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.


40th Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2014

Event Details

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Symposium #372
CE Offered: BACB
Academic Skills Instruction for Postsecondary Learners with Intellectual Disability
Monday, May 26, 2014
11:00 AM–11:50 AM
W194b (McCormick Place Convention Center)
Area: EDC/DDA; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: David L. Lee (Penn State)
Discussant: William Therrien (The University of Iowa)
CE Instructor: David L. Lee, Ph.D.

Results from the National Longitudinal Transition Study 1 and 2 indicate that more and more young adults with disabilities are pursuing a postsecondary education after high school. However, young adults with intellectual disabilities continued to be the group that was the least likely to participate in any postsecondary education. As a result, these individuals are not likely to benefit from occupations that offer opportunities for advancement and financial security in this economy (Wagner et al., 2005). One of the factors that lead to the low enrollment of young adults with intellectual disabilities in postsecondary education is their limited academic skills, particularly in the areas of reading and writing. Therefore, educators should prepare learners with intellectual disabilities with the academic skills necessary to succeed in the postsecondary education settings. The symposium will include two experimental studies that focus on teaching academic skills to young adults with intellectual disabilities at the postsecondary level. We will also discuss the implication of our findings.

Keyword(s): Academic skills, Assistive technology, Reading comprehension, Writing instruction

Reading Comprehension Instruction Using iPad for Learners with Intellectual Disability

YOUJIA HUA (The University of Iowa), Saeed Alqahtani (University of Iowa), Wei Lin Chen (The University of Iowa)

Reading is one of the most important academic skills because it enhances individuals learning opportunities as well as general well-being. One research-based reading intervention that targets both oral reading fluency and reading comprehension is the Reread-Adapt and Answer-Comprehend (RAAC) intervention. Although effective, we found this intervention required extensive amount of time and resources. As an alternative to the RAAC intervention, we utilized the text-to-speech feature of the iPad as a component of a reading intervention for learners with ID. Three students diagnosed with ID participated in the study. RAAC and iPad + Comprehension monitoring are the two interventions. We scored student oral story retell as a dependent variable. During the RAAC condition, the student first read the story grammar questions. Then the student read passage three times. During the iPad + Comprehension monitoring condition, each student read the story grammar questions. The student then listened to the passage using iPads text-to-speech feature. We used a multiple-baseline across the participants design to first investigate the two interventions on reading comprehension of the participants. Then we compared the effects of the two interventions in the context of an alternating treatment design. We will complete data collection by the end of November, 2013.

An Investigation of an Editing Strategy with Postsecondary Students with Developmental Disabilities
SUZANNE WOODS-GROVES (The University of Iowa), Doreen J. Ferko (California Baptist University)
Abstract: This investigated the efficacy of an editing strategy designed to improve the editing skills of young adults (ages 19-to-22 years), who were enrolled in a post-secondary education program for individuals with developmental disabilities study (Woods-Groves, Hua, Therrien, Kaldenberg, Kihura, & Hendrickson, in press). Sixteen students were randomly assigned to treatment or control groups and a pre- and posttest design was employed. The students were taught a multi-component editing strategy. The EDIT Strategy (Hughes, et al., 2010) is an example of a learning strategy that was designed to target students’ ability to correct editing errors (i.e., spelling, punctuation, capitalization, substance, and overall appearance) commonly found within their electronically written documents. The treatment group significantly outperformed the control group with regard to the total number of editing errors corrected and in the correction of punctuation and overall appearance errors. In addition, the treatment group significantly outperformed the control group on a maintenance test given 11 weeks following intervention. The results supported the utility of the EDIT Strategy in improving the editing skills of the young adults with developmental disabilities who were taught the strategy.



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