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.


33rd Annual Convention; San Diego, CA; 2007

Event Details

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Symposium #485
CE Offered: BACB
Application of Behavior Analysis at the Program-Wide Level
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Emma C
Area: OBM/DDA; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Paula Ribeiro Braga-Kenyon (New England Center for Children)
CE Instructor: Paula Ribeiro Braga-Kenyon, M.S.

A hallmark of behavior analysis is a focus of intervention at the level of the individual. Interventions occurring at the organizational or facility-wide level may have significant effects at the level of individual clients and Staff. The presentations in this symposium all represent behavior analytic work with implications for application at the program-wide level.

Effects of a Unit-Wide Special Activity Program on Maladaptive Behavior.
KIMBERLY SLOMAN (University of Florida), Timothy R. Vollmer (University of Florida), Jorge Rafael Reyes (University of Florida)
Abstract: We evaluated the effects of a unit-wide special activity program on the occurrence of maladaptive behavior in offenders with developmental disabilities. During the program, residents could earn access to the special activity contingent upon the absence of maladaptive behavior for the week prior to the activity. The special activity was a catered lunch, music, and conversation with staff members. We alternated the weeks that the program was in place and compared rates of maladaptive behavior during the special activity weeks to non-special activity control weeks. The results showed lower levels of maladaptive behavior during the weeks that the program was in place. Factors influencing program efficacy as well as the cost effectiveness of the program will be discussed.
A Method for Obtaining Interobserver Agreement on Data Collected Daily over Twelve-Hour Periods.
JILL MARIE HARPER (New England Center for Children), Jason C. Bourret (New England Center for Children), Myrna E. Libby (New England Center for Children), Sorrel Ryan (New England Center for Children), Richard B. Graff (New England Center for Children), Stacie Bancroft (New England Center for Children)
Abstract: xii. Interobserver agreement is a typical requirement for the publication of data and has become a hallmark of behavior analytic research in which the data collection is not automated. Interobserver agreement can be thought of as adding to the believability of the data and placing interobserver agreement requirements on clinical data may have several benefits including identifying problems with response definitions, data collection methods, and staff data collection training. In the present study, a system for obtaining interobserver agreement on data collected daily, over twelve-hour periods at a residential school for children diagnosed with developmental disabilities was evaluated. Following implementation of the interobserver agreement data collection system, methods for increasing the amount of time in which interobserver agreement data were obtained were examined.
Reliability Assessment of Protective Hold Implementation.
AVA E. KLEINMANN (The May Institute), Gary M. Pace (The May Institute)
Abstract: Many human services and behavioral healthcare organizations rely on data collection to evaluate outcome. For data to be interpretable it must be recorded reliably. Reliability, or interobserver agreement (IOA), refers to the consistency of measurement over time. The importance of IOA assessment when collecting and evaluating data is heightened when considering extraordinary, and sometimes controversial, interventions. For example, protective holding (therapeutic restraint) may be required for some consumers who present with challenging behaviors (e.g., aggression, SIB). Given the restrictiveness and inherent risks in this type of procedure, reliable data recording of protective holding is a necessity in order to document effectiveness and justify continued implementation. To date, no published protocols exist to address this clinical need at the systems level. The present study designed and implemented a systems protocol for recording IOA data for protective holding across an entire educational program. Results indicated that the protocol yielded valuable clinical data with a minimal investment of staff resources. The findings will be discussed in the context of best practices in behavior analysis including the use of these data as an index of accountability, as an approach towards risk management, and as a clinical tool at a number of levels.
Evaluation of a Negative Reinforcement-Based Treatment for Increasing Independent Transitioning Using Data Collected by Direct-Care Staff.
PAULA RIBEIRO BRAGA-KENYON (New England Center for Children), Allen J. Karsina (New England Center for Children), Jason C. Bourret (New England Center for Children)
Abstract: Interobserver agreement is rarely obtained for data collected by direct-care staff in clinical settings. The present study provides an illustrative example of the use of a data collection procedure that required multiple staff to agree on the report of each recorded episode in evaluating a behavioral intervention. A negative reinforcement-based treatment package was used with a 10 year-old participant who was diagnosed with autism and had a history of difficult transitions to and from the school bus. Preference assessments did not yield any effective reinforcers for walking to and from the school bus. A functional analysis of the participant’s aggression indicated that escape from demands functioned as a reinforcer for aggressive behavior. Access to escape from demands was used to reinforce independent transitioning in an ABAB design. Results indicated that using escape from demands to reinforce independent walking to and from the school bus was effective.



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