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.


38th Annual Convention; Seattle, WA; 2012

Workshop Details

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Workshop #W55
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
Identifying Priorities for Teaching Children With Autism: Where Do We Begin?
Saturday, May 26, 2012
8:00 AM–11:00 AM
4C-1 (Convention Center)
Area: AUT/EDC; Domain: Applied Research
CE Instructor: Chata A. Dickson, Ph.D.
CHATA A. DICKSON (New England Center for Children), RENEE C. MANSFIELD (New England Center for Children)
Description: Although there is considerable research on the effectiveness of teaching procedures across a variety of skills, it can be challenging to determine which skills are important to teach first. This issue becomes even more complex when you consider the range of ability levels and the individual differences in specific strengths and weaknesses across individuals with autism spectrum disorders. Although different students require different goals, there are some skills that are useful for all individuals with ASDs. These are the fundamental skills for participating in a broad range of environments, communities, and activities—the skills that provide a foundation upon which more complex skills can be built. In planning programs of instruction for individuals with ASDs, behavioral educators must consider the extent to which the selected skills will open new possibilities for the individual student. These skills that open new doors for individuals have been referred to as "behavioral cusps," and they are prerequisite to more advanced independent, competent behavior (Rosales-Ruiz & Baer, 1997). In this workshop we will discuss important considerations related to identifying and prioritizing instructional goals, and we will describe to attendees a skills assessment that has been developed to assist in selecting critical goals for students with autism.
Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of this workshop, when considering and selecting educational and behavioral goals for students with autism spectrum disorders, participants should be able to:

State the most important issues to consider

Define and provide examples of "behavioral cusps"

Describe the importance of considering future environments

Discuss the importance of independence, work, and community participation for adults

Activities: Activities will include lecture, individual workbook responding, and small group discussion.
Audience: The target workshop audience is professionals who develop educational treatment plans for children with autism.
Content Area: Practice
Instruction Level: Basic
Keyword(s): Autism Curriculum, Behavioral Education, Foundational Skills, Goal Selection



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