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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Poster Session #422
AUT Monday evening session
Monday, May 28, 2012
7:00 PM–9:00 PM
Exhibit Hall 4AB (Convention Center)
1. Effects of Video Modeling to Improve Conversation Skills for Children With Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
AYUKO KONDO (Keio University), Jun'ichi Yamamoto (Keio University)
Abstract: In spoken Japanese, back-channel feedback, the supportive verbal response to the speakers, play important role for conversation. In the present study, we examined whether video modeling improve back-channel feedback of two boys with autism (Child A and B). Pre-post design was used for assessments, and multiple baseline design was used for interventions. In the assessments, the experimenter said to him, my favorite is (target item), and the following response was recorded. This conversation repeated with 10 different items. For the intervention, there are four phases: Baseline, Video Modeling (VM), Imitation, and Roleplaying. For all phases, the experimenter showed him some pictures, and told him by pointing one of the pictures, This is my favorite, and the boys responses were recorded as a block of 10 trials after the intervention. In VM, two adults talked which one they like better by watching some pictures, and back-channel feedback each other in the video. In imitation, the boy was required to imitate the back-channel feedback while watching the video. In roleplaying, the boy practiced using back-channel feedback with prompt after watching the video with imitation. The results demonstrated that using video modeling increased the frequency of back-channel feedback for both children.
2. Contingencies That Influence the Health Behaviors of Children With Autism and Their Families
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
SUNEETA KERCOOD (Butler University), Janice A. Grskovic (Indiana University Northwest)
Abstract: Applied behavior analysis methodologies are being applied to issues in public health more than ever before. For example, reinforcement contingencies in individual, community, social, and cultural factors are being identified. Health behaviors are influenced by individual factors (e.g., physical/cognitive/ behavioral), local factors (e.g., home, school, work, family, community environments), policy factors (e.g., health policy, laws, media), and specific cultural influences. The analysis of behavioral and environmental contingences influencing health behaviors, especially for individuals with disabilities and their families/caretakers, is important to reduce the prevalence of primary and secondary chronic disease (and related health care costs) and their subsequent potential social consequences, such as reduced interactions in the community, additional challenges for their family/caregivers, and low self concept. In this study, 94 parents of children with Autism were surveyed on their childrens diet, physical activity, and preventive healthcare, and barriers to healthy practices. In this poster we will present results from this study focusing on contigencies that promote and challenge regular physical activity for children with Autism. Implications of the study could lead to the development of disability-specific nutritional and health programs.
3. Social Validity of Early Behavioral Intervention for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders in Mainstream Child Care
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
Annie Paquet (Universite du Quebec a Trois-Rivieres), MELINA RIVARD (CRDI Monteregie-Est), Carmen Dionne (Universite du Quebec � Trois-Rivi�res), Jacques Forget (Universite de Quebec a Montreal), Beatrice Balmy (Universite du Quebec a Trois-Rivieres)
Abstract: In 2003, The Department of Health and Social Services of Quebec gives the mandate to implement early intensive behavioral intervention (EIBI) services for children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Different intervention strategies resulting from the applied behavior analysis (ABA), in particular, discrete trial training (DTT) and incidental teaching (IT) are used. The perception of Stakeholders (those receiving, implementing or consenting) about the relevance, feasibility and effects of a program or a procedure can influence their choice and maintenance of those interventions. (Machalicek et al., 2008). In behavior analysis the degree of acceptance of a procedure or a program designed to change behaviors is called social validity (Carter, 2010). More precisely, the social significance of goals, the appropriateness of procedures and the social importance of the effects correspond to the concept of social validity (eg., Carter, 2010; Hamilton & Zoitas, 2003; Schaeffert & Clment, 2010). To date, little information is available about the choice of strategies and the social validity of those strategies when EIBI services are offered in mainstream childcare. The aim of this study is to assess the social validity of DTT and IT providing during EIBI services in mainstream childcare as perceived by interventionist and key partners of the integration of children with ASD (educators of childcare and parents). Method: The Treatment Evaluation Inventory Short-Form (TEI-SF) (Kelley et al., 1989) is translated and adapted in French with the permission of the author. It is integrated in a questionnaire and used to evaluate social validity of the EIBI in general, and more precisely of DTT and IT. A short presentation of the application of each of those intervention strategies is proposed before respondents can complete de TEI-SF. Preliminary data are presented.
4. One Stop Shop: Transforming the Therapeutic Experience Using an Integrated Clinical Model
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
LEANNE B. BALDWIN (Peel Behavioural Services), Patricia Cheston (Trillium Health Centre POPS), Kristie Hannahson (Peel Behavioural Services), Joan Moore (Trillium Health Centre POPS), Melanie Latimer (Trillium Health Centre POPS)

Peel Behavioural Services and the Paediatric Outpatient Services at Trillium Health Centre have created a model where a multidisciplinary team comprised of a Psychologist, Behaviour Therapist, Occupational Therapist and Speech Language Pathologist coordinate efforts to assess/treat children with Autism Spectrum disorder. Dawson et al (2010) conducted the first randomized, controlled trial which demonstrated the efficiency of a comprehensive developmental behavioural intervention for toddlers with ASD for improving cognitive function, adaptive behaviour and severity of the ASD diagnosis. Children in the Early Start Denver Model showed significant improvement when compared to a group of children receiving only community intervention. This model elaborates on these findings. Joint assessment, comprehensive planning, parent training, behavioural intervention, speech language intervention, and occupational therapy are implemented by one team in a coordinated effort. Treatment occurs both in centre and in the home setting. This allows for multiple intervention opportunities, consistent communication with the family and a simplified treatment approach. It is cost effective in that existing resources are utilized in a more efficient coordinated manner. The poster will present both the model and an initial case study which examines implementation and effectiveness.

5. Targeting Appropriate Goals for the Treatment of Adults with Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
DARYN KALMUS (Autism Spectrum Therapies), Robert Haupt (Autism Spectrum Therapies), William D. Frea (Autism Spectrum Therapies), Andrea L. Ridgway (Autism Spectrum Therapies)
Abstract: The aging autism epidemic is presenting a major challenge to social services system wide. As more teens and adults with autism require training to prepare for independent home living and community membership, program development is desperately needed (Gerhardt & Lainer, 2011; Taylor & Seltzer, 2011). One approach to building the capacity for independent functioning is self-management. The field of Applied Behavior Analysis has generated an impressive evidence base for self-management training methods (Hume, Loftin, & Lantz, 2009; Koegel, Frea, & Surrat, 1994; Lee, Simpson, & Shogren, 2007). For example, self-management focuses on independence, with the expectation that the individual will learn to define goals, measure their behavior, and maintain contingencies that will develop or change behavior (e.g., Frea & Hughes, 1997; Koegel, Koegel, Hurley, & Frea, 1992). This paper discusses a newly developed program for teens and adults with autism that utilizes self-management to target independent home living, employment, and community skills. Participants in this program range from those preparing for the transition to adulthood to those who have already transitioned but are struggling to become more independent. The process for goal development and implementation will be described in detail and examples of programming options and outcomes will be provided.
6. An Analysis of the Relation Between Restraint Reduction and Problem Behavior
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JEFF SCHRAM (New England Center For Children), Jonathan Seaver (New England Center for Children), Jason C. Bourret (New England Center for Children)
Abstract: There has been a nationwide movement towards trying to decrease the use of restraint with individuals diagnosed with developmental disabilities. In this study, archival data were analyzed to determine whether restraint reduction was associated with increases in problem behavior. Data for 10 individuals who had a significant decrease in restraints were reviewed. This analysis examined rates of problem behavior, specifically self-injurious behavior and aggression, prior to and after the decrease in holds. Results revealed that there was no reliable increase in problem behavior associated with decreases in restraints; in fact, rates of problem behavior decreased for seven of ten students as restraints were decreased. These findings suggest that restraint use can be decreased without concomitant increases in problem behavior.
7. Outcomes Following One Year of a PublicEarly Intensive Behavior Intervention Program for Preschoolers With Autism Spectrum Disorder on Intellectual Functioning, Adaptive Behaviors and Autistic Symptoms
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
MELINA RIVARD (CRDI Monteregie-Est), Claudel Parent-Boursier (Université du Québec à Montréal), Amélie Terroux (Centre de réadaptation Montérégie Est), Celine Mercier (University de Montreal)
Abstract: EIBI have been shown to be an evidence based practice for preschoolers with ASD and lead to significant gains in childrens development and learning (Eikeseth et al., 2002; Makrygianni & Reed, 2010; Perry et al., 2011). Since 2003, EIBI was selected as the intervention of choice in Quebec (Canada) by the Ministry of Health and Social Services, who have mandated the 19 public rehabilitation centers to deliver it to young children with ASD and their family. The current study describes the outcomes following one year (20hours/week) of EIBI in one public rehabilitation center on three measures: intellectual functioning, adaptive behaviors and severity of autistic symptoms. Method. 60 children with ASD have participated to this study (age mean = 4.3). An intellectual evaluation (WPPSI-III; Wechsler, 2003) is conducted with the child. An evaluation of the severity of the autistic symptoms (CARS; Schopler, Frith, & Daly, 1980) is completed by the public rehabilitation centers therapists. Adaptive behaviors (ABAS-II; Harrison and Oakland, 2000) are evaluated by the childs parents. Results. T-tests revealed significant difference after one year on two out of the three outcomes: intellectual functioning (t (57) = -4.80; p <0.00) and adaptive behaviors (t (53) = -3.84; p<0.00). The severity of autistic symptoms are marginally different after intervention (t (59) = 1.89; p<0.06). Conclusion. Those results revealed that significant gains are obtain on intellectual functioning and adaptive behaviors after a year of EIBI. For intensity of autistic symptoms, the difference is less noticeable. Findings will be discussed in terms of clinical impacts.
8. Literature Review: Autism Diagnostic Observations Schedule and Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule-Generic, 1989-2010
Area: AUT; Domain: Theory
DEIRDRE M. MULDOON (University of New Mexico Center for Development and Disability)
Abstract: The Autism Diagnostic Observations Schedule (ADOS-G) is a semi structured assessment of social interaction, communication, play and imagination. The ADOS-G is a combination of an earlier version the ADOS and the Pre-Linguistic Autism Diagnostic Observation Scale (PL-ADOS). The ADOS-G now consists of 2 domains (previously 3) that are applied to a revised scoring/cut-off algorithm. To provide more detail on the extent to which the external validity of this assessment tool has been replicated since the combination of the ADOS and the PL-ADOS; and to examine the sensitivity of the ADOS-G in differentiating PDD-NOS from other ASDs, 13 studies from medical and educational databases, were reviewed. Results show that the external validity of the ADOS has been replicated once since 1999. It remains difficult to correctly differentiate PDD-NOS from other ASDs using the ADOS-G. This review showed that the validity and improved sensitivity of the revised algorithms has been replicated in several studies. Limitations arose given the requirement for professionals to be research trained; the limited number of authors reviewing and analyzing data; and the thrice repeated use of the same cohort in data analysis. Questions around sensitivity arose if the ADOS was not administered in combination with other tests.
9. Treatment for a Pubescent Female with Aggressive Behavior in a Home Setting
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
LACEY R. BAILEY (Help Services, Inc.), Richard M. Foxx (Penn State University)
Abstract: Researchers have established that setting events can exacerbate the aversive qualities of task demands and influence rates of problem behavior (Backeljauw, Rose & Lawson , 2004; Burke, Kalpakjian, Smith & Quint, 2010; Carr, Smith, Giacin, Whelan, & Pancari, 2003). Increased levels of severe behavior have been positively correlated with many physiological conditions, including otitis media, constipation, allergies, menses, sleep deprivation and urinary tract infections (Burke, et al., 2009; Carr & Owen-DeSchryver, 2007; Carr, et al. 2003; Christensen, Ringdahl, Bosch, Falcomata, Luke, & Andelman, 2009; Ibrahim, Voigt, Katusic, Weaver & Barbaresi, 2009). Similarly, task demands and daily routines can influence rates of severe behavior. Especially for those individuals who are escape motivated (Carr, et al. 2003; Foxx & Meindl, 2007). Conversely, the appropriate manipulation of both biological and psychosocial setting events can decrease the rate and intensity of problem behavior (Backeljauw, et al., 2004; Boutot & Tincani, 2009; Carr, et al., 2003; Christensen, et al., 2009; Foxx & Meindl, 2007). This case study, done in an applied setting, will focus on one class of biological setting events: menses. This case study demonstrates the importance of a comprehensive and collaborative approach to treating severe behavior using an alternating-treatment design.
10. Functional Communication Training With a Toddler With Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
JESSICA LEIGH WAGNER (Gonzaga University), Evan Tyler Anderson (Gonzaga University), Anjali Barretto (Gonzaga University)
Abstract: In this study we examined the effects of functional communication on aberrant behavior following a functional analysis. The participant was 2 years old and diagnosed with autism. She engaged in severe aberrant behavior, which included aggression, tantrums, and destruction. The functional analysis showed an escape function therefore FCT was based on escape. We began Functional Communication Training via a microswitch, then transitioned to a card, followed by the use of verbal mands. Parent training was conducted both in the successfully in the clinical setting and in the home. All assessment and treatment sessions were videotaped and coded using a 6-second partial interval recording system. Two independent observers achieved 90% agreement on over 33% of the sessions. Results showed that aberrant behavior during FCT decreased from a high of 98% to a low of 0% by the end of treatment. Manding was a 0% during the initial stages of treatment and increased to 20%.
11. A Comparison of Procedures for Teaching Phase 1 of the Picture Exchange Communication System
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
RACHEL FREEDMAN (BEACON Services), Robert K. Ross (BEACON Services), Meagan Elderkin (Autism Consultants of New Brunswick)

The Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) is widely used in teaching individuals with autism spectrum disorders to initiate communication with other people (Bondy and Frost, 1994). According to the PECS teaching protocol (Bondy and Frost, 1994), phase 1 requires two teachers working with the student simultaneously; the first teacher serves as the Communicative Partner, while the second teacher is the Physical Prompter. Having two trained teachers present during all PECS training sessions is not always practical. For this reason, researchers have raised the question of whether it may be possible to effectively teach phase 1 of PECS with only 1 teacher present (Ross and Lavallee, 2009). The current study compared the number o f trials to acquisition of an independent mand in the two conditions (1 trainer and two trainers). The order of treatments (1 teacher or 2 teachers) was randomly assigned, interobserver agreement data as well as procedural fidelity data were collected. Results suggest variability across students and that some students may acquire the independent mand more rapidly in the single trainer condition.

12. Investigating Variables Related to Treatment Progress Using an Electronic-Data-Collection System
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
ANDRE MAHARAJ (Florida International University), Anibal Gutierrez Jr. (Florida International University), Greg Olmstead (Mobile Thinking, LLC)
Abstract: Autism Spectrum Disorder affects nearly 1 in 110 children and research has shown that early intervention using evidence-based treatments results in the best outcomes. The goal of this study was to evaluate data collected using an electronic data collection system (mTrial) to identify variables related to overall treatment progress. We evaluated the relationship between treatment progress in early intervention programs in specific curriculum areas to overall treatment progress and the rate at which different skills are mastered. Data on the skill programs targeted and the number of correct and incorrect responses were collected for five children in ABA programs during an average eight-month period. The number of mastered programs within curriculum areas was counted and the average found for the total programs mastered as well as the average programs mastered. Results showed a significant correlation between the number of imitation programs mastered (p < 0.01) and the total number of programs mastered as well as between the number of discrimination programs mastered (p < 0.05) and the total number of programs mastered. These data suggest that student performance in specific curriculum areas may be related to overall treatment progress and demonstrate the potential importance of utilizing an electronic data collection system.
13. Intervention to Avoidance of Dog-Related Stimuli for a Boy With Asperger's Syndrome
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
YUMIKO SASADA (Hamamatsu-City Medical and Welfare Center for Development), Kenji Okuda (Ohka Gakuen University)
Abstract: Study Objectives:Effectiveness of walking home from school procedure for the boy with Asperger's disorder who must be accompanied by a parent from school to school to avoid dog-related stimuli were evaluated, using token economy and exposure. Participant:A 10-year-old boy with Aspergers disorder Intervention: In phase 1, the token economy was carried out by the way home from school. In phase 2, in addition to the token economy, made the exposure of the dog-related stimuli. In Phase 3, only a token economy continued. Results:In phase1, the boy could walk home from school without riding mothers bicycle. In Phase 2, began spontaneously from school alone and led to 100% in Phase 3. Conclusion: The results indicate that the intervention using token economy and exposure was effective to modification avoidance of dog-related stimuli, for the boy with Aspergers disorders. Future, it is necessary to clarify the relevance of each procedures and behavior change.
14. A Comparison of Maintenance and Highly Preferred Tasks in the High-Probability Instructional Sequence
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
KATHLEEN ESCH (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology), Mitch Fryling (California State University, Los Angeles)
Abstract: Behavior analysts have conducted a number of studies on the phenomena of behavioral momentum. Within the applied domain, this phenomenon is often studied under the auspices of task interspersal or the high-probability instructional sequence. While a number of studies have demonstrated that the high-probability (high-p) instructional sequence is an effective intervention to increase compliance with a range of tasks, the high-p sequence is not always found to be effective. This study attempted to understand what makes the high-probability instructional sequence effective by examining two variations of it: 1) requesting the individual to engage in three high-p maintenance tasks prior to engaging in the low-p task, and 2) requesting the individual to engage in three highly-preferred high-p tasks prior to engaging in the low-p task. Results indicated that compliance with the low-p task was higher in the highly-preferred high-p condition relative to the maintenance high-p condition. This finding was demonstrated in a multiple-baseline design across three tasks. Results are interpreted in a broadly defined respondent paradigm. Implications for understanding effective antecedent interventions are provided.
15. Using Video Technology To Reduce Problem Behavior Associated With Being Alone
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
BAILEY SCHERBAK (University of Maryland Baltimore County), Ainsley Thompson (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Jennifer R. Zarcone (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Ashley Stromberg (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
Abstract: Non-contingent reinforcement is a common treatment component for individuals with attention maintained behavior, specifically when caregiver attention is unavailable. Multiple studies have shown non-contingent tangible items are near equally effective as non-contingent attention, and in many cases may be a more practical alternative (Hanley, Piazza and Fisher, 1997; Fisher et al., 2004). However, this approach might be problematic for individuals who dont regularly engage with toys or have adequate play skills. In the current study a 14 year old female with autism was assessed for the treatment of problem behavior. Functional analysis results suggested that her problem behavior occurred most often when she was presented with demands or when she was left alone. Initial preference assessments showed no clear preference for tangible items. Her most preferred activity involved caregiver interaction. A video preference assessment concluded the highest levels of engagement were observed with individualized videos of therapist-client interaction. These videos were then used along with therapist fading to teach the individual to tolerate being alone for increased amounts of time. At the conclusion of the intervention, the individual consistently tolerated 15 minutes of alone time in the absence of problem behavior. Non-individualized videos were also generalized into these sessions.
16. The Use of LEGO to Increase the Social Skills of Children Diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
KATHERINE PHILLIPS (St. Lawrence College), Andrew McNamara (St. Lawrence College), Ken Roberts (Lancaster Drive Public School)
Abstract: Autism spectrum disorder is now recognized as the most common neurological disorder in children (Geneva Centre for Autism, 2011), with impairments in social competence and communication being among the major characteristics of this disorder (Ministry of Education, 2007). This AB multiple-subject design focused on increasing the social skills of six males, aged 5 to 10-years-old, with autism spectrum disorder. The primary intervention was LEGO therapy, with other selected interventions including token reinforcements, verbal prompts, modeling, stimulus prompts, and social reinforcers. LEGO Club lasted for 18 days, and was used as an intervention procedure to increase social interactions between children with autism and their peers. There were six groups and each group was comprised of a child from the Autism Support Classroom, a Grade 4 neurotypical peer, and a Grade 8 intermediate supervisor. Results indicated that the intervention was moderately effective at increasing five of the six children’s rate of social interactions. This study adds to the growing literature that LEGO therapy can teach and enhance the social skills of children diagnosed with autism.
17. Treatment of Food Selectivity Using Stimulus Fading, Modified Simultaneous Presentation, and Shaping
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
DAWN BIRK-INSTRELLA (Institute for Child Development), Rachel N.S. Cavalari (Binghamton University), Tracy Smith (Institute for Child Development), Stephanie Lockshin (Institute for Child Development), Linda Matey (Institute for Child Development)
Abstract: Food selectivity, defined as consuming a limited repertoire of foods, is a commonly associated feature of autism spectrum disorders. Food selectivity can be developed and maintained by a number of stimulus variables, including non-preferred taste, texture, smell, brand, appearance, and presentation of food items. Importantly, both antecedent and consequent interventions have shown efficacy in remediating food selectivity and mealtime behavioral rigidity. This poster will present the implementation of a combined treatment program using stimulus fading, modified simultaneous presentation, and shaping to increase food acceptance in an 8-year-old boy with autism during his regularly scheduled lunchtime at school. The intervention package consisted of stimulus fading of texture and flavor into liquids that he already consumed, tolerance of non-preferred food items presented on the same plate as preferred foods, and reinforcement of successive approximations for ingesting non-preferred food items. Discussion will focus on the utility of combined interventions for food selectivity in children with autism who exhibit both excessively restricted food repertoires and behavioral rigidity during meals. Additionally, the importance of planning for generalization by programming common stimuli (Stokes and Baer, 1977) will be reviewed in the context of food selectivity intervention.
18. Intensive Treatment of Urinary Incontinence of Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders: An Archival Analysis of Procedures and Outcomes From an Outpatient Clinic
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
NICOLE M. HANNEY (Auburn University), Candice M. Jostad (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Linda A. LeBlanc (Auburn University), James E. Carr (Behavior Analyst Certification Board)
Abstract: LeBlanc, Crossett, Bennett, Detweiler, and Carr (2005) described an outpatient model for conducting intensive toilet training with young children with autism using a modified Azrin and Foxx (1971) protocol. The present data analysis summarizes the use of the protocol in an outpatient setting and the outcomes achieved with a large sample of children with autism spectrum disorders. Thirty archival clinical records were coded for several variables including participant demographics (e.g., age, gender, diagnosis, communication modality), target behaviors (e.g., successes, accidents, accident/success conversions, initiations), and intervention components (e.g., differential reinforcement used, request training, duration of the intensive day, fluid loading, pants alarm, positive practice) related to treatment implementation and outcome. The majority of participants achieved full continence in an average of approximately two weeks. Details on the typical implementation and course of treatment are presented to provide a profile of the typical implementation of the protocol and suggestions for early intensive behavioral (EIBI) service providers.
19. Comparison of Two Extinction Methods to Increase Self-Feeding
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Michele D. Wallace (California State University, Los Angeles), BIANCA HO (SEEK Education, Inc.)
Abstract: A number of interventions have been demonstrated to treat feeding disorders (i.e., increase food consumption). To date most research suggests that some form of escape extinction is necessary to increase food consumption and decrease mealtime problematic behaviors. Although escape extinction has been demonstrated to increase food acceptance and consumption, little research has evaluated the form of escape extinction as it relates to increasing or promoting self-feeding. Thus the purpose of this research was to evaluate differential reinforcement of alternative behavior (DRA) with two escape extinction procedures: non-removal of the spoon (NRS) and the use of 3-step prompting (3P) with respect to increasing self-feeding as well as food consumption. Results thus far demonstrate that both forms of extinction increase food consumption; however, that 3P promotes self-feeding quicker than NRS. However, 3P is also associated with more negative side effects when compared to NRS. Implications for both extinction methods will be discussed.
20. An Evaluation of Concurrent Operant Assessment to Increase Compliance
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
NICOLE H. LUSTIG (The University of Iowa), Wendy K. Berg (University of Iowa), Greg Breznican (The University of Iowa), Patrick Romani (University of Iowa)
Abstract: The purpose of this evaluation was to identify a childs relative preferences between social reinforcers using a concurrent schedules design and use the results of that assessment to bias the childs responding towards completing a low preferred task. Joey was a 10 year old boy with Asperger Syndrome and an anxiety disorder. He was referred to the Childrens Hospital of Iowa Biobehavior Day Treatment Service for assessment and treatment of noncompliance, aggression, destruction, and rigidity. Joey refused to complete less preferred work tasks and insisted that activities be conducted according to his directions. When his directions were not followed he refused to participate in the activity and engaged in aggression and destruction. All assessment and treatment sessions were conducted over 10 days. A forced choice preference assessment was conducted identify Joeys relative preferences between three academic tasks. A concurrent schedule design was used to determine Joeys relative preferences between social reinforcers (i.e., toys with attention, toys, attention, and escape from work). The results of this assessment were used to bias Joeys responding toward completing his least preferred academic task using a concurrent schedules design. Interobserver Agreement was collected across 32% of the sessions and averaged 99% (range 90% to 100%). Key Words: concurrent operant assessment, task preference assessment, noncompliance, Asperger Syndrome, anxiety disorder Email and mailing address for presenting author: Nicole Lustig Center for Disabilities and Development 100 Hawkins Drive Iowa city, Iowa 52242-1011
21. Increasing Independent Appropriate Play Skills Using Peer Modeling With a Child Diagnosed With Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
SCOTT FONTECHIA (Advanced Behavioral Systems), Kristin Fowler (Advanced Behavioral Systems)
Abstract: The purpose of this quasi experiment was to increase the frequency of independent appropriate play skills for a four-year-old male who has the diagnosis of Autism. The sessions were conducted in an inclusion preschool setting. After conducting direct observations it was determined that the target child engaged in low frequencies of independent appropriate play skills. Peer modeling was added as a component to the current treatment plan to increase the independent occurrences of the target behavior. Peer modeling involved typically developing peers modeling appropriate play skills in a contrived situation. Frequency data was recorded during the baseline and intervention phases to determine the levels of prompted versus independent occurrences of appropriate play skills. The data indicates that with the addition of the peer modeling component, independent appropriate play skills increased more rapidly than during the baseline phase.
22. Training and Generalization of Complex Auditory-Visual Conditional Discriminations in Individuals With Autism: New Procedures Using Dynamic Stimuli
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
HARRY ALLAN MACKAY (University of Massachusetts Medical School E.K. Shriver Center), Brooks Thompson (University of Massachusetts Medical School E.K. Shriver Center), William J. McIlvane (University of Massachusetts Medical School)
Abstract: Individuals with autism often have difficulty learning auditory-visual conditional discriminations and generalization may be restricted. This research developed new attention-shaping procedures for teaching such discriminations and assessing generalization. First, five participants with autism performed identity matching with the visual training stimuli but did not match these stimuli to auditory samples. For initial training, the auditory stimuli were added as sample components to the visual identity task. The visual component then was faded out in two ways. In one, across-trial contrast fading gradually vanished the visual samples (two large, small, or mixed-size forms), thus establishing conditional control by pairs of tones (same or mixed, respectively). Generalization occurred to new sample frequencies. We also introduced a novel dynamic fading method. Visual comparisons for the training were different forms. Each of these stimuli was paired with different tone combinations to construct the respective complex samples. Initially, selecting the comparison that matched the visual sample component was reinforced. Those components then were removed gradually with dynamic fading, which erased the cues actively within trials (resembling apparent movement) and cumulatively across trials. After fading, conditional control was demonstrated by the auditory samples only. Generalization was shown using tones with frequencies different from the training stimuli.
23. Sensory Regulation and the Impact on Skill Acquistion and Rate of Responding
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
MINDY MILES (APPLE CONSULTING SERVICES), Teresa Field (Fair-Field Functional Therapy)
Abstract: In the field of applied behavior analysis there is a deliberate focus on the relationship between motivation, behavior and consequences to increases skills. This research looks at a fourth dimension to this process, the improvement of skills by attending to the nervous system. Specifically, can we increase the rate of skills acquisition over time by regulating the nervous system? Can we improve the rate of in- session responding? The study included 4 participants, 3 males ( 15, 8, and 5 yr old) and 1 female (3 yr old). In each data collection session we were careful to make sure we had strong instructional control and paired that with strong reinforcers, per a brief preference assessment. We structured our data collection into 3 areas 1) demand completion 2) correct responding and 3) sensory seeking behaviors. We introduced our first treatment based on the seeking behaviors the participants exhibited and continued tracking the other preselected skills. The results showed an increase in the rate of in- session responding and rate of skill acquisition in the majority of the cases. The results also indicate that sensory regulation may impact other behaviors and function skills such as sleeping and warrant further study.
24. Group-Delivered Video Modeling to Teach Pretend Play Skills to Young Children with Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
KIMBERLY ANN KROEGER (Kelly O'Leary Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders), Stephanie Weber (Kelly O'Leary Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders), Emily Boehmler (Kelly O'Leary Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders), Laura Thielman (Kelly O'Leary Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders), Emily Johnson (Kelly O'Leary Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders), Rachel Doty (Kelly O'Leary Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders), Sarah Tyo (Kelly O'Leary Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders), Melanie Carter (Kelly O'Leary Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders)
Abstract: This ABA study employed a group-delivered intervention using video modeling to teach pretend play skills to children with autism. The participants were 7 children (aged 2 y, 5m to 5y, 7m) diagnosed with an ASD by a multidisciplinary team at the local children’s hospital. The children participated in a 10 week, 20 session program. Fifteen minutes of the 90minute sessions was dedicated to the video modeling intervention. The first 2 weeks were baseline where the children were exposed to the toys without instruction during a 10 minute free play. The video modeling was then introduced where the children viewed the module as a group and then immediately went into a 10 minute free play with the module specific toys. Three pretend play activities were targeted, each two weeks at a time, including doll house, construction and rock band themes. The remaining two weeks were return to baseline where the video models were discontinued and all toys were present for the free play time. Results were positive for increased engagement with the target toys, as well as interaction play among the children. Data are being reviewed additionally for appropriate functional play with the items, as well as interobserver agreement.
25. Increasing Implementation of Behavior Support Plans Through Performance Feedback and Video Self-Evaluation
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
CATHLEEN M. ALBERTSON (Devereux CARES), Jean Hirst (Devereux CARES)
Abstract: The current study examined the effectiveness of performance feedback and self-evaluation on staffs treatment integrity scores of behavior support plans. Performance feedback was conducted utilizing checklists based on individual behavior support plans. Staff completed self-evaluation by watching videos of themselves and scoring the same checklists. The participants were three female staff, ages 23-28 with one to two years experience in their roles. Three staff-student dyads were observed by clinicians during daily activities in one classroom for students with an autism spectrum disorder diagnosis. During baseline, participants were observed with no feedback presented. During the first intervention, clinicians provided structured, specific feedback following the observation. Results showed that all staffs scores increased following this intervention. During the second intervention, participants observed themselves on video and scored their own performance using the same checklist, then the clinicians presented the same type of performance feedback and talked with the staff about their own observations. Results showed that treatment integrity scores increased further following the second intervention. Follow-up probe data will be collected. Clinicians have collected baseline data on a second classroom. Again, three staff-student dyads will be observed and scored using checklists designed for each students individualized behavior support plan. So far, baseline scores average 59.5% correct implementation. Using a multiple baseline across staff, clinicians plan to intervene first using the video self-evaluation alone. Second, they will combine the performance feedback with the video self-evaluation and compare results to the initial completed study. Inter-observer agreement data was collected on approximately 33% of sessions and averaged 92%
26. Skill Acquisition Through Observational Learning in a Dyad Setting
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
NICOLE CULL (Erinoakkids), Mary Anne Ondrade (ErinoakKids), Margaret Elson (ErinoakKids)
Abstract: The present study intends to further research in the area of observational learning. It addresses socially valid issues related to social deficits and challenges with the generalization of skills related to Autism. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the rate of acquisition of language skills using a multiple baseline across subjects design with 3 learners with Autism through the observation of peer models in a dyad setting. Participants were matched according to a set of prerequisite skills and similar scores on their standardized assessments. Treatment consists of the presentation of novel language targets to the peer model and ongoing measurement of the acquisition of these targets by the other learner. Assessment and intervention was conducted during Intensive behavioural intervention (IBI) sessions with trained instructor therapists at an in-centre treatment program. Preliminary results suggest that learners acquire target stimuli without direct teaching through observation of their peer model and the delivery of reinforcement. In addition, through pre and post measures, social skills will also be evaluated to determine if there are improvements in social interactions as a result of the pairing of learners in a dyad setting.
27. Improving a Child with Autism's Independent Manding Through Echoic Training and Modeling
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
CARRIE SKALLA (FEAT of Washington), Ann M. Sturtz (FEAT of Washington)
Abstract: Learning to use appropriate mands, or requests, is a critical skill for a child with autism. With this skill, a child can request items and activities, ask for help, and advocate for other needs such as using the bathroom. We began collecting data on the number of mands emitted by a 5-year-old boy with autism prior to the intervention. Data were collected on both inappropriate (grabbing items, whining or crying) and appropriate (picture exchange, one to two word vocal utterances) mand topographies as well as the number of times a clinician provided a verbal prompt before a mand. The number of items an dactivities the child requested and the syntactic complexity of the mands were also recorded. Intervention consisted of improving the child's ability to repeat phrases likely to be reinforced within a mand contingency as well as modeling use of those phrases in naturally occurring context where establishing operations appeared to be in place for a mand response. The goal of intervention was to increase both the variety and length of the child's mands. During intervention, the child began using the functional sentences to mand outside of the echoic training. The data provided in this poster focus on both the process and the result of this intervention.
28. Peddling Pseudoscience
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
CARLOS FREEMAN (Florida Institute of Technology), Mark Malady (Florida Institute of Technology), Ryan Lee O'Donnell (Florida Institute of Technology), Nomara Santos (Florida Institute of Technology), Joshua K. Pritchard (Florida Institute of Technology)
Abstract: Given its emotional toll on families, uncertain etiology, and reputation as an epidemic, autism is a fertile ground for pseudoscience. In this poster, we will present data demonstrating the accelerating trend in the proliferation of pseudoscientific treatment. Not only are these wastes of time, energy and money, but some have already resulted in harmful (and/or fatal) side-effects. We will highlight, discuss, and examine the evidence base of several of the treatment options currently in vogue. Additionally, we discuss the factors which impact parents’ decisions on treatment options for their children and how these might be used in support of empirically validated treatment. The diversity and absurdity found in treatments and their theories of autism etiology are likely to astound the science-minded practitioner. This poster will illuminate the current state of affairs and suggest future dissemination ides to support science-based autism treatment and protect consumers against those who would peddle snake-oil to vulnerable populations.
29. Application of Trial-Based Functional Analysis to Increase Appropriate Waiting for a Student with Asperger Syndrome
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
AMANDA N. SORG (The Ivymount School), Erin Rose Flanagan (Ivymount School), Stacey M. McIntyre (Ivymount School)
Abstract: The present study demonstrates the effectiveness of a trial-based functional analysis to determine function and craft an intervention to reduce aggression and disruption and increase appropriate waiting for a 9-year-old boy with Asperger Syndrome. A trial-based functional analysis demonstrated attention in 90% of test trials and access to tangible items in 100% of test trials. Interobserver agreement was collected for 27% of trials with 100% agreement. Differential Reinforcement of Alternative Behavior (DRA) was implemented to increase duration of appropriate waiting for attention and tangible items during classroom instruction while systematically increasing wait time from 30 sec to 3 min across 32 school days. The DRA utilized a token economy and a color-coded card to signal wait periods. Generalization and maintenance of appropriate waiting were demonstrated by fading the visual support and thinning the reinforcement schedule. Aggression and disruption were reduced from 24% and 24% of 15-min intervals to 11% and 14% of 15-min intervals, respectively. Maintenance probes indicated that aggression and disruption reduced further. These results indicate that trial-based functional analysis is a viable assessment methodology in a special education classroom setting and that DRA can be successfully used to increase duration to attention and access to tangible items.
30. CANCELLED: The Institute for Child Development in Gdansk, Poland,as the Only Polish Replica of the Princeton Child Development Institute
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
IWONA RUTA-SOMINKA (Institute for Child Development), Anna Budzinska (Institute for Child Development in Gdansk)

The Institute for Child Development (IWRD) in Gdansk is a non-profit organization offering a comprehensive science-based program of therapy for children with autism. The Institute for Child Development is the first replica in Europe and the only one in Poland of the Princeton Child Development Institute located in the USA. The following programs operate within IWRD: -- Special Kindergarten for Children with Autism -- Psychology and Education Clinic -- Teacher Training Center -- Single-grade Integrational Kindergarten The main method incorporates the principles of applied behavior analysis as well as basic teaching standards. The IWRD educational program is based on the Princeton Child Development Institute model. A special education kindergarten for children with autism offers a program of early development intervention consisting of therapy for children that begins with the moment of the initial diagnosis and continues until they reach school age. Children work according to individualized educational and therapeutic programs under the guidance of highly qualified therapists at the Institute. They also implement the programs at family homes under the supervision of IWRD specialists. Each task in the program is recorded once a week and the data are plotted onto a graph. All changes in behavior (i.e. students progress) are analyzed. The main objective of the therapy is gradual and systematic introduction of the child into his or her peer group at mainstream kindergartens and schools. The Institute for Child Development also conducts a research and development program designed to conduct scientific studies and publish books and articles as well as popularize knowledge about the latest methods of diagnosis and therapy of small children with autism and related disorders. We have initiated joint programs with the University of Gdansk and other scientific research centers in Poland and abroad. We share our experience and knowledge by holding training sessions and internships designed for teachers, psychologists and students.

31. Investigation of Highly Verbal Participants in the Autism Peer Networks Project
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
CARLA T. SCHMIDT (Juniper Gardens Children's Project), Debra M. Kamps (Juniper Gardens Children's Project), Matthew Schmidt (University of Hawaii at Manoa)
Abstract: The purpose of this pilot study was to investigate the impact of a combined reading and social skills intervention on advanced language ability in 10 kindergarten age participants with Autism Spectrum Disorders in the Autism Peer Networks Project (APNP). The potential impact of these data is to further understand participants with advanced language capabilities and to inform the development of supplemental intervention to meet their specific developmental needs. Advanced language ability was defined as participants who had at least 25 communicative acts (initiations and responses) during baseline 10-minute video probes. The pilot sample consists of 5 experimental and 5 control participants. To ensure group similarity, the experimental and the control groups were matched on results from the Childhood Autism Rating Scale and the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test. Using the SALT software to transcribe and analyze participants verbalization, three baseline video probes from before intervention and three treatment video probes from after one year of intervention were included. The following variables were investigated: total completed words, number of different words, mean length of utterances and type token ratio. Continuations or expansions in conversation beyond an initial initiation/response exchange were also coded.
32. A Comparison of Video Modeling and Stimulus Pairing in Increasing Appropriate Toy Play by Three Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
SELINA FIELD (Amherst County Public Schools), Charles Brent Martin (Commonwealth Autism Services)
Abstract: The current study was designed to compare the efficacy of video modeling and stimulus pairing to teach appropriate toy play to a child with ASD. The purpose of the experiment was to improve social skills, specifically sustained social play, for the participant by increasing appropriate toy play as well as to contribute to existing literature on social skills development. Development of independent toy play would not only provide a repertoire of functional leisure activities, but would also provide increased opportunities for social interactions with peers. Three school-aged children with a diagnosis of autism served as participants. We utilized a multiple baseline across participants design with alternating treatments in order to increase appropriate toy play. Treatments were alternated to determine the most effective intervention for increasing the target behavior. Results indicated that the target behavior increased consistently during the stimulus pairing sessions, while responding was generally lower and more variable during the video modeling sessions. In addition, the consistency of data reported across participants indicates the presence of a functional relationship between the independent variable and the target behavior. This study extends the literature on play skills by incorporating stimulus pairing, which has not been widely researched to date.
33. Video Modeling and Observational Learning to Teach Recreation and Leisure Skills to Students with Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
AMY SPRIGGS (University of Kentucky)
Abstract: Teaching individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders to engage in age-appropriate recreation and leisure skills is vital for non-academic inclusion with typical peers. Individuals with autism often require specialized instruction for appropriately engaging in age-appropriate recreation and leisure activities; when allowed to direct their free time activities, individuals with autism will often engage in inappropriate behaviors (e.g., self stimulatory behaviors, activities that are not age-appropriate). The purpose of this study was to evaluate both video modeling and observational learning to teach age-appropriate recreation and leisure skills (e.g., Nintendo Wii, Nintendo DS, Power Joy Atari Stick) to students with autism. Results were evaluated via a multiple probe design across participants for video modeling and across participants and behaviors for observational learning. Participants included 4 children with autism, ages 8 to 11, who were served in self-contained special education classrooms. Results indicated video modeling was effective for teaching chained tasks, across students; observational learning occurred for at least some steps across students. Results add to research on using video modeling to teach tasks to individuals with autism; results suggest that some students with autism can learn via observational learning in small group instructional arrangements.
34. A Desensitization Approach to Address Dental Resistance in a Child with Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
WILLIAM TIM COURTNEY (Little Star Center), Angela Hensley (Little Star Center), Lisa Steward (Little Star Center), Mary Rosswurm (Little Star Center)
Abstract: Decreasing challenging behavior in children with autism and related developmental disabilities during dental treatment can consist of various interventions. Behavior that interferes with dental procedures and/or treatment may increase the risk of periodontal disease. This research sets out to investigate a systematic desensitization procedure to address behavior exhibited by a six-year old boy with autism experienced during dental treatment. The systematic desensitization treatment package evaluated consisted of social stories, peer modeling, and mock dental procedures. A behaviorally anchored rating scale will be implemented to evaluate the effectiveness of the treatment procedure
35. Embedding Applied Behavior Analysis Methods into a Summer Camp for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
TERESA SUEN (Autism Spectrum Therapies), Caroline Thompson (Autism Spectrum Therapies), Robert Haupt (Autism Spectrum Therapies), William Frea (Autism Spectrum Therapies), Andrea L. Ridgway (Autism Spectrum Therapies)
Abstract: Camps provide an excellent environment for motivated learning. By embedding social skills goals into a fun camp curriculum, Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) methods can be used to increase children’s engagement with peers through clearly defined interactive themes and activities. This presentation describes several key components of a new camp program for children with autism. The components, ABA methods, and examples of social skills embedded into this new program are outlined.
36. Assessment and Treatment of Rituals Associated With Transitions
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JASON HARTMAN (Kennedy Krieger Institute), John M. Huete (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
Abstract: Up to 72% of individuals diagnosed with of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) exhibit some form stereotypy such as hand flapping, body rocking, and perseverative speech (Goldman et al., 2009; Matson, Dempsey, & Fodstad, 2009). Stereotypies do not always require intervention, but are the most frequently reported challenging behavior for children with ASD (Matson, Wilkens, et al., 2009). Some stereotypies can present as compulsive or ritualistic patterns of behavior, that when blocked or interrupted lead to severe behavioral reactions (Hausman, Kahng, & Mongeon, 2008). One such ritual is repetitive straightening or organizing of items. Kuhn, Hardesty, and Sweeney (2009) examined excessive straightening and associated destructive behaviors of a 16-year-old with autism. Using an intervention of functional communication, extinction, and blocking, the authors were able to reduce the behavior. The current study presents data on the assessment and treatment of compulsive straightening behavior by a 16-year-old male diagnosed with Pervasive Development Disorder and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Functional assessment suggested that compulsive straightening was associated with transitions. A treatment utilizing prompting, redirection, and competing items effectively reduced ritualistic behavior by 93% of baseline rates. Results are discussed in regards to noninvasive interventions for compulsive behaviors.
37. Observational Learning Across Three Verbal Operants in a Child with Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JENNIFER LYNN STORLIE (Southern Illinois University Carbondale), Moniek Dewit (Southern Illinois University Carbondale), Leigh Karole Grannan (Southern Illinois University Carbondale), Ruth Anne Rehfeldt (Southern Illinois University)
Abstract: The capacity of an organism to acquire new behaviors as a result of observing the behavior of a model is termed observational learning. Researchers argue that learning via observation may account for the natural acquisition of behavior. However, studies conducted with participants diagnosed with a developmental disability have demonstrated an inability to acquire new information through observational learning in participants. This deficit in an observational learning repertoire may be a large factor for the poor behavioral repertoires of those diagnosed with a developmental disability. One objective of the current study was to assess observational learning across verbal operants in a child diagnosed with autism. Another objective of the study was to expand the literature of using a learner model also diagnosed with autism. One child was designated as the learner and the other child was designated as the observer. The observer was assessed for the acquisition of targets across three verbal operants: tact, intraverbal, and listener responding by feature, function, and class through observation of the learner. The results are expected to demonstrate learning through direct instruction by the learner, as well as learning through observation by the observer, across all three verbal operants.
38. Effects of the Proportion of High-Probability to Low-Probability Requests on Compliance
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
LILIN CHEN (SEEK Education, Inc.), Hui Hung Chen (SEEK Education, Inc.), Claire Hsu (SEEK Education, Inc.)
Abstract: Numerous studies have shown the effectiveness of the high-probability (high-p) request sequence on increasing compliance. The ratio of high-p requests to low-probability (low-p) request is usually set at a 3-to-1 ratio. However, it is unknown if the high-p procedure could be enhanced by increasing the ratio of high-p-to-low-p request. Thus, the purpose of this study was to examine the influences of a 3-to-1 ratio and a 6-to-1 ration on the percentage of compliance. Results from one participant demonstrate equivalent compliance percentages across both ratios. Implications and future research are discussed.
39. A Stimulus Control Procedure to Decrease Noncontextual Vocalizations
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
KELLY DELLA ROSA (Alpine Learning Group), Danielle Schatz (Alpine Learning Group), Courtney Gavin (Alpine Learning Group), Jaime A. DeQuinzio (Alpine Learning Group), Bridget A. Taylor (Alpine Learning Group)
Abstract: For an adolescent girl with autism, non-contextual vocalizations (NCV) consisted of making repetitive comments about topics such as rollercoasters and Jet Blue airplanes. A functional analysis indicated that NCV were maintained by social attention in the form of reciprocal comments made by teachers and adults about these topics. A changing-criterion design will be used to examine the effects of discrimination training and DRO, on reducing NCV. During baseline, if the learner engages in NCV, teachers respond as they normally would by making one reciprocal comment and directing the learner back to work. During discrimination training, the presence of a bracelet will serve as an S-delta for extinction in which NCV will be ignored, whereas the absence of the bracelet will serve as a discriminative stimulus for reinforcement in which NCV will be followed by attention. After the participant demonstrates successful discrimination of the stimuli (i.e., the absence of NCV when the bracelet is on and the engagement in NCV when the bracelet is off) intervention will begin. During intervention, a DRO procedure will be implemented. If the learner completes tasks in the absence of NCV for a specified interval, the bracelet will be removed and NCV will be reinforced. The DRO interval will be systematically increased throughout intervention as the learner meets criterion and timed access to NCV will be systematically decreased. Stimulus generalization across settings and instructors will be assessed throughout intervention.
40. I Will Not Give You My Wallet: Teaching Self-Advocacy to People with Autism Using Multiple Exemplar Instruction Procedures
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Saundra Bishop (B.A.S.I.C.S. ABA Therapy, LLC), CHRISTINA RYAN (B.A.S.I.C.S. ABA Therapy, LLC)

Children with Autism display deficits in social skills in areas of communication and social interactions. This leads to difficulties in the ability to self-advocate for themselves. There are many different strategies used to teach social skills (DiGennaro, Reed, Hyman, Hirst, 2011). This poster explores whether Multiple Exemplar Instruction (MEI) can be used to effectively teach social skills. This model is traditionally used to teach language (Greer, Yaun, & Gautreaux, 2005 & 2008). MEI procedures teach using the exemplars of tact, intraverbal, and match. We created scenarios that were used to target these areas. We also added Natural Environment to record whether the skill was generalizing. This model was used with 3 students to teach the difference between being Rude, a Self Advocate, and Being Taken Advantage of. We used several types of scenerios and varied the type of exemplars in each condition. Data was recorded on each exemplar and graphed separately. The studies indicated that teaching only MEI without natural environment did not generalize the behavior. MEI including natural environment applications created a mastery of the material in the natural environment.

41. Increasing Staff Transition Treatment Integrity Scores through Videos and Performance Feedback
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
KATHERINE GENGARELLY (May Institute), Shannon Kay (May Institute)
Abstract: Self-monitoring, through the use of videos and checklists, was used to improve staff scores on treatment integrity during transitions. In a multiple-baseline study across staff, researchers observed and videotaped five staff members during four types of activity transitions with a nine-year-old student with autism. The transitions included leaving choice, leaving DRO, going to and leaving recess. These transitions were shown to be setting events for target behaviors if staff were not in compliance with the student’s behavior plan. Researchers and staff members watched videos of the transitions and filled out treatment integrity checklists simultaneously and then compared results. Inter-observer agreement was required to be 100% between two trained researchers and the staff member, as well as two consecutive sessions scoring 100% on the treatment integrity checklist. For all 5 staff members, treatment integrity scores improved to 100% across all transitions after self-monitoring and video feedback and these scores were maintained in follow-up sessions. Rates of student target behaviors decreased following accurate implementation of the behavior plan during these transitions and were also maintained.
42. Elimination Of Mouthing In A Child With Autism Spectrum Disorder Using Noncontingent Reinforcement, Redirection, and Shaping Procedures.
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
RADHIKA POOVAYYA (Rehabilitation Council of India)
Abstract: Many children with autism put inappropriate objects in their mouth. This behavior results in social isolation , is a health hazard and also acts as a barrier in learning. In this study, an intervention plan was designed which gave non contingent access to sensory stimuli on a predetermined schedule and simultaneously increased desirable behavior ( in this case- appropriate play) and decrease inappropriate behavior (mouthing) for a four year old boy with ASD. Brief functional analysis indicated an automatic reinforcement function, and independent toy play was selected as an appropriate alternative behavior. The mother was trained to teach appropriate toy play and to block and redirect mouthing attempts. The presence of the mother was faded after successful elimination of mouthing behavior in the mothers presence. Results were maintained in the absence of the mothers presence.
43. A Comparison of Two Error-Correction Methods on Color Learning by Adolescents With Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Basic Research
BRUCE G. HAUSER (Heartspring), Pam Calabria (Heartspring)
Abstract: Published research on the efficacy of different types of error correction with children and adolescents with autism is limited and inconclusive. Studies have indicated no consistent across subject results when comparing differential reinforcement of correct responses only, modeling without active subject response, modeling with a single active student response and modeling with multiple active student responses. This research reports the results on the learning rates on a color identification task for four adolescents on the autism spectrum. Treatment conditions compare modeling without active subject response and modeling with a single active student response when differential reinforcement is given for all correct responses.
44. Comparing Questions About Behavioral Functions Assessments and Functional Analysis for Functions of Behaviors
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
MARISSA A. NOVOTNY (St. Cloud State University), Nicholas Watkins (Douglas College), John T. Rapp (St. Cloud State University)
Abstract: There have been many studies conducted to determine how effectively Question About Behavior Function (QABF) assessment and functional analyses can predict the function of behaviors. However, few studies have compared the results of the two assessments to determine if each indicates the same function for problem behaviors. In the current study, we compared the results of six participants QABF results to either the results of their functional analysis or consecutive alone conditions (i.e., a brief functional analysis). The QABF was administered by giving the questionnaire to either one or both of the participants parents. The functional analysis procedures were similar to those of Iwata, Dorsey, Slifer, Bauman, and Richman (1982/1994) or Iwata and Dozier (2008). This was done to see if the QABF would indicate the same function of the behaviors as the corresponding functional analysis. The results of the study showed that all six of the QABFs and functional analyses came up with non-social as the function of the participants problem behaviors. We discuss the clinical implications of this finding, potential limitations of this study, and directions for future research with the QABF.
45. Effects of Self-Management Treatment Packages on Behavior Reduction and Skill Acquisition: Review of Recent Literature
Area: AUT; Domain: Theory
KRISTINE RODRIGUEZ (Autism Spectrum Therapies)
Abstract: There has been much research dedicated to evaluating self-management programs designed to help individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) acquire new skills and reduce maladaptive behavior. In this review, relevant articles are analyzed to compare applications of self-management treatment packages. Self-management has been implemented to teach daily living skills using a picture schedule (Pierce & Schreibman, 1994), improve social communication (Koegel, Koegel, Hurley & Frea, 1992) and functional play skills (Stahmer & Schreibman, 1992), reduce self-injurious behavior (Tiger, Fisher & Bouxsein, 2009), and to teach students to set and evaluate goals while staying on-task during independent work (Mithaug & Mithaug, 2003). Benefits of a self-management program include validity for individuals of varied cognitive and developmental levels, cost-effectiveness, promotion of increased independence and integration, and minimal clinician presence. This review is intended to synthesize existing research findings in order to identify the applications of self-management treatment packages for students of all developmental levels with ASD. This analysis will also suggest areas of future study.
46. Treatment of Aggression With Functional Communication Training and Planned Ignoring
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
AMY LOCKNEY (The Knapp Center for Childhood Development), Julie Knapp (Cleveland Clinic Center for Autism)
Abstract: There is limited research on how to teach functional communication training to an individual without any formal communication system in place, who has poor fine motor skills and the inability to discriminate photographs. There is also limited research on how to teach a child to engage in functional communication training targets when any attempts to place demands results in aggression. In the present study, the effectiveness of functional communication training with planned ignoring and compliance training was assessed with an eight year-old boy with Downs syndrome and autism who presented with limited communication skills and aggression. The intervention included multiple teaching opportunities of requesting functional communication targets, paired with planned ignoring upon the occurrence of aggressive behavior. Treatment included the implementation of compliance training upon the second implementation of planned ignoring after the occurrence of an aggression. Treatment resulted in a 90% reduction of aggression and an increase in functional communication training targets in both training environments. These results demonstrate that functional communication training with planned ignoring and compliance training can be an effective means to teach individuals with autism to replace aggression serving the communication function with a more appropriate means to communicate.
47. Using Differential Reinforcement of Other Behavior and Functional Communication Training to Reduce Stereotypic Behavior in a Child with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
REBECCA JONES (Autism Spectrum Therapies)
Abstract: Stereotypy is a serious concern for teachers and professionals working with the autistic population because of its propensity to interfere with learning and socialization. While there are several studies that evaluate the effectiveness of interventions designed to reduce stereotypy through the application of aversives, there are relatively few that focus on positive reinforcement or functional communication training as effective interventions. Thus, it is the purpose of this study to evaluate the effectiveness of a combined Differential Reinforcement of Other Behavior (DRO) and Functional Communication Training (FCT) intervention to teach a seven-year old autistic male to eliminate stereotypy during learning segments and engage in stereotypy only when appropriate. The author found that implementing a combined DRO/FCT procedure significantly reduced stereotypic behavior.
48. Further Evaluation of the Efficacy of Data-Collection Methods and Mastery Criteria Used in Applied Behavior Analysis-Based Programs for Children Diagnosed with Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Basic Research
MEAGAAN S. TURNER (Autism Spectrum Therapies), Rachel S. Findel-Pyles (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, Los Angeles), Jonathan J. Tarbox (Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.)
Abstract: In behavior programs focused on Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), clinicians often set mastery criteria to indicate when a skill has been learned, and subsequently assess the maintenance of the behavior change over time. Currently, there are numerous measurement systems and mastery criteria used to assess the acquisition of skills across a variety of different behavioral programs. Cummings and Carr (2009) and Najdowski et al. (2009) evaluated two commonly used measurement systems including all-trials and first trial. The purpose of the current investigation was to further evaluate the efficacy of these systems as well as related mastery criteria used in ABA-based programs. Similar to the results found by Najdowski, et al. (2009), the results of the current investigation suggest little difference between the all-trials and first-trial measurement systems. Results also suggest that more stringent mastery criteria may not be correlated with better maintenance. Additional research on the efficacy of commonly used measurement systems and mastery criteria may help to increase the overall effectiveness of ABA-based behavioral programs.
49. Reducing Physical Aggression in Persons with Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
MICHAEL R. MAYTON (West Virginia University), Stacy L. Carter (Texas Tech University), Tony Menendez (Cleveland State University), John J. Wheeler (East Tennessee State University)
Abstract: The presence of physical aggression in persons with autism (a) tends to predict the use of anti-psychotic medications and more intrusive interventions, such as psychiatric services (Tsakanikos, Costello, & Holt, 2007); (b) can result in the use of more restrictive, consequence-based interventions, such as restraint (e.g., Foxx & Meindl, 2007) or electroconvulsive therapy (e.g., Wachtel, Jaffe, & Kellner, 2011); and (c) increases the likelihood of involvement with the criminal justice system, at a higher rate than that of the general population (Cashin & Newman, 2009; Mayes, 2003). In addressing the need to reduce aggression and avoid these associated risk factors, a generalized intervention model is presented that utilizes positive, non-punitive intervention components such as functional communication training, planned ignoring, and differential reinforcement. Implementation of this model is illustrated within two applied case studies incorporating behavioral data showing substantial reduction in aggression across two adult men diagnosed with autism. As consistent with the findings of other researchers, the current authors have found that the use of non-punitive methods such as reinforcement-based strategies and antecedent modification are often just as effective as restraint and punishment-based methods for reducing the occurrence and intensity of physical aggression in this population.
50. Use of a Conversation Box to Increase Social Interactions in a Child With Autism Spectrum Disorder and a Child With Developmental Delays
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
LAURA J. DANTONA (BEACON Services), Robert K. Ross (BEACON Services), Joseph M. Vedora (BEACON Services)
Abstract: Visual supports have been shown to facilitate language production in children with ASD (Sarokoff, Taylor, & Poulson, 2001). The current study assessed the effects of visually cued conversation starters (asking a question and making a statement) as well as topic maintainers (answering a question and returning a comment). A conversation box containing textual prompts was used to support production of social language in a child diagnosed with ASD and his brother diagnosed with developmental delays and a speech delay. The material used within this study was unique in that it incorporated a physical exchange, which assisted topic maintenance and shifting. The implications of these findings and the use of visual supports to increase language production are discussed.
51. A Comparison of the Acquisition and Maintenance of Spelling Using Different Mastery Levels
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
KELLER MACMATH (BEACON Services), Robert K. Ross (BEACON Services), Joseph M. Vedora (BEACON Services)
Abstract: Najdowski et al. (2009) assessed multiple data collection procedures used during instruction of individuals with developmental disabilities and suggested that research was needed to determine the impact of different criterion levels on evidence of mastery. Researchers in the current study assessed the acquisition of spelling across two sets of equivalent words using a less and more restrictive mastery criteria. The participant in the present study had history of learning to spell with the use of visual prompts; however, acquisition of the target words was very slow. The participants rates of acquisition were compared and the maintenance of spelling was evaluated to determine if either criterion resulted in more rapid and more durable responding.
52. Using Video-Based Activity Schedules and Matrix Training to Teach Socio-Dramatic Play
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JENNIFER SMITH (BEACON Services), Robert K. Ross (BEACON Services), David Robert Dilley (BEACON Services), Victoria Sadler (BEACON Services)
Abstract: Autism is characterized by deficits in communication, social/play and restricted repetitive and stereotyped patterns of behavior. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) specifies one of the key deficits in children with Autism as a delays or abnormal functioning in the area of symbolic or imaginative play (American Psychiatric Association [DSM-IV-TR], 2000). Because deficits in play skills may have a negative influence on the quality and quantity of children social interactions, the possibility of facilitating childrens social skills is a compelling reason for providing instruction in socio-dramatic play (Goldstein & Cisar, 1992). Socio-dramatic play includes instances where the learner says and does things that are thematically related and distinct from other things said and done (Dauphin, Kinney and Stromer, 1992). The current study assessed effects of using video modeling and matrix training to teach socio-dramatic play skills to a student diagnosed with autism. A 6X6 instructional matrix identified thirty-six activities to be performed including combinations of 6 objects and 6 actions, all participants acquired the target responses and demonstrated generalized use of the play skills outside of the trained context.
53. Pairing Therapists of Children With Autism With Reinforcement: Effects on Task Engagement and Challenging Behavior
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
DAVID J. O'REGAN (Hesley Group), Sarah I. Denison (Hesley Group), John Carl Hughes (Bangor University)
Abstract: Pairing a therapist with reinforcement is commonly advised when initiating behavioural intervention programmes with children with autism. While much research has been carried out on stimulus-stimulus pairing, there has been little empirical evaluation of the effects of pairing individuals with reinforcement. The present study examined the effect of pairing a therapist with preferred activities on the task engagement and challenging behaviour of children with autism. Two children with autism participated in a multiple-probe across participants design. Experimental functional analyses indicated escape from task demands as the primary maintaining variable for both participants challenging behaviour. A therapist conducted multiple pairing sessions with each participant across a 4 week period. While an increase in task engagement was observed after the pairing procedure was introduced for one participant, the data for the second participant were not conclusive. No significant effects on challenging behaviour were observed. The present study represents an initial analysis of an under-researched topic, which merits further investigation.
54. A Comparison of Verbal Feedback and Modeling Error Correction Methods on Color Learning by Adolescents With Autism
Area: AUT; Domain: Basic Research
BRUCE G. HAUSER (Heartspring), Jennifer Miller (Heartspring)
Abstract: Published research on the efficacy of different types of error correction with children and adolescents with autism is limited and inconclusive. Studies have indicated no consistent across subject results when comparing differential reinforcement of correct responses only, modeling without active subject response, modeling with a single active student response and modeling with multiple active student responses. This research reports the results on the learning rates on a color identification task for four adolescents on the autism spectrum. Treatment conditions compare modeling the correct response with no modeling when differential reinforcement is given for all correct responses.
55. The Effects of Behavioral Skills Training on Implementation of Mand Training Teaching Components
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
LAURA NOLAND (The Bay School), Josh Harrower (California State University, Monterey Bay)

This multiple baseline study investigated the effectiveness of a behavioral skills training (BST) package in teaching three instructional assistants to implement mand training teaching components to a 13 year old student with autism. During baseline, the experimenter provided the assistants with a mand training checklist and instructed them to follow the steps to the best of their ability during a 5-mintes session with the student. Behavioral skills training consisted of a 5-minute session in which the experimenter provided each assistant with the training package (i.e., instructions, modeling, rehearsal, and feedback) followed by a 5-minute uninterrupted session in which performance was measured. Immediately following achievement of the mastery criteria of BST, 5-minute post-training sessions evaluated each assistants ability to independently implement the teaching components in the absence of the prior BST session. Results revealed that the percentage of correct implementation of mand training teaching components increased significantly across all three assistants during BST sessions and maintained at high levels during the post-training phase.




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