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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.

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42nd Annual Convention; Downtown Chicago, IL; 2016

Event Details

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Poster Session #63
Sunday, May 29, 2016
12:00 PM–2:00 PM
Riverside Exhibit Hall, Hyatt Regency, Purple East
Chair: Judah B. Axe (Simmons College)
75. The Predictive Validity of a Parent-Report Measure of Verbal Behavior
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
RACHEL YOSICK (Marcus Autism Center), Caitlin H. Delfs (Marcus Autism Center), Ashley Baker (Marcus Autism Center), Brittany Lee Bartlett (Marcus Autism Center), Taylor Thompson (Marcus Autism Center), Sandra Shirk (Marcus Autism Center), Bhavna Kansal (Marcus Autism Center)
Discussant: Laura Grow (University of British Columbia)
Abstract: The Verbal Behavior Milestones and Placement Program (VB-MAPP) is a widely-used instrument by clinicians who wish to assess a child’s verbal behavior across several language and adaptive skill domains. Data are typically collected via direct observation by a trained clinician, and administration typically requires several hours. In clinical situations where there are limited time and resources, it could be beneficial to administer a parent-report measure that estimates the approximate “level” an individual would score on the VB-MAPP. The Marcus Brief Language Questionnaire (MBLQ) was developed for clinicians to derive an estimate of a child’s language skills across 11 domains, such as requesting, labeling, and play skills, based on caregiver report. The present study seeks to examine the predictive validity of the MBLQ for predicting score ranges on the VB-MAPP (i.e., level). Archival data from over 30 participants who were administered both an MBLQ and VB-MAPP will be compared. Results will include predictive validity of the tool and the utility of a caregiver-report of an individual’s functional language skills will be discussed.
76. The Effects of Manipulating Establishing Operations on Teaching Children With Autism to Mand Using "How?"
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
John W. Eshleman (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology), ALANOUD AL SAUD (The Chicago School of Professional psychology), Scott A. Herbst (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology)
Discussant: Laura Grow (University of British Columbia)
Abstract: Abstract: The present study examined the effects of manipulating establishing operations on teaching children with Autism to mand using how? Methods: A multiple baseline across activities was implemented, while one activity was in mand training the rest remained in baseline. Data was collected on independent mands how? Across all conditions of the experiment. Which were baseline, initial mand training, 5s delay of prompt, 5s delay of partial prompt and generalization probe to novel people. Results: Results show that manipulating establishing operations did have an affect on the participants learning to mand using how?. Both participants learned to mand how? independently even though they only received direct training for two out of the five activities. Generalization to novel people also occurred for both participants. Discussion: Some of the limitations were: - There was no baseline data on the occurrence of independent mands how? when the participants mother ran the session. - The number of participants was a slight increase from original study (only 2 original had 1) - A minor limitation was the time between one session and the next was not constant.
77. Review of the Use of the Verbal Behavior Milestones Assessment and Placement Program (VB-MAPP) in Published Literature
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
RACHEL YOSICK (Marcus Autism Center), Caitlin H. Delfs (Marcus Autism Center)
Discussant: Laura Grow (University of British Columbia)
Abstract: The Verbal Behavior Milestones and Placement Program (VB-MAPP) is an instrument used by clinicians who wish to assess a child’s behavior across many language and developmental domains. Derived from Skinner’s analysis of verbal behavior, the VB-MAPP is comprehensive, built from proven empirical research, and allows for clinicians to easily derive treatment plans based on results from the assessment. Despite these strengths, little research has been conducted on the instrument’s reliability and validity. Further, questions remain as to how results from the assessment are interpreted and used in an individual’s language programming. The present study sought to review the literature to determine how the VB-MAPP has been utilized in published studies. Out of 41 published studies that mentioned the VB-MAPP, 25 studies met inclusion criteria for this review, by utilizing data from the VB-MAPP in participant descriptions or outcome comparisons. Studies included in the review will be discussed in light of the type of VB-MAPP data they utilized, and for what purposes. Recommendations for future research examining the VB-MAPP as an assessment instrument will be provided.
78. Using Behavior Chain Interruption to Teach Mands for Actions to Children With Autism Who Communicate Using an iPad-Based Speech-Generating Device
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
AMARIE CARNETT (Victoria University of Wellington), Jeffrey S. Sigafoos (Victoria University of Wellington)
Discussant: Laura Grow (University of British Columbia)
Abstract: Children with autism who do not fully develop speech are often taught to use speech-generating devices (SGDs) as an alternative communication mode. Intervention with SGDs often begins by teaching the child to mands for preferred object. To date there is limited research investigating the use of speech-generating devices to make advanced mands. The current study aimed to extend the literature on teaching advanced manding skills by evaluating methods for teaching mands for actions using an iPad-based SGD. Using behavior chain interruption strategy, we taught three nonverbal children with autism to mand for actions. We also assessed for generalization to a novel stimulus. Specifically, a behavior chain interruption (blocking assess format) was used to contrive the motivating operation. A multiple probe across participants design was used to evaluate the effectiveness of this intervention. All three participants acquired the target mand, however generalization to a novel stimulus only occurred for one participant. These results suggest that mands for actions can be taught to children with autism using SGDs and the behavior chain interruption strategy.
79. The Effects of Script Fading Within a Matrix Design on Vocalizations During Play
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
BRITTANY LEE BARTLETT (Marcus Autism Center), Robin K. Landa (Western New England University), Jordyn Turner (Marcus Autism Center), M. Alice Shillingsburg (Marcus Autism Center, Emory University School of Medicine)
Discussant: Laura Grow (University of British Columbia)
Abstract: Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) exhibit deficits in appropriate functional play as well as social communication during play. Studies show typical play skills can foster social interactions with peers (Pierucci, Barber, Gilpin, Crisler, & Klinger, 2015). Without intervention play of children with autism is often ritualistic and void of social engagement (Wing, Gould, Yeats, & Brierly, 1977). The current study used script fading as a method of prompting item-specific spontaneous vocal initiations during play. Three play activities each with 4 toys items that were categorically related (i.e. Doctors Kit: thermometer, stethoscope, syringe, and plessor) were selected. For each toy item within the play activity, 3 vocal responses were selected and included the name of the item, a feature of the item, and the function of the item. The toy items and the vocal responses were arranged in a matrix resulting in 3 matrices (i.e., play activities) each consisting of 4 items and 3 vocal response types. During baseline, vocalizations were recorded during play with the play activities. Following baseline, intervention for Matrix 1 was conducted. The diagonal targets were taught, as together they a contained a component of every response. Following mastery of the diagonal targets, the non-diagonal targets were probed to measure emergence of non-targeted vocal initiations during play. Next the untrained Matrix 2 and Matrix 3 were tested. Results demonstrated emergence of untrained vocal responses in all 3 matrices.
80. Assessing Communication Repair Strategies Across Two Modalities of Communication With a Child With Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Pilot Study
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
ALICIA MARIE BRAVO (Victoria University of Wellington), Laura Roche (Victoria University of Wellington ), Jeffrey S. Sigafoos (Victoria University of Wellington)
Discussant: Laura Grow (University of British Columbia)
Abstract: The current pilot study aimed to directly assess the communication repair strategies of a 6-year-old girl with autism spectrum disorder in the context of a communication breakdown. The child had previously been taught to use an iPad-based speech-generating device to mand for preferred foods and was also able to request by speaking approximations of words (e.g., snack, please). After preferred snacks were presented to the child, repair strategies were assessed across conditions where the child either did, or did not have access to the speech-generating device under varied schedules of reinforcement. The assessment included three types of trials presented in a random order: (a) the childs initial mand form, which, was reinforced immediately (T1), (b) the experimenter requested clarification once and then reinforced the first mand form that occurred after that request for clarification (T2), or (c) the experimenter requested clarification twice and then reinforced the first mand form that occurred after the second request for clarification (T3). The results suggest that across both phases, the childs response class hierarchy was comprised of primarily response modifications where the individual combined modalities of communication (e.g. speech-generating device activation with speech, or prelinguistic communication with speech) to repair initial mands.
81. A Comparison of Picture Touch and Modified Sign Language Training to Establish Discriminated Mands in a Child With Autism
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
JULIA KINCAID (Marcus Autism Center), Cassondra M Gayman (Marcus Autism Center), Sarah Frampton (Marcus Autism Center), Dianna M. Shippee (Marcus Autism Center), Meighan Adams (Marcus Autism Center), Caitlin H. Delfs (Marcus Autism Center/ Emory University School of Medicine), M. Alice Shillingsburg (Marcus Autism Center/ Emory University School of Medicine)
Discussant: Laura Grow (University of British Columbia)
Abstract: Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) often have limited speech abilities and may require the use of alternative communication systems in order to effectively communicate with others. A few studies have compared different communication modalities in an effort to determine which form of communication may be most effective when teaching requesting skills (Tincani, 2004; Barlow, Tiger, Slocum, & Miller, 2013). The current study is a replication and extension of the comparison study conducted by Barlow and colleagues in 2013 and consists of a multiple probe design across behaviors (mands) with an embedded alternating treatments design. In this study, experimenters simultaneously taught the modified sign and picture touch for one preferred item while two additional items remained in baseline. Once mastery criteria were met for a mand item a post-test consisting of correspondence checks between the indicating response (i.e., pointing to preferred item), mand, and item consumed was conducted for all three mand items. Preliminary data suggest mands taught using picture touch may be acquired more rapidly than modified sign, are discriminated from other mands, and generalized this skill with untaught items. These data and their clinical implications will be discussed.
82. An Evaluation of Two Tact Training Procedures on Tact Acquisition
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
KATE LA LONDE (Michigan State University), Ana Duenas Garcia (Michigan State University), Josh Plavnick (Michigan State University)
Discussant: Laura Grow (University of British Columbia)
Abstract: Tact training is a common procedure in early intervention programs for children with autism. Previous research has compared tact training with and without a supplemental question (e.g., What is it?) on the number of tacts acquired and has found that results are idiosyncratic across individuals with autism. The current study replicates previous research by comparing two tact training interventions and extends the literature by including a naturalistic pre and post probe to determine if the different procedures have an effect on tacts emitted in a naturalistic setting (i.e., during play). A repeated acquisition design was used to evaluate two instructional procedures on percentage of correct tacts during discrete trial training. In addition, each participant completed discrete trial and naturalistic pre and post probes for sets of stimuli to determine if the instructional procedures had an effect on rates of spontaneous tacts during a play condition with a therapist. Implication for clinical practice and potential collateral effects of different procedures to teach tacts will be discussed.
83. Self-Motivation Among College Athletes: What Difference Can a Coach Make?
Area: VRB; Domain: Basic Research
PETER COILEY (Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Center for Applied Behavior Systems), Devin Carter (Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Center for Applied Behavior Systems), E. Scott Geller (Virginia Tech)
Discussant: Laura Grow (University of British Columbia)
Abstract: Sport psychologists claim self-motivation is key to becoming a successful athlete. Plus, behavioral scientists have found that perceptions of autonomy, competence, and relatedness enhance self-motivation. Question: How does the verbal behavior of coaches benefit or stifle the self-motivation of college athletes? We explored empirical answers to this question by systematically observing verbal interactions between college wrestling coaches and wrestlers during practice and during inter-collegiate competition. We have developed and applied a behavioral checklist to categorize a coach's statements as potentially increasing or decreasing a wrestler's perception of autonomy, competence, and/or relatedness, and used a semantic differential to assess wrestlers� perceptions of autonomy, competence, and relatedness, as well as their overall self-motivation before and after practice and a competition. Preliminary data after just two weeks of observations show that 65% of coaching feedback is corrective and of the 35% supportive feedback behaviors, 68% were general rather than behavior-based feedback. We believe more data and an in-depth analysis of our findings have potential to show connections between coaching behavior and self-motivation is worthy of an ABAI poster presentation and interactive discussion with conference attendees.
84. Evaluation of the Effect of Tact Interventions on Emerging Intraverbals in Children With Developmental Disabilities: A Literature Review
Area: VRB; Domain: Theory
MADISON CLOUD (Baylor University)
Discussant: Laura Grow (University of British Columbia)
Abstract: In order to better understand the possible relationship between tacts and intraverbals, a systematic review of the existing literature on the use of tact interventions to establish intraverbal response skills was conducted. There were seven articles identified. The articles found were then analyzed to determine the types of prompts or training that had been implemented. Studies designed to compare the effectiveness or efficiency of different intraverbal training procedures were also identified and analyzed. The existing literature shows that tact prompting (transfer of tact stimuli) is the most common tact intervention used to produce emergent intraverbals. When compared to the efficiency and effectiveness of other styles of intervention, including echoic prompting, cue-pause-point prompting, textual prompting, and prompt delay, the results are inconclusive. Furthermore, no articles were found that compared tact prompting to tact training. More research is needed in this area to better establish the potential role of tact interventions for intraverbal response skills.



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