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 #78
CE Offered: BACB
Precision Learning Systems and Telehealth Applications
Saturday, May 27, 2017
3:00 PM–3:50 PM
Convention Center Mile High Ballroom 2B
Area: PRA/CBM; Domain: Translational
Chair: Melissa L. Olive (Applied Behavioral Strategies LLC)
CE Instructor: Melissa L. Olive, Ph.D.
Abstract: Precision learning systems use behavioral technologies to advance the success of learners through a variety of format. In this session the use of telehealth, telemonitoring, and home-based visits were used to extend behavior analysis services to otherwise inaccessible populations. Skill acquisition in the domains of reading, math, and fitness were addressed.
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): Precision teaching, self-monitoring, telehealth
Interval Sprints as an Online Reading Fluency Intervention
(Applied Research)
LACY KNUTSON (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology), Deirdre Lee Fitzgerald (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology), Susan D. Flynn (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology)
Abstract: The evaluative benefits offered by Precision Teaching in quantifying the effectiveness of reading interventions may help to empirically determine the most effective methods of providing reading instruction. Proponents of Precision Teaching look to establish fluency in basic behavioral repertoires so that students are able to perform complex skills with ease. The present study evaluated the use of interval sprints as an online fluency intervention. Participants completed short reading sprints to establish fluent reading. Post-intervention application measures evaluated the effects of using interval sprints to building fluency with the component skill of sight words, on the composite skill of oral reading. Following intervention, all participants demonstrated an increase in fluency with target stimuli as well as demonstrated improvement on application measures. Participants, who met mastery aims, demonstrated improved application and retention than compared to those who did not. The results from this study support the use of interval sprints as an online reading fluency intervention and expand the online precision teaching literature. Future research should seek to address the limitations discussed herein and examine practical strategies for teaching this methodology to educators who could incorporate it into the learning environment for those struggling with reading fluency.
Computer-Based Precision Teaching in Developmental Mathematics
(Applied Research)
CICELY LOPEZ (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology), Deirdre Lee Fitzgerald (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology), Susan D. Flynn (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology)
Abstract: The current research examined the effects a computer-based precision teaching intervention had on the development of math fact fluency in three 6th grade participants. Pre and post-tests of pre-algebraic skills were compared to investigate effects training component skills had on composite skills without direct training on those composite skills. All three participants made slow, but steady progress in their correct responding, their learning opportunities, errors, were undesirably variable and high during the training. Post-tests scores of pre-algebraic skill, when compared to the pre-test scores, were significantly higher than pre-test scores, suggesting the computer-based precision teaching intervention improved basic math fact fluency, and improved composite skills. Limitations and suggestions for future research are also discussed.

Increasing Physical Activity in Adults With Down Syndrome and Obesity Utilizing a Telehealth Fitness Intervention

(Applied Research)
ANDREA MURRAY (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology), Deirdre Lee Fitzgerald (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology), Jack Spear (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology)

Individuals with disabilities are disproportionately more likely to be overweight or obese compared to the general population. With the other health concerns that go along with disabilities, specifically Down Syndrome, this creates the need for a program to increase physical activity. There are several biological characteristics common among individuals with the diagnosis which make them more prone to obesity, such as hypothyroidism, a lower basal metabolic rate, and an increase in leptin along with behavioral characteristics such as oppositional behavior, noncompliance, and inattention (Murray & Ryan-Krause, 2010). Current literature on the use of activity trackers for behavioral intervention is available, but none have specifically focused on individuals with disabilities. The present study utilized fitness trackers to make slow, incremental increases in the daily walking activity of adults with Down Syndrome who are considered obese. The study included five participants living with their families, four males and one female, who ranged in age from 22 to 30. Participants were supported in the intervention by an adult caregiver, which in each case was their mother. The intervention included the provision of a Fitbit worn daily, weekly performance goals, daily performance monitoring on a phone app, weekly data review by phone with the researcher and a caregiver, and immediate reinforcers for goal attainment delivered in the home setting by the adult caregiver in the household. Following implementation of the intervention, all participants increased their frequency of steps taken per day 30% over baseline averages.




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