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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Paper Session #177
Social Skills Training
Sunday, May 25, 2008
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Stevens 4
Area: AUT
Chair: Kelly McKinnon (Kelly McKinnon & Associates)
Teaching Cooperative Play Skills to Children with Autism Using Peer Social Aims to Determine Play Targets.
Domain: Applied Research
KELLY MCKINNON (Kelly McKinnon & Associates)
Abstract: Neurotypically developing children can be seen smoothly joining into a group of children playing, coordinating play and switching play to another group of children. Difficulties with joining into play or coordinating play can be very common for children on the Autism Spectrum Disorder. As a result, children on the autism spectrum often fail at this advanced level of social skill play, setting them apart from other children. Using baseline observation and data from neurotypically developing children engaged in joining in and coordinated play skills is important to ensure age-appropriate programming, and prevent non-realistic programming such as the “Can I play with you” phenomenon that is often taught, yet not appropriate. Observation and data collection of joining in and cooperative play skills were collected and used to teach realistic social skill objectives of joining in and sustaining and coordinating play skills for several children on the autism spectrum to play.
Using Self-Monitoring Systems to Teach Conversation Skills to Middle School Students with Developmental Disabilities.
Domain: Applied Research
KELLY MCKINNON (Kelly McKinnon & Associates), Laura Butler (New Vista School)
Abstract: Kazdin (1975) defined self-management as the application of behavioral principles to modify one’s own behavior. A review of the literature suggests that few studies have spent time addressing the effects of self-management as a technique to enable children with ASD to control and report on their progress toward increasing and decreasing target behaviors, enabling teachers to devote more time to teaching. Three middle school students were taught 3 pro-social skills based on a set of school-wide values. Once skills were deemed acquired in a small group setting, students were provided with visual self-monitoring tools during crucial social situations to support skill fluency across several natural-environment social situations. Review pre- and post-data, along with student interviews and parent feedback to determine the effectiveness of the self-monitoring tools on students with ASD to increase instances of pro-social behavior.
A Preliminary Investigation of the Effect of a Playscript on the Acquisition of Symbolic Play for Children Diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Domain: Applied Research
NANCY J. CHAMPLIN (Autism Concepts, Inc.), Elizabeth C. Rusinko (Autism Concepts, Inc.), Aimee Collier (Autism Concepts, Inc.)
Abstract: We investigated the effect of a visual playscript to teach symbolic play to 4 children diagnosed on the autism spectrum. Symbolic play was defined as using a toy to simulate a real-life action such as, holding a thermometer to a stuffed animal’s mouth and saying the word “sick”. The ‘Vet’ script was comprised of pictures representing 7 motor actions and 7 corresponding vocal actions that typically occur during a visit to a veterinarian. Each picture depicted a stuffed dog, the necessary prop for the required action and the corresponding vocal response. For example, the first picture showed the stuffed dog, a stethoscope and the word “bum-bum”. Physical and vocal prompts were used to teach the motor and vocal responses, respectively. Prompts were systematically faded to facilitate independent responding for both motor and vocal responses. Increases occurred in independent symbolic play across all 4 children. Results are discussed concerning the importance of teaching play to children diagnosed with autism and the effect of play on the acquisition of cognitive and social skills.



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