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 #166
CE Offered: BACB
Studying The Enhancement of Sexual and Relationship Health
Sunday, May 28, 2017
8:00 AM–8:50 AM
Hyatt Regency, Mineral Hall A-C
Area: CSS; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Fawna Stockwell (Upswing Advocates, The Chicago School of Professional Psychology)
CE Instructor: Fawna Stockwell, Ph.D.

Historically, research on human sexuality and romantic and sexual relationships has rarely been conducted with the general population using a single-subject design and direct measures of behavior. This symposium presents research studies focused on a behavior analytic strategies for teaching sexual consent, examining the impact of attraction and self-disclosure on intimacy-related behaviors, and for assessing the impact of mindfulness on gender dysphoria and valued behaviors. Presenters will discuss resulting data and their implications, as well as directions for future research, instruction, and applied projects.

Instruction Level: Basic
Keyword(s): gender dysphoria, LGBTQ, romantic relationships, sexual consent

Sexual Consent Training and Its Impact on Adult Participant's Pretest-Posttest and Application Task Responding

STEFANIE SCHOENEMAN (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology), Fawna Stockwell (Upswing Advocates), Ashley E. Bennett (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology)

This study examined the effects of a sexual consent training on pre-test and post-test responding of young adults from the general population. Participants attended a 90-minute workshop that presented five modules of information on sexual consent, including myths and society perspective related to sexual violence and consent, how to give and get consent from a sexual partner, and video scenarios where consent was received, not given, or unclear. As part of a multiple probe design, participants completed an assessment at the beginning of the session and multiple times following modules presented. Results of the study showed that, in general, participants correct responses on the assessment increased following the presentation of each module, and assessment performance was correlated to performance on the application tasks. This presentation will address implications and directions for future research in the area of sexual consent education.


Speed Dating: Attraction and Self-Disclosure and Its Impact on Queer Participants' Intimacy-Related Behaviors

WORNER LELAND (Upswing Advocates), Fawna Stockwell (Upswing Advocates), Jennifer Klapatch Totsch (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology)

This study examined the effects of initial partner preference combined with intensity level of self-disclosure questions in a speed dating setting on the intimacy-related behaviors of queer-identified adults from the general population. Participants attended a two-hour speed dating session. As a part of an alternating treatments design, participants alternated between 10-minute speed dating sessions with high-intensity questions and high-preference partners, low-intensity questions and high-preference partners, high-intensity questions and low-preference partners, and low-intensity questions and low-preference partners. Results and anecdotal outcomes of speed dating, along with implications and areas for future research will be discussed.


The Impact of Mindfulness and Values Clarification Exercises on Behavior of Adults With Gender Dysphoria

Stephanie Popovitch (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology), FAWNA STOCKWELL (Upswing Advocates, The Chicago School of Professio), Jessica Gamba (Pipio Academy)

This study examined the effects of mindfulness and values-focused exercises on gender dysphoria and valued behavior for individuals experiencing gender dysphoria. Five adult participants selected and tracked one or more valued behaviors, as well as the frequency, duration, and magnitude of daily dysphoric episodes using an electronic daily survey. During baseline conditions, there were no instructions regarding mindfulness practice put in place. During experimental conditions, participants met with the experimenter twice per week to complete Acceptance and Commitment Therapy-based exercises, and experimenters encouraged participants to practice mindfulness on their own every day. Results of the study show that frequency of dysphoric episodes decreased over the course of the study for the four participants who were exposed to all conditions; however, it is unclear whether this change was due to mindfulness practice, meetings with experimenters, major life events, or a combination of the three. Valued behaviors remained at similar levels across conditions, and responses on the Acceptance and Action Questionnaire (AAQ-II) decreased over the course of the study for most participants. Participants rated the exercises as useful and applicable to their valued behaviors and reported that practicing mindfulness was helpful for self-care and for staying in the present moment.




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