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.


10th International Conference; Stockholm, Sweden; 2019

Event Details

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Poster Session #62
AUT Poster Session
Sunday, September 29, 2019
5:30 PM–7:00 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 4, Balcony

The Effects of Functional Communication Training on Disruptive Behavior Maintained by Task Avoidance in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
RENATA MICHEL (Pontifical Catholic University of São Paulo / Grupo Conduzir)

Functional Communication Training (FCT) is a common treatment for problem behavior Carr & Durand (1985) and it is defined as a procedure that reinforces a functionally equivalent communicative response. The current study investigated the efficacy of FCT to reduce disruptive behavior maintained by escape avoidance; verify the efficacy of a alternative fading out procedure used by Lalli, Casey, & Kates (1995), to teach the participant to tolerate, engage and complete the task independently. Participants were three children between three and six years old, diagnosed with autism, that never had received any previous behavior treatment and were regularly attending to a mainstream school for at least one year. The sessions were conducted at a particular clinic. An experimental functional analysis was conducted to assess the function of disruptive behaviors for all the participants. The functional analysis was composed of three experimental conditions: A - Demand; B - Control; and C - Attention condition. All functional analysis and intervention sessions were 5 min induration, and data on disruptive behavior were collected using 10-s momentary time sampling. In the Functional Communication Training (FCT) condition, each participant was taught to request a pause to perform tasks through verbal responses. Teaching the non verbal response. A fading out procedure was implemented. The task execution response was taught and a gradual decrease of the prompt was implemented, from highest to lowest: FP - total physical prompt, DL - partial physical prompt, DG - gestural prompt and I - independent response. A naive experimenter were asked to conduct the same procedures of condition 1 and 2. Functional analyses results showed that the there was a considerably greater number of disruptive responses emitted by the three participants in the demand condition.The results showed all the participants presented a decrease in disruptive behavior after the acquisition of a verbal response to request a pause to perform tasks. The results also indicated the participants acquired responses for the task execution, reducing the emission of verbal pause requests and maintaining a low number of disruptive behavior. The generalization test of the verbal response (mand) and the non-verbal response (do the task) to a naive experimenter, it was verified that for all the participants there was generalization of the verbal and non verbal responses.


Eating Meatballs: Increased Food Consumption by Providing Choices

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
HAMPUS ERIK BEJNÖ (Department of Special Education, Stockholm University), Amanda Marie Jackman (Autism Center for Young Children, Habilitation & Health, Stockholm County Council, Stockholm, Sweden), Lars Klintwall (Department of Psychology, Stockholm University)

Selective eating is common among children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). It can in some cases threaten the physical development of the child, as it requires a variety of nutrients from different sources. In a single-case experimental design (SCED) a 5.6 year old boy with ASD who displayed food selectivity and only ate pasta, french fries, vegetables and fruit received a food choice intervention in order to increase his consumption of food containing protein. The target behavior was to eat meatballs during family dinner. In the baseline condition the boy could pick any amount of meatballs he wanted from a bowl in the middle of the table, whereas in the experimental condition the boy was asked to choose between two bowls containing different amounts of meatballs. An ABAB design was used to demonstrate experimental control over the target behavior. The boy displayed an increased consumption of meatballs and thus protein during the SCED’s two experimental conditions, which proved the effectiveness of the intervention.


Effects of Social Stories using Video Self-Modeling and Discrete Trial Teaching using Text Card on Social Communication Skills of Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
EUNJUNG HUR (Dankook University)

The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of social story intervention using video self - modeling and discrete trial teaching intervention using text card on social communication skills of children with autism spectrum disorder. The subjects of the study were six boys with autism spectrum disorder between the ages of 5 and 7 years. This study used alternating treatments design with initial baseline phase , final best-treatments phase and maintenance and the frequency of greeting, requesting, pecentage of responses were estimated through the sessions. The results of this study were as follows: First, DTT using text card was effective to acquire social communication skills for children with autism spectrum disorder with acquisition deficits and social story intervention using video self-modeling was effective to increase the social communication behavior for the children with performances deficits. Second, the children received the social story intervention using video self-modeling performed faster than the children received DTT using text card. Third, all subjects showed the maintenance effect of acquired skills after withdrawal of best effective intervention. Fourth, the effect of intervention was generalized during follow-up sessions except greeting behavior. The subjects received social story intervention using video self - modeling showed a higher level of generalization than the subjects received DTT using text card. These results indicated that DTT intervention using text card is effective for social communication skills for children with autism spectrum disorder with defects acquiring social communication skills and social story intervention based on video self-modeling was effective for social communication behaviors for the children with autism spectrum disorder with defects skill performances.


Reduction of Food Selection by a Functional Assessment and a Questionnaire

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
ALEXANDRA LECESTRE (BA-eService), Laurent Keser (BA-eService)

Eating issues are a major problem for a lot of children with ASD. It can be a real challenge for their health and for their inclusion to the community at the short, middle or long term. This problem’s resolution has a great social significance for improving the lives of the persons. A functional assessment coupled with a questionnaire on eating habits was implemented in 2 children with autism of 5 and 6 years to increase for one, the amount of food ingested, and for the other, the food diversification. The coupling of these 2 types of evaluations made it possible to set up effective programs in both cases to decrease the number of challenging behaviors and to increase the amount of food or the number of accepted different foods by a better definition of the program steps in the food exposure, the shaping, and the acquisition criteria. It would be interesting to use the food habit questionnaire for other situations in order to assess its effectiveness in developing food-related programs.


A Comparison of Modified Food Chaining and Simultaneous Presentation Plus Nonremoval of the Spoon to Treat Food Selectivity in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Catherine McHugh (Brock University), KIMBERLEY L. M. ZONNEVELD (Brock University)

Feeding disorders can range from mild (e.g., food selectivity by taste or texture) to severe (e.g., total food refusal). If left untreated, feeding disorders can result in serious health ramifications, including malnutrition, growth delays, and developmental delays. Recent studies comparing commonly used occupational therapy (OT) treatments (sensory integration therapy and a modified sequential oral sensory approach) and empirically supported behavioral treatments found behavioral treatments to be more effective for all participants while both OT treatments were ineffective for all participants. The purpose of this study is to compare a modified version of another commonly used OT treatment, food chaining, to an empirically validated behavioral treatment, simultaneous presentation plus nonremoval of the spoon, to treat food selectivity in three children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).


Relational Learning Between Symbols and Words Representative of the Addition and Subtraction by T-IRAP for a Child With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
NOZOMI YOSHIDA (Meisei University), Daiki Furuya (Meisei University), Koji Takeuchi (Meisei University)

This research is for a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder who can not perform appropriate calculation when asked to add and subtract in words (For example, "+" is replaced by the word "add"). The signs of addition and subtraction and words expressing them was learned by T-IRAP, which is a computer task, and then it was investigated whether an appropriate calculation could be performed. T-IRAP displays stimuli at the top and center of the monitor and it involves a task to seek appropriate selection ("same" or "different") based on the relationship between the two stimuli. Participating child did 32 sentence problems expressing additions and subtractions in words before T-IRAP, immediately after T-IRAP, 2 weeks after and 1 month after implementation. As a result, the number of correct answers before T-IRAP implementation was 20, but immediately after implementation, after 2 weeks and after 1 month all questions were answered correctly. In other words, by using T-IRAP, learning the relationship between signs of addition and subtraction and also words expressing them, makes it possible for a child with the disorder to perform appropriate calculations.

67. Applied Behavior Analysis in the Czech Republic: Strides Made and Progress Needed
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
SHERI KINGSDORF (Masaryk University ), Karel Pancocha (Masaryk University)
Abstract: Over the past decade there has been an increase in the awareness and recognition of autism in the Czech Republic. Even with this rise, practices for diagnosis are still in their infancy, only being seen within the last 30 years. Therefore, it is not surprising that areas like education and treatment are too lagging. Even with the late introduction of diagnostic practices, the Czech Republic has made applied behavior analysis (ABA) part of the conversation surrounding treatment. This introduction has been minimal, though, with the availability of ABA services being scarce. The presence of the science of behavior in the Czech Republic is in a state of growth. However, the full impact of this maturation is relatively unknown. Therefore, the aim of this investigation was to look closer at the applications of ABA in this region by conducting a preliminary assessment on the recent expansion of the science. Preliminary results indicate that parents play an integral role in the service delivery model; but that there are current gaps in data collection, assessment, and curriculum development. This valuable information can be used to drive future practitioner curriculum in the area.

Parent-Mediated Early Intervention for Young Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder in India: Preliminary Outcomes

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
GEETIKA AGARWAL (Ball State University; Stepping Stones Center, Bangalore, India), Svetlana Iyer (Stepping Stones Center, Bangalore, India), Divya D'Souza (Stepping Stones Center, Bangalore, India)

Literature suggests that Early Intervention (EI) is the most effective intervention program to increase behavioural outcomes of children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Solomon et. al. (2007) reported that although the methods of early intervention programs available to children may vary, they all share a few characteristics: Early, Intensive, and one-on-one intervention. While researchers continue to “perfect the formula of early intervention”, a number of studies have demonstrated positive outcomes for parent-implemented EI approaches to address behavioural problems, parent-child interactions, and to facilitate communication. In a first study of its kind, we share outcome data from a 6-week ABA-based and parent-implemented EI program at a private clinic in Bangalore, India. Thirty children between 18 months to 60 months old and their caregivers enrolled in the program. The teaching goals were designed in the areas of co-operation, play, visual performance, motor imitation skills, social interaction, behavioral skills, receptive and expressive language. The parents were taught errorless teaching procedures for skill acquisition along with behaviour management strategies. The result of the program demonstrated significant gains for children across all domains, supporting the existing literature. This is an especially important outcome for a country such as India which has few trained professionals, very limited knowledge and awareness about ABA and a growing recognition of the prevalence of ASD and need for EI.


Cultural and Family Factors on Parent-Mediated Multimodal Communication Intervention for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Ching-Yi Liao (Texas A&M University), Jennifer Ganz (Texas A&M University), Kimberly Vannest (Texas A & M University), Yan Li (Texas A&M University), Yi-Fan Li (Texas A&M University), Sarah Ura (Texas A&M University), SANIKAN WATTANAWONGWAN (Texas A&M University)

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is characterized by impairments in social interaction, language, and communication as well as restricted interests and repetitive behaviors. Multimodal communication intervention (MCI) focuses on children's natural speech productions that children are taught to develop their own communication skills via nonsymbolic and symbolic forms of expression to communicate with others. After receiving training from professionals, caregivers with limited experience can be taught to implement communication intervention correctly. However, culturally and linguistically diverse exceptional (CLDE) children with ASD and their families who speak native languages other than English usually do not receive sufficient and appropriate services and supports. To understand CLDE children’s cultures and special needs, collaborating with parents is an important component of a successful special education program. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of cultural and family factors on parent-mediated multimodal communication intervention for children with ASD. The participants were four families who spoke more than one language and shared more than one culture at home. The parents' implementation of the intervention strategies and the children's communication behaviors were evaluated in a multiple-probe design with baseline, intervention, and maintenance phases, as well as generalization phases across all phases. One cultural background survey, a parent interview, and the short coaching surveys were conducted to understand each family's acculturation, cultural background, and parent feedback to provide culturally appropriate parent coaching. Parents implemented learned strategies with the children and got feedback from the coach during each parent coaching session. This presentation will present the results of parents' implementation of intervention components, children’s communicative outcomes, and social validity. Limitations and suggestions for future research will be discussed.

70. Cross-Cultural Content Validity of the Autism Program Environment Rating Scale in Sweden
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
HAMPUS ERIK BEJNÖ (Department of special education, Stockholm University), Lise Renat Roll-Pettersson (Department of special education, Stockholm University), Lars Klintwall (Department of Psychology, Stockholm University), Ulrika Langh (Stockholm Autism Center and Karolinska Institutet), Samuel L. Odom (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill), Sven Bolte (Karolinska Institutet)
Abstract: Increasing rates of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and younger age at diagnosis pose a challenge to preschool intervention systems. In Sweden, most young autistic children receive intervention service in community-based preschool programs, but no tool is yet available to assess the quality of the preschool learning environment. This study adapted the Autism Program Environment Rating Scale Preschool/Elementary to Swedish community context (APERS-P-SE). Following translation and a multistep modification process, independent experts rated the content validity of the adaptation. Findings indicate high cross-cultural validity of the adapted APERS-P-SE. The cultural adaption process of the APERS-P-SE highlights similarities and differences between the American and Swedish preschool systems and their impact on early ASD intervention.

Using Telehealth and Consultation to Reduce Problem Behavior in a Speech Therapy Session: A Behavioural Consultation Model

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
GEETIKA AGARWAL (Ball State University, Muncie, Indiana, USA; Stepping Stones Center, India.), Jency Blesson (Jewel Autism Center, Kerela, India.)

Positive reinforcement is effective in reducing inappropriate behaviours, while increasing appropriate and adaptive behaviours. In this study, we demonstrated the use of positive reinforcement, by a speech therapist within the participant’s speech therapy session. The intervention was developed using a consultative model, along with a Board certified Behavior analyst using telehealth. The intervention was developed address out of seat and screaming behaviours in a 3 years and 9 months old child with Autism Spectrum Disorder. The participant was enrolled in an autism centre in Kerala, India where he was receiving Occupational Therapy (OT), Speech Therapy (ST) and Individual Education Program. The intervention was implemented by a speech therapist in the regularly scheduled speech therapy session, where the therapist collected ongoing data, and also videotaped the session for review and feedback. A multiple baseline design was used to evaluate the outcome of the intervention. Inter-observer agreement (IOA) data were collected for 100% of the sessions. IOA was calculating by dividing the number of agreements by the sum of the number of agreements and disagreements and then multiplying by 100%. For the sessions, IOA was 100%. The results indicated that the intervention was effective in reduction of the two target problem behaviour.

73. Promoting Generalization of Varied Play Behavior With Children With Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
BETHANY P. CONTRERAS YOUNG (Middle Tennessee State University ), Thomas S. Higbee (Utah State University), Annie Galizio (Utah State University), Azure Pellegrino (University of Kansas), Lorraine A Becerra (Utah State University)
Abstract: One of the defining characteristics of autism is the presence of excessive repetitive behaviors. Many children with autism engage in rigid and repetitive play. Researchers have shown that variability of play behavior, among other behaviors, can be increased through contingencies of reinforcement. However, little is known regarding generalization of response variability beyond the specific responses that are trained. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of combining multiple exemplar training with discrimination training on promoting generalization of varied play behavior to untrained play materials. After increasing variability of play behavior by implementing lag schedules across multiple play sets, we observed generalization of varied play to untrained play sets with all three participants.
74. An Evaluation of Fidelity of Implementation of a Manualized Social-Play Curriculum
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
MATTHEW T. BRODHEAD (Michigan State University), Emma Seliina Sipila (Michigan State University ), Josh Plavnick (Michigan State University)
Abstract: Play is the foundation upon which social skills are built. Though typically developing children learn from an early age to interact socially through play, children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) demonstrate characteristic deficits in social interaction and often do not engage in social play like their typically developing peers. When children with ASD engage in inappropriate, rigid, or isolated play, their peers often perceive them as odd or disrespectful. These perceptions lead to social isolation and stigmatization, and interfere with a child's ability to build meaningful relationships with peers. The purposes of the present study were to: (1) implement a component of a play curriculum for children with ASD, and (2) measure the extent to which that curriculum was accurately implemented by instructors. The results of this study indicated that instructors implemented the curriculum with high levels of treatment fidelity. The implementation of an instructor self-monitoring checklist further increased instructor fidelity. These findings and implications are discussed.
75. The Effects of Behavioral Skills Training on the Acquisition of Swimming Skills
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Abstract: Childhood obesity is a growing public health concern. Studies have suggested that children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have a prevalence of obesity higher than that of the general population (Hill, Zuckerman, and Fombonne, 2015). Specific interventions to increase physical activity in this population are needed to promote a more active lifestyle. The current study evaluated the effects of Behavior Skills Training (BST) on the acquisition of aquatic skills needed to swim laps for 3 participants diagnosed with ASD. Prior to implementation of BST, each participant was evaluated using the American Red Cross Learn-to-Swim Level 4 criteria. Skills selected were those needed to swim laps for exercise. Baseline data showed that targeted skills were 0% correct.  Treatment was evaluated using a multiple baseline across skills. Results showed that the percentage correct increased for all skills following BST. These results suggest that BST is a viable approach for teaching swimming as exercise to children with ASD.

Parent-Implemented School-Readiness Skill Training Using iPad in Preschool Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
YUKA ISHIZUKA (University of Tsukuba, Faculty of Human Sciences), Natsumi Ishikawa (Keio University), Jun'ichi Yamamoto (Keio University)

The purpose of this study was to examine whether children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) acquired school readiness skills through parent-implemented video modeling intervention using iPad. Two preschool children with ASD participated in this study. We used multiple baseline design across stimulus sets to evaluate the intervention effect. We created videos about school-readiness skills such as rules for engaging in collective action or making friends. In the baseline, the child watched a video which are not presented the corrected answers and the therapist asked the child what to do in such a scene. In the training1, the appropriate answer in a sentence were presented after video and the child was asked to read the answer. In the training2, the child watched a video modeling video which were presented the appropriate answers on an iPad with parent. When the child answer appropriate answer, the parent presented the verbal praise. At the baseline and training1 phase, all children had low correct rates. However, all children increased their correct response rate following training2 and maintained the correct response at follow up. The results suggest that parent-implemented video modeling intervention using iPad can be an effective procedure for acquiring school readiness skills.


A Behavioral Approach to Using Tripartite Interpersonal Distance as a Measure of Social Engagement

Area: AUT; Domain: Basic Research
Masashi Tsukamoto (Keio University), AIRI TSUJI (University of Tsukuba), Satoru Sekine (Keio University), Kenji Suzuki (University of Tsukuba), Jun'ichi Yamamoto (Keio University)

Engineering technologies have provided various perspectives for the social intervention in children with autism spectrum disorders. The purpose of this pilot study was to determine whether the motion capture system (MCS) could quantify the social interactions between an adult and two typically developing children (age 5, respectively). This experiment consisted of a single session including two types of phases: testing and interaction. In testing phases, the children wore a specialized cap which acquires the information about head position, and then freely played with several toys in the circle with a diameter of approximately four meters. The adult was pinned to a predetermined position and took little initiative in that play. In interaction phases, the adult exhibited positive affect such as smiling, laughing, and playful vocal tone to provide reinforcement for the child’s social-communicative responses. After interaction phases, the children engaged in increased levels of social behavior although the observable distances between the children and the adult on the testing phases were almost the same level through the session (the MCS data is under analysis). The results may suggest that a wide variety of social behaviors other than making an approach are available for typically developing children.


Telepractice Parent Coaching in a Multimodal Communication Intervention: Part 1, Parent Implementation and Part 2, Child Outcomes and Correlations

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
SANIKAN WATTANAWONGWAN (Texas A&M University), Jennifer Ganz (Texas A&M University), Lauren Pierson (Texas A&M University), Valeria Yllades (Texas A&M University), Ching-Yi Liao (Texas A&M University - College Station, TX), Sarah Ura (Texas A&M University)

Telepractice parent coaching facilitates communication between therapists and parents of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and provides the potential to decrease the discrepancy between demand for behavioral intervention services and families’ ability to access those services. The purpose of this single case multiple probe design was used to evaluate the effects of telepractice coaching on child communication skills in a multimodal communication intervention with parents of children with ASD. Three parent-child dyads and one parent-child triad participated in the study, with child ages ranging from 3 years to 15 years. The study design included three main phase changes in each level, including baseline, intervention, and maintenance phases. The generalization data was conducted across all three phases. All parents completed 10 to 12 coaching sessions ranging in duration from 30 to 60 minutes one time per week via a telepractice platform. The coach provided weekly feedback to parents after data analyzation of a video-recorded parent-child interaction. Results of the functional relation between parents’ fidelity and intervention, correlation and effects between parents’ fidelity and the child’s behavior, study limitations, and implications will be discussed.

80. Least-To-Most Prompting in Increasing Frequency and Diversity of Pretend Play in Children With Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
DİNÇER SARAL (Anadolu University), Burcu Ulke Kurkcuoglu (Anadolu University)
Abstract: The purpose of this study is to examine the effects of least-to-most prompting (LTM) with the use of contingent imitation (CI) on increasing frequency and diversity of pretend play in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Three children with ASD aged between 5-6 years took part in the study. Functional relationship was established by using multiple probe design across sets. The findings showed that LTM was functionally effective on increasing children’s frequency, categorical diversity and different pretense behaviors as well as vocalizations. More importantly, novel pretense behaviors and vocalizations by all children increased. The findings also indicated LTM was effective on increasing the number of children’s sequences of pretense behaviors. In the study, all children maintained the skills 1, 2 and 4 weeks after the intervention and generalized them across different setting, person and toys. The opinions of children’s mothers and teachers regarding the study were positive.

Motivating Operations: Reducing Attention-Maintained Repetitive Vocalizations in Students With Autism

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
RACHEL LEE (University of Detroit Mercy), Helen I. Cannella-Malone (The Ohio State University)

As repetitive vocalizations are common in students with autism spectrum disorders, it is important that educators working with this population understand the function of these behaviors and how to intervene. The current study was designed to extend prior studies examining the evocative effects of establishing operations with attention-maintained repetitive vocalizations. Participants included two boys with autism spectrum disorder receiving services in home-based programs. An ABAB treatment design was used to measure the effects of providing pre-session attention on levels of challenging behavior during subsequent intervention conditions. Findings revealed that, for both participants, pre-session access to attention acted as an abolishing operation. Additionally, combining pre-session access to attention with extinction led to further decreases in the challenging behavior of both participants, demonstrating an abative effect. Results of this study can provide educators with strategies to modify interventions in order to abolish or delay attention-maintained motivating operations. Limitations, social validity, implications for educators, and additional resources will be provided.


Evaluation of the Quality of the Services Trajectory of Early Intensive Behavioral Intervention Programs as Perceived by Immigrant Families

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
MÉLINA RIVARD (University of Quebec, Montreal), Charlotte Magnan (University of Quebec in Montreal ), Marjorie Morin (Université du Québec à Montréal), Marie Millau (Université du Québec à Montréal), Diane Morin (Universite du Quebec a Montreal), Nadia Abouzeid (UQAM)

While the efficacy of early intensive behavioral intervention programs (EIBI) is well documented, there are few studies on the access and the quality of these programs in real-life settings, such as in complex public care systems. The experience of families with children with ASD who are attempting to access these services is challenging throughout their trajectory, which suggests research has to better describe the factors that influence their effectiveness in order to enhance the quality of the services. Immigrant families are among the most vulnerable to these challenges, particularly due to cultural and language differences as well as several other risk factors related to their immigration. This presentation describes an evaluation of the quality of the service trajectory of EIBI by 24 immigrant families in Quebec (Canada) in the semi-structured interview (qualitative data) and by 43 immigrants families in a quantitative questionnaire based on the ETAP model (Evaluation of the trajectory in autism for parents — EIBI version). Results on collaboration between parents and therapists (one specific indicator of the ETAP model) and the need of psychological support for parents during the early childhood services trajectory (from the diagnostic to school) will be discussed.


The Treatment of Location Specific Restricted Behavior in an Adolescent Female With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
ASHLEY ROBINSON (Ball State University; Avail Outreach, LLC), Rebekah Terese Bernstein (Avail Outreach, LLC), Lauren Faust (Avail Outreach, LLC)

Restricted and repetitive behaviors are a core feature of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD); however, limited research is available on complex forms of higher order restricted and repetitive behaviors (H-RRB). H-RRB are rooted in a rigid adherence to a cognitive state or rule and frequently manifest as specific interests, compulsions, insistence on sameness, rituals, and routines (Turner, 1999). To date, no known research explores restricted behavior related to access to a specific location. In the present, on-going case study, the effects of a treatment to decrease location specific H-RRB are evaluated. The participant is a 14-year-old female with limited verbal approximations and an ASD diagnosis. At home, the participant spent the majority of her time in a specific area of the kitchen, including sleeping in this location. A changing criterion design is used to demonstrate the effects of a differential reinforcement and contingent demand intervention to decrease time spent inside of the target location while simultaneously expanding the size of the target area. Results show the intervention has resulted in an increase in time spent outside the target area, including outside of the kitchen, and successful fading of the size of the target location, while maintaining low rates of problem behavior.

84. Effects of Direct Instruction on Acquisition of Elementary Mathematical Vocabulary by Students With Autism: Phase Two
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
DAWN PATTERSON (West Chester University of PA)
Abstract: Providing young students with autism the opportunity to learn grade-level content in a format that best prepares them for general education classrooms was the focus of this research. Educational professionals continue to develop an understanding of how to meet the demands of educational reform, including the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). One aspect of CCSS is the integration of vocabulary instruction into all content areas. Research indicates systematic methods, such as Direct Instruction (DI), are effective for teaching components of literacy to students with autism; however, no research to date has investigated the use of DI in a group format to teach kindergarten and first grade students grade-level mathematical vocabulary. Results indicated that DI shows promise with students possessing prerequisite skills and learning behaviors, such as attention and engagement, when introducing new information in a research setting. However, some students continue to require explicit, systematic instruction in a one-to-one format to make progress with novel skills. Information gained from this research suggests that DI in small group may be effective during maintenance and generalization for young students with autism. Additionally, when teaching new skills to students with autism, it is necessary to begin at their current level of communication.
85. Psychometric Research for Assessments Based in Applied Behavior Analysis: A Review and Proposed Protocol
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
KRISTEN LENAE PADILLA-MAINOR (Baylor University), Regan Weston (Baylor University), Providence Gee (Baylor University)
Abstract: Behavior analysts use instruments to identify an individual’s competencies and skill deficits in order to develop individualized goals and treatment plans. According to the assessment guidelines for evaluating individuals with disabilities in the Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing, an assessment should have research to support its psychometric properties (American Educational Research Association, the American Psychological Association, and the National Council on Measurement in Education 2014). Validity and reliability research for applied behavior analysis-based assessments is a relatively new area of study in the field with fewer than 25 studies across six known assessments found in the literature. The purpose of this poster is to present the results of a systematic literature review on instruments based in applied behavior analysis. Additionally, the authors will propose a guideline for researchers conducting psychometric research for assessments developed and used in the field.

An Evaluation of the Use of Flow Charts to Teach Caregivers of Children With Autism Pediatric Feeding Interventions

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
DEBRA BERRY MALMBERG (California State University, Northridge), Ashley Andersen (University of Nebraska Medical Center, Munroe-Meyer Institute), Megan D. Aclan (California State University, Northridge), Beverly Nichols (California State University, Northridge)

Though pediatric feeding challenges such as food selectivity are common in individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders, there is little research examining methods to efficiently teach caregivers to implement the feeding interventions. This study evaluated the effects of written instructions and flow charts on caregiver implementation of their child’s feeding protocol for two families with children with autism and food selectivity. Results showed that one caregiver implemented the protocol with high fidelity with the flow chart, and the other caregiver required a slight modification to the flow chart to implement the protocol with high fidelity. These findings are surprising because a visual representation and alteration of written instructions was effective in teaching caregivers to carry out complex interventions with their children. The findings of this study could have important implications for caregivers of individuals with food selectivity, as it shows potential for simpler and more efficient methods of caregiver training.


The Effect Of Intraverbal Training on Vocal Emergence

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
SMITA AWASTHI (Behavior Momentum India), Karola Dillenburger (Queen's University Belfast)

Estimates of children with autism who have no speech range from 10-30% (Koegel et al., 2009; Tager- Flusberg et al., 2013). Awasthi (2017) examined the role of intraverbal fill-in training in inducing first instances of speech. 46 participants between ages 1.8-12.2 years were on mand training for 2-18 months using signs with paired vocals. The introduction of the Intraverbal training using animal sound and contexual fill-ins led to evocation of vocals in 37 (80%) participants. Mean IOA on vocal type was 89% and and treatment integrity score was 88% (range 67-100%) The mastery crietria of 7 stable vocals was met within 2 weeks by nine participants, while the remaining took longer intervals. Vocals emerged across operants however the continuation of mand training, IBI training & maturity could have been confounding variables. The findings suggest that Intraverbal fill in training should be added early on in programs intended to evoke first instances of speech in non-vocal children with autism.


Parent-Implemented Stereotypy Intervention for a Child With Autism

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
STEPHANIE GEROW (Baylor University), Gabriela Juanita Rivera (Baylor University), Jessica Akers (Baylor University), Marie Kirkpatrick (Baylor University)

Automatically maintained stereotypy, or repetitive behavior, is common among children with autism spectrum disorder. This study described the treatment of automatically maintained stereotypy for a 2-year-old girl with autism. The child’s father implemented all intervention sessions. The initial intervention consisted of prompting for appropriate engagement, differential reinforcement for appropriate engagement, and extinction. The efficacy of the intervention was evaluated using an alternating treatment design. The treatment evaluation indicated the initial intervention was not effective in reducing automatically maintained motor stereotypy. The researchers then conducted a competing stimulus assessment. The initial intervention with a competing stimulus was effective in reducing motor stereotypy. Intervention effects persisted following the removal of the differential reinforcement and extinction components. The results indicated that the use of a competing stimulus with the initial intervention was effective in reducing automatically maintained stereotypy. The findings suggest the importance of identifying items that compete with automatically maintained stereotypy, to the extent possible, in order to effectively reduce stereotypy. Implications for practice and directions for future research will be discussed.

89. Tele-Coaching to Improve the Conversation Skills of Young Adults With Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
ROSE A. MASON (PUrdue University), Emily Gregori (Purdue University), Howard P. Wills (Juniper Gardens Children's Project)
Abstract: Impairments in social-communication for individuals with autism limits the ability to engage in meaningful and socially reinforcing social interactions leading to social isolation and loneliness. The impact of which often leads to comorbid anxiety and depression. Unfortunately, research on effective social interventions for females with autism is limited. Further, typical interventions aimed at supporting social skill acquisition and maintenance while also fostering independence for adolescents and young adults with autism can be challenging and stigmatizing, particularly given the need for the close proximity of the interventionist. Yet, few studies have capitalized on the use of tele-coaching to deliver evidence-based practices within a natural setting. This study employed a multiple-baseline design across participants to evaluate the impact of tele-coaching to increase the question asking of four young adults with autism. The intervention yielded increases in the targeted communication skills for each participant. Challenges as well as implications for practice and future research will be discussed.

Training on Home Safety Skills for Parents of Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
CANDAN HASRET SAHIN (University of Mugla ), Aysun Colak (Anadolu Universitesi Egitim Fakultesi Özel Egitim)

The present study determined requirements of children and parents of children with ASD on home safety skills and implemented family training program. The present study was designed as an experimental mixed method research and was conducted in three stages. The first two stages focused on determining the requirements of families related to home safety skills; while the final stage implemented program addressing the individual requirements of families. The study was conducted on a total of 16 parents, eight of which were assigned to the control group and eight assigned to the experimental group. The quantitative data collected was analyzed using a Mann-Whitney U-test and a Wilcoxon signed-rank test. A significant difference was identified between the pre-test and post-test scores of parents in the experimental group, whereas no significant difference was noted between the pre-test and post-test scores of the parents in the experimental group and the control group. During the focused group interviews with the parents after the intervention, the parents stated that the in-home skills education had been entertaining, that they gained the ability to prepare education programs related to home safety skills for their children, that they had become advocates regarding the rights of their children.

91. Shaping Functional Communication Complexity
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
HEBAH AL BOUN (Mohammed bin Rashid Center for Special Education operated by The New England Center for Children), Shannon Ward (Mohammed bin Rashid Center for Special Education operated by The New England Center for Children; Western New England University), Daniel John Sheridan (Mohammed bin Rashid Center for Special Education operated by The New England Center for Children), Katherine Rousseau (Mohammed bin Rashid Center for Special Education operated by The New England Center for Children)
Abstract: Functional communication training (FCT; Carr & Durand, 1991) has been found to be efficacious in the treatment of problem behavior for children diagnosed with autism. In the present study, functional analyses indicated that problem behavior of two young children with autism was maintained by a synthesized reinforcement contingency. An omnibus mand was taught in which all reinforcers found to maintain problem behavior were delivered simultaneously. A systematic shaping procedure based upon the methods of Ghaemmaghami, Hanley, Jessel, and Landa (2018), was used to increase the complexity and interactional nature of the omnibus mand under progressively evocative conditions. Participants were taught a call mand (e.g., “Excuse me”), a mand frame (e.g., “I want), and one participant was taught specifying mands for each reinforcer included in the synthesized contingency (e.g. “break please” to escape demands and “play with me” to interact with the therapist). Introduction of the omnibus mand resulted in an immediate reduction in problem behavior for both participants, and problem behavior remained low while the complexity of the mand was shaped. Terminal probes conducted with one participant suggested the systematic shaping procedure was necessary. Interobserver agreement averaged 97% (range, 86 -100%).

Applying Multiple Exemplars to Deictic Frame Protocol to Induce Perspective Changes and Promote Social Functioning in Young Adults With Intellectual Disability

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
NICOLA MAFFINI (Scientific Board CASAGIOIA research centre), Roberto Cattivelli (Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, Milan ), Rosa Mauro (CASAGIOIA research centre), Cosima Marsella (CASAGIOIA research centre)

Applications of Behavior Analysis, Contextual Behavioral Science and Functional Contextualism are often used directly with intellectually disabled adult to improve autonomies, decrease problem behaviors and increase quality of life, but rarely applied to the whole system, including staff management and to promote data based clinical decision. We tested various applications of Multiple Exemplars Training and Relational Training to increase compliance in subjects with moderate to mild intellectual disabilities, to increase pro-sociality and participation in staff members and more direct training, such as deictic relational training to increase social skills and Perspective Taking. In the first study, we compare a standard procedure of contingency contracting and token economy with a similar procedure with the introduction of MET, providing broaden interaction for people with poor compliance and limited participation in healthy activity in a facility for intellectually disabled people.?Preliminary findings suggest that the introduction of MET is consistent with better long terms outcomes at six-months follow-up, and broaden extension of the effect to response never directly reinforced.?In the second study, we test the effect of deictic frame training to promote acquisition of Perspective Taking and to reduce challenge behavior in three adults with intellectual impairments.?After the training participants successful complete false belief tests and show a reduction of problem behaviors, an increase in prosociality and compliance with the activity proposed in the ALF.?Some consideration about future extended applications through behavior system analysis is also provided.


FuturoSchool: A Pioneering Concept for Delivering Behaviour Analytic Service to Children With Autism in France

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
Katerina Dounavi (Vaincre l’Autisme; Queen’s University Belfast), PALOMA TREJO (Vaincre l'Autisme), Ioana Tetcu (Vaincre l'Autisme), Sara Tejero (Vaincre l'Autisme), M'Hammed Sajidi (Vaincre l'Autisme)

FuturoSchool is a system of evaluation, intervention and parental training for individuals with autism based on applied behaviour analysis. It has a capacity of 12 students receiving 1-to-1 behavioural services during 22 hours of intervention per week. Students work in natural environments alongside neurotypical children, including mainstream school classrooms, municipal swimming pools, music academies and fitness centres. Our team also provides home-based parental training. Since 2012, FuturoSchool undergoes a behavioural assessment every year with the goal to ensure the correct application of behavioural principles and ongoing professional development of staff. These endeavours are led by a senior and junior supervisor, BCBA-D and BCBA respectively, who are responsible for the overview of the service delivery including staff training. Other team members are currently in the process of becoming certified in behaviour analysis or being registered as behaviour technicians. Our devoted team faces an environment where behaviour analysis is not fully accepted, where people with autism are not welcomed in regular classrooms, where access to sports and cultural activities is restricted and where autism remains largely unknown. The development of FuturoSchool as an evidence-based structure will be discussed with data of yearly evaluations and major achievements of our students and team members.


Pari-Mixite: A Job Coaching Programme for French Youngsters Based on Applied Behaviour Analysis

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
ALBANE VIGNON (Vaincre l'Autisme), Paloma Trejo (Vaincre l'Autisme), M'Hammed Sajidi (Vaincre l'Autisme), Katerina Dounavi (Queen's University of Belfast; Vaincre l’Autisme)

Applied Behaviour Analysis is the basis of medically necessary treatments for individuals with autism. Although research for the effectiveness of such programmes is abundant for pre-school and school-age children, data on the use of behaviour analytic methods with adults are still scarce. This is the case especially in countries with a few Board Certified Behavior Analysts and behaviour-analytic service-delivery settings and of course for inclusive employment settings. In FuturoSchool, Paris, one of the few behaviour analytic providers in France, some of the students that we have served throughout the years are now full-grown adults and therefore need to be included in a professional environment. For this, a partnership was developed with a retail company where students were trained by store employees in everyday tasks under the direct supervision of staff trained in behaviour analysis including a BCBA. Two case studies will be discussed in detail illustrating progress towards independence, barriers that need to be accounted for and the overarching principles in our endeavours to include young adults in mainstream work settings.


Feasibility and Satisfaction With Parental Training Delivered Through the Telehealth Programme "UpToYou" in France

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
PALOMA TREJO (Vaincre l'Autisme), Anne-Sophie Desjars (Vaincre l'Autisme), M'Hammed Sajidi (Vaincre l'Autisme)

Telehealth has the potential to boost service accessibility, especially for families living in remote areas or countries with few Board Certified Behavior Analysts, while maintaining treatment quality. Vaincre l’Autisme, founded in France in 2001, is an association of families of people diagnosed with autism that offers behaviour analytic services in a country where psychoanalysis is still more widely accepted. In 2004, Vaincre l’Autisme inaugurated FuturoSchool in Paris, an innovative structure where 12 students diagnosed with autism receive 22 hours of behaviour-analytic services per week at a 1:1 ratio. Given the significant success of students receiving these services, an increased demand for training professionals and serving families living outside Paris arose. To meet this need, UpToYou was created in 2016 and piloted with four families. Outcomes so far show that parental training delivered through telehealth is highly successful, leading to important gains for children with autism. Service characteristics, encountered barriers and ways to overcome these will be discussed, while service-recipients’ progress will be illustrated through the presentation of one case study.


A Variation of the Interview-Informed Contingency Analysis and Corresponding Skills-Based Treatment in a School Setting

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Dhi Jadeja (Forest Bridge School), SUSAN TIRELLA (Forest Bridge School)

When designing the conditions for the Interview-Informed Contingency Analysis (IISCA) Hanley and colleagues (2014) implemented 5 consecutive 5-minute conditions, alternating between control and test conditions, with a manipulation of the Motivation Operation (MO) every 30 seconds in the test condition. This, however, did not account for any delays in emotional regulation on the part of the participant that are commonly found in young children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) (Nuske et al, 2017). This study aimed to address this deficit by extending the length of IISCA conditions to 10-minutes each with a manipulation of the MO every 60 seconds. In addition, when implementing corresponding skills-based intervention as outlined by Hanley and colleagues (2014), this study extended upon the prior research by including both the training of specific mands as an interim step prior to teaching gaining attention and also including the teaching of mindfulness (Fletcher & Hayes, 2005) when introducing compliance with contextually appropriate behaviour.


The Interview-Informed Synthesized Contingency Analysis and Corresponding Treatment: Incorporating Specific Mand Training

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Julia O'Hallarn (Forest Bridge School), SUSAN TIRELLA (Forest Bridge School)

Hanley and colleagues (2014) successfully assessed and treated the problem behaviour of 3 children with a primary diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) through the use of the Interview-Informed Contingency Analysis (IISCA) and corresponding skills-based treatment in a clinic setting. Through this skills based training, they taught a synthesized mand for the “my way” condition and went on to teach a tolerance response to denial of reinforcement and compliance with increasingly more complex demands in the form of contextually appropriate behaviours. However, they did not incorporate specific mand training within their initial steps, which may result in a faulty mand repertoire. This study attempted to replicate the traditional IISCA outlined by Hanley and colleagues (2014) with a young male with ASD in a school setting and extended the skills based treatment to include specific mand training using a voice-output device prior to introducing a tolerance response and compliance with contextually appropriate behaviour.




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