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.


46th Annual Convention; Washington DC; 2020

Event Details

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Symposium #352
CE Offered: BACB
The Diversity of Applied Behavior Analysis in Practical Settings
Sunday, May 24, 2020
4:00 PM–5:50 PM
Marriott Marquis, Level M4, Archives
Area: TBA/DEV; Domain: Translational
Chair: Katrina J. Phillips (University of Auckland)
Discussant: Zoe Lucock (Bangor University)
CE Instructor: Katrina J. Phillips, Ph.D.

This symposium will present a variety of applied behavioural analytic assessment and intervention strategies for practitioners and educators. Students and staff at the University of Auckland, New Zealand and Bangor University, Wales work across a range of diverse settings including residential care for people with dementia, residential rehabilitation for people with acquired brain injuries and developmental disabilities, and in graduate teaching programs. The aim of this symposium is to showcase the diversity of applied behavior analysis in practical settings.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): dementia, Diverse applicaitons, TBI
Target Audience:

We are wanting to inspire BCBAs who are already qualified to work with populations outside of Autism. We are also wanting to provide tools for BCBAs who are training the next generation to ensure that the students of today are trained using behaviour analytic techniques, so they come out with all the skills needed to be well rounded practitioners.

Learning Objectives: - identify how ABA intervention and methods can be used for Traumatic brain injury - identify how ABA intervention and methods can be used for dementia - identify how ABA intervention and methods can be used to train students and supervisees.

Using a Check-In Procedure to Increase Engagement With a Range of Populations: Adults With Dementia, Acquired Brain Injuries, Intellectual Disabilities

(Applied Research)
ANGELA ARNOLD-SARITEPE (University of Auckland), Katrina J. Phillips (University of Auckland), Ebonee Hodder (ABI), Eve Mulder (The University of Auckland), Sarah Leadley (University of Auckland), Javier Virues Ortega (The University of Auckland), Rhian Collings (The University of Auckland)

Engagement in leisure activities is considered an important contributing factor to a person’s quality of life. Many adults with disease, injury and disability show a low level of engagement in leisure activities. There exists a limited amount of research regarding interventions that specifically target increased engagement in leisure activities. Caregivers are often busy with the day to day tasks of caring and require a straightforward intervention that is not time consuming to improve the quality of life of their clients. The check-in procedure has previously shown success with increasing engagement in adults with dementia. We were able to replicate and generalize these findings. This collection of studies applied the check-in procedure with adults with dementia, acquired brain injury and developmental disabilities. Results showed increased levels of engagement for all participants, suggesting that the check-in procedure is an effective intervention for multiple populations. As a further extension we trained staff of a day programme for adults with intellectual disabilities to implement the check in procedure across all clients. Results of this study were mixed as some staff resisted implementing the procedure.


Improving Academic Teaching: Interteach and Equivalence-Based Instruction

(Applied Research)
KATRINA J. PHILLIPS (University of Auckland), Queenie Leung (The University of Auckland), Jacqueline Munro (Explore ), Angela Arnold-Saritepe (University of Auckland), Sarah Leadley (University of Auckland), Javier Virues Ortega (The University of Auckland)

Learning is viewed by behavioural psychologists as an addition of new behaviour. From this perspective the traditional format for university courses in both assessment and teaching provides weak contingencies for the facilitation of learning and places students in a passive as opposed to active role. Interteach and equivalence-based instruction (EBI) are alternative methods of teaching that have been shown to result in greater marks in quiz scores, assignment and exam grades, and retention tests when compared to traditional lecture styles. Research was conducted on Postgraduate students of the Applied Behavioural Analysis Programme at the University of Auckland. Comparisons were made between interteach lectures and traditional lectures or traditional lectures with a choral response element. Active and passive on task and off task behaviour was measured, along with self-reported student satisfaction and preparation time. In addition, EBI was compared with traditional lectures. Learning and student preference was assessed in addition to generalisation of concepts. This presentation will demonstrate the use of Interteach and EBI and provide a summary of the background research, methods used, and results.


CANCELED: Evaluating How Staff in Dementia Care Homes Spend Their Time Using Behavioral Measures

(Service Delivery)
CHOO YING LAU (Bangor University), Rebecca A Sharp (Bangor University)

Previous research has shown that short–staffing, competing contingencies, and a lack of skills training for staff can be a barrier to quality care for people with dementia. We evaluated the proportion of time care home staff in a residential care home spent on various activities, including interactions with residents and custodial activities. We collected continuous data on the amount of time staff spent on operationally-defined categories of work behavior for a 7-day week (24 hours per day). We found that staff spent most of their time engaging in unit-related activities such as washing dishes and doing laundry, followed by delivering personal care, and spending time engaging with residents. We found no differences in the distribution of staff behavior on weekdays and weekends. We offer suggestions on how the findings could be used to develop interventions such as training for staff regarding how best to allocate their time, and to convince management to alter contingencies to support staff to spend more time engaging with clients, and less time involved in custodial activities such as cleaning.


Self-Reflection and Evaluation of Task-List Competencies and Critical Soft-Skills for Trainees Pursuing Their BACB Qualifications

(Service Delivery)
SVETLANA DALY (University of Auckland), Katrina J. Phillips (University of Auckland), Angela Arnold-Saritepe (University of Auckland)

The Applied Behavior Analysis programme within the University of Auckland provides independent fieldwork supervision to trainees pursuing certification as behavior analysts. As part of their course the trainees are required to complete their 1500 hours across two placements within a calendar year. During 2019, we wanted to support the development of the required skills (BACB Task list 4) as well as the development of the critical soft skills, that would support the trainees in becoming more compassionate and more effective clinicians upon graduation. A list of critical softs skills was developed that the programme staff agreed to be relevant to support the trainees in their interactions with stakeholders. The trainees were asked to self- evaluate their competence for each task at the start of their supervised fieldwork experience and during each quarterly review. The trainees’ supervisors were also asked to evaluate the trainees soft skills and the results were compared and discussed during their progress review meetings. This process allowed the students and their supervisors to identify skills that needed specific skills based training at the start of, and throughout, their supervised field work experience. A social validity questionnaire was given to the trainees at the end of their supervised fieldwork experience. Future directions will look at developing these processes further and aligning them with the supervision guidelines that are emerging in the literature.




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