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.


43rd Annual Convention; Denver, CO; 2017

Workshop Details

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Workshop #W70
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
Conducting Functional Analyses in Applied Settings
Friday, May 26, 2017
4:00 PM–7:00 PM
Hyatt Regency, Centennial Ballroom H
Area: AUT/PRA; Domain: Service Delivery
CE Instructor: Meghan Van Nostrand, M.S.
STEPHANIE PHELAN (ABACS; Simmons College), Ashley Williams (ABACS; Simmons College), MEGHAN VAN NOSTRAND (ABACS; Simmons College), BRANDON HERSCOVITCH (ABACS)
Description: Functional analysis (FA) is a powerful tool for the assessment of challenging behavior in students with autism and other disabilities. FAs systematically manipulate the antecedents and consequences of target behavior so as to experimentally determine the function(s) of that behavior. The literature indicates that treatments based on the results of functional analyses are more effective than treatments based on other assessment methodologies. However, FAs may not be conducted regularly in home- or school-based settings. Several reasons have been cited for this, including the lack of resources typically needed to conduct these analyses. Given that functional analysis is the only experimental methodology available to determine the function of behavior, and that function-based interventions have been demonstrated to more effective, it is important to extend this methodology to applied settings. The current workshop is designed to prepare practitioners to develop and implement FAs in their current setting, within the scope of time and resources typically available for home-based services. Participants will work through the entire assessment process, from identification of procedures, steps to take, analysis of data, and selection of function-based intervention.
Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the workshop, the participant will be able to: (1) articulate in writing the importance of conducting functional analyses in applied settings; (2) articulate in writing the steps to preparing for a functional analysis in an applied setting (including selecting an experimental design, procedures, measurement methods, and methods for collecting and evaluating interobserver agreement and procedural integrity data); (3) articulate in writing what resources should be taken into account when planning to conduct a functional analysis in an applied setting and analyze how to work within the constraints of the available resources; (4) articulate in writing his or her evaluation of functional analysis outcomes; (5) match function-based treatments with the functional analysis outcomes; (6) articulate in writing a variety of issues that occur while planning for and conducting functional analyses and will articulate in writing how to respond to such issues.
Activities: Instructional strategies include: lecture, group-discussion, and targeted case studies. Workshop objectives will be met through a balanced presentation of lecture, group discussion, and guided practice. Core content will be taught through lecture, video, and a guided discussion of case studies to be presented. (Supplemental materials for identifying language and learning barriers will be provided in order to support participant learning). The format combines lecture, video, group discussion, and guided practice.
Audience: Behavior Analysts with background knowledge of functional analysis research, seeking to expand their repertoire in implementing functional analyses in applied settings.
Content Area: Practice
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): Applied Settings, Functional Analysis, Functional Assessment



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