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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.


Incorporating Verbal Behavior Instruction Into Everyday Activities for Children With Autism

Sundberg MarkMark L. Sundberg, Ph.D., (B. F. Skinner Foundation)


Abstract: The most common behavioral methodology used for working with children with autism is typically identified as discrete trial training (e.g., Lovaas, 2003), and usually involves a variety of structured table-top teaching activities. Another general behavioral methodology has been collectively identified as naturalistic teaching approaches (LeBlanc, Esch, Sidener, & Firth, 2006), and involves a variety of activities that are conducted in the context of a child’s naturally occurring daily events (e.g., play, meal time, self-care). Both methodologies are necessary for an effective program, but they each require unique teaching skills and curricula. This presentation will suggest a framework for teaching in the natural environment guided by Skinner’s analysis of verbal behavior. The main focus will be on developing a curriculum that includes natural environment training (NET) activities to teach manding, tacting, listener skills, intraverbals, matching-to-sample, imitation, social skills, and play skills, while making language instruction relevant to the child functional and fun.


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