Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


42nd Annual Convention; Downtown Chicago, IL; 2016

Event Details

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Symposium #103
CE Offered: BACB
Teaching and Measuring Foundational and Complex Repertoires
Sunday, May 29, 2016
3:00 PM–4:50 PM
Regency Ballroom B, Hyatt Regency, Gold West
Area: EDC/PRA; Domain: Translational
Chair: Joanne K. Robbins (Morningside Academy)
Discussant: Jesus Rosales-Ruiz (University of North Texas)
CE Instructor: Joanne K. Robbins, Ph.D.
Abstract: From time to time behavior analytic approaches to education have been criticized because they are said to focus on simple behaviors or basic skills. Over the past twenty years there has been a concerted effort to extend behavior analytic approaches to the areas of reasoning, problem solving, inquiry, and independent learning. Learners with a range of entering repertoires in a wide range of environments from classrooms to online platforms have benefited. This effort has resulted in work that has led to the examination of the critical foundational skills required in terms of verbal operants, mands, tacts, echoics, intraverbals and autoclitics leading to conversation skills, to composite repertoires such as Talk Aloud Problem Solving (TAPS) and Fluent Thinking Skills™ (FTS) which emphasizes question asking, and to advanced content areas such as music education. This symposium will describe recent work in this area with an emphasis on measuring both foundational and complex educational repertoires. It will highlight the effects not only on the learner, but on teachers as well. An emphasis throughout the presentation will be how behavior analysis can benefit a great range of learners, some who otherwise may not have been successful.
Keyword(s): instructional design, music, reasoning, vocal operants
TAPSing into the Potential of Students and the Ingenuity of Classroom Staff
SEAN WILL (University of North Texas), Lucero Neri (University of North Texas), Joanne K. Robbins (Morningside Academy), Jesus Rosales-Ruiz (University of North Texas)
Abstract: Students with learning and developmental disabilities often have slow academic and social progress. They seem to lack interest and sometimes refuse to work at all. Sometimes, they demonstrate high levels of understanding in one subject area, while performing extremely poorly in other areas. Educators usually blame slow academic progress on the lack of intelligence or low capacity to learn. As a result, educators lower their expectations for these students. One particular deficit area is often problem solving. This presentation will describe the efforts of teaching and assessing a set of reasoning skills with seven students with learning and developmental disabilities in a Life Skills class in a public school. We will further discuss the effects of teaching this repertoire on four classroom staff members in their interaction with children while helping the students with their assignments. The reasoning skills under discussion were based on those described by Robbins in her 2014 manual, Learn to Reason with TAPS: A Talk Aloud Problem Solving Approach.
Measuring Complex Repertoires in Project Based Learning
MARIANNE DELGADO (Morningside Academy), Joanne K. Robbins (Morningside Academy)
Abstract: This presentation will describe a sequence of developing and measuring the acquisition of analytic thinking skills required for the talk aloud problem solving (TAPS) repertoire (Robbins, 2014) and Fluent Thinking Skills (FTS™) (Robbins, Layng, Jackson, 1996) repertoire in middle school students at Morningside Academy. Ways to define and assess application of the component skills, or atomic repertoires (after Palmer, 2012), that lead to composite thinking repertoires will be explored. To ensure that all students acquire the repertoires of the Problem Solver and Active Listener, all students must learn to observe and record the presence or absence of the essential qualities in trios and then apply their TAPS skills to the enquiry model taught in Fluent Thinking Skills. Everyday academic and nonacademic problems are then presented that required the use of these strategies. Precision Teaching procedures may be used in the measurement of question generating, and accuracy and rate of problem solving. Finally, application of these skills during independent research in project based learning will be discussed.

Measured Music: Behavior Analysis Meets the Arts

MARK MALADY (Institute of Meaningful Instruction), Ryan Lee O'Donnell (Institute of Meaningful Instruction), Bryan Hallauer (High Sierra Industries/WARC), Brendan James Bohr (Brohavior)

Over the past 20 years there has been a renewed interest in designing educational environments that lead to a range of practical outcomes for learners. Educational endeavors may be conceptualized as falling within several categories that may include formal public education, formal private education, independent studies, sports related activities, musical activities and day-to-day learning through the life of an individual. A common move in the past 10 years has been the creation of individual learning opportunities through internet-based applications. Behavior analysis as a science has historically been closely aligned with the formulation of instructional design methods and is in a well-suited position to lend a helping hand to the endeavor of creating meaningful educational opportunities for people of varying ages and skill sets. This presentation will outline a pilot program that was designed to teach students of music how to design their own independent studies using the science of behavior analysis. This program, Measured Music, is one example of how the Institute of Meaningful Instruction is aiming to assist learners in becoming their own instructional designers. The Measured Music program will be overviewed and future directions will be discussed.

Measurement and Induction of Vocal Verbal Behavior
ANGELA MORAN (Ascension Parish School District), Derek Jacob Shanman (Nicholls State University), Mary Johnson (Ascension Parish Schools)
Abstract: Effective social interactions are imperative for all individuals, in particular those with faulty verbal repertoires. Vocal verbal behavior is the most common form of speaker behavior and allows for access to reinforcement across multiple listeners. This type of behavior provides information in a more accessible form for listeners and allows speakers to access more advanced verbal functions. The five vocal verbal operants, mands, tacts, echoics, intraverbals and autoclitics, are learned through the function of an individual’s environment and reinforced by the responses of others. This presentation will discuss these vocal verbal operants and their and function in conversation, as well as measurement tools that can be used to identify the presence or absence of these behaviors under varying conditions. Finally, protocols and procedures, such as Speaker Immersion Protocol, Intensive Tact, and Social Listener Reinforcement games, used to induce these behaviors for individuals who may have faulty or no vocal verbal behavior will be discussed.



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