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

Event Details

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Symposium #511
CE Offered: BACB
Instructional Arrangements to Promote Intraverbal Emergance
Monday, May 29, 2017
5:00 PM–5:50 PM
Convention Center Mile High Ballroom 3A
Area: VRB/AUT; Domain: Translational
Chair: Christopher A. Tullis (Georgia State University)
CE Instructor: Christopher A. Tullis, Ph.D.
Abstract: Learners with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) frequently present with difficulties acquiring novel behavior without direct teaching. As such, teaching procedures that result in the emergence of untrained verbal behavior are one essential component of behavioral language intervention for learners with ASD. Although teaching arrangements that encourage emergence of untrained verbal relations are present in the behavior analytic literature, a large proportion of investigations focus on the emergence of mand or tact responses. In comparison, a smaller number of investigations focus on emergence of intraverbals. The three investigations presented will illustrate teaching methodologies that resulted in the emergence of untrained intraverbals with vocal and non-vocal learners with ASD. In the first investigation (Shillingsburg et al.), the effects of listener training on emergent intraverbal responding was examined. The second (Fetzer et al.), extends previous investigations focusing on training history and emergence of novel intraverbals. In the final investigation (Tullis et al.), the effects of instructive feedback on the acquisition of untrained intraverbals for a learner with a speech generating device was examined. These investigations also highlight the significance of explicitly programming for emergence within clinical settings.
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): Autism, Emergence, Intraverbal

The Effects of Training Multiple Unidirectional Intraverbal Relations on the Emergence of Bidirectional Relations With Children With Autism

(Applied Research)
JAMIE FETZER (Caldwell University), April N. Kisamore (Caldwell University), Amanda Karsten (Western New England University), Jason C. Vladescu (Caldwell University), Catherine Taylor-Santa (Caldwell University)

Perez-Gonzalez, Garcia-Asenjo, Williams, and Julio-Carnerero (2007) evaluated the effects of training multiple bidirectional (A?B) relations on the emergence of novel bidirectional relations with two children diagnosed with pervasive developmental disorder. Results showed that although both participants demonstrated emergence of bidirectional relations, the participant who experienced immediate bidirectional training demonstrated emergence of novel bidirectional relations in fewer training trials than the participant who experienced extended unidirectional training (A==>B) prior to bidirectional training (A==>B and B==>A). The purpose of the current study was to replicate the basic procedures of Perez-Gonzalez et al. and extend their findings by evaluating the effects of an extended unidirectional training history on the emergence of bidirectional relations with four children with autism. We further extended Perez-Gonzalez et al. by (a) using simple antecedent stimuli (i.e., English ==> French translations), (b) reporting participant scores on expressive and receptive language assessments, (c) evaluating the effects of training history with two matched groups of children with autism, (d) programming for and assessing maintenance, and (e) assessing social validity. Novel bidirectional relations emerged quickly for both participants who were exposed to an immediate bidirectional training history. Emergence of novel bidirectional relations was impeded for one of the two participants who were exposed to an extended unidirectional training history. These results indicate that bidirectional relations should be trained immediately to avoid potential problems with emergence of bidirectional relations.


A Clinical Application of Procedures to Promote the Emergence of Untrained Intraverbal Relations With Children With Autism

(Applied Research)
STACY CLEVELAND (The Marcus Autism Center), M. Alice Shillingsburg (Marcus Autism Center, Emory University School of Medicine), Sarah Frampton (Marcus Autism Center), Tom Cariveau (Marcus Autism Center)

Strategies to promote the emergence of untrained verbal relations are of critical importance for learners with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The current study examined the effects of systematically training new relations on the emergence of intraverbal relations within the same set and across untrained sets using a multiple probe across behaviors (sets) design. Three sets consisting of three classes of stimuli were developed for each of the six participants with ASD. Training was sequentially introduced within Set 1 for listener responses by feature/function, tact feature/function, and bi-directional intraverbals. Following mastery of one relation within the set, probes were conducted to assess emergence of all untrained relations within set 1. Once mastery criteria were met through direct training or emergence for all intraverbal relations in set 1, probes were conducted to evaluate relations across all sets (1-3). The procedures were repeated with the remaining sets. Results indicated that some participants showed emergence of untrained intraverbal relations following training of the listener and tact responses, consistent with prior research. Some participants required training across multiple relations and classes before emergence of intraverbals was observed. These results highlight the importance of evaluating performance over multiple sets and the benefits of systematically programming for emergence within clinical work.


Enhancing Instruction via Instructive Feedback for a Child With Autism Using a Speech Generating Device

(Applied Research)
VIDESHA MARYA (Marcus Autism Center), Christopher A. Tullis (Georgia State University), M. Alice Shillingsburg (Marcus Autism Center, Emory University School of Medicine), Emma Jensen (Marcus Autism Center), Shoma Sajan (Marcus Autism Center)

Instructive feedback (IF) is a procedure in which non-targeted information is presented to a learner during instruction for targeted skills. Previous research has demonstrated that students with autism spectrum disorder may acquire at least a portion of skills presented via IF. Although a promising instructional methodology for learners with ASD, few studies focus on learners who use an augmentative device for communication purposes. The purpose of the current investigation was to extend the IF literature related to students with ASD who use communication devices. Across all target skills, IF resulted in the acquisition of at least a portion of secondary targets without explicit teaching.




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