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 #404
International Paper Session - Outcomes for Young Children with Autism
Monday, May 26, 2008
1:30 PM–2:50 PM
Stevens 1
Area: AUT
Chair: Diane M. Sainato (The Ohio State University)
Project TASK: Transition for Children with Autism to School from Kindergarten.
Domain: Applied Research
DIANE M. SAINATO (The Ohio State University), Sunhwa Jung (Otterbein College), Rebecca S. Morrison (Oakstone Academy), Judah B. Axe (The Ohio State University), Susan Snyder (Oakstone Academy), Nikki Kerns (Oakstone Academy)
Abstract: As of Year Three in our model inclusive kindergarten study three cohorts of children with autism (N=30) have been recruited for participation in the study. Three separate cohorts of children with autism (N=18) from local school districts have also participated. In the Project TASK classroom a curriculum consisting of Direct Instruction Reading, peer mediated social skill interventions, behavioral interventions for challenging behavior and IEP objectives embedded into typical classroom activities was implemented. Pretest and post-test measures included standardized assessments for language, cognitive functioning, social, and academic achievement. Behavioral observations were conducted once a month for each child for a total of 540 minutes of direct observation in classrooms across each of the three years. Outcomes from the model program were as follows: The majority of children from Project TASK demonstrated an increase on standardized assessments across all areas along with increased levels of appropriate engagement in observed classroom activities as compared to the comparison subjects. Interobserver agreement measures for the direct observations yielded a mean level of 90%.
The Effectiveness of Community-Based Intensive Behavioural Intervention: A Waitlist Comparison Study.
Domain: Applied Research
HELEN E. FLANAGAN (York University), Adrienne M. Perry (York University), Nancy Freeman (Surrey Place Centre)
Abstract: Intensive Behavioural Intervention (IBI) has been recognized as the treatment of choice for young children with autism. However, additional research is needed that examines treatment benefits in large community samples using comparison groups. This study assessed changes over time in 79 children who received IBI and 79 waitlist controls. Information was obtained through file review at a treatment agency that provides publicly funded IBI to a diverse urban population. At Time 1, children were 2 to 6 years of age and groups did not differ with respect to age, autism severity, adaptive functioning, and parent stress. Data from the Childhood Autism Rating Scale and the Vineland Adaptive Behaviour Scales were available at Time 1 and Time 2 and information about cognitive functioning was available at Time 2. The treatment period tended to be longer than the waitlist period and this difference was controlled in analyses. Preliminary analyses using repeated-measures ANOVAs suggested significant differences between groups at Time 2 in autism severity and adaptive functioning (Communication and Socialization domains of the Vineland differed, but the Daily Living Skills domain did not). In addition, cognitive skills were higher at Time 2 for the treatment group. The role of initial age and functioning level when predicting outcome will also be described and implications of findings will be addressed.
Starting off on the Right Foot: One Year of Behavior Analysis in Practice.
Domain: Applied Research
JEREMY H. GREENBERG (Applied Behavioral Consultant Services), Rosa C. Martinez (The Children's Center for Early Intervention)
Abstract: Strong evidence exists for the efficacy of behavior analytic approaches with children on the autism spectrum (Carr & Firth, 2005). In general, most early intervention studies report outcomes based on pre-school populations (Smith, 1999; Mastropieri, 1986) while outcome studies for younger 0-3 populations are scarce. We reviewed one year of data from an Early Intervention (EI) center-based program using applied behavior analysis special instruction. The population served was two- and three-year-olds with pervasive developmental disorder (PDD). One-to-one instruction was provided in individual and in group formats using learn units as the basic unit of instruction. Instruction was provided within a combination of discrete trial training (DTT) and natural environment training (NET) formats. Program data are reported for 24 EI children diagnosed with PDD. Ninety-five percent of the children who participated in this program for one year progressed to lesser restrictive environments. Results were also expressed using a cost benefit analysis.



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