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

Event Details

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Symposium #337
CE Offered: BACB
Parent Training: Effective Practice, Acceptability, and Preference
Monday, May 28, 2012
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
202 (TCC)
Area: PRA; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Jennifer N. Y. Fritz (University of Houston - Clear Lake)
CE Instructor: Jennifer N. Y. Fritz, Ph.D.
Abstract: Caregiver implementation of behavior change programs is a hallmark of applied behavior analysis in clinical practice. Studies in this symposium address strategies for parent training and implementation of interventions to produce behavior change in a variety of areas. The first study evaluated the effects of a training program on caregiving behaviors of parents who lost custody of their children, as well as assessed social validity of the procedures. The second study examined three parent-implemented interventions for improving the sleep of young children and determined parent preference for the interventions. The third study evaluated a program for teaching parents to implement reinforcement-based behavioral interventions to reduce problem behavior and assessed parent preference for the interventions. The final study involved training parents to teach their child communication skills using picture exchange or manual signs, as well as assessed parent preference for teaching a particular topography of communication. Collectively, these studies clearly demonstrate effective practice in parent training, as well as provide important information about social validity of behavioral interventions in various applications.
Keyword(s): acceptability, parent training, preference
Effects of a Strength-Based Video Feedback Parenting Program on Parenting Skills
RHONDA NESE (University of Oregon), Cynthia M. Anderson (University of Oregon), Philip Fisher (University of Oregon)
Abstract: During the Federal fiscal year of 2009, approximately 686,400 children were placed in out-of-home care, including foster and group facilities (U.S. DHHS, 2009). Loss of custody occurs for a variety of reasons; however, abuse and neglect are the primary cause. In the current study we evaluated effects of a behavioral parent-training program designed to teach specific parenting skills on the parenting behaviors of four mothers who had lost custody of their children. A multiple baseline across behaviors design was used to assess functional control with each participant. We also assessed social validity and contextual fit. Results obtained across participants document a clear functional relation between the intervention and parenting behaviors and support the utility of this intervention for teaching parents positive parenting skills. Results are discussed in terms of implications for supervised visits and parent training within the context of the child welfare system. Data for all four families has been provided in the subsequent graphs.
A Comparative Analysis of Extinction, Time-Based Visiting, and Bedtime Pass in Decreasing Sleep Interfering Behaviors in Young Children
CHUNYING S. JIN (Western New England University), Gregory P. Hanley (Western New England University)
Abstract: We investigated the relative efficacy of and the preference for three behavioral strategies used to decrease sleep interfering behaviors in young children: bedtime pass, time-based visiting, and extinction. We used nighttime infrared video and sleep diary to take measures on sleep interfering behaviors, sleep onset delay, night awakenings, the total amount of sleep, as well as other relevant variables in the participating children. Parents helped to develop the treatments during the assessment process and served as interventionists at home after behavioral skills training. We used a multiple baseline across subjects design to evaluate the treatment efficacy across families and a multi-element design within each family to compare the three strategies. At the end of the treatment comparison, children were given the opportunity to choose the condition they most preferred; children then experienced the corresponding procedure. Parents also provided feedback on the acceptability of each treatment and on their satisfaction with the outcomes. The relative advantages and disadvantages of each treatment option, their comparative efficacy, and the extent to which parents can implement the strategies with integrity will be discussed.
Caregiver Preference for Reinforcement-Based Behavioral Interventions
ANNE SHROYER (University of Houston - Clear Lake), Jennifer N. Y. Fritz (University of Houston - Clear Lake), Denise A. Salazar (University of Houston - Clear Lake)
Abstract: Studies on the social validity of behavioral interventions often employ indirect measures (verbal report) of caregiver preference or focus primarily on the preferences of individuals receiving treatment. In the current study, caregiver preference for reinforcement-based interventions for problem behavior was determined via a concurrent-operants arrangement. Parents were neurotypical, and all children were diagnosed with developmental disabilities and engaged in problem behavior maintained by access to positive reinforcement. Parents first were trained to implement noncontingent reinforcement (NCR), differential reinforcement of alternative behavior (DRA), and differential reinforcement of other behavior (DRO) with the experimenter. Parents then practiced each intervention with their children. Finally, the parent selected and implemented one of the interventions during 5-min sessions. One parent preferred DRA, and the other parent selected the three treatments equally. Interobserver agreement for treatment choice was 100% for both participants. This study outlines a methodology for identifying interventions that are both preferred and implemented with high levels of integrity.
Parental Choice Between Teaching Manual Sign and Picture Exchange Communication
LILLIE WILSON (University of Houston - Clear Lake), Dorothea C. Lerman (University of Houston - Clear Lake)
Abstract: Parents of children with developmental disabilities are often involved in teaching their children new skills. To become proficient teachers, parents must be trained to implement effective teaching programs that ensure the success of their children. One major area of focus in parent training is teaching parents to increase their child’s communication skills. Typically, parents are taught to teach their child a communication topography determined by a teacher or other professional. However, if more than one modality of communication is appropriate for a particular child, it may be useful to allow the parent to decide which modality is to be used, especially if that parent is going to be teaching. This study examined parental preference for teaching a particular topography of communication by training parents to teach communication using manual signs and picture exchange communication, and then giving them the option of teaching either topography to their child. Four parents and their children participated, and each parent chose picture exchange communication rather than sign language communication. Implications of these results will be discussed.



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