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.


34th Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2008

Event Details

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Symposium #31
CE Offered: BACB
BATSS to the Rescue Part II: Super Science Saves Students
Saturday, May 24, 2008
1:00 PM–2:20 PM
Williford B
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Janet Ellis (University of North Texas)
CE Instructor: Janet Ellis, Ph.D.

Public schools are fertile grounds for behavior analysis interventions ranging from restructuring environments to teaching staff about scientific principles of human behavior. Oftentimes the focus of behavior analytic interventions is the reduction of severe problem behavior encountered across a variety of school settings. In contrast, the focus of the current presentation is on building appropriate behavior and teaching teachers to teach reading. This symposium includes 4 presentations on varied interventions for 3-5 year olds at risk for failure in kindergarten. Interventions will be presented demonstrating BATSS procedures for teaching literacy skills at various points on the learning continuum. Assessing and training component skills in programs designed for children with special needs also improves teaching efficiency and learner performance. A comparison between current reading scores for this particular group of children and data collected during the prior academic school year will reflect BATSS innovative changes to this technology. Data and video will be shown exhibiting training procedures for teaching reading for this special needs, specific age group of students.

Function Following Form: Forestalling Student Failure.
KRISTIN R. OSLEY (University of North Texas), Anna Whaley Carr (University of North Texas)
Abstract: Oftentimes public schools provide less-than-optimal learning environments for children in special education settings. This presentation focuses on the environmental assessment and re-structuring of an Adaptive Life Skills class with 8 students, 1 teacher, and 2 paraprofessionals. Problem issues included: students not engaged for long periods during transition, very lean schedules of reinforcement for appropriate student behavior, frequent attention following inappropriate behavior, high rates of repetitive instruction delivery with near zero rate of compliance, little time spent teaching adaptive life skills, disorganized classroom with confusing schedule of activities, unnecessary physical prompts with no systematic plan for implementing fading. The intervention includes 2 main components: restructuring of the physical environment to include a 1:1 teaching area, constructing then displaying a cohesive class schedule for students and staff; organizing the classroom into functional activity units. Another component focused on staff training to establish a more effective social environment that supports & maintains appropriate staff and student behavior. Data are being collected and will be reported. Before and after conditions will be shown via video clip.
When It Works, Improve It: Teaching Three to Five Year Olds with PPCD to Read.
RACHEL LEE KOELKER (University of North Texas)
Abstract: School districts need to provide services to children with disabilities before they enter kindergarten. These three to five year old PPCD students need academic help before they reach kindergarten. The BATSS reading program has had tremendous success working with these students to teach them to read. Like any other system the BATSS reading program needs continual adaptation to improve the success of the program. Following last year’s success changes have been made that include more consistency across consultants, increasing feedback to consultants, introducing the concept of blending into the program sooner, and providing more variety in activities to keep student motivation amongst other changes. These changes and others will be discussed as well as presenting this year’s data in comparison to last year’s data. The importance and effect of the changes made will be demonstrated in the improvement in student performance illustrated by the difference in data from year to year.
1,000 words? No, 1,000,000!
LARISA MAXWELL (University of North Texas)
Abstract: Many times, it is difficult to visualize procedures discussed in presentations, and thus also difficult to apply the procedures in our respective work environments. This presentation will provide attendees the opportunity to view a short film demonstrating reading program procedures to further illustrate the use of the reading program technology used by consultants with Behavioral Assessment and Technology Support Systems (BATSS). The film will include teaching at-risk preschool students, ages 3-5, to read at various points in the learning continuum. Video demonstrations may range from teaching sounds to blends to sight words. Several different teaching methods, including see/say and hear/touch will be included along with an error correction procedure. BATSS’ reading program uses and develops a variety of materials to increase and maintain student engagement, along with program for generalization across stimuli, and these will be available for viewing also. If a picture says 1,000 words, this video must say 1,000,000!
Pre-reading Skills: Component Skills that Provide a Foundation for Competent Reading Repertoires.
JASON C. COHEN (University of North Texas)
Abstract: Programs designed to teach new skills are often inefficient or ineffective due to a failure to address component skills. Lack of component skill proficiency frequently results in little or no progress toward meeting goals and leaves teachers and learners frustrated. Depending on the goals and the current repertoire of a learner, several component skills may be trained simultaneously in the context of relatively difficult academic skills or even during unstructured recreational activities. To meet mastery criteria on other goals, however, it may be necessary to break the skills down and train certain components in isolation. This discussion will include descriptions of components across several skill sets, the importance of training component skills in the context of acquisition and remediation, and possible benefits of component skill assessments. By and large, assessing and training component skills in programs designed for children with special needs can improve efficiency of teacher and learner performance by facilitating acquisition of new skills and remediation of disfluent skills.



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