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.


44th Annual Convention; San Diego, CA; 2018

Event Details

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Symposium #110
Improving Higher Education Using Behavior Analysis: Interteaching Research and Practice
Saturday, May 26, 2018
3:00 PM–4:50 PM
Manchester Grand Hyatt, Harbor Ballroom C
Area: TBA; Domain: Translational
Chair: Catherine M. Gayman (Troy University)
Discussant: Joseph D. Dracobly (Eastern Connecticut State University)

Interteaching is a relatively new behavioral teaching method with a growing body of empirical evidence to support its efficacy. Over the past 15 years, over 25 empirical studies have been published examining the effectiveness of interteaching. However, more research is still needed to examine the influence of different interteaching components and the methods used for instructional delivery. The first presenter will provide a conceptual overview of effective instructional design, along with a review of interteaching, how the instructional method is implemented, and recent empirical research in the area. The second presenter will share results of a laboratory study which conducted a component analysis of interteaching. The third presenter will highlight the findings of a two-study series examining the relationship between content contained in interteaching prep guide questions, quality of discussion, student test scores, and student preference. The final presenter will discuss how instruction and student learning in higher education can be improved upon by combining techniques from behavioral teaching methodologies, such as fluency building, programmed instruction, and interteaching, as well as strategies for demonstrating effective teaching. Together, these four presentations illustrate current interteaching research and practice in higher education.

Instruction Level: Basic
Keyword(s): Higher Education, Interteaching, Pedagogy
Principles of Effective Instruction: What Behavior Analysis Has Discovered About Best Teaching Practices
Thomas L. Zane (University of Kansas), CATHERINE M. GAYMAN (Troy University)
Abstract: Behavior analysis has uncovered principles of effective instruction that govern the acquisition of both knowledge and overt behaviors. Best practices include immediate feedback, teaching small units of material, students working at their own pace, and active responding to the content being targeted for acquisition. These principles of effective instruction have been demonstrated to facilitate student learning across learner populations (e.g., children, adults, typical learners, learners with disabilities). An evidenced-based procedure for use with higher-education is the “Interteach,” which combines best instructional practice to enhance student learning in college environments. An InterTeach involves active student responding in small groups of students, working at their own practice on guided notes and questions provided by the instructor. Student feedback at the end of the Interteach session guides the instructor to prepare subsequent teaching sessions to further review concepts and topics recommended by students. Numerous studies have shown InterTeach to produce better student acquisition, maintenance, and retention. This presentation will provide a brief overview of the InterTeach procedures embedded in a conceptual presentation of effective instructional design.
A Component Analysis of Interteaching
(Applied Research)
STEPHANIE JIMENEZ (University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown), Catherine M. Gayman (Troy University), Clarissa Nepereny (University of Pittsburgh Johnstown )
Abstract: Although interteaching has been shown to improve students’ understanding of course material and test scores, further investigation is needed to determine which components of interteaching are responsible for its success. Up to this point, only one laboratory study has been conducted and it demonstrated that those who experienced interteaching scored significantly higher on a quiz than any other group. The goal of the present study was to add to the laboratory literature in this area by parsing out the different components of interteaching to determine which are necessary and sufficient for students' academic success. Four groups of 20 participants (n = 80) answered a 10-question quiz in a pre-test/post-test design. Group 1 read over an excerpt of reading, group 2 read over the material and filled out a prep guide, group 3 had the addition of a small group discussion over the prep guide, and group 4 experienced a clarifying lecture following the group discussion. It was hypothesized that each component will incrementally increase participants’ quiz scores. Results support this hypothesis, which implies that each component is integral to producing positive academic outcomes. This study will allow for more efficient implementation of interteaching.
Multiple Variables in Interteaching Sessions and the Relation Between Question Type and Discussion Quality
(Applied Research)
SCOTT A. SPAULDING (University of Washington), Michael Gutierrez (University of Washington)
Abstract: Interteaching is a behavioral teaching approach used in higher education that scaffolds multiple components to facilitate student learning, including prep guides, in-class discussion, records of interteach sessions, targeted lectures, and content quizzes or probes (Boyce & Hineline, 2002). Recently, researchers have begun examining interteaching components to understand the efficacy of this approach (see Querol, Rosales, & Soldner, 2015, for a review). The purpose of this research was to evaluate student preference for and performance on multiple interteaching aspects in a master’s program in special education. During study 1, a different interteaching variable was modified each week, and students provided feedback about the change in their interteach records. Based in part on these results, study 2 will alternate prep guide content each week to compare the differential effects of fact-based and application questions on student test scores and preference. Study 1 results include higher preferences for fluency building activities and application exercises. We anticipate study 2 will show differences in student preference and performance between prep guides with application questions and those with fact-based questions or those discussions that occur in class rather than online between class sessions. These results may lead to continued refinement of interteaching components.

Comparing Teaching Styles: Traditional Lecture Versus Interteach

MARGARET MURPHY (St. Cloud State University), Benjamin N. Witts (St. Cloud State University)

Training for applied behavior analysts often starts in the classroom. Much like other arenas where behavioral principles are employed to benefit learning rates, so, too, can the classroom become a place for applied behavior analytic intervention. A current goal of many behaviorists is to develop technologies that improve classroom learning, though often in a segregated fashion. Some examples of classroom instructional technologies include programmed instruction, fluency building, errorless learning, spaced rehearsal, stimulus equivalence, interteaching, and personalized systems of instruction. This talk discusses creative ways by which educators, particularly those in the higher education system, can combine these and other behavioral technologies to improve instruction and enhance learner performance in the classroom. Particular emphasis will be placed on methodological issues in demonstrating effective teaching, such as parametric and component analysis. In addition, suggestions for single case design strategies and effect size measures will be addressed.




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