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.


10th International Conference; Stockholm, Sweden; 2019

Event Details

Previous Page


Symposium #10
CE Offered: BACB
Evaluating the Outcomes of Low-Intensity Behavior Interventions
Sunday, September 29, 2019
9:00 AM–9:50 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 6, A2
Area: AUT/VRB; Domain: Translational
Chair: Paula Pompa-Craven (Easterseals Southern California)
CE Instructor: Amin Duff Lotfizadeh, Ph.D.

Early intensive behavioral interventions are considered the intervention of choice for treating individuals diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. However, in many instances constraints prevent individuals from receiving intensive behavioral treatments and low-intensity interventions are provided instead. In this symposium, the authors will present outcome of low-intensity behavioral interventions across different sites using a variety of assessment tools, including the Verbal Behavior Milestones Assessment and Placement Program (VB-MAPP), the Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scale, Childhood Autism Rating Scale (CARS), IQ scores, and other related measures. The reliability of the VB-MAPP is discussed and it is evaluated as an outcome measure.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): autism, clinical outcomes, low-intensity, vb-mapp
Target Audience:

Practitioners and policy-makers who provide ABA interventions or prescribe interventions for autism.

Learning Objectives: 1) Describe outcomes of low-intensity ABA interventions 2) Describe the outcomes of community-based low-intensity ABA interventions 3) Describe the reliability of the VB-MAPP assessment
Moderate Effects of Low-Intensity Behavioral Interventions
(Service Delivery)
AMIN DUFF LOTFIZADEH (Easterseals Southern California), Ellie Kazemi (California State University, Northridge), Paula Pompa-Craven (Easterseals Southern California), Sigmund Eldevik (Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences)
Abstract: We compared two-year clinical outcomes across two group of individuals who received ABA interventions for an average of 10.6 (n=98) and 5.7 weekly hours (n=73). The more intensive group made greater gains on language skills, social skills, and other areas assessed by the Verbal Behavior Milestones Assessment and Placement Program (VB-MAPP). We also evaluated gains for a smaller sample of the participants (n=28) using the Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales (VABS) but the groups did not differ on this measure after two years. The gains in this study were moderate and provide further support for a dose-response relationship between intervention hours and outcomes.
Evaluating the Inter-Rater Reliability of the VB-MAPP
(Applied Research)
KHRYSTLE LAUREN MONTALLANA (Easterseals Southern California), Brendan Michael Gard (Easterseals Southern California ), Amin Duff Lotfizadeh (Easterseals Southern California), Alan D. Poling (Western Michigan University)
Abstract: The Verbal Behavior Milestones Assessment and Placement Program (VB-MAPP) is a comprehensive assessment tool that takes a functional and topographical approach to assessing language and other skills (e.g., social skills, play skills, math skills). The VB-MAPP has received considerable attention and promise as a clinical assessment tool and was recently used as an outcome measure in a longitudinal study. This study evaluates the inter-rater reliability of the VB-MAPP when administered by trained clinicians who regularly conducted the VB-MAPP as part of their clinical duties. The Milestones assessment had moderate to good reliability, but individual domains within it were less reliable. Caution must be taken when analyzing individual domain scores.

Effects of Moderately Intensive Behavioral Intervention Provided Through a Community-Based Service Model

(Service Delivery)
SIGMUND ELDEVIK (Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences), Kristine Berg Titlestad (Oslo Metropolitan University), Hege Aarlie (Norway ABA), Roy Tonnesen (Pedagogisk Psykologisk Tjeneste), Silje Nikolaisen (Norwegian ABA), Astri Valmo (Centre for Early Intervention (STI))

We evaluated outcome of early behavioral intervention for children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) as it was provided through public service providers in Norway. One group of children received low intensity intervention (11.1 weekly hours), a second group higher intensity intervention (18.1 weekly hours), and a third group received eclectic special education. We compared outcomes on adaptive behavior, ASD severity and intellectual functioning across the groups after one year. Although, both the lower and higher intensity behavioral intervention groups received less hours than what is recommended in the literature, both groups did significantly better than the eclectic comparison group. Furthermore, the higher intensity behavioral group did better than the lower intensity behavioral group. Confirming a dose-response relationship between intensity and gains made. Nevertheless, gains in both behavioral groups were more modest than what is reported for intervention that is more intensive. We discuss the pros and cons of the publicly funded behavioral intervention model.




Back to Top
Modifed by Eddie Soh