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 #513
International Paper Session - Genetic and Medical Research in Developmental Disabilities
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
9:00 AM–10:20 AM
Stevens 1
Area: DDA
Chair: John C. Neill (Long Island University)
Systematic Application of Harrisonian Behaviorism to Neurobehavioral Impairments.
Domain: Applied Research
JOHN C. NEILL (Long Island University)
Abstract: Neill and Harrison's (1987) auditory discrimination procedures were systematically applied to the comparative analysis of stimulus control in rats and humans following seizures early in development. This auditory discrimination methodology was successful in detecting substantial impairments in stimulus control that were not apparent to the casual observer. In both animal models, and in developmentally disabled humans, increases in stimulus control changed the probability of abnormal brain activity and these brain changes were a prerequisite for improvements in behavior. Like ships passing in the dark of night, the effects of neurological events, and the interacting effects of the environment on brain, may be missed unless central nervous system factors are incorporated into the functional analysis. The analysis of brain-behavior-environment relations is a productive area for behaviorists, whose skills and knowledge are needed greatly in clinical and basic behavioral neuroscience.
Preliminary Examination of Gene-Behavior-Environment Relations; Challenging Behavior in Fragile X Syndrome.
Domain: Applied Research
PAUL D. LANGTHORNE (Tizard Centre, University of Kent), Peter McGill (Tizard Centre, University of Kent)
Abstract: Various topographies of challenging behavior are associated with fragile X syndrome (FXS). Only a small handful of studies have gone beyond form to address the function served by such behaviors. The current study adopted indirect functional assessment methods (using the QABF) to examine the function served by challenging behaviors displayed by individuals with FXS in comparison to controls. Implications for the concept of the 'behavioral phenotype' are discussed.
Where’s the Data? Developing an Evidenced-Based Approach to Psychotropic Medication Treatment.
Domain: Applied Research
GREGORY S. HANDEL (The Halcyon Center/Groden Network)
Abstract: Only in the past 25 years have aberrant behaviors exhibited by individuals with developmental disabilities been considered as possible symptoms of psychiatric disorders. However, more often than not, the treating psychiatrist relies solely on the subjective report of primary support providers to make judgments as to what medication to prescribe and whether subsequent adjustments in the medication regime are necessary. This presentation will propose an evidenced-based system for treating individuals dually diagnosed with psychotropic medication. Symptoms used in the current edition of the Diagnostic Statistical Manual, Fourth Edition (DSM-IV) present an opportunity for the behavior analyst to use the monitoring of overt behaviors with a single subject research design to be the primary treatment decision-making tool when using psychotropic medication. More specifically the presentation will also discuss: (a)The importance of operational definitions of symptoms that closely match DSM-IV criteria; (b) how behavioral technology, including a functional analysis, can be useful in preventing misdiagnosis and over medication; (c)_ how various data collection techniques and single-subject designs can be used as methods of measuring and evaluating medications’ efficacy; and (d) the use of behavioral treatment to supplement medication. Data from several case studies will be presented.



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