choice, Dan Gilbert on happiness or mistaken expectations, Joachim de Posada on delayed gratification, Jonathan Haidt on moral reasoning, Dan Pink on the science of motivation, or Rebecca Saxe on how we read each other’s minds. In this event, panelists will discuss how some of these popular ideas can be questioned, further explained, or even supported by behavioral research and existing data. Panelists will also discuss ideas on how to promote behavior analysis outside of behavioral conferences and journals, such as supporting behavioral presentations at future TED conferences.
 
 
Symposium #370
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
Testing a Computer-Based Protocol for the Assessment of Generative Verbal Behavior in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
214C (CC)
Area: VRB/AUT; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Siri Morris Ming (VB3)
Discussant: Caio F. Miguel (California State University, Sacramento)
CE Instructor: Michelle Duda, Ph.D.
Abstract: A key aspect of verbal behavior, and one that is at the core of communication deficits for children with autism, is generativity—put simply, the ability to produce or understand totally new sentences. Relational Frame Theory (RFT) provides new insight into the issue of generativity, by conceptualizing the core skill in language as learned contextually controlled relational responding (referred to as relational framing). Whereas typically developing children learn relational framing through exposure to natural language, children with ASD do not, and thus show deficits in both relational framing ability and generativity. Nevertheless, empirical evidence also shows that children with ASD can benefit from explicit training of this repertoire. This symposium introduces a novel computer-based protocol (Training & Assessment of Relational Precursors & Abilities; TARPA) designed to allow for the assessment and training of a progression of key skills critical to the development of advanced flexible relational framing and hence generative language. We describe the background to and initial development of the TARPA protocol along with the current state and future direction of our research, explain the core stages in the protocol, and discuss the results of initial pilot testing of this protocol with both children with ASD and typically developing children.
 
Training and Assessing Relational Framing Precursors and Abilities: An introduction to the Training and Assessment of Relational Precursors and Abilities
IAN T. STEWART (National University of Ireland, Galway)
Abstract: Relational Frame Theory conceptualizes the core skill in language as learned contextually controlled relational responding (referred to as relational framing). The Training and Assessment of Relational Precursors and Abilities (TARPA) is a novel computer-based protocol designed to allow for the assessment and training of a progression of key skills critical to the development of advanced flexible relational framing and hence generative language. The hierarchical ordering and content of the stages and levels of the TARPA is based on relevant theory and research. In this paper, the background to and initial development of the TARPA protocol will be described, along with an explanation of a number of core stages in this protocol including basic discrimination, conditional discrimination with similarity, conditional discrimination with non-similarity, mutually entailed relational responding, combinatorial entailed relational responding, and transformation of function. A brief overview of the current state and future direction of our program of research will be provided.
 
Assessing Relational Framing Precursors and Abilities of Typically Developing Children
SIRI MORRIS MING (VB3), Carey A. Burgess (Play ABA)
Abstract: The Training and Assessment of Relational Precursors and Abilities (TARPA) is a novel computer-based protocol designed to allow for the assessment and training of a progression of key skills critical to the development of relational framing and hence generative language. Standardized assessment tools have played a very important role in other domains within behavior analysis and psychology more broadly by providing a normative baseline of age appropriate responding that serves both applied as well as basic science purposes. One of the aims of the TARPA research is to provide a standardized tool for the assessment and training of relational framing abilities themselves and of the precursor skills supporting those abilities. Previous research including Lipkens & Hayes (1993) and Luciano, Gomez & Rodriguez (2007) has tracked the emergence of derived relational responding skills in young typically developing infants. This research has indicated potential developmental sequences of relational framing precursors and skills. In this paper, initial results of pilot testing of the TARPA protocol with a number of typically developing young children in the age range 1-2 years will be discussed with respect to confirmation of the expected hierarchical sequencing of skills assessed by this protocol and correlation with other developmental measures.
 
Assessing Relational Framing Precursors and Abilities of Children With Autism
JOHN D. MCELWEE (Pennsylvania Verbal Behavior Project), Tara Jane Rice (Chrysalis Academy; Play ABA), Ken Smith (Pennsylvania Colonial Intermediate Unit 20)
Abstract: Relational Frame Theory conceptualizes the core skill in language as learned contextually controlled relational responding referred to as relational framing. Whereas typically developing children learn relational framing through exposure to natural language, children with ASD do not, and thus show deficits in both relational framing ability and generativity. Nevertheless, empirical evidence also shows that children with ASD can benefit from explicit training of this repertoire. The TARPA is a novel computer based protocol for the assessment and training of relational framing in young children with ASD. The hierarchical ordering and content of the stages and levels of this protocol is based on relevant theory and research. The aim of the work reported here was to evaluate the TARPA as an assessment tool. Initial results with respect to the hierarchical ordering of the stages and levels of the TARPA, correlations with other language measures, and patterns of performance of children with autism will be discussed and compared with results of testing with typically developing children.
 
 
Symposium #371
CE Offered: BACB
Implementation of Behavioral Skills Training in Community Settings
Monday, May 31, 2010
9:30 AM–10:50 AM
Seguin (Grand Hyatt)
Area: CSE/EDC; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Mark T. Harvey (Florida Institute of Technology)
Discussant: W. Joseph Wyatt (Marshall University)
CE Instructor: Jason Bourret, Ph.D.
Abstract: Behavioral Skills Training (BST) is an active learning approach during which instruction, modeling, participant rehearsal, feedback and in situ assessment are conducted to develop skill mastery. The utility and generality of BST is well documented as an efficient way to teach safety skills and address low probability high intensity problem behavior. This symposium will include three data-based studies that demonstrated the use of BST to diminish aberrant behavioral patterns and concurrently increased appropriate behavior for children and adults in community settings. In the first study, BST was used to teach children adaptive responses when they encountered matches or lighters. The second study included BST procedures to teach a child with Hemophilia A the skills necessary to report medical crises and treat wounds effectively. The third study reports on the use of BST training techniques to teach parenting skills to foster parents. Discussion will focus on the utility, adaptability, and generality of BST training procedures when applied to issues of social significance.
 
Putting Out the Fire: Behavioral Skills Training and Teaching Fire Safety Skills
ANDREW J. HOUVOURAS (Brevard County Public Schools), Patricia Rich (Brevard County Public Schools), Alana Bellizzi (Florida Institute of Technology), Mark T. Harvey (Florida Institute of Technology)
Abstract: Fires set by adolescents are responsible for millions of dollars of property damage, thousands of injuries and hundreds of deaths in the United States every year. Most fires set by children are set by lighters and matches. To date, most fire safety programs largely center on increasing knowledge bases and vocal reports. Behavioral skills training (BST), the sequence of instructing, modeling, rehearsing, providing feedback and conducting in situ assessments, has been shown to be highly effective in teaching safety skills. Evaluating these skills by applying BST to fire safety, three elementary school boys, two with prior histories of fire setting, showed an increase in their skill sets. Follow-up data for two of the three subjects showed maintenance of the skills one month after training was completed. We discuss the need for evaluating skill sets empirically and how behavioral skills training offers professionals an efficacious method to address low probability, covert behavior such as fire setting.
 
Blood Runs Red: Using Behavioral Skills Training to Teach a Child With Hemophilia to Care for Bleeds
RAYNA M. HOUVOURAS (Applying Behaivor Concepts), Andrew J. Houvouras (Applying Behavior Concepts)
Abstract: Hemophilia A is an x-linked genetic bleeding disorder often resulting in spontaneous bleeding episodes. A rare and incurable chronic medical condition, hemophilia A (as most other bleeding disorders) is most often studied by social workers and psychologists. To date, extensions of applied behavior analysis to individuals with hemophilia have rarely been undertaken. In the present study, behavioral skills training (BST), an adaptive learning procedure, was used to teach a 3 year old child to vocally report and demonstrate self care for two types of bleeds: epistaxis (nosebleeds) and minor cuts. The child successfully acquired four-step vocal reports and self care skills and exhibited them to criterion during follow-up probes. Discussion will focus on the use of artificial agents when using BST, current concerns of bleeding disorder treatment (latency from the onset of bleeds to the seeking of treatment) and advancements in behavioral science that may be applicable to the bleeding disorders community.
 
Teaching Parenting Tools Using Behavioral Skills Training
STACIE NEFF (Private Practice), Bryon R. Neff (Florida Institute of Technology)
Abstract: From 2001-2008, the State of Florida’s Department of Children and Families funded and offered behavior analytic services to children in foster care and their caretakers. The Behavior Analysis Services Program (BASP) utilized BST to teach caregiving skills to adults responsible for the well being of children who suffered from abuse and neglect. This presentation will describe how BST was implemented in this statewide program that trained thousands of caseworkers and foster, adoptive and biological parents. Data examples will include pre/post test scores for in-class role-plays as well as in-situ (in-home) performance. Other interesting outcomes related to the BST, such as improving staff interactions in group home settings and reducing restrictive procedures in a locked residential facility, will also be discussed.
 
 
Symposium #378
CE Offered: BACB
Sure, Go Ahead and Stim! Reducing High-Frequency Ritualistic Behaviors in Children With Autism Using Delayed Permission
Monday, May 31, 2010
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
204AB (CC)
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Elizabeth Martineau (Nashoba Learning Group)
Discussant: Elizabeth Martineau (Nashoba Learning Group)
CE Instructor: Tiffany Kodak, Ph.D.
Abstract: Reducing high-frequency obsessive or ritualistic behaviors in children with autism presents a unique challenge because there is often no reinforcer more potent than engaging in the behavior itself. When unable to engage in certain rituals, many children with autism display anxiety correlates such as sweating, tensing, or increased heart rate. The apparent feeling of relief experienced after after completing the ritual is far more powerful than any item offered as reinforcement for refraining from the ritual. For some students, interruping these ritualistic behavior chains can also trigger tantrum behavior. It is possible, however, to bring the behavior under stimulus control and reduce levels dramatically over time by teaching the student to ask permission or wait for permission to engage in the behavior as a new first step in the behavior chain. We taught several students with autism to ask or wait for permission before engaging in ritualistic behaviors, and then began systematically delaying and eventually denying permission. All students had a history of aggression, self-injury, or non-compliance when redirected from engaging in ritualistic behaviors, but data show that this procedure was effective in bringing these behaviors under stimulus control and significantly reducing rates of stereotypy without triggering dangerous behavior.
 
Can't Touch This: Reducing High-Frequency Touching and Tapping Behaviors Through Delayed Permission, Denied Permission, and Containment
JESSICA SLATON (Nashoba Learning Group), Elizabeth Martineau (Nashoba Learning Group), Joshua Dahlin (Nashoba Learning Group)
Abstract: A teenager with autism was taught to ask permission for (and eventually refrain from) repetitive tapping and touching. These behaviors initially occurred over 2,000 times per school day and interfered with all instructional activities. The student attempted to repetitively touch not only his own belongings, learning materials, and familiar items in his environment, but also items belonging to others or jewelry worn by others. Attempts to block the behavior resulted in aggression or property destruction (tackling staff to the ground or breaking furniture). The student was first taught to pause and request "I want to touch" before touching an item, and permission was immediately granted. A delay to permission was then inserted by instructing the student to perform 1-2 simple motor imitations before permission was granted. Once the student was able to tolerate performing up to 8-10 demands before being granted permission to touch, we began denying permission in some locations. We systematically increased the locations in which permission was denied, successfully containing the behavior to one small specified area. Data show that the intervention was effective in significantly reducing the target behavior from 2,000+ per day to less than 4 per day, with near-zero rates of tantrum behavior.
 
The Weakest Link: Breaking Word Chains by First Transferring Control to a Teacher-Controlled Stimulus, Then Withdrawing That Stimulus
TARA L. MONTOURE (Nashoba Learning Group), Robyn E. Stewart (Nashoba Learning Group), Benjamin Fisher (Nashoba Learning Group)
Abstract: A young boy with autism engaged in high-frequency verbal stereotypy in the form of word chains, such as adding "please" to the end of every phrase or repeating the phonetic sound of a letter multiple times (kuh, kuh, K). The added words or sounds occurred in the same pattern each time a verbal response was given, making them truly part of a specific behavioral chain and not random word inserations. The student was first taught to produce his word chains on command using cue cards with blank boxes. We instructed the student to say his chain, tapping one box per word (such as "Hi Tara please" while tapping each of 3 boxes in order). Once the student reliably produced his word chain when instructed to and reliably produced only 1 word per box, we removed the boxes representing inappropriate parts of the chain. Because the word chains had come under control of these teacher-controlled boxes, the student automatically deleted words from his chain when the teacher deleted boxes. Over time the use of boxes was faded completely. Data show that this procedure was effective in eliminating inappropriate word chains that were interfering with skill acquisition in multiple programs.
 
Can't Touch This, Revisited: Replicating the Use of a Delayed Permission Procedure to Reduce Repetitive Touching Behavior
CHANELLE HUME (Nashoba Learning Group), Crystal Seagle (Nashoba Learning Group), Elizabeth Martineau (Nashoba Learning Group), Joshua Dahlin (Nashoba Learning Group)
Abstract: Another teenager with autism was taught to request permission before accessing tangible items or engaging in motor stereotypy. This student attempted to take toys or rifle through drawers without permission, go to preferred locations without permission, or stereotypically arrange objects and kick objects down the hall. When blocked from accessing a preferred toy or location, the student bolted towards the item and flopped. These behaviors initially occurred at high rates and greatly interfered with all learning activities, particularly because the student was too heavy to be lifted by a single staff member after a f lop. Similar behaviors occurred when the student was blocked from engaging in motor stereotypy with objects (such as kicking a piece of trash down the hall). The student was taught to use a text strip to request access to preferred objects or to request to engage in stereotypy. Permission was at first granted for every request, and then a delay to permission was inserted by requiring the student to complete simple demands. The number of demands was systematically increased and a modified parametric analysis was conducted to determine how many demands were necessary before permission could be completely denied without triggering tantrum behavior.
 
 
Symposium #379
CE Offered: BACB
Recent Findings Using TAGteach in Diverse Populations and Applications Such as Autism and Commercial Fishermen
Monday, May 31, 2010
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
202AB (CC)
Area: AUT/EDC; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Theresa Mckeon (TAGteach International)
Discussant: Julie S. Vargas (B. F. Skinner Foundation)
CE Instructor: Henry Roane, Ph.D.
Abstract: Three presentations analyzing the effectiveness of using an acoustical stimulus in conjunction with reinforcement in various teaching strategies will be presented. Standard teaching curricula (especially those designed for students with autism) are typically based on the use of prompting and shaping procedures. One way to augment these procedures is to pair an auditory or visual event with the delivery of reinforcement to “mark” the correct response. TAGteach© is a technology based on the use of “markers” or auditory stimuli paired with the delivery of reinforcement to teach new behaviors. “TAG” stands for Teaching with Acoustical Guidance and is demonstrated in Dr. Julie Vargas’ new book, “Behavior Analysis for Effective Teaching”. Practitioners of TAGteach argue for its effectiveness in many endeavors across a wide range of populations. Two of the presentations discuss the use of TAGteach combined with currently accepted technologies for teaching early learning curriculum to young children with autism. The third reaches out to a diverse population (commercial fishermen) that showed tangible benefits from this application of behavior analysis.
 
The Combined Effects of TAGteach and Precision Teaching on Learning for Children With Autism
KEVIN S. CAULEY (Step by Step Learning Group), Elizabeth Benedetto-Nasho (Step by Step Learning Group Inc.)
Abstract: The cognitive profile of children with autism suggests that they require immediate and clear performance feedback with regards to whether or not their responses matched the desired teaching target. The behavior analytic literature has found that performance feedback is greatly enhanced when reinforcement is delivered contingently and immediately (Miller, 2006). TAGteach capitalizes on the principles of reinforcer effectiveness through the use of audible makers that communicate a simple and clear statement that gives students instant feedback. Precision Teaching emphasizes the idea of evaluate then revise. Using this powerful technology, teachers are urged to pinpoint behaviors, count and time them, and then immediately adjust when initial teaching tactics do not produce desired results. A key aspect of viewing student performance through a Precision Teaching paradigm is the concept of child knows best. That is, if a student is progressing, then the instructional arrangement is good. However, if performance falters, then the instructional arrangement should be adjusted (Lindsley, 1972). Combining TAGteach and Precision Teaching provides a template for potentially enhancing the rate of learning for children with autism. This data-based presentation will discuss the use of these combined technologies for teaching early learning curriculum to young children with autism.
 
Creating and Following Directions in Hazardous Situations—TAGteach on the Bering Sea
THERESA MCKEON (TAGteach International)
Abstract: This case looks at the Cascade fishing company and how they incorporated positive reinforcement and TAGteach (a set of procedures directly derived from B.F. Skinner’s work) to improve overall communication and substantially reduce onboard injuries over two years. The environment is a trawler that fishes the Bering Sea. The fish are processed on the boat, so workers spend 70 straight days working dangerous equipment while the boat is tossed about in freezing temperatures. Communication difficulties abound from the natural environment and are compounded by cultural and language differences among the crew. In the first year following the TAGteach workshop, injuries during the off loading procedure were reduced from 21 to 0. Year two provided the same results. Going into season 3 the ‘Seafisher’ has had no accidents and has had their insurance rates lowered as a result. In post season interviews, 100% of participants attributed the reduction to the techniques acquired during the workshops. Videos of the interactive training and of subsequent improvements will be shown to emphasize the potential of this type of training.
 
The Use of TAGteach to Improve the Acquisition of Instruction Following in Children With Autism
MARY LYNCH BARBERA (Barbera Behavior Consulting)
Abstract: The use of TAG (Teaching with Acoustical Guidance) was examined in the acquisition of various skill deficits in children with autism. Some students demonstrated a deficit in their tact repertoire and others in their instruction following repertoire and/or their ability to identify items receptively. Four students at a non-public school for children with autism participated in the study. The students had not acquired the skills previously mentioned in a structured teaching environment using standard discrete trial teaching nor through incidental teaching (e.g., within routine contexts). A multiple baseline across subjects design was used to examine whether the insertion of TAG, used to reinforce the target response prior to receipt of the highly preferred item, led to an increase in the acquisition of the skill. Students were exposed to a either a tacting, instruction following, or receptive object identification lesson with standard discrete trial teaching (i.e., SD-R-SR) during baseline. The use of TAG was implemented with each student in a staggered fashion and inserted immediately after a correct response.
 
 
Symposium #380
CE Offered: BACB
The Challenges of Running Behavior Plans: Can't We All Just Do What's Written?
Monday, May 31, 2010
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
203AB (CC)
Area: AUT/DDA; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Shawn E. Kenyon (New England Center for Children)
Discussant: Ronnie Detrich (Wing Institute)
CE Instructor: Marcie Desrochers, Ph.D.
Abstract: The level of procedural integrity (the systematic implementation of an independent variable as written and defined) can influence the outcomes of a behavioral intervention and/or skill acquisition (Wilder, D.A., Atwell, J., & Wine, B. 2006). This symposium includes three papers evaluating training components for increasing procedural integrity of behavior management plans. The first paper discusses the use of video and self-scoring as a tool to increase procedural integrity of behavior program implementation. The second paper discusses the delivery of feedback in a group format for increasing procedural integrity with program implementation. The third paper presents data on the effects of quizzes and individual feedback for increasing procedural integrity with behavior program implementation. The three papers together offer a variety of interventions that were effective in increasing levels of procedure integrity of behavior plans implementation.
 
The Effects of Procedural Integrity Data Collection on the Implementation of a Behavior Program
KYLIE ROBERTS (New England Center for Children), Jonathan Seaver (The New England Center for Children), Shawn E. Kenyon (New England Center for Children)
Abstract: The level of procedural integrity (the systematic implementation of an independent variable as written and defined) can influence the outcomes of a behavioral intervention and/or skill acquisition (Wilder, D.A., Atwell, J., & Wine, B. 2006). Modeling, in-service training, written instruction, performance feedback, and role playing have all been used to improve procedural integrity. However, these options are time consuming and require a skilled trainer to implement. The purpose of the current study is to evaluate the effects of an intervention on procedural integrity. Participants were video recorded running a behavior intervention plan in the classroom. These participants were then given the video and a data sheet and told to score themselves on the video. Follow up observations on plan implementation were then conducted.
 
Increasing Procedural Integrity of Behavior Management Programs Through Group Feedback
JESSICA J. ALVERSON (The New England Center for Children), Sorrel Ryan (The New England Center for Children)
Abstract: Procedural integrity is important to insure effective programming for students with autism. It is difficult to evaluate the effectiveness of a behavior program if it is not implemented as written. As such, high procedural integrity is important for overall student progress. Studies have looked at increasing procedural integrity using different methods including verbal, written, visual and video. The current study attempted to increase the procedural integrity aggregated across a team of 15 teachers for 2-3 students. During observations, a checklist of student and teacher behavior was used to measure correct implementation of behavior program guidelines. Brief and immediate feedback was only given if the program was implemented incorrectly. During intervention integrity data was presented in a group format and specific feedback on incorrect implementation of behavior program guidelines was delivered.
 
Evaluating the Effects of Quizzes and Feedback on Procedural Integrity
COLLEEN O'GRADY (The New England Center for Children), Shawn E. Kenyon (New England Center for Children)
Abstract: Brackett, Reid, and Green (2007) examined effects of reactivity to observations conducted inconspicuously on staff performance. Results showed staff did not complete acquired steps during the observations. DiGennaro (2007) examined the extent to which treatment integrity in teachers was affected by performance feedback. Results showed that treatment integrity increased to high levels after feedback was admitted. Parsons, MB and Reid (1995) showed that feedback training for supervisors improved their teaching skills. The purpose of the current study was to evaluate the effects of quizzes and feedback on procedural integrity of teachers implementing a behavior program for a student with a primary diagnosis of autism. Three participants were observed in a classroom setting implementing a behavior program. A quiz was then given to each of the participants after which a short discussion occurred, covering incirrect responses on the quiz. Follow up observations were then conducted to test the effect of the quiz behavior plan implementation.
 
 
Symposium #383
CE Offered: BACB
Further Advancements in the Assessment and Treatment of Feeding Problems in Children
Monday, May 31, 2010
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Texas Ballroom Salon C (Grand Hyatt)
Area: CBM/DDA; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Meeta R. Patel (Clinic 4 Kidz)
CE Instructor: Adel Najdowski, Ph.D.
Abstract: Feeding problems are common in children with autism and other developmental disabilities; however, there is a paucity of research on the assessment and treatment of feeding problems. Previous research has shown that escape extinction has been an effective intervention. However, in some cases escape extinction alone is not effective. Furthermore, escape extinction may produce other side effects such as extinction bursts and/or emotional responding. Studies have also shown that escape extinction combined with differential reinforcement or noncontingent reinforcement may produce less emotional responding. Although escape extinction has been shown to be effective, it may be difficult for caregivers to implement such procedures. In addition, children who display skill deficits with regards to eating (e.g., poor lip closure, poor tongue movement, poor self-feeding skills etc.) may require other treatment components in combination with escape extinction. More research examining assessment tools and alternative treatments is warranted. Therefore, the purpose of this symposium is to present systematic data on both assessment and treatment of feeding problems in children.
 
Using an Antecedent Assessment to Evaluate the Effects of a High- Probability Instructional Sequence and Food Fading in the Treatment of Feeding Problems in Children
NISSA WENDY GOLDBERG (Clinic 4 Kidz), Meeta R. Patel (Clinic 4 Kidz), Michelle L. Waddell (Clinic 4 Kidz), Jennifer Leigh King (Clinic 4 Kidz), Aida Miles (Clinic 4 Kidz)
Abstract: Children with pediatric feeding disorders may display a variety of inappropriate behaviors to avoid eating. It has been hypothesized that these behaviors are maintained by negative reinforcement in the form of escape. Typically some form of escape extinction is necessary to increase acceptance and decrease inappropriate behaviors. However, escape extinction (EE) may produce side effects and in some cases EE alone in not a sufficient intervention. Many times antecedent based procedures such as a high-probability (high-p) instructional sequence and stimulus fading are warranted. High-p instructional sequence has shown to be effective in the treatment of feeding problems when topographically similar responses (e.g., presentation of highly preferred food/drink) were used prior to the target response (e.g., presentation of a nonpreferred food/drink) as opposed to using responses that were not associated with eating (e.g., putting a block in the bucket). The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of high-p instructional sequence and food fading by first using an antecedent assessment to empirically identify the most appropriate high-p response as well as to evaluate the starting point for treatment. Data from the antecedent assessment showed that each participant had a different high-p response. In addition the data indicated different starting points for treatment (e.g., milk on a spoon, apple juice on a spoon etc.). A multiple probe and multiple baseline across participants designs were used to evaluate high-p instructional sequence, fading and EE. Data from the treatment evaluation showed an increase in acceptance and decrease in inappropriate behaviors for both participants. One participant required the high-p instructional sequence with every food introduced; however, high-p instructional sequence was only required for the first food introduced for the second participant. In addition, no extinction bursts or emotional responding were observed. These data are discussed in relation to behavioral momentum, establishing operations, transfer of stimulus control, and stimulus generalization.
 
Treating Food and Liquid Refusal in an Adolescent With Asperger’s Disorder
KEITH E. WILLIAMS (Penn State Hershey Medical Center), Michael P. Roth (The Pennsylvania State University, Harrisburg), Candace M. Paul (Penn State Hershey Medical Center)
Abstract: Food refusal is a complicated and problematic condition that has both medical and social implications. In the current study, a 16-year-old male with Asperger’s disorder, who was dependent on gastrostromy tube feedings for nine years, was treated with a behavioral intervention for both solid and liquid food refusal. The intervention consisted of several components included stimulus fading for both solids and liquids, a token economy for solids, and an escape prevention component for liquids. Prior to treatment the participant consumed three different foods and water. After treatment, the participant was consuming 78 foods and 13 beverages. At the end of 14 days of treatment, all of the participant’s intake was received orally, gastrostomy tube feedings were eliminated, and the patient had gained over one pound on oral feedings. The intervention was generalized to both home and school settings, and maintenance of treatment gains was reported by parents one month after the end of treatment.
 
Use of Backward Chaining to Develop Self-Feeding Skills in Children With Developmental Disabilities
GEETIKA AGARWAL (Marcus Autism Center), David L. Jaquess (Marcus Autism Center), William G. Sharp (Marcus Autism Center)
Abstract: Backward chaining is a procedure that has been successfully used to assist individuals of various skill and developmental levels acquire a wide range of behaviors, including self-help skills, personal hygiene, and more complex sequences of behaviors, such as computer use. Few studies, however, have focused specifically on the use of backward chaining to encourage independent feeding skills, such as utensil use and/or self-feeding, in the treatment of pediatric feeding disorders. In the current study, data from a chart review for two children treated at an intensive day-treatment program for severe food refusal are presented. A non-self-feeder treatment package involving escape extinction was successful in increasing oral intake in both cases, but neither child demonstrated self-feeding skills or respond to less intensive prompting procedures to promote independent intake. A backward chaining protocol was successfully employed for both children to increase self-feeding using a spoon. Results from the study are discussed in relation to treatment development and generalization of findings to other children with pediatric feeding disorders.
 
Use of Swallow Facilitation and a Chaser to Decrease Packing in Children With Feeding Disorders
CHARIS L. FARRELL (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Valerie M. Volkert (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Cathleen C. Piazza (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Rebecca A. Groff (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Jana Frese (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Carrie E. Combs (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center)
Abstract: Previous research has demonstrated that escape extinction in conjunction with reinforcement- based procedures often is effective in increasing acceptance and decreasing inappropriate mealtime behavior (e.g., head turns, disruptions) in children diagnosed with feeding disorders (Piazza, Patel, Gulotta, Sevin, & Layer, 2003; Reed et. al., 2004). However, additional procedures may be needed when the child packs (pockets) accepted food (Sevin, Gulotta, Sierp, Rosica, & Miller, 2002). The purpose of the current investigation was to evaluate the effects of swallow facilitation (i.e., using a flipped spoon or a Nuk brush) and/or a chaser alone and in combination as treatment for the packing of 2 children diagnosed with a feeding disorder. Neither swallow facilitation nor the chaser alone produced clinically significant decreases in packing. By contrast, the combination of swallow facilitation and a chaser produced clinically significant decreases in packing for both children.
 
 
Symposium #388
CE Offered: BACB
The Use of Stimulus Fading to Increase Meal-Time Behavior and Leisure Skills
Monday, May 31, 2010
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
217A (CC)
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Louis P. Hagopian (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
Discussant: Richard G. Smith (University of North Texas)
CE Instructor: Jeanine Plowman Stratton, Ph.D.
Abstract: Stimulus fading involves highlighting a physical dimension of a stimulus to increase the likelihood of a correct response. Thus, stimulus fading is a useful method of transferring stimulus control to prompt a response. The purpose of this symposium is to present three applied examples of the use of stimulus fading to prompt novel responding. The first two studies used stimulus fading to improve mealtime behavior. Both studies used a spoon-to-cup fading procedure to increase cup drinking in children with pediatric feeding disorders. The first study conducted an analysis to identify the motivating operation for liquid refusal and used this as the basis for their stimulus fading intervention. The second study used a stimulus fading procedure after their initial function-based intervention failed to increase liquid consumption. The results of both studies showed that their stimulus fading procedures led to increased cup drinking. The third study used stimulus fading to increase a novel leisure skill, rock climbing, in children with autism. Stimulus fading in conjunction with an errorless learning procedure and positive reinforcement resulted in the acquisition rock climbing. These studies highlight the utility of stimulus fading strategies to increase behavior.
 
Acquisition of Cup Drinking Using Stimulus Fading
MELANIE H. BACHMEYER (University of Iowa), David P. Wacker (University of Iowa), Linda J. Cooper-Brown (University of Iowa), Joanna Wiese (University of Iowa)
Abstract: Stimulus fading procedures have been demonstrated as effective in shaping a wide variety of new behaviors. Specific to the acquisition of feeding skills, stimulus fading procedures have more widely been applied to the acquisition of solid food consumption. The purpose of this study was to demonstrate the efficacy of stimulus fading in the acquisition of cup drinking with two children diagnosed with feeding disorders. An analysis of motivating operations for liquid refusal was conducted within a multi-element design. Results suggested presentation of the liquid via cup was an establishing operation for liquid refusal, whereas presentation of the liquid via spoon was an abolishing operation for liquid refusal. A six-step fading procedure was used to transfer stimulus control from presentation of the liquid via spoon to presentation via cup. Probe sessions using the target cup were conducted between each step of the fading procedure as a control condition in a multiple probe experimental design. Interobserver agreement was collected during 25% of sessions and agreement was above 90%. Results showed that for both children cup drinking skills were established only following the fading procedures. Results will be discussed in terms of motivating operations and transfer of stimulus control.
 
Assessment of the Effectiveness of Function-Based Treatments and Spoon to Cup Fading in Increasing Mouth Cleans for Cup Drinking
REBECCA A. GROFF (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Cathleen C. Piazza (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Jason R. Zeleny (Monroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Jack R. Dempsey (Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Abstract: Function-based treatments have been demonstrated to be effective in decreasing inappropriate mealtime behavior in children diagnosed with pediatric feeding disorders (Bachmeyer et al., 2009). When a function-based treatment for inappropriate mealtime behavior is implemented, there is often a corresponding increase in acceptance and mouth cleans (a product measure of swallowing). The current investigation provides an example of when a function-based treatment for inappropriate mealtime behavior alone was not sufficient to increase mouth cleans for cup drinking. Attention and escape functions of inappropriate mealtime behavior were identified via a functional analysis conducted with a four-year old child diagnosed with Short Gut Syndrome and Gastrostomy (G-) Tube and Total Parenteral (TPN) dependence. Attention extinction and escape extinction were implemented with liquid presented in a cup and resulted in a decrease in inappropriate mealtime behavior and an increase in acceptance, but did not result in an increase in mouth cleans. Spoon to cup fading was implemented according to the procedures described by Babbitt, Shore, Smith, Williams, and Coe (2001) and mouth cleans for cup drinking increased. This investigation is an example of when stimulus fading was needed, in conjunction with extinction, in order to increase mouth cleans for cup drinking.
 
Evaluating a Stimulus Control Fading Procedure to Teach Indoor Rock Climbing to Children With Autism
HANNAH KAPLAN (Caldwell College), Tina Sidener (Caldwell College), Kenneth F. Reeve (Caldwell College), David W. Sidener (Garden Academy)
Abstract: The present study used a multiple probe design across participants to evaluate an intervention package for teaching route following to two children with autism at an indoor rock-climbing gym. The intervention consisted of multiple within-stimulus fading procedures in combination with errorless learning and positive reinforcement. In addition, conditional discrimination training technologies were implemented to foster appropriate stimulus control. The results demonstrated that both participants learned to climb at least 10 ft/ 3 m on specified routes. Furthermore, both participants learned to climb an entire 22-ft/6.7-m wall for at least one of three different routes without any errors in a regular rock-climbing gym setting. The acquisition of this skill provides children with autism with an additional option for leisure participation with others.
 
 
Symposium #392
CE Offered: BACB
The Marriage of Percentile and Precision: Shaping Academic Behaviors Using Percentile Schedules
Monday, May 31, 2010
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Texas Ballroom Salon A (Grand Hyatt)
Area: EDC/EAB; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Jeffrey Gesick (University of North Texas)
Discussant: Henry S. Pennypacker (University of Florida)
CE Instructor: Grant Gautreaux, Ph.D.
Abstract: Although firmly seated in our basic science, shaping procedures throughout behavior analysis tend to resemble more of an art than a science. Precision Teaching (PT) frequently utilizes shaping procedures as a means of increasing response frequencies. Unfortunately, the PT literature remains unclear as to how specific reinforcement parameters used during shaping affect critical learning variables. However, basic studies have shown percentile schedules of reinforcement to be a more systematic and effective method to shape behavior. Across three papers, the current symposium will identify the relevance of percentile schedules of reinforcement for PT practices. Specifically, the first paper will provide an overview of percentile schedule methodology and how it specifically applies to the kinds of shaping procedures utilized by precision teachers. In the second paper, clinical data from a PT center will be presented that compares the effects of percentile schedules versus more traditional methods on the shaping of frequencies on academic tasks. In the third paper, data will be presented from a controlled study empirically evaluating specific parameters of percentile schedules and their effect on the shaping of response frequencies. Clinical and empirical implications of percentile schedules for PT, and behavior analysis more generally, will be offered.
 
A Case for Incorporating Percentile Schedules Into Precision Teaching Practices: A Systematic Approach to Shaping Response Frequencies
JEFFREY GESICK (University of North Texas), Kerri K. Milyko (University of Nevada, Reno), Kimberly Nix Berens (Center for Advanced Learning, Inc.)
Abstract: Educating children is one of the most important practices in society; however, mainstream education has failed at this process in many respects. Precision Teaching (PT), a branch of behavior analysis, has provided both clinically and empirically supported technologies that are relevant for improving educational outcomes. Of main concern for precision teachers is the establishment of “fluency” or “true mastery” of academic repertoires. More often than not, fluency is synonymous with high response frequencies. As such, a main practice in PT is the use of shaping procedures to build frequencies on academic skills to levels that indicate mastery. However, as in other areas of behavior analysis, shaping tends to be implemented based on “feel” rather than on a set of systematic procedures. In our basic science, percentile schedules of reinforcement have been demonstrated to be a more systematic means of shaping behavioral repertoires and training others in the shaping process. This presentation will provide a conceptual account of the relevance of percentile schedules for PT practices. A detailed methodology for using percentile schedules in the shaping of response frequencies will be offered. Finally, “plain English” strategies for training precision teachers in the usage of percentile schedules of reinforcement will be provided.
 
Bringing Basic Science Into an Applied Setting: Using the Percentile Schedule to Take the Art Out of Shaping
MOLLY HALLIGAN (University Nevada, Reno), Kerri K. Milyko (University of Nevada, Reno), Kimberly Nix Berens (Center for Advanced Learning, Inc.)
Abstract: Precision Teaching methods have produced fluent academic behaviors. Traditionally, shaping fluent behaviors has occurred through the reinforcement of behavior streams, or timings, resulting in the highest frequency. However, delivering reinforcement contingent upon “personal best” performance often produces responding similar to that of ratio strain. Regularly, precision teachers identify this ratio strain; often providing reinforcement for behaviors that do not necessarily meet any sort of criterion (e.g., sympathy reinforcement). However, there are exceptional precision teachers that have their own shaping process developed through an extensive history of interactions with a multitude of learners. Unfortunately, these methods are difficult to teach and remain rather artistic in nature. Being a natural science, it is surprising that an artistic technique remains the predominant shaping method in behavior analysis. Diversely, percentile schedules of reinforcement allow for a more systematic shaping procedure, removing the artistic “feeling” of shaping. Therefore, the current presentation will show clinical data from a learning center that uses Galbicka’s percentile schedule in various ways with different types of learners. Data will be discussed with respect to frequency, celeration, and variability.
 
Dissecting the Percentile Schedule Equation: Evaluating the Effects of Various Densities of Reinforcement
KERRI K. MILYKO (University of Nevada, Reno), Kimberly Nix Berens (Center for Advanced Learning, Inc.)
Abstract: Percentile schedules of reinforcement have been effective in shaping rate of lever pressing in rats, increasing variability in key pressing with teenagers with autism, decreasing carbon-oxide levels of smokers, increasing eye contact with children with Fragile X syndrome, and increasing on-task behaviors with children with learning disabilities. Within these studies, researchers have evaluated various manipulations of Galbicka’s percentile schedule equation, such as the density of reinforcement and the number of recent observations used to calculate the reinforcement criterion. However, further investigation is warranted, particularly that which evaluates the effects of the schedule alone without an added rule, which may potentially compete with the programmed contingency. Therefore, the present study examined the effects of different densities of reinforcement with college students performing a simple computer task using an A/B/A/C/A/D reversal design with a constant-series control. Data will be examined with respect to frequency, celeration, and variability. Additionally, a discussion will be provided regarding implications of the current study and further directions of investigation.
 
 
Panel #397
CE Offered: BACB
Accreditation and Licensure: Defining and Supporting the Future of Applied Behavior Analysis
Monday, May 31, 2010
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Texas Ballroom Salon F (Grand Hyatt)
Area: TBA; Domain: Theory
CE Instructor: Kristie Frissen-Thompson, Ph.D.
Chair: Charles T. Merbitz (Chicago School of Professional Psychology)
LINDA J. PARROTT HAYES (University of Nevada, Reno)
PATRICK M. GHEZZI (University of Nevada)
LIBBY M. STREET (Central Washington University)
MICHAEL J. CAMERON (Simmons College)
Abstract: People in a field accredit educational programs when they are judged to produce graduates who are seen as competent professionals. Such a judgment requires standards and a consensus that the standards provide for competent graduates. Then, evaluators must be trained to apply the standards, and a system must be operating to judge programs, produce reports, and resolve disputes. Finally, the standards must be made public and shared with educators, so that educational programs can be shaped to meet them. When the entire system is in place, State governments look to accreditation standards to guarantee minimum standards of competence and ethics, so that citizen-consumers are protected from incompetent and unethical practitioners. Prospective students can look for accredited programs to help assure that they will have certain competencies and qualify for known, accepted credentials before they enroll in a school. Finally, federal support for training needed professionals can be pursued. ABAI is now in the process of revising its Standards and accreditation system. Members of the ABAI Education Board will discuss the importance of ABAI? accreditation of behavior analysis programs to the field. Issues of ?graduate and undergraduate accreditation and national recognition of? ABAI's accreditation program will be addressed.
 
 
Symposium #399
CE Offered: BACB
Research on Verbal Relations
Monday, May 31, 2010
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
214C (CC)
Area: VRB/AUT; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Daniel B. Shabani (California State University, Los Angeles)
CE Instructor: Brian Iwata, Ph.D.
Abstract: Skinner (1957) defined verbal behavior as the behavior of an individual that has been reinforced through the mediation of another person's behavior (i.e., the listener). Moreover, to be considered verbal, the listener must have been conditioned to respond precisely in order to reinforce the behavior of the speaker. Thus, undertanding the listener repertoire is essential for the development of effective linguistic skills. The current symposium focuses on the study of verbally mediated listener skills in the context of teaching individuals with disabilities. The first presentation focuses on motivational control over listener responses. The second study compared listener and speaker training procedures for the establishment of novel stimulus relations. The third study evaluated specific prerequisites for the establishment of rule-following. Finally, the fourth study assessed the effects of speaker training on the emergence of categorization and listener skills. These presentations shed light into the design of programs to develop verbal and verbally-controlled behaviors.
 
Establishing Operations and Listener Behavior
ROBERT R. PABICO (Center for Behavior Analysis and Language Development), Daniel B. Shabani (California State University, Los Angeles), Rachel Adler (California State University, Los Angeles), Erika Myles (California State University, Los Angeles)
Abstract: Listening behavior requires the listener to discriminate and differentially respond to verbal stimuli within their environment and to associate those verbal stimuli by emitting either a verbal or nonverbal responses. However, the presence or absence of setting events (i.e., motivating operations; MO) may in fact influence the listener’s behavior to respond in an appropriate fashion to verbal stimuli in his environment. Therefore, the purpose of the current investigation was to evaluate the role of motivating operations on listener responding.
 
The Effects of Listener and Speaker Training on the Formation of Equivalence Classes
EVELYN C. SPRINKLE (California State University, Sacramento), Lesley A. Macpherson (California State University, Sacramento), Krisann E. Schroeder (California State University, Sacramento), Jared T. Coon (California State University, Sacramento), Caio F. Miguel (California State University, Sacramento)
Abstract: Equivalence relations may be established through the training of either listener or speaker repertoires. The purpose of the current study was to compare the use of standard conditional discrimination procedures and textual/tact training in the establishment of three-member equivalence classes containing dictated words, pictures and printed words. Three male children with autism were taught to select pictures and printed words in the presence of their dictated names in a conditional discrimination task. Additionally, they were taught to produce the vocal label corresponding to a presented picture or printed word during a simple discrimination task. Two participants acquired speaker relations in fewer trials than listener relations. The remaining participant acquired both relations in an equal number of trials. For all participants, both listener and speaker training resulted in the formation of stimulus classes and the emergence of untrained stimulus relations.
 
Rule-Governed Behavior: Further Analysis of a Procedure for Teaching Children With Autism a Preliminary Repertoire of Rule-Following
CARRIE KATHLEEN ZUCKERMAN (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.), Jonathan J. Tarbox (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.), Michele R. Bishop (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.), Melissa L. Olive (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.), Denis P. O'Hora (National University of Ireland, Galway)
Abstract: This presentation consists of data from two studies on teaching prerequisite skills which may be necessary for developing a repertoire of rule-governed behavior. In the first study, children with autism were taught “conditionality,” by reinforcing compliance with instructions containing “if/then” statements. The emergence of untrained instances of following if/then rules is evidence for the formation of the generalized operant class of rule-following, rather than merely the acquisition of particular behaviors under stimulus control, and generalization of this sort was observed for two of three participants. The second study was a replication and extension of the first. The same procedures were used with one exception; the behavior was specified before the antecedent was described. In other words, the children were asked to perform the behavior “if” the appropriate antecedent was presented. Results will be discussed in terms of implications for autism intervention as well as the learning history which may lay the foundation for the development of a repertoire of rule-governed behavior.
 
The Effects of Single-Tact Training on Naming and Categorization by Children With Autism
VISSY V. KOBARI-WRIGHT (California State University, Sacramento), Sonya Gotts (California State University, Sacramento), Caio F. Miguel (California State University, Sacramento)
Abstract: Recent studies have demonstrated that the skill of sorting objects by category develops with no direct training when typically-developing children learn to label pictures and objects with a common category name. A recent study by our group found that a multiple-tact training procedure produced novel categorization in two of the three participants diagnosed with autism. The purpose of the current study was to extend the previous study by controlling for the possibility that stimulus classes could have been formed based on within class generalization, and to test whether the common label is solely responsible for the stimulus class formation. Participants included two children diagnosed with autism (5 years-old). The effects of training were evaluated using a non-concurrent multiple-baseline across participants design. Both children, who did not categorize or emit listener behaviors correctly during pretraining were able to do so during posttraining probes. These results suggest that the common label is solely responsible for stimulus class formation, and single tact training may be an efficient way to produce naming and categorization in children diagnosed with autism
 
 
Invited Paper Session #401
CE Offered: BACB
Drug Reinforcing Effects: Establishment and Measurement
Monday, May 31, 2010
11:00 AM–11:50 AM
Ballroom A (CC)
Area: BPH; Domain: Experimental Analysis
CE Instructor: Linda LeBlanc, Ph.D.
Chair: Karen G. Anderson (West Virginia University)
RICHARD A. MEISCH (University Of Texas HSC-H)
Richard A. Meisch published his first drug self-administration paper in 1967, and has continued to conduct drug self-administration studies to the present. In 1970 he completed an M.D.-Ph.D. program (Ph.D. in Pharmacology and M.D.) at the University of Minnesota, and subsequently a postdoctoral fellowship in behavioral pharmacology and a residency in Psychiatry at the same institution. Since 1988 he has been a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston. His research has remained focused on drug self-administration studies in humans, rhesus monkeys, rats, and mice. A number of routes of administration have been explored. In addition to the IV route he has used the oral, subcutaneous, and intraperitoneal routes. Research interests include procedures to establish drug reinforcing effects and to measure the magnitude of the effects. Methodological interests include the interpretation of drug self-administration data and development of novel experimental designs and procedures. In studying these topics his research has crossed into areas such as polydrug abuse, behavioral economics, food restriction, behavioral genetics, and the generality of findings across humans, monkeys, and rodents.
Abstract: Orally delivered drugs are more difficult to establish as reinforcers than intravenously delivered drugs for at least three reasons: (1) aversive taste, (2) low volume consumed including low drug intake (mg of drug/kg of body weight), and (3) long delay between drinking and onset of central nervous system effects. Nevertheless , a broad range of orally delivered drugs can be established as effective reinforcers for rhesus monkeys. Moreover, some of these drugs will also serve as reinforcers for rats and mice. Strategies for establishing drugs as reinforcer via the oral route will be discussed as well as an explanation for the marked effectiveness of these drugs when taken by mouth. New methods have been developed for measuring the magnitude of reinforcing effects will be described. The findings with these new methods are consistent with findings from choice studies. Although choice procedures are the “gold standard” for evaluating relative reinforcing effects, counter-intuitive findings emerge under some choice parameters. These findings will be shown to be instances of a larger analytic perspective.
 
 
Panel #402
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
The Applied Behavior Analysis Crusades: Notes From the Front Lines
Monday, May 31, 2010
11:00 AM–11:50 AM
Seguin (Grand Hyatt)
Area: CSE/TBA; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
CE Instructor: Jessica Everett, Ph.D.
Chair: Janet L. Montgomery (Florida Institute of Technology)
KRISTIN K. MYERS (Florida Tech)
COREY L. ROBERTSON (Florida Institute of Technology)
CINDY SCHMITT (Florida Institute of Technology)
Abstract: B. F. Skinner saw the potential for world change in what he had discovered regarding human behavior. In the 21st century, applied behavior analysis (ABA) is gaining worldwide recognition and acceptance, mostly due to its implications for autism and developmental disabilities. However the reach of ABA does not stop there, and it is important to broadcast successful application in business, education, homeland security, parent training, and more. As Applied Behavior Analysis is a natural science of human behavior, any movement to spread the knowledge and use of the principles of ABA ethically requires proper training. In this panel, we propose three cornerstones of the crusade for ABA: Dissemination, Education, and Supervision. In addition, we share where the field is now, what some are currently doing, and what we need to do to ensure Applied Behavior Analysis becomes part of 21st century culture.
 
 
Invited Tutorial #414
CE Offered: BACB
The Unusual Suspects: Myths and Misconceptions About the Picture Exchange Communication System
Monday, May 31, 2010
1:30 PM–2:20 PM
Ballroom A (CC)
Area: VRB/AUT; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Kimberly Berens, Ph.D.
Chair: Caio F. Miguel (California State University, Sacramento)
Presenting Author: ANDREW S. BONDY (Pyramid Educational Consultants)
Abstract: The first presentations about the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) were offered at ABAI conventions in 1987. The foundation for the system and its teaching protocol are found in Skinner’s analysis of verbal behavior. Since that time, research and interest about PECS has expanded significantly—at the 2009 convention there were 15 papers and posters about and involving PECS. Publications about the system and its protocol also have increased notably with over 60 publications worldwide. Despite this popularity—or perhaps because of this popularity—myths and misconceptions about PECS and its use abound. These range from early questions, such as “Can we do PECS and applied behavior analysis?” to recent comments such as, “You can’t do PECS and verbal behavior.” While there is an emphasis upon manding early in the protocol, practitioners often do not move toward tacting and intraverbal use. There also are ongoing concerns about the relationship between PECS and speech development, including confusion about what augmentative communication effects are all about. We will review these and other concerns about PECS and its use.
 
ANDREW S. BONDY (Pyramid Educational Consultants)
Andrew S. Bondy, Ph.D. has over 40 years experience working with children and adults with autism and related developmental disabilities. He served for over twelve years as the Director of the Delaware Autistic Program. He has taught numerous university level courses for teachers and specialists regarding autism, behavior analysis, curriculum design, effective instruction, and functional communication training. He has presented regional, national, and international workshops concerning educational, behavioral, and communicative issues pertaining to preschool children through adults with autism.
 
 
Symposium #415
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
Social and Communicative Interventions for Individuals With Autism or Developmental Disabilities
Monday, May 31, 2010
1:30 PM–2:50 PM
204AB (CC)
Area: AUT/DDA; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Mandy J. Rispoli (Texas A & M University)
CE Instructor: John Pokrzywinski, M.A.
Abstract: In this symposium we present recent research regarding social and communicative interventions for persons with autism spectrum disorders and developmental disabilities. The first paper provides a review of the literature involving the use of speech generating devices to teach communication skills to individuals with developmental disabilities. Results highlight areas of future research and implications for practitioners. The second paper investigates the use of video modeling to teach appropriate social interaction behaviors to college students with high functioning autism or Asperger’s syndrome. Implications for future research and clinical practice are provided. The third paper evaluates self-monitoring for decreasing inappropriate social behaviors for two boys with autism. Results demonstrate reduction in each target behavior. Finally, the fourth paper provides a meta-analysis of single case research on the use of augmentative and alternative communication with individuals who have autism spectrum disorders. Data are analyzed using an effect size analysis, the Improvement Rate Difference.
 
Speech Generating Devices in Communication Interventions for Individuals With Developmental Disabilities: A Review of the Literature
SIGLIA PIMENTEL HÏ¿½HER (Texas A & M University), Mandy J. Rispoli (Texas A & M University), Jessica Hetlinger Franco (San Antonio Autism Community Network), Russell Lang (University of California, Santa Barbara)
Abstract: The use of Speech Generating Devices is a popular means for teaching communication skills to persons with developmental disabilities. We reviewed studies published between 1989 and 2009 involving the use of Speech Generating Devices (SGD) in communication interventions for individuals with developmental disabilities. The purpose of this review was to examine how and with whom SGD training for communication has occurred in intervention studies. Systematic searches of electronic databases, journals, and reference lists identified 46 studies meeting the inclusion criteria. These studies were evaluated for participant characteristics, SGD characteristics, targeted communication skills, intervention procedures, outcomes, and certainty of evidence. Targeted communication skills included requesting, labeling, receptive language skills, and spontaneous communication. Positive outcomes were reported for the majority of the reviewed studies. Overall, this literature base supports the use of SGDs with simple programming for individuals with limited functional communication skills. Recommendations for future research and clinical practice will be provided.
 
The Use of Video Modeling to Teach Social Behaviors to College Students With Autism Spectrum Disorders
ROSE A. MASON (Texas A&M University), Mandy J. Rispoli (Texas A & M University), Jennifer B. Ganz (Texas A&M University)
Abstract: The social impairments characteristic of individuals identified with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) result in challenges in successfully maneuvering both familiar environments and new environments with novel experiences and expectations. Despite the growing numbers of individuals with ASD who participate in post-secondary education (Smith, 2007), the research base for interventions to assist with successful integration into college life is scant. Video modeling, which has been demonstrated to be an effective intervention for improving social skills in children and adolescents with ASD, lacks empirical support for use with post-secondary individuals with ASD. The purpose of this study to investigate the effect of video modeling on social interaction skills for post-secondary students with ASD and to compare modifications of video modeling interventions on the acquisition and/or generalization of appropriate social behaviors, utilizing a multiple baseline design across participants. This paper will present the results of this study, for which the data is currently being collected. Further, the presenters will discuss findings and implications for future research.
 
Improving Social Behavior of Individuals with Autism Through the Use of Self-Monitoring
AMY KATHLEEN HEATH (Texas A & M University), Jennifer B. Ganz (Texas A&M University), John Davis (Texas A & M University)
Abstract: Self-monitoring is an antecedent strategy which allows individuals to monitor their own behavior or learning. Individuals are taught to collect data on their own behavior by comparing their engagement in a target behavior with pre-established criteria. This study examined the use of a self-monitoring procedure on the social behaviors of two boys with autism spectrum disorders. Specific target behaviors included decreasing duration of talking about preferred topics in a conversation and decreasing the duration of playing with his tongue for the two participants, respectively. Participants were taught to assess if they were engaged in the target behavior on a FI 30 sec schedule with the assistance of a MotivAider ®. A multiple-baseline design was used to demonstrate experimental control. Data were collected on frequency of statements, questions or preferred topic discussions that occurred within a 5 minute conversation for the first participant and the frequency of tongue play for the second participant. Results showed improvement in the target behavior for both participants. These results suggest that self-monitoring may be an effective means of improving social behaviors for students with autism spectrum disorder. Suggestions for future research and implications for practice will be discussed.
 
A Meta-Analytic Application of IRD to Evaluate Augmentative and Alternative Communication Systems with Individuals with Autism
JENNIFER B. GANZ (Texas A&M University), Theresa Earles-Vollrath (University of Central Missouri), Amy Kathleen Heath (Texas A & M University), Richard I. Parker (Texas A & M University), Mandy J. Rispoli (Texas A & M University), Jaime Duran (Texas A & M University)
Abstract: Many individuals with autism cannot speak or cannot speak intelligibly. A variety of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) approaches to address these deficits have been investigated. However, most of the research on these approaches has been single-case research, with small numbers of participants. The purpose of this investigation was to meta-analyze the single case research on the use of AAC; including the Picture Exchange Communication System, other picture-based AAC interventions, and speech-generating devices; with individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Twenty-four single-case studies were analyzed. The participants included in these studies were individuals of all ages who had an autism spectrum disorder diagnosis, sometimes along with additional diagnoses (e.g., developmental disability, sensory impairment). The data is currently being analyzed using an effect size analysis, the Improvement Rate Difference. Results will be reported by six overarching variables: intervention, dependent variable, setting, age range, iconicity of AAC symbols, and diagnostic category. Implications will be discussed.
 
 
Symposium #416
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
Scaling Up: Intervention Models for Students With Autism From Classroom to State
Monday, May 31, 2010
1:30 PM–2:50 PM
202AB (CC)
Area: AUT/EDC; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Diane M. Sainato (The Ohio State University)
CE Instructor: Bryan Crisp, M.A.
Abstract: Four papers will be presented. We will highlight the results of data based efforts to provide intervention programs for students with autism from those focusing on individual children to those making an impact at the state level. Hudson and Schwartz will offer a paper examining a study on increasing social interactions of preschool children with autism using a conversation flip book. Sainato, Jung, Morrison, and Axe will detail the findings of Project TASK, an inclusive kindergarten program for children with autism and typical peers while Davis, Schwartz and Williams will describe their project examining the use of teams to assist teachers in the identification and delivery of services to students with ASD in two school districts. Finally, Garfinkle will provide an overview of Montana’s three-year statewide program of intensive behavioral intervention for young children with autism. Implications for service delivery and future directions for research will be discussed.
 
Increasing Social Interactions of Young Students With Autism: Effectiveness of a Conversational Flipbook
DEBBY HUDSON (Seattle Pacific University), Ilene S. Schwartz (University of Washington)
Abstract: With the ever increasing number of children being diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) now 1 in 91 (National Institutes of Health, 2009), the need for effective, sustainable and low cost intervention for language and social skills, major core deficits of ASD, is a priority in providing support for children, teachers, and families. This study implemented a low technology communication device, the Conversation Flip Book (CFB), to facilitate conversation between three preschool children with ASD and their typically developing classmates. A multiple –probe baseline across subjects was used to assess the effectiveness of the specific conversation training on interaction and behavior between children with disabilities and their typically developing peers. The results of the training with the Conversation Flip Book (CFB) did prove to facilitate conversation skills for all three target children during free choice time. All three target children were able to maintain conversation skills at follow up when the training was withdrawn and two of the children were able to generalize the skills to other settings and people. Due to time constraints, generalization data was not taken on the third child.
 
Project Task: Transition for Children With Autism to School From Kindergarten
DIANE M. SAINATO (The Ohio State University), Sunhwa Jung (Otterbein College), Rebecca Morrison (Oakstone Academy), Judah Axe (Simmons College)
Abstract: Project TASK was to developed and evaluated a comprehensive program for kindergarten children with autism. A total of 42 children with autism from the model program and 21 students with autism recruited from four local school districts participated. Results included an increase in scores on standardized assessments across all areas and improved levels of appropriate engagement in observed classroom activities as compared to the comparison subjects. Standardized assessments for receptive and expressive language, cognitive functioning, social behavior, adaptive behavior, and academic achievement were conducted. Direct observations of child and teacher behavior (i.e. engagement, social interaction, prompt level, etc.) were implemented once a month for a minimum of 6100 minutes per year for each student. Inter-observer agreement measures for the direct observations yielded mean levels of at least 90%. Initial results indicate Reading Mastery, social skills instruction; behavioral interventions, and use of naturally occurring learning opportunities to practice IEP objectives were effective in promoting achievement of kindergarten children with ASD in inclusive settings. The project will be discussed in terms of the establishment of more effective educational programs for children with autism spectrum disorders with reduction in the cost of services.
 
Elementary DATA: Team Based Training for Identification and Delivery of Services to Students With Autism Spectrum Disorder
CAROL ANN DAVIS (University of Washington), Ilene S. Schwartz (University of Washington), Penny Lynn Williams (University of Washington)
Abstract: We examined the use of teams to assist teachers in the identification and delivery of services to students with ASD. Data on fidelity of the intervention were collected. The “Student Program Assessment” developed as a part of this project examined components in the general areas of: systematic instruction, individualized supports, functional approach to behavior, data collection, and family involvement. Both standardized tests (i.e., SSRS, Dibels, PPVT) and behavioral observations were collected on student performance. Fidelity of implementation was collected using a needs-based generated checklist and direct observation. Over the course of three years, this project trained 4 teams (16 total team members), in 2 school districts to assist in the identification of and delivery of services to students with ASD. These teams served a total of 54 students K-5. Data on overall program components indicate that a mean change score of +16.75. Data on growth on all standardized measures were documented. Data on the fidelity of intervention indicated that as fidelity increased the interventions effectiveness increased (e.g., student outcome data). Data will be reported for all students in the project and three case studies examining individual student outcomes will be presented.
 
A State-Wide Model for Behavioral Services for Young Children With Autism
ANN N. GARFINKLE (University of Montana)
Abstract: This paper will present work being conducted in the second year of a three year state-wide behavioral program for young children with autism. The State of Montana recently implemented a program to serve 50 young children (younger than 5 at program entry) diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders (ASD; as demonstrated on the ADOS) and significant adaptive delays (as measured by the Vineland). This program provides 20 hours per week, per child of intensive ABA at-home intervention. The paper will present issues related to behavioral training of families, family support specialists and rehabilitations aides as well as information about the progress of the participants. Data so far suggest gains in all participants with gains in language and adaptive skills as the most significant. Also presented will be the projects unique integration of formative assessments with shoulder-to-shoulder professional development activities.
 
 
Symposium #417
CE Offered: BACB
Assessment and Teaching of Abstract and Complex Social Behaviors to Children With Autism
Monday, May 31, 2010
1:30 PM–2:50 PM
203AB (CC)
Area: AUT/DDA; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Sabrina D. Daneshvar (Autism Spectrum Therapies)
CE Instructor: Philip Hineline, Ph.D.
Abstract: It is well documented in the literature that individuals with autism have deficits in understanding and performing abstract and complex social behaviors. Specifically, they lack a fundamental understanding of other people’s perspectives (e.g., Baron-Cohen, Leslie & Frith, 1985) and are unable to engage in behaviors related to taking another person’s perspective such as lying or cheating. Included in the present symposium are 4 papers reviewing: 1) the development of abstract social behaviors in typically developing individuals and individuals with autism, 2) the assessment of social behaviors in individuals with autism and 3) the teaching of social behaviors to individuals with autism using empirically validated strategies (discrimination training and video modeling). Findings are discussed in terms of applications to natural settings, increased participation in social interactions and overall improvements in quality of life for individuals with autism.
 
The Development of Perspective Taking and Lying in Typically Developing Individuals and Individuals With Autism
JENNIFER BURKE (Autism Spectrum Therapies)
Abstract: It is well documented that individuals with autism demonstrate difficulties with abstract social behaviors, such as perspective taking in the form of lying. In contrast to typically developing peers, individuals with autism struggle with understanding, performing, and knowing when to perform or not to perform these social behaviors, even if language abilities are within a normal range. This presentation will review the development of two behaviors in typical children: perspective taking and lying, and what is known about the development of these behaviors in individuals with autism. There is currently a lack of information regarding children with autism and the development of the ability to successfully lie. The ability to lie involves higher order processes, such as theory of mind and perspective taking. It is well known that children with autism have difficulty with perspective taking (Perner, Frith, Leslie, & Leekam, 1989); however research has shown that initial deficits in these areas that can be improved through the use of behavior techniques such as reinforcement, modeling, and prompting (e.g., Carr & Darcy, 1990). The purpose of this discussion is to summarize what is know about the development of lying and perspective taking in typically developing children and children with autism.
 
The Assessment of Socially Abstract Behavior in Children With Autism
SARA GOMEZ (Autism Spectrum Therapies)
Abstract: Children with autism spectrum disorders demonstrate a variety of social impairments (e.g., Anderson, Oti, Lord & Welch, 2009). Abstract social behaviors such as lying and cursing are often never displayed or emitted in a socially appropriate context. Children with autism are not always aware of the discriminative stimuli in their environment which would typically elicit a particular response or behavior (Yirmiya, Solomonica-Levi & Shulman, 1996). Four children with autism participated in this study. The first phase of the study involved an assessment phase, in which a sample group of typically developing children (ages 6-10) were interviewed to determine under what conditions they lie and curse. These findings were used to establish what discriminative stimuli are present in the environment to gain appropriate response criteria for teaching discrimination. In the second phase, the 4 participants with autism were then also interviewed in order to compare their responses to those of their typical peers and focus the discrimination training. Assessment results found that typical children were likely to lie and curse based on the perspective of those in their current environment whereas children with autism lied less frequently and were less likely to take into consideration the individuals in their environment.
 
Teaching Discrimination of Abstract Social Behaviors to Children With Autism and/or Developmental Disabilities
CAITLIN ELIZABETH O'BOYLE (Autism Spectrum Therapies)
Abstract: The present study looked at the effects of a discrimination training procedure with respect to three abstract social behaviors: lying, cheating, and verbal aggression in children diagnosed with autism and/or developmental disabilities. The use of discrimination training procedures has been successful when implemented with children with autism and/or developmental disabilities for training when it is appropriate versus inappropriate to emit a previously learned behavior. This study explored more sophisticated forms of social behaviors that are complex, and therefore difficult to operationally define. A multiple baseline across participants design was utilized. Baseline assessments were conducted based on the lack of discrimination on the participants’ part. Discrimination training was defined as training participants to emit certain behaviors at appropriate times versus inappropriate times. Post-discrimination training, an analysis of participants was conducted and the behavior measured was participants’ ability to emit certain behaviors at appropriate times versus inappropriate times. Participant outcomes were later compared to the criteria available on typically developing children (no discrimination training). The present study will produce preliminary findings and provide researchers and applied practitioners’ insight into perspective taking, further uses of discrimination training procedures, and further research on complex social behaviors with children with autism and/or developmental disabilities.
 
Video Modeling as a Group Instructional Strategy: The Effectiveness in Teaching Perspective Taking Skills to Children With Autism
EVE R. RASMUSSEN (Autism Spectrum Therapies), Sabrina D. Daneshvar (Autism Spectrum Therapies)
Abstract: Research has consistently documented the failure of children with autism to take someone else’s perspective, a skill that is developed in typical children starting around age 4 (e.g., Baron-Cohen et. al, 1985). Two previous studies have successfully used video modeling to teach perspective taking to children with autism (LeBlanc, et. al, 2003; Daneshvar & Charlop-Christy, 2003). Video modeling has been successfully utilized in classroom settings (e.g., Ayres & Langone, 2005); however, the video model is presented to a child in a 1:1 teaching setting with a teacher or paraprofessional. The present study extends the previous research on teaching perspective taking by assessing whether video modeling presented as a classroom wide instructional strategy is effective in teaching perspective taking to children with autism. In addition, while previous research has focused on teaching first order, basic perspective taking skills, the present study also assessed the efficacy of video modeling in teaching second order, more advanced perspective taking tasks. Five children with autism, ages 4 to 9 participated in this study; results found that video modeling was effectively applied in a group setting and 5 out of the 5 children successfully acquired and generalized both first and second order perspective taking skills.
 
 
Symposium #421
CE Offered: BACB
Advancing the Assessment and Treatment of Pediatric Feeding Disorders
Monday, May 31, 2010
1:30 PM–2:50 PM
Texas Ballroom Salon C (Grand Hyatt)
Area: CBM/DDA; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Megan D. Aclan (The Chicago School, Los Angeles)
Discussant: Michele D. Wallace (California State University, Los Angeles)
CE Instructor: Joseph Cautilli, Ph.D.
Abstract: As more providers begin to treat the problem of pediatric feeding disorders, more emphasis should be placed upon practitioner training on assessment and possible treatment interventions. This symposium addresses these issues through a large scale descriptive analysis and the utilization of basic behavior analytic principles in the treatment of two specific issues. The first talk focuses upon using a known assessment tool for feeding problems within the new population of children with autism. The second talk looks at the not as often used changing criterion design in order to establish and maintain chewing in children with autism who are at a stand-still in terms of texture advancement. The third talk addresses treatment intervention for feeding disorders without the use of the commonly implored escape extinction, thus avoiding potential negative side effects. The symposium concludes with a discussion by Dr. Michele Wallce.
 
Validation of the Screening Tool of Feeding Problems Within Autism Spectrum Disorders
KATHARINE GUTSHALL (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.), Taira Lanagan (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.), Courtney Lanagan (FirstSteps for Kids, Inc.)
Abstract: Eating is a fundamental behavior required for physical and mental growth. Feeding problems such as refusal, nutritional deficits, selectivity, skill deficits, rumination, and aspiration can all attribute to potential health problems. The Screening Tool of Feeding Problems (STEP) was designed as a method to identify individuals for whom feeding and mealtime behaviors were problematic so that these individuals could receive behavioral or medical intervention (Matson and Kuhn, 2001). However, when developed the STEP was only applied to individuals with mental retardation. Past studies have shown that caregivers often report differences in eating patterns for children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorders (Ledford and Gast, 2006, Martins, Young, and Robson, 2008, Schreck and Williams, 2006, Schreck, Williams, and Smith, 2004). However, few have used any sort of standardized scale to ascertain the true deficits seen within this population. The STEP was administered to the caregivers of over 40 children diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder. Results from these individuals are able to be compared and contrasted with the results obtained by Matson and Kuhn within the mental retardation population. Further consideration determines if the STEP is an appropriate screening tool for this young population.
 
Acquisition of Chewing in Children With Autism Utilizing a Changing Criterion Design
TAIRA LANAGAN (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc), Katharine Gutshall (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.), John Galle (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.)
Abstract: The changing criterion design has been widely demonstrated to effectively change behavior across various populations. Prompting and reinforcement have been used as a treatment to effectively increase the number of chews per bite (Shore, LeBlanc & Simmons, 1999). The purpose of this study was to use a changing criterion design to increase chews per bite in two children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Data were collected on the number of chews per bite during all sessions. Treatment was initiated using a non-edible object presented simultaneously with a bite of food to teach chewing. Results demonstrated that both participants were able to increase the rate of chewing across a variety of foods.
 
Treating Feeding Disorders Without the Use of Escape Extinction
KATHARINE GUTSHALL (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.), Taira Lanagan (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.), Nichole Swansfeger (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.), Megan D. Aclan (The Chicago School, Los Angeles)
Abstract: Within the first few years of life, acquiring the skill of eating is one of the most fundamental and important behaviors a child can learn. However, for some children, the act of eating is not learned, or learned inappropriately. In these cases behavioral interventions have been shown to be useful in increasing appropriate eating while decreasing inappropriate mealtime behavior. Interventions tend to include one or more components such as reinforcement, shaping, and escape extinction in order to gain the desired effect (Chung and Kahng, 2006). Within peer reviewed literature, the majority of successful interventions include the use of escape extinction (Kern and Marder, 1996; Cooper, et al. 1995; Coe, et al. 1997). However, knowing that the implementation of escape extinction can result in an increase of adverse side effects such as crying and refusal behavior, it is preferable to use extinction only when necessary. In treating two young boys, with and without developmental disabilities, feeding interventions were employed using reinforcement-based principles only within a reversal and multiple baseline design. Results from these cases indicate that escape extinction may not be necessary in the treatment of all clients. Additionally, thought should be given as to when clinicians and parents believe a client's feeding behavior to be "good enough."
 
 
Panel #430
CE Offered: BACB
Professional Development Series: Practicing What You Teach: Behavioral Approaches to College Instruction
Monday, May 31, 2010
1:30 PM–2:50 PM
Texas Ballroom Salon F (Grand Hyatt)
Area: TBA/EDC; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
CE Instructor: Claire St. Peter Pipkin, Ph.D.
Chair: Christopher J. Perrin (The Ohio State University)
BRYAN K. SAVILLE (James Madison University)
THOMAS S. CRITCHFIELD (Illinois State University)
NANCY A. NEEF (The Ohio State University)
KATE KELLUM (University of Mississippi)
Abstract: College students’ academic performance is often affected by their inability to discriminate relevant material and then effectively study that material. Behaviorally approaches to college instruction offer a means of addressing these deficiencies. The panelists will discuss interteaching, equivalence relations to structure college instruction, use of games to increase helpful studying, and how to conduct research while teaching college courses.
 
 
Symposium #434
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
A Further Examination of Functional Analysis Methodologies
Monday, May 31, 2010
2:00 PM–3:20 PM
Lone Star Ballroom Salon C (Grand Hyatt)
Area: EAB/DDA; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Tonya Nichole Davis (Baylor University)
Discussant: Christina L. Fragale (Meadows Center for Preventing Educational Risk)
CE Instructor: Jessica Everett, Ph.D.
Abstract: Purpose: In this symposium we will present recent research regarding use of functional analyses when working with persons with developmental disabilities. The first paper examines the appropriateness of utilizing a functional analysis in a school setting. School administrators are often apprehensive about allowing an assessment which specifically elicits high rates of challenging behavior; therefore, this paper examines the effects of conducting a functional analysis in a school setting on subsequent challenging behavior in the classroom. The second paper investigates the difference between the results of a brief functional analysis consisting of 5-minute sessions and a functional analysis consisting of 10-minute sessions. Implications for application in clinical practice are presented. The third paper evaluates the use of a modified, latency functional analysis to identify the function of elopement. Results identify the value of this modified assessment for assessment of elopement, a challenging behavior which is characteristically difficult to assess with traditional functional analysis methodologies.
 
The Effects of a Functional Analysis on Subsequent Classroom Behavior
LISA FUENTES (University of North Texas), Tonya Nichole Davis (Baylor University), Shannon Durand (University of North Texas)
Abstract: Although a functional analysis is an essential component to a functional behavior assessment, school administrators are often apprehensive about allowing an assessment which specifically elicits, and potentially reinforces, high rates of challenging behavior. This apprehension is likely due to concern that participation in a functional analysis will results in increased challenging behavior in the classroom prior to the implementation of an intervention. In this study, we examined the effects of participation in a functional analysis on classroom challenging behavior, across multiple participants with developmental disabilities. Data was collected for weeks prior to the implementation of functional analyses, during classroom sessions immediate after participation in a functional analysis, and for weeks after completed participation in a functional analysis. The results are discussed in terms of the practicality and rationality of perceived disadvantages of utilizing a functional analysis in a school setting.
 
A Comparison of Brief Versus Traditional Functional Analyses
SHANNON DURAND (University of North Texas), Tonya Nichole Davis (Baylor University), Lisa Fuentes (University of North Texas)
Abstract: Several variations in functional analysis methodology exist, with one common variation being the duration of sessions. While traditional functional analysis sessions are 15-minutes in duration, brief analysis utilizing 5-minute sessions also have documented success at identifying potential reinforcers of challenging behavior. The purpose of this study was to compare the results of 5- and 10-minute session functional analyses. In the first phase of the study we implemented a 5-minute session functional analysis with two participants diagnosed with developmental disabilities. The functional analysis of phase one resulted in very few displays of challenging behavior for the first participant and yielded undifferentiated results for second participant; thereby resulting in no firm conclusion regarding function of behavior for both participants. In phase two we implemented a second functional analysis utilizing 10-minute sessions. The results of the second analysis yielded clear results for both participants. The results are compared to other studies and implications of this study will be discussed in terms of the selection of functional analysis methodologies in clinical settings.
 
Functional Analysis of Elopement: A Comparison of Traditional and Latency Functional Analyses
TONYA NICHOLE DAVIS (Baylor University), Wendy A. Machalicek (University of Wisconsin-Madison), Lisa Fuentes (University of North Texas), Shannon Durand (University of North Texas), Sarah Sifford (Baylor University), Jessica Semons (Baylor University)
Abstract: We compared results of traditional functional analyses of elopement to the results of latency functional analyses for two children with autism. First, traditional functional analyses of elopement without participant retrieval following elopement were conducted for each participant using percentage of intervals as the dependent measure. Then, latency functional analyses of elopement were conducted for each participant using latency to elopement as the dependent measure. Compared results of both traditional and latency functional analyses indicated that each participant’s elopement was multiply maintained by access to attention and escape from demands. Findings suggest that the use of latency as the dependent measure of challenging behavior in functional analyses may yield similar results to traditional measures (e.g., percentage of intervals) of challenging behavior in functional analyses and may provide clinicians with an additional methodology to determine the operant function of elopement. The results will be compared to other studies and implications for clinical application will be discussed.
 
 
Symposium #437
CE Offered: BACB
The Design, Testing, and Implementation of Headsprout Reading Comprehension
Monday, May 31, 2010
2:00 PM–3:20 PM
Texas Ballroom Salon B (Grand Hyatt)
Area: EDC/TPC; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Melinda Sota (Headsprout)
CE Instructor: David Lee, Ph.D.
Abstract: This symposium will highlight various conceptual and applied considerations involved in designing and delivering a reading comprehension program, as well as how Headsprout addressed those considerations in order to develop a sound program that can be scaled to wide-spread implementations, yielding data to be used in the program’s formative evaluation. The conceptual foundations, methodological approaches, and applied tools of behavior analysis were central to the program’s development and testing, and will be discussed in light of their contributions to the program’s content, sequence, and contingencies for learners and educators.
 
Design of a Reading Comprehension Program: Building Learner Repertoires
MARTA LEON (Headsprout), T. V. Joe Layng (Headsprout), Victoria Ford (Headsprout), Melinda Sota (Headsprout), April Heimlich Stretz (Headsprout), Hirofumi Shimizu (Headsprout), Cassie Donish (Headsprout), Janet S. Twyman (Headsprout)
Abstract: This presentation will describe the process whereby instructional designers at Headsprout determined the key skills and strategies necessary for a fundamental reading comprehension repertoire that can be recruited by reading comprehension tasks of varying complexity and topographic characteristics. The presentation will provide an overview of the fine-grained analysis of the component skills involved in the behavior of comprehending and how that analysis can be translated into systematic strategies that can be explicitly taught to young learners. Reading comprehension entails a complex repertoire that is highly dependent on the specific reading comprehension question or task at hand. The sub-repertoires for four distinct reading comprehension tasks (literal, inferential, summative, and vocabulary comprehension) will be described in light of their concept analysis and task analysis. Vocabulary knowledge is another key component of reading comprehension, and this presentation will describe a procedure for accelerated vocabulary acquisition drawing on behavior-analytic principles.
 
Design of a Reading Comprehension Program: Data Collection
HIROFUMI SHIMIZU (Headsprout), Melinda Sota (Headsprout), Janet S. Twyman (Headsprout)
Abstract: The ability to collect live, detailed data on learner performance was an intrinsic component of the program design. Learner performance data guided the evaluation of the program during development and will continue to do so as the program reaches more learners, resulting in additional, large amounts of individual and aggregated student data. This presentation will describe the data collected automatically by the program; the rationale for data selection, categorization, and analysis; and some of the behind-the-scenes structure of the data collection system. Symposium attendants will be able to see how the data collection system is linked to the concept analyses that shaped the program and how it is used to feed back into the formative evaluation of the program for further development and evaluation.
 
Formative Evaluation of a Reading Comprehension Program: From First Draft to Public
April Heimlich Stretz (Headsprout), MELINDA SOTA (Headsprout), Marta Leon (Headsprout)
Abstract: Formative evaluation, also known as user testing, occurs with one student at a time for extended periods of time at the Headsprout user-testing laboratory. The goal of user testing is to provide experimental control-analysis data as a basis for program revision in order to provide the targeted guidance of learner behavior. User testing of Headsprout’s reading comprehension program includes direct observation, analysis of videotaped learner sessions, analysis of performance data within the program, pre- and post-test measurements, and learner and parent interviews. These components of the user testing process will be described and related to the design, development, evaluation, and refinement of the program. Specific examples will be provided of how events which occurred during user testing impacted subsequent program development and revision.
 
Implementation of a Reading Comprehension Program: The Role of the Teacher
PAMELA G. OSNES (Headsprout), Janet A. Webb (Headsprout), Janet S. Twyman (Headsprout), Melinda Sota (Headsprout), Marta Leon (Headsprout), T. V. Joe Layng (Headsprout)
Abstract: This presentation will address the role of educators when implementing a reading comprehension program, as well as considerations about implementation that shaped the design of the program from its inception. Key components of implementation to be discussed include frequency of program usage, performance tracking, data-based decision making, and teacher-initiated activities to promote the transfer and extension of the reading comprehension skills taught by the program to other materials and subject matters. This presentation will describe Headsprout's approach to encouraging the behaviors required to ensure a good implementation. This approach includes a commitment to a simple, easy-to-use program, carefully constructed job aids and user guides, proactive customer support, training, professional development, and an ongoing contingency analysis that assumes that all stakeholder behaviors are sensible operants that are a function of the current alternative sets of contingencies operating to select those behaviors. Implementation strategies designed in accord with this approach will be discussed.
 
 
Invited Tutorial #439
CE Offered: BACB
An Introduction to Using Genetics in Combination With Behavior Analysis to Understand Drug Abuse
Monday, May 31, 2010
2:30 PM–3:20 PM
Ballroom A (CC)
Area: BPH/EAB; Domain: Experimental Analysis
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Anibal Gutierrez Jr., Ph.D.
Chair: Jesse Dallery (University of Florida)
Presenting Author: SUZANNE H. MITCHELL (Oregon Health and Science University)
Abstract: The tutorial will first provide an introduction to behavioral genetics. This introduction will outline the basics of population genetics and will describe different gene mapping methods. Then I will discuss how selective breeding, classical genetic crosses and inbred strain research in animals can be used to identify the amount of variation in behavior that can be attributed to genetics rather than environmental influences. I will also review techniques used with humans, including family history and genome-wide association studies. After discussing the positive and negative features of the various techniques, I will discuss examples of findings using different genetic mouse models that provide information about the shared genetics between self-control (delay discounting and behavioral inhibition) with alcohol drinking, alcohol withdrawal and sensitivity to the stimulating effects of methamphetamine. These examples will be used to demonstrate the critical role of behavioral phenotypes and operational definitions of behavior in moving this area of research forward. Implications of these findings for human drug-using populations will be assessed as well as the limitations of animal phenotypes.
 
SUZANNE H. MITCHELL (Oregon Health and Science University)
Suzanne H. Mitchell, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) in the Behavioral Neuroscience and Psychiatry departments. She obtained her undergraduate degree at the University of Hull, England, and her Ph.D. at State University of New York at Stony Brook. Her research at OHSU uses lesion techniques and imaging to examine the basic neural processes involved in decision-making, including impulsive and risky decision making. Other research areas of interest include learning, cognition, and drug abuse. Dr. Mitchell has published extensively and lectures internationally on these topics.
 
 
Symposium #441
CE Offered: PSY
Teaching Social Behavior to Children With Autism
Monday, May 31, 2010
2:30 PM–3:50 PM
201 (CC)
Area: AUT/EAB; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Adel C. Najdowski (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.)
CE Instructor: Oliver Wendt, Ph.D.
Abstract: Responding to others’ subtle social cues (e.g., gestures and facial expressions) and gaining the attention of others are both fundamental repertoires for everyday social interactions. This symposium presents four papers demonstrating the acquisition of skills related to this topic. The first paper presents the results of a study on teaching children with autism to infer what others want, based on their nonverbal behavior. The second paper is a demonstration of teaching children with autism to raise their hand appropriately during group instruction. The third paper is an evaluation of using video modeling to teach children with autism to respond to subtle facial expressions. The symposium concludes with an evaluation of the effects of scripts and varied teacher responding on novel bids for joint attention in children with autism.
 
Teaching Children With Autism to Infer Others’ Desires
ADEL C. NAJDOWSKI (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.), Emily L. Barnoy (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.), Jonathan J. Tarbox (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.)
Abstract: Perspective taking refers to the ability to: (a) acknowledge that others’ mental states differ from one’s own, (b) infer others’ mental states such as what they are thinking and feeling, and (c) explain and predict their corresponding behavior (Frith, 1989). Deficits in perspective-taking include the inability to infer others’ desires, intentions, emotional states, beliefs, opinions, and what others know or think. It also includes the inability to read social cues such as facial expressions or body language in a given situation (Baron-Cohen et al., 1985; Baron-Cohen, 2001; Frith, 1989). Nevertheless, the ability to engage in perspective-taking is crucial for successful social interaction in our culture. Demonstrated in a multiple baseline across participants design, this study taught two children with autism to infer others’ desires, based on their nonverbal overt behavior, using multiple exemplar training. Interobserver agreement was collected on 40% of sessions and ranged between 90% - 100%. Generalization to novel stimuli and settings was also observed.
 
Teaching Children With Autism When to Raise Their Hand During Group Instruction
Shaireen M. Charania (Kinark Child and Family Services), LINDA A. LEBLANC (Auburn University), James E. Carr (Auburn University), Narmatha Sabanathan (Central East Autism Program), Inas A. Ktaech (Kinark Child and Family Services), Kristen Gunby (Central East Autism Program)
Abstract: Early intensive behavioral intervention (EIBI) typically focuses on teaching children with autism a wide range of basic learning skills, pre-academic skills, social skills and academic skills to prepare them for subsequent educational activities. Often children with autism have difficulty exhibiting skills learned in prior one-to-one instructional settings when they have to perform in a group setting. The study focuses on teaching three children with autism the conditional discriminations required to respond appropriately during group instructional settings such as “circle time.” Children were taught to raise their hand or keep both hands down in correspondence with their status on three progressively more difficult tasks (i.e., having a requested item,knowing a recent secret, knowing an answer) using modeling, prompting and reinforcement. All three children acquired hand-raising skills during group instruction. Initial hands-down responding was accurate but became more variable as the hand-up response was acquired with eventual mastery of both responses. The implications for practice in EIBI settings are discussed.
 
Teaching Children With Autism to Respond to Facial Expressions Using Video Modeling
JUDAH AXE (Simmons College), Christine Evans (Simmons College)
Abstract: Young children with autism often exhibit delays in responding to facial expressions and few studies have examined teaching subtle facial expressions to this population. Three participants with autism (age 5) in a suburban early childhood school were taught to respond to facial expressions using video modeling. Eight facial expressions were targeted: approval, bored, calming, disapproval, disgusted, impatient, pain, and pleased. Probes consisted of showing an adult performing these facial expressions in a video and generalization probes across adults and settings were conducted. Training was showing a video of an adult modeling a response to each facial expression. The effects of the training were evaluated in a multiple probe across behaviors design. Two participants correctly responded to all facial expressions across people and settings after viewing the video models one or two times. Experimental control was achieved with the other participant though he required more training sessions and was less consistent with responding. Future researchers should teach teachers to implement video modeling and evaluate ways to teach and test responding to facial expressions under naturalistic conditions.
 
Using Scripts and Varied Teacher Responses to Promote Novel Bids for Joint Attention in Young Children With Autism
JOY S. POLLARD (Utah State University), Alison M. Betz (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Thomas S. Higbee (Utah State University)
Abstract: Children with autism often exhibit deficits in social interaction and communication skills. Joint attention, the ability to coordinate attention between objects or events and a social partner, has also been identified as a deficit in children with autism. Scripts and script-fading procedures have been used to teach children with autism to initiate bids for joint attention and have been successful in demonstrating generalization to novel settings, stimuli, and social recipients of interaction. Additionally, past researchers have anecdotally suggested that children may include past adult responses into their initial bids for joint attention. This, however, has not been systematically investigated. The purpose of this study is to extend the current literature by systematically investigating the effects of scripts and varied adult responses pertaining to the feature, function, or class (FFC) of the stimuli on novel statements during bids for joint attention. Additionally, generalization to peers and a natural setting were assessed. Results thus far are consistent with previous findings, that children with autism are able to learn to initiate bids for joint attention using script and script-fading procedures. Furthermore, participants have demonstrated some novel statements that have incorporated past adult statements pertaining to the FFC into the bids for joint attention. Results generalized to a novel setting, stimuli, and same-age peer, as well as maintained at the one-month follow-up.
 
 
Symposium #443
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
Case Studies in the Critical Components to Implementing an Effective Applied Behavior Analysis Program Across Different Cultures
Monday, May 31, 2010
2:30 PM–3:50 PM
Bonham B (Grand Hyatt)
Area: TPC/EDC; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Junelyn Lazo (Center for Behavioral Sciences, Inc.)
Discussant: Joyce C. Tu (Center for Behavioral Sciences, Inc.)
CE Instructor: Daniel Moran, Ph.D.
Abstract: Children with developmental disabilities such as autism typically receive an applied behavior analysis (ABA) program with the following basic outline: use of the functional analysis model, principles of reinforcement, and prompting, shaping, and fading techniques. Many other cultures offers values and beliefs that differ from critical components that make for an effective ABA program. These differences may possibly cause stress to the family and/or hinder the effectiveness of the program when either the family or the program is being compromised for the other. The three papers compare and contrast the similarities and differences between the components of an effective ABA program and values and beliefs of the Asian American, Hispanic, and Middle Eastern communities.
 
Successful and Critical Components in Implementing an Applied Behavior Analysis Program Within the Asian American Community
JOHANNA F. LORCA (Center for Behavioral Sciences, Inc.)
Abstract: Children with developmental disabilities such as autism typically receive an applied behavior analysis (ABA) program with the following basic outline: use of the functional analysis model, principles of reinforcement, and prompting, shaping, and fading techniques. The Asian American community offers values and beliefs that differ from critical components that make for an effective ABA program. These differences may possibly cause stress to the family and/or hinder the effectiveness of the program when either the family or the program is being compromised for the other. This study compares and contrasts the similarities and differences between the components of an effective ABA program and values/beliefs of the Asian American community. Seven Asian American families with children with developmental delays and/or a diagnosis of autism participated in the study. The data for this study consisted of parent satisfaction surveys.
 
Successful and Critical Components in Implementing an Applied Behavior Analysis Program Within the Middle Eastern Community
TRICIA M. CANTON (Center for Behavioral Sciences, Inc)
Abstract: Children with developmental disabilities such as autism typically receive an applied behavior analysis (ABA) program with the following basic outline: use of the functional analysis model, principles of reinforcement, and prompting, shaping, and fading techniques. The Middle Eastern community offers values and beliefs that differ from critical components that make for an effective ABA program. These differences may possibly cause stress to the family and/or hinder the effectiveness of the program when either the family or the program is being compromised for the other. This study compares and contrasts the similarities and differences between the components of an effective ABA program and values and beliefs of the Middle Eastern community. Three Middle Eastern families with children with developmental delays and/or a diagnosis of autism participated in the study. The data for this study consisted of parent satisfaction surveys.
 
Successful and Critical Components in Implementing an Applied Behavior Analysis Program Within the Hispanic Community
RHYSA MORENO (Center for Behavioral Sciences, Inc.)
Abstract: Applied behavior analysis (ABA) is an effective treatment for individuals with autism. When implementing a program for children, it is important to be sensitive to cultural values and beliefs of the family. Cultural beliefs in Hispanic community differ from the critical components for an ABA program. These differences may cause stress and hinder the effectiveness of a program. This study examines the critical components of an effective ABA program and how they compare and contrast to Hispanic cultural beliefs and values. Three Hispanic families with children diagnosed with autism participated in this study. Parents were given a satisfaction survey.
 
 
Symposium #454
CE Offered: BACB
Some Effects of Reinforcer Delay and Reinforcement Rate in the Acquisition or Maintenance of Behavior
Monday, May 31, 2010
3:00 PM–4:20 PM
217A (CC)
Area: DDA/EAB; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: John C. Borrero (University of Maryland, Baltimore County)
CE Instructor: Mary McDonald, Ph.D.
Abstract: Among the reinforcement parameters that influence the acquisition and maintenance of behavior, two will be highlighted: reinforcer delay and reinforcement rate. When a new skill is taught, reinforcer delay is often minimal and reinforcement rate is often rich. However, when acquired skills are to be maintained in natural settings (e.g., classrooms) and at practical levels, the inverse is often programmed (larger delays and lower reinforcement rates). The first presentation will summarize findings on the acquisition of academic skills under conditions of sporadic training and under more intensive training conditions. The results are prescriptive for the design of intervention strategies when learning progresses slowly. The second presentation involves an evaluation of schedule thinning in the context of mixed and multiple schedules, when reinforcement density is also manipulated. The interactive effects of schedule correlated stimuli and reductions in reinforcement density are described. The third presentation will focus on the role of delay and response rate. Results will be described using a quantitative model of behavior and the role of intervening activities, during delays, will be reported. The final presentation will focus on overall levels of responding when delays are systematically imposed. Parallels between increasing delays and increasing response requirements will be discussed.
 
Examination of Effects of Increasing Rate of Exposure to Training Trials on Response Acquisition
MELISSA EZOLD (New England Center for Children), Jason C. Bourret (New England Center for Children)
Abstract: In the current study we examined the effects of increasing the rate of exposure to training sessions on response acquisition. Academic objectives for two participants diagnosed with autism were selected for inclusion in the study due to lack of progress. During baseline, teaching sessions were conducted once or twice per day, five days per week. During treatment, massed teaching sessions were conducted for one hour per day, five days per week. Results showed that increasing the rate of exposure to training sessions increased the rate of skill acquisition per session. Findings are discussed in terms of the utility of manipulating the rate of training sessions as a general intervention to improve skill acquisition when learning is not occurring or is occurring too slowly.
 
A Comparison of Mixed and Multiple Schedules in the Treatment of Severe Problem Behavior
ALISON M. BETZ (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Wayne Fisher (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Henry S. Roane (SUNY, Upstate Medical University), William J. Higgins (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center)
Abstract: Reinforcement schedule thinning is a critical component in the development of treatments for destructive behavior (e.g., like functional communication training [FCT]) because parents, teachers, and other caregivers are more likely to carry out interventions that are practical and not labor intensive. Most reinforcement thinning procedures involve two components: (a) discriminative stimuli that signal periods of reinforcement and extinction for the alternative response (as in multiple schedules) and (b) gradual reductions in the density of reinforcement for the alternative response. However, the independent and interactive effects of these two components have not been examined in prior research. In the current investigation, we conducted an analysis of these components by implementing reinforcer schedule thinning with and without correlated discriminative stimuli using multiple and mixed schedules, respectively. Although individual differences were observed across participants, the results generally suggested that both components (correlated discriminative stimuli and gradual changes in schedule density) were important for maintaining low levels of destructive behavior during reinforcement schedule thinning.
 
An Evaluation of Response Rates Under Progressively Increasing Delays to Reinforcement
JOLENE R. SY (University of Florida), Timothy R. Vollmer (University of Florida)
Abstract: The temporal proximity between a response and a reinforcer has been recognized as one of the most important parameters of reinforcer value (Williams, 1976). Basic research has found that unsignaled delays produce rapid reductions in response rates. However, fewer applied investigations have examined the effects of delayed reinforcement. Two children, both age 5, diagnosed with developmental disabilities participated at their school. The purpose of the present investigation was to (a) determine whether delayed reinforcement could maintain similar response rates as immediate reinforcement on an arbitrary computer task, (b) identify maximum reinforcement delays that maintained responding (“breakpoints”), (c) determine whether the relationship between response rate and reinforcer delay could be quantified by a modified version of Mazur’s (1987) hyperbolic discounting equation, and (d) determine whether the availability of alternative responses could disrupt reinforcement effects. We found that both participants continued to respond under progressively increasing delays to reinforcement, that “breakpoints” varied across sessions, that response rates could be adequately characterized by a discounting function, and that the availability of alternative responses during the delays interfered with reinforcement effects. Results indicate that reinforcement delays may only disrupt responding if the participant engages in topographically similar responses during the delay interval.
 
Delayed Food Supports More Responding Than Delayed Tokens
YANERYS LEON (Kennedy Krieger Institute), John C. Borrero (University of Maryland, Baltimore County), Iser Guillermo DeLeon (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
Abstract: Multiple reinforcement parameters may contribute to the price of a commodity. For example, if work requirement remains constant, but reinforcers are delayed, the delay may be conceptualized as the essential “cost” component. An equation that accounts for delay might prove beneficial when examining UP in matters of clinical importance. Although several reinforcement parameters likely influence responding, the ubiquitous nature of delay in applied settings makes it an especially important parameter for further study. Temporal discounting research has demonstrated that primary reinforcers are discounted more steeply than conditioned reinforcers. This study examined the effects of delayed reinforcement on the responding of individuals with intellectual disabilities. Three conditions were evaluated: (a) No reinforcement baseline, in which responses did not produce a reinforcer, (b) FR 1 No Delay, in which responses produced a reinforcer immediately, and (c) FR 1 Increasing Delay, in which responses produced a reinforcer following one of 5 delays. These conditions were evaluated with primary reinforcers and then repeated with conditioned reinforcers. Current results suggest that delayed food produced greater response persistence when compared to delayed tokens. Results are discussed in terms of the implications for token systems given delayed exchange opportunities.
 
 
Symposium #456
CE Offered: BACB
From Joint Attention to Social Referencing: Two Major Developmental Deficits in Autism
Monday, May 31, 2010
3:00 PM–4:20 PM
Travis A/B (Grand Hyatt)
Area: DEV/AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Gary D. Novak (California State University, Stanislaus)
Discussant: Gary D. Novak (California State University, Stanislaus)
CE Instructor: Sophia Yin, Doctor of Veterinary MedicineDiplomate ACVB
Abstract: This symposium will address two significant hidden deficits in autism for a developmental perspective, and address procedures that can be used to build these skills. Holth will address the basic behavioral mechanisms involved in the development of joint attention and how these principles can be applied to developing joint attention in autism. MacDonald, Wheeler and Dube will show how an interactive play, discrete-trial situation can be used to establish joint attention in autistic children. Pelaez will describe social referencing responses as behavioral processes and relate them to deficits in autistic children. She will also relate social referencing to later development, especially the development of relational responding by children. The symposium will be discussed from the point of view of the relevance of these skills in the process of the development of autism, and to highlight the similarities and differences in the practical approaches taken to remediating them in autistic children.
 
Joint Attention and the Establishment of Generalized Conditioned Reinforcers
PER HOLTH (Akershus University College), Sissel Lork (Akershus University College)
Abstract: In an operant interpretation of joint attention, the establishment of typical generalized reinforcers, such as others’ nods and smiles seem crucial for the establishment and maintenance of peculiar joint attention functions. A series of studies have focused on (1) How early during infancy can typical generalized reinforcers, such as others’ smiles, be shown to function as reinforcers for the behavior of typical developing children? (2) If social stimuli do not function as reinforcers, how can we most effectively establish them as such? (3) How can a reinforcing effect of conditioned reinforcers best be maintained? and (4) Can these procedures be interpolated into effective joint attention skill training for children with autism such as to produce such skills that will endure in natural environments where such stimuli appear to be the core reinforcing consequence? Results indicate that when a reinforcing effect of social stimuli is lacking, a procedure in which such stimuli are established as SDs for positively reinforced responses is more effective than a classical conditioning or pairing procedure for establishing those stimuli as conditioned reinforcers. Also, the interpolation of a sequence of such procedures into a joint attention skills training program indicates that targeting such core social reinforcers directly can contribute to the maintenance of acquired joint attention skills that are otherwise quickly lost.
 
Behavioral Evaluation of States of Engagement During Play in Children With Autism
REBECCA P. F. MACDONALD (New England Center for Children), Emily E. Wheeler (University of Massachusetts Medical Center), William V. Dube (University of Maryland Medical System)
Abstract: In interactive play situations, children with autism were given discrete-trials training to produce specific joint-attention related target behaviors: gaze shifting between toy and play partner, pointing, showing, giving, and commenting. In free-play sessions that followed, additional dependent measures of interest were changes in percent of time in “states of engagement” originally defined in cognitive developmental psychology: unengaged, person engagement, object engagement, supported joint engagement, coordinated joint engagement. States were determined by coding videos of the play sessions, according to an objective coding protocol that defined these states in terms of explicit behaviors. Results showed increases in coordinated joint engagement immediately following discrete-trials training sessions, but attenuation when states were measured at other times.
 
Moving Beyond Joint Attention: The Analysis of the Social Referencing Response in Identifying Autism
MARTHA PELAEZ (Florida International University)
Abstract: Social referencing refers to the child?s search for cues in the facial, vocal, and/or gestural expression of another person, typically the mother, to determine how to respond to ambiguous events or novel situations. Referencing response is one of the earliest forms of communication and seems to be a precursor for derived relational responding (Pelaez, 2009). I will argue that behavior analysts have neglected the study of social referencing response (SRR). We should move beyond the examination of join attention (which is a requirement/prerequisite skill for social referencing) and track the development of the SRR. Whether affective and emotional or instrumental andcognitive cues are involved, those interested in the developmental trends and trajectories of children with autism and language disorders should examine the emergence of SRR or its deficits. Data from two experiments will be discussed to support these assertions.
 
 
Symposium #457
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
Behavior Analysis in the Classroom: Interventions to Decrease Problem Behavior and Enhance Learning
Monday, May 31, 2010
3:00 PM–4:20 PM
Texas Ballroom Salon A (Grand Hyatt)
Area: EDC/CBM; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Cynthia M. Anderson (University of Oregon)
CE Instructor: Tom Sharpe, Ed.D.
Abstract: The technology of behavior analysis has great utility for enhancing student behavior in schools. Although some research has documented the utility of interventions designed for individual students and for small and large groups of students, the overall body of school-based, behavior analytic research is small. In this symposium we add to this literature base. Two papers explore the generality of the Good Behavior Game in novel settings, (a) small-group reading instruction and (b) kindergarten classrooms. A third paper examines preference for response cost, a frequently used component of classroom-interventions. The final paper examines school-wide interventions for students with behavioral and academic challenges, documenting that a standardized (i.e., implemented similarly across students) token-economy can be used effectively to address both academic and social behavior problems. Together, these papers document the use of behavior analytic interventions in school settings with typically developing children. Further, three of the four papers focus on interventions implemented by teachers and other school personnel (i.e., typical change agents).
 
An Evaluation of the Good Behavior Game in Kindergarten Classrooms
JEANNE DONALDSON (University of Florida), Timothy R. Vollmer (University of Florida), Tangala Krous (Davenport, IA School District), Susan E. Downs (Davenport Community Schools), Kerri Berard (University of Florida)
Abstract: The Good Behavior Game is a classroom-wide group contingency that involves dividing the class into two teams, creating simple rules, and arranging contingencies for breaking or following those rules. The game has been firmly established as an effective management strategy in numerous prior studies. The purpose of the current study was to evaluate the game with a younger population of students and with a larger sample. Five kindergarten teachers and classrooms (98 total students) participated in this evaluation of the Good Behavior Game. There were three rules: 1) you must sit “criss-cross applesauce” in your designated location, 2) you must raise your hand to talk, and 3) you must keep your hands and feet to yourself. Any time a student broke a rule, a tally was scored for that team. The team with fewer tallies at the end of circle time would win, or if both teams met a set criterion, both teams would win. Rewards for winning included snacks, stickers, stamps, extra recess, etc. There was a dramatic decrease in disruptive behavior in all five classrooms as a result of the intervention. The Game was easy for teachers to implement and the majority of students voted that they would like to continue to play the Game.
 
Design, Implementation, and Evaluation of a Secondary Interventions for Students Whose With Escape-Maintained Problem Behavior
JESSICA TURTURA (University of Oregon), Cynthia M. Anderson (University of Oregon), Justin Boyd (University of Oregon)
Abstract: Schools increasingly are moving to three-tiered models of behavior support consisting of primary interventions for all students, secondary interventions for students at risk, and tertiary supports for students with significant need. Primary prevention is implemented for all students and is similar across students whereas tertiary supports typically are based on results of a functional assessment and consist of individualized interventions. In the middle lie secondary supports, small group interventions for students emitting similar, low-intensity behavior problems. A commonly used secondary intervention that is evidence-based is Check-in/Check-out (CICO; Hawken & Horner, 2003), CICO builds off of home-school notes and is effective for students whose problem behaviors are attention-maintained. Importantly, CICO offers little in terms of altering the environmental contingencies which maintain problem behaviors for students who engage in escape-maintained problem behavior (March & Horner, 2002). This presentation will focus on two modifications of CICO for students whose problem behaviors are maintained by escape from or avoidance of academic tasks and activities. Specifically, two modified versions of CICO were designed and evaluated; one for elementary-aged students and the other for middle school-aged students. Each intervention was implemented as a secondary intervention in a school, by typical school staff. We used appropriate single subject designs to assess effects of each intervention on problem behavior and academic skills.
 
An Evaluation of Preference for Reinforcement or Response Cost Conditions
CRISTINA M. WHITEHOUSE (University of Florida), Timothy R. Vollmer (University of Florida), Rocio Cuevas (University of Florida)
Abstract: The use of response cost and reinforcement-based interventions (e.g., token economies & group level systems) are common in academic settings. Despite the ubiquity of these interventions, only a few investigations have evaluated child preference for response cost versus reinforcement; furthermore, the few existing investigations have yielded mixed results. We will present an extension of earlier evaluations of child preference for response cost or reinforcement conditions during skill acquisition. Specifically, typically developing children were repeatedly presented with a computerized matching to sample task under both reinforcement and response cost conditions. Following exposure to each condition, children were asked to select their subsequent working conditions. Child selections were the primary dependent measure of choice. This preparation was repeated using different stimuli to evaluate if preference results obtained could be reproduced. Additionally, this preparation was repeated using math problems appropriate for the child’s grade level. Five participants showed a preference for reinforcement, 1 showed a preference for response cost, and 2 indicated indifference. Side effects associated with response cost were not observed. These data may have implications for the growing trend of client treatment preference and discussions about the use of response cost procedures.
 
Enhancing Pre-Literacy Instruction With the Good Behavior Game
BILLIE JO RODRIGUEZ (University of Oregon), Cynthia M. Anderson (University of Oregon)
Abstract: Deficits in pre-reading skills at the end of kindergarten have been shown to predict future behavior problems and lack of responsiveness to school-wide interventions over time. This suggests early intervention is important not only to prevent later reading problems but also to prevent future behavioral challenges. Small-group reading instruction often is provided for young children at risk for reading failure. Group instructors often are instructional assistants with little or no experience managing social behavior of groups. In this experiment we assessed effects of training instructors to use TGBG during reading groups. A concurrent multiple baseline across groups design was used to assess effects. For all groups, a significant reduction in problem behavior was observed. Further, all instructors implemented TGBG with fidelity and indicated a high degree of satisfaction with the intervention. This experiment demonstrates how TGBG can be used to incorporate behavior analytic techniques in school settings for students who are at-risk for academic difficulties
 
 
Symposium #458
CE Offered: BACB
Oldies but Goodies: School Applications of Classic Research in Applied Behavior Analysis
Monday, May 31, 2010
3:00 PM–4:20 PM
Texas Ballroom Salon D (Grand Hyatt)
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Sara C. Bicard (University of Memphis)
Discussant: Sara C. Bicard (University of Memphis)
CE Instructor: John Borrero, Ph.D.
Abstract: This symposium will showcase three replications and extensions of classic research in applied behavior analysis. Two studies demonstrate that group oriented contingencies (GOC) and function-based interventions can be used by classroom teachers to increase appropriate behavior of students with emotional and behavioral disorders. The first study found that an individualized interdependent GOC, a combination of independent and interdependent GOC, increased academic test scores and behavior of students with emotional and behavior disorders in a residential setting. The second study investigated the efficacy of interventions derived from functional behavior assessments reduced the time a student served in in-school suspension, decreased office disciplinary referrals, and increased academic grades for two students with attention deficit disorders in general education classrooms. The third study extends the research on The Good Behavior Game and provides evidence that The Good Behavior Game and goal setting, behavior change procedures traditionally used with students, may have applications for increasing desired teacher behaviors.
 
Using Individualized Interdependent Group Oriented Contingencies With Students With Emotional Disorders
MEGAN HUBBARD (University of Memphis), Sara C. Bicard (University of Memphis), David Bicard (University of Memphis), Laura Baylot Casey (University of Memphis)
Abstract: Independent and interdependent group oriented contingencies (GOC) are commonly used in school classrooms to create a behavior management system. The research indicated that they are effective in changing student behavior and easily executed by teachers in the classroom. This study examined the effects of an individualized interdependent GOC, a combination of independent and interdependent GOC, on the academic test scores and behavior of students with emotional and behavior disorders in a residential setting. This study utilized an ABAB reversal design in which approximately five participants were exposed to the GOC and have GOC withdrawn. Participants earned rewards for achieving independent and group (interdependent) goals addressing appropriate behavior and academic test scores. The participants had higher test scores and earn more points for appropriate behavior during GOC than during baseline conditions. All participants improved both their daily and weekly averages of points earned, target behaviors, and percent accuracy on academic tests. Due to individual improvements in weekly points earned averages, the group averages increased as well.
 
Using Interventions Informed by Functional Behavior Assessment to Decrease Time Out of Class
CLINTON SMITH (University of Memphis), Sara C. Bicard (University of Memphis), David Bicard (University of Memphis)
Abstract: The current study investigated the effects of performing function-based interventions with information gathered from functional behavior assessments (FBA). The purpose of this study was two-fold: (1) to determine if the function-based classroom interventions derived from a FBA that was implemented by teachers would improve target behavior and (2) to compare the effectiveness of function-based classroom interventions derived from a FBA and an in-school suspension (ISS) program utilizing a single subject research design. The study found that using function-based interventions with information derived from FBA's reduced the time a student served in (ISS), decreased office disciplinary referrals (ODR’s), and increased academic grades. The study also showed that self-monitoring helped participants stay on-task in the classroom thereby reducing problem behaviors in the classroom and increasing academic performance. The participants who did not receive the FBA or a function-based classroom intervention but received only ISS had increased days in ISS, increased ODR’s, and lower academic grades.
 
Applying the Good Behavior Game to Increase Teachers’ Praise Rates
CLINTON SMITH (University of Memphis), David Bicard (University of Memphis), Sara C. Bicard (University of Memphis)
Abstract: The Good Behavior Game (GBG) has been used extensively to promote pro-social behavior by students. However, little research exists on using this procedure to promote praise by teachers. This study utilized an ABCB design to investigate the use of GBG and GBG plus goal setting on the rate of praise statements given by six day-camp teachers of children with disabilities. All teachers received training on praise procedures prior to baseline conditions. Baseline consisted of no contingency for praise statements. Teachers were divided into three teams that earned points for the number of praise statements each member made. The team with the highest points at the end of the week earned a reward. GBG plus goal setting involved the GBG procedures and asking teachers to set daily goals for the number of praise statements, reporting and public posting of daily performance. Interobserver agreement averaged 90% across sessions. Results indicated GBG and GBG plus goal setting improved praise statements made over baseline rates. GBG plus goal setting produced substantially higher praise rates than GBG alone. One important contribution to this study was to replicate and extend the data that show the generality of GBG as a research supported method for not only improving the behavior of students, but for also improving the behavior of teachers.
 
 
Symposium #459
CE Offered: BACB
Supporting Student Learning: Recent Research in College Instruction
Monday, May 31, 2010
3:00 PM–4:20 PM
Texas Ballroom Salon F (Grand Hyatt)
Area: TBA/EDC; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: James Nicholson Meindl (The Ohio State University)
Discussant: Kate Kellum (University of Mississippi)
CE Instructor: Guy Bruce, Ed.D.
Abstract: This symposium will focus on recent research in higher education. Specifically, presentations will discuss interventions designed to target students’ tendency to procrastinate with studying and failures to generalize information presented in class to novel situations. In the first study, the authors measured and reduced college student’s tendency to delay studying until shortly before a quiz. The second and third studies examined ways to improve generalization. In one study, the author designed a review session to improve performance on essay exams. The second study developed a writing evaluation designed to improve student’ ability to analyze realistic treatment descriptions.
 
Measuring and Reducing College Students' Procrastination of Studying
CHRISTOPHER J. PERRIN (The Ohio State University), Jonathan Ivy (The Ohio State University), James Nicholson Meindl (The Ohio State University), Alayna T. Haberlin (The Ohio State University), Nancy A. Neef (The Ohio State University), Neal Miller (The Ohio State Univeristy)
Abstract: College students often lack the skills necessary to study effectively which is exacerbated by a tendency to delay studying until shortly before the quiz. This accelerating trend in studying as the deadline approaches has been described by Michael (2001) as a procrastination scallop. The purpose of the current study was (a) to measure the extent to which graduate level college students’ use of online practice quizzes conforms to the procrastination scallop and (b) to measure the effects of access to additional sections of a practice quiz contingent upon completion of previous sections on the distribution of studying behavior. Results and implications for the design of college courses will be discussed.
 
Programming for Generalization: A Component Analysis of a Review Session in a Behavior Modification Course
WESLEY H. DOTSON (University of Kansas)
Abstract: Students often struggle when asked to apply their knowledge from class to novel situations. They also often struggle when evaluated using essay exams. This presentation describes a mock exam review session designed to support students in mastering the course material in an application-based undergraduate behavior modification course in which students are evaluated on five short essay exams, and also the component analysis of several of the variables contained within the review session. Results suggesting students need practice and review on several different skills in order to be most successful will be discussed.
 
Assessing Generalization: Creating an Evaluation of Student Ability to Analyze Realistic Treatment Descriptions
WESLEY H. DOTSON (University of Kansas)
Abstract: The evaluation of students’ ability to generalize their knowledge about behavior analytic principles and procedures from classroom to assessment situations usually occurs within the well-structured context of exams and quizzes. Exams and quizzes contain questions and descriptions which may act as prompts for the students in identifying which information should be applied within the exam. This presentation describes the development of a more realistic and less structured writing evaluation designed to require students to critically analyze a treatment situation in the absence of such contextual prompts. Results and suggestions regarding how to prepare students to critically evaluate more realistic treatment situations will be discussed.
 
 
Invited Tutorial #460
CE Offered: BACB
A Tutorial on Objective Methods for Determining the Values of Those We Serve for the Things We Recommend as Behavior Analysts
Monday, May 31, 2010
3:30 PM–4:20 PM
Ballroom A (CC)
Area: DDA/CSE; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: Mark O'Reilly, Ph.D.
Chair: Jennifer M. Asmus (University of Wisconsin-Madison)
Presenting Author: GREGORY P. HANLEY (Western New England College)
Abstract: The adoption of effective behavioral interventions and teaching strategies for young children is largely influenced by the extent to which stakeholders find the procedures appropriate and the effects important. Stakeholder values have been described as indices of social validity in applied behavior analysis, and these have typically been collected via indirect measurement. This reliance on verbal descriptions of values has inadvertently marginalized young children and adults with severe language impairments from full participation in the social validation process. In this tutorial, strategies for empirically-deriving the values of people with limited language abilities for interventions, teaching tactics, or habilitative and educational contexts will be described.
 
GREGORY P. HANLEY (Western New England College)
Gregory Hanley, Ph.D., BCBA, has over 19 years experience applying the principles of learning to improve socially important behaviors of children and adults with and without disabilities. Dr. Hanley is currently an Associate Professor of Psychology and Director of the Behavior Analysis Doctoral Program at Western New England College. Dr. Hanley has published over 50 articles in peer-reviewed journals in areas such as the assessment and prevention of problem behavior, teaching tactics for young children, and evidence-based values. Dr. Hanley is a Senior Associate Editor for Behavior Analysis in Practice and its next Editor, and a past Associate Editor of The Behavior Analyst and of the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis. He was the 2006 recipient of the B.F. Skinner New Researcher Award by Division 25 (Behavior Analysis) of the American Psychological Association and was appointed a Fellow of the Association in 2007.
 
 
Symposium #468
CE Offered: BACB
Verbal Behavior Applications With Children and Older Adults
Monday, May 31, 2010
3:30 PM–4:50 PM
214C (CC)
Area: VRB/AUT; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Tina Sidener (Caldwell College)
CE Instructor: Hannah Hoch, Ph.D.
Abstract: This symposium will present contemporary basic and applied research influenced by Skinner’s analysis of verbal behavior. In the first study, Melissa Howlett will present data showing how script fading can be incorporated into the teaching of “where?” mands for information. This research illustrates how to incorporate evidence-based teaching methods with proper consideration for a response’s optimal controlling variables. In the second study, April Kisamore will present data showing that typically developing children were able to effectively answer intraverbal categorization questions after they were taught to use a visual imagery strategy to do so. This research has implications for designing more effective and explicit educational programs that require problem solving. In the third study, John Esch will present data showing that children with autism exhibit deficits in self-echoic behavior compared to typically developing peers. This research has implications for maximizing the likelihood of emergent behavior during behavioral language intervention. In the final study, Amy Gross will present data comparing elementary verbal operants in elders with and without cognitive impairment. This research has implications for designing language-based interventions for older adults.
 
Teaching Mands for Location to Children With Language Delays via Manipulation of Motivating Operations and a Script Fading Procedure
MELISSA A. HOWLETT (Caldwell College), Tina Sidener (Caldwell College), Patrick R. Progar (Caldwell College), David W. Sidener (Garden Academy)
Abstract: The effects of contriving motivating operations and script fading on the acquisition of the mand “where’s (object)?” were evaluated with two preschoolers with similar language skills: one boy diagnosed with language delays and one boy diagnosed with autism. During each session, trials were alternated in which high preference toys were present (AO trials) and missing (EO trials) from their typical locations. Model prompts were delivered via a voice recorder out of sight of the participants. Both participants learned to mand only when toys were missing and met criterion in a similar amount of time; however, additional prompts were needed to teach the boy diagnosed with autism to respond differentially during AO and EO trials. Generalization of manding was demonstrated across novel instructors, stimuli, and settings. Maintenance of manding was demonstrated 3-4 weeks following completion of the study. Results replicate previous research on contriving motivating operations to teach for information and extend this literature by utilizing an interspersed toy-present/absent trial arrangement, a photographic choice board to demonstrate EOs, and audiotaped scripts and script-fading procedures.
 
The Effects of a Visual Problem-Solving Strategy on Complex Categorization Task Performance
APRIL KISAMORE (Western New England College), James E. Carr (Auburn University)
Abstract: It has been suggested that verbally sophisticated individuals engage in a series of precurrent behaviors (e.g., covert intraverbal behavior, grouping stimuli, visual imagery) in order to solve problems such as answering questions (Palmer, 1991; Skinner, 1953). We examined the effects of one problem solving strategy—visual imagery—on increasing responses to intraverbal categorization questions. Participants were four typically developing preschoolers between the ages of 4 and 5. Visual imagery training and modeling were not sufficient to produce a substantial increase in target responses. It was not until the children were prompted to use the strategy that a large and immediate increase in the number of target responses was observed. The number of prompts necessary to occasion strategy use did not decrease until the children were given a rule. Following introduction of the rule the number of prompts quickly decreased to zero. The within-session response patterns indicate that none of the children were effectively using the visual imagery strategy prior to the prompts and that use of the strategy continued following introduction of the rule. These results were consistent for 3 of 4 children. The results are discussed in terms of Skinner’s analysis of problem solving and development of visual imagery.
 
An Assessment of Self-Echoic Behavior
JOHN W. ESCH (Esch Behavior Consultants, Inc.), Barbara E. Esch (Esch Behavior Consultants, Inc.), Jordan D. McCart (Texas Christian University), Anna I. Petursdottir (Texas Christian University)
Abstract: Studies on memory functioning in autism have found that children diagnosed with autism-spectrum disorders may fail to use effective verbal rehearsal strategies. In this literature, rehearsal has been described as a strategy for transferring material from working memory to long-term memory. Behaviorally, rehearsal may be conceptualized as self-echoic responses that follow an initial vocal response (e.g., echoic, tact, or textual). Within the behavioral literature, self-echoic behavior has been hypothesized to play an important role in, for example, emergent conditional discriminations (e.g., Lowenkron, 1991), emergent verbal operants (Horne & Lowe, 1996), and problem-solving (Skinner, 1957). Although early behavioral intervention programs for children with autism emphasize the establishment of accurate echoic repertoires, the type of stimulus control that defines a self-echoic response is typically not addressed. No procedures have been described for assessing or intervening on self-echoic repertoires. We report the development of a self-echoic assessment procedure, based on traditional digit-span assessment, that was administered to children with and without diagnoses of autism-spectrum disorders. Preliminary results indicated that in spite of similar digit spans, a discrepancy between echoic and self-echoic repertoires was more likely to be present among participants with autism than among typically developing participants. Future research should evaluate the extent to which interventions to establish self-echoic responding might produce other collateral benefits.
 
Evaluation of Verbal Behavior in Older Adults
AMY GROSS (Western Michigan University), R. Wayne Fuqua (Western Michigan University), Todd Allen Merritt (Western Michigan University)
Abstract: Approximately 5% of adults over 65 years old suffer from some form of dementia (Kempler, 2005), a condition affecting memory and other cognitive functions, one of which is language. Skinner’s (1957) analysis of verbal behavior may lend itself to assessment methods that will identify specific verbal behavior deficits, which, in turn, may lead to more specific treatment recommendations. The purpose of this study is to evaluate verbal behavior in older adults. The research will address two questions: 1) As language deteriorates, does it do so in a pattern compatible with Skinner’s functional verbal operants? 2) In what way do verbal behavior problems differ between older adults with and without cognitive impairment? Researchers will evaluate 30 participants, 15 with and 15 without cognitive impairment (additional data to be collected). Based on Skinner’s analysis of verbal behavior, researchers developed a series of assessments and will administer them to participants on two occasions separated by one week. Results will reveal the consistency across repeated assessments and across different verbal operant classes, and differences in performance between the groups. Using Skinner’s framework of verbal behavior may provide for evaluation of specific verbal behavior deficits, which may allow for more individualized intervention methods.
 
 
Panel #469
CE Offered: BACB
Early Intensive Behavioral Intervention: Family Characteristics Affecting Choice of Service Intensity and Child Outcomes
Monday, May 31, 2010
4:00 PM–4:50 PM
205 (CC)
Area: AUT/CBM; Domain: Service Delivery
CE Instructor: Thomas Zane, Ph.D.
Chair: Robert F. Littleton Jr. (Evergreen Center)
ROBERT F. LITTLETON JR. (Evergreen Center)
STEVEN WOOLF (BEACON Services)
ROBERT K. ROSS (BEACON Services)
Abstract: Across the United States, individual states have recently enacted or initiated legislation supporting early intensive behavioral intervention (EIBI) services to families and children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Research has demonstrated the effectiveness of EIBI services in controlled settings. However, there is minimal research demonstrating the effectiveness of EIBI within home-based settings. Panel members will discuss the implications of providing home-based EIBI within the context of outcome data collected on 200 children below 36 months of age diagnosed with ASD. These data were collected across large geographic regions with culturally diverse populations. The panel shall address treatment data categorized relative to the number of weekly home-based ABA treatment hours. Additionally, panel members will examine characteristics of families (socio-economic status, parents educational levels, number of siblings, and culture) affecting the selection various service intensity levels. The panel will explore solutions to challenges posed by providing EIBI services across a large geographic region and varying family demographics, while inviting participation from attendees.
 
 
Special Event #483
CE Offered: BACB
ABAI Practice Board: Autism Insurance Summit
Monday, May 31, 2010
7:30 PM–10:30 PM
216A (CC)
Area: AUT/AAB; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Michael F. Dorsey (Endicott College)
CE Instructor: Karen Wagner, Ph.D.
Panelists: LORRI UNUMB (Autism Speaks), ERIC BILLINGTON (United Health Group), MARY JANE WEISS (Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey), GERALD L. SHOOK (Behavior Analyst Certification Board), SUSAN BUTLER (South Carolina Early Autism Project, Inc.), GINA GREEN (Association for Practicing Behavior Analysts), DOREEN GRANPEESHEH (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.), RHONDA ROBINSON BEALE (United Behavioral Health)
Abstract: The purpose of this event is to begin a dialogue between applied behavior analysis (ABA) providers, advocates, and insurance industry representatives around the issue of the implementation of the Autism Insurance Mandate Bills and the funding of ABA services. As of September, 2009, and thanks to the hard work of many including the staff of Autism Speaks, there are now 15 states with such bills in-place and 6 more shortly to be considered in their respective state legislatures. Many providers claim that the delay in being paid for their services is driving them away from accepting referrals when insurance funding is the only source of payment.
LORRI UNUMB (Autism Speaks)
ERIC BILLINGTON (United Health Group)
MARY JANE WEISS (Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey)
GERALD L. SHOOK (Behavior Analyst Certification Board)
SUSAN BUTLER (South Carolina Early Autism Project, Inc.)
GINA GREEN (Association for Practicing Behavior Analysts)
DOREEN GRANPEESHEH (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.)
RHONDA ROBINSON BEALE (United Behavioral Health)
 

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