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.


36th Annual Convention; San Antonio, TX; 2010

Event Details

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Paper Session #528
Naming Research With Children
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
214C (CC)
Area: VRB
Chair: Vera Costa (Bangor University)
Naming and Categorization at Different Levels in Young Children, I.: Transfer of Function
Domain: Experimental Analysis
MARLEEN T. ADEMA (Bangor University), J. Carl Hughes (Bangor University, Wales), Pauline Horne (Bangor University)
Abstract: According to Horne and Lowe (1996), learning the same name for disparate stimuli may establish category relations between these stimuli, which can be demonstrated through, for example, transfer of function. Three typically developing 4- to 5-year-old children were trained to tact eight different “alien” animals as hibs, febs, tors, or lups (two-member common name categories). Intraverbal training linked these lower-level names with potential higher-level names (zaag, and noom). In the present studies, novel behaviors (two different gestures) were then trained, one to a zaag, one to a noom, followed by transfer tests for the other zaags and nooms. One child showed full lower- and higher-level transfer, another child showed partial transfer. Next, transfer of animal cries was investigated in one child who showed partial transfer. Listener behavior was also in place for both gestures and cries. These studies were replicated in other children but with pre-training using familiar stimuli. The results were similar: one child showed full transfer, and one child partial transfer for the gestures. For the animal cries, two children showed partial transfer in retests, and listener behaviour was in place for the gestures and cries involved in novel behavior training, but only partially for the other aliens. These findings show that lower-level tact training and intraverbal training can bring about lower- and higher-level category relations. Added pre-training did not affect the results.
Naming and Categorization at Different Levels in Young Children, II.: Category Sorting
Domain: Experimental Analysis
MARLEEN T. ADEMA (Bangor University), J. Carl Hughes (Bangor University), Pauline Horne (Bangor University)
Abstract: Apart from transfer of function, the functional properties of name relations are demonstrated through category sorting (e.g., Horne & Lowe, 1996; Lowe, Horne & Hughes, 2005). In this study, one typically developing boy of four years and nine months old who had learned to tact eight different aliens at a lower name level (hib, feb, tor, lup), and who had shown appropriate listener behavior for them at the higher name level (zaag, noom), was given a category match-to-sample test. When presented with one alien per trial as sample and all others as comparisons, he correctly sorted all stimuli into lower- and higher-level categories. The study was replicated with added pre-training with another child. This boy sorted stimuli correctly into lower-, but not higher-level categories. These results show that for one boy, but not for another (who had pre-training), lower-level tact training and intraverbal training had established nested category relations (i.e., lower-level categories nested in higher-level categories).
Can Naming of Component Arm Movements Improve Imitation Accuracy in 2- to 3-Year-Old Children?
Domain: Experimental Analysis
VERA COSTA (Bangor University), Mihela Erjavec (University of Wales Bangor), Pauline Horne (University of Wales Bangor)
Abstract: The role of naming of two arm movements on matching of hand-to-body touches that incorporate these movements was investigated in three 2- to 3-year-old children. In blocks of generalized imitation tests, children were presented with modeling of four trained ipsilateral hand-to-body baseline responses, interspersed with four novel untrained and unreinforced contralateral targets. Repeated exposure to modeling, staggered over children, evoked consistent matching of baseline behaviors but did not evoke generalized imitation of target behaviors. Next, the children were trained to label the two component actions performed by the experimenter (“across” and “to the side”) in a multiple-baseline-across-behaviors procedure. Training was administered in a series of steps, each followed by generalized imitation test blocks. Speaker training of the component actions in the absence of modeling increased the rates of children’s matching of some, but not all, target behaviors in the subsequent tests. For one child naming training was sufficient for the emergence of generalized imitation. The remaining two children were next given mixed matching training of the target behaviors and subsequently they matched their targets without reinforcement in the final generalized imitation tests. These results give further evidence that naming is one of the determinants of imitation in young children.



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