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Association for Behavior Analysis International

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44th Annual Convention; San Diego, CA; 2018

Event Details

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Poster Session #280
Sunday, May 27, 2018
1:00 PM–3:00 PM
Marriott Marquis, Pacific Ballroom
Chair: Kelly M. Schieltz (The University of Missouri)
40. A Comparison of Accumulated and Distributed Reinforcement Periods With Children With Escape-Maintained Problem Behavior
Area: DDA/AUT; Domain: Applied Research
CAITLIN FULTON (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee), Hannah Effertz (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee), Melissa Drifke (May Institute), Hannah Meitzen (Integrated Development Services), Jeffrey H. Tiger (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee)
Abstract: Differential reinforcement of compliance is a common treatment for children that present with escape-maintained problem behavior. This treatment involves providing positive and/or negative reinforcement following compliance with tasks. Traditionally, this arrangement involves brief, fixed-ratio schedules (i.e., small, distributed work requirements) to result in brief reinforcement periods. However, recent research has suggested that individuals may prefer to complete longer ratio schedules (i.e., larger, or accumulated work periods) to access longer reinforcement periods. However, for children with escape maintained problem behavior, accumulated work periods involve prolonged exposure to aversive events and delayed access to positive reinforcement, and thus may occasion increased problem behavior. In the current study, we exposed 3 children with escape-maintained aggression to distributed and accumulated work conditions to assess the efficacy of both arrangements. We then assessed these childrens preferences for both arrangements using a concurrent-chains procedure. Across three participants, not only did accumulated work periods not occasion additional problem behavior, it was associated with decreased problem behavior relative to distributed work periods for 2 of 3 participants. Preferences for these three conditions were idiosyncratic across participants.
41. Modifying Instruction Delivery to Evoke Escape-Maintained Problem Behavior Following an Undifferentiated Functional Analysis
Area: DDA/AUT; Domain: Applied Research
KIMBERLY GUSSY-FRAGAKIS (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee), Madelynn Lillie (Autism Intervention Milwaukee, LLC), Jeffrey H. Tiger (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee)
Abstract: Functional analyses yield low and undifferentiated problem behavior rates if test conditions fail to include potentially idiosyncratic establishing operations to potentiate relevant reinforcement. Escape-maintained problem behavior during academic instruction may only occur during a functional analysis if sufficiently non-preferred tasks or teaching strategies are incorporated. In the current study, an initial functional analysis of aggression with a child with autism yielded low, undifferentiated rates across conditions. We modified our assessment based upon parental report to increase the likelihood of making errors and contacting an error-correction procedure. This modification led to the identification of aggression being maintained by negative reinforcement in the form of escape from demands where errors are likely to be made. This outcome led to the development of an effective function-based intervention involving differential reinforcement of alternative behavior.
42. Evaluating Intrasession Patterns of Escape-Maintained Problem Behavior to Predict Treatment Outcomes
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
CATHERINE LARK (Louisiana State University; Marcus Autism Center), Mindy Christine Scheithauer (Marcus Autism Center)
Abstract: Although function-based treatments are generally effective, the required time and intensity of intervention varies greatly across individuals. Hagopian and colleagues (2015) demonstrated that response patterns during functional analyses (FA) could be used to predict response to treatment for individuals with automatically-maintained problem behavior. The purpose of the current study was to expand the literature by assessing whether patterns of responding in an FA could also predict treatment outcomes for individuals with escape-maintained problem behavior. A retrospective chart review was conducted and 16 participants were identified with escape-maintained problem behavior. Rates of problem behavior in the presence and absence of relevant establishing operations (EOP and EOA, respectively) in the FA were analyzed and compared to participants’ treatment results. A moderate correlation was found between the amount of EOA problem behavior and the percent reduction of problem behavior during treatment. Due to the limited sample size, more research on the use of intrasession patterns of responding for escape-maintained problem behavior is warranted.
43. Rapid Assessment of Attention-Types to Guide Treatment for Attention-Maintained Problem Behavior
Area: DDA/TBA; Domain: Applied Research
Craig Strohmeier (Kennedy Krieger Institute), MOLLY BUTTS (Kennedy Krieger Institute ), Suni Schwandtner (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
Abstract: In the current study, a functional analysis showed that problem behavior demonstrated by an 8 year-old male was maintained by adult attention in the form of social disapproval. Functional communication training (FCT) for a commonly used attention-type (i.e. praise), produced low rates of functional communication responses (FCRs) in the form of handing a specific card to a therapist. We conducted a Rapid Assessment of Attention-Types (RAAT) to identify attention-types that could be used to reinforce FCRs as functionally equivalent replacements for problem behavior. The RAAT identified two attention-types likely to produce higher rates of FCRs. We used a reversal design to evaluate the rates of FCRs when using praise to reinforce FCRs in comparison to RAAT-identified attention-types. Results suggested that the RAAT accurately predicted the attention-types that would reinforce FCRs. Additionally, we report outcomes of a function-based treatment for attention-maintained problem behavior that included the attention-types identified with the RAAT.
44. The Effect of Treatments for Automatically-Maintained Problem Behavior in Demand Situations With Multiply-Maintained Problem Behavior
Area: DDA/AUT; Domain: Applied Research
KARYS MICHAELA NORMANSELL (Marcus Autism Center), Mindy Christine Scheithauer (Marcus Autism Center)
Abstract: When problem behavior (PB) is maintained by multiple functional reinforcers, we often assume that different treatment components are needed. However, there are very few studies systematically testing this assumption. This study aimed to evaluate multiply-maintained PB (escape and automatic reinforcement) in a demand context following implementation of treatment targeting automatically-maintained PB with two participants. For participant one, self-injurious behavior (SIB) was multiply-maintained. Treatment included arm splints and differential reinforcement of other behavior (DRO) targeting SIB. For participant two, disruption was at least in part automatically-maintained while aggression was escape-maintained. Treatment included a DRO and punishment, targeting only disruption. Following demonstration of control in an austere environment, we returned to escape baseline. In baseline, the treatment for automatically-maintained problem behavior was in place, but we provided a break from demands contingent on SIB (participant 1) or aggression (participant 2). For both participants, low rates of PB occurred during escape baseline. Potential explanations include that a break was only reinforcing when combined with access to automatic reinforcement, that treatment increased the response effort of SIB (participant 1), or that treatment targeted PB lower in the response class for escape (participant 2). We discuss results in the context of future research and recommendations.
45. A Component Analysis of Destructive Behavior Maintained by Automatic Reinforcement
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
PEI HUANG (The University of Iowa, Center for Disabilities and Development, University of Iowa Stead Family Children's Hospital), Wendy K. Berg (The University of Iowa), Eddie Scott (The University of Iowa), Sarah Jacqueline Frantz (The University of Iowa), Lexy Rozmus (The University of Iowa), Kristy DePalma (The University of Iowa), Matthew O'Brien (The University of Iowa), Cindy Kim (The University of Iowa)
Abstract: Problem behavior maintained by automatic reinforcement is difficult to treat because we are not able to manipulate the reinforcers maintaining the behavior. Piazza et al (1996) used a component analysis to address pica (eating cigarette butts) maintained by automatic reinforcement. In the current study a component analysis was conducted to identify the factors (sensation of heft and resulting noise) that reinforced destructive behavior (i.e., throwing items) maintained by automatic reinforcement as identified within a functional analysis. The participant, a 9 year old non-verbal boy diagnosed with autism and attention deficit disorder was referred to an intensive behavioral outpatient service to address destructive (throwing and kicking), aggressive, and self-injurious behavior. During the component analysis, the occurrence of throwing was compared across three conditions: (A) items with heft and noise, (B) items with heft but no noise, and (C) items with minimal heft and minimal noise. The results showed that throwing was maintained by heft and was not sensitive to noise. The treatment package provided access to heft using appropriate behaviors (e.g., throwing balls into a basket), a schedule to reduce down-time, and to teach appropriate play skills. Inappropriate throwing decreased to near zero levels as did kicking items.
46. Evaluating the Observation Length Necessary to Test for an Automatic Function Using Back-to-Back Austere Sessions
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
STEPHANIE LIOLLIO (Marcus Autism Center), Seung Ju Lee (Emory University), Mindy Christine Scheithauer (Marcus Autism Center)
Abstract: Functional analyses (FAs) are used to identify which variables maintain problem behavior, with several studies evaluating FA methodologies for identifying social compared to automatic reinforement. Queirim et al. (2013) found that extended alone sessions conducted prior to a multielement FA would orrectly identified whether problem behavior was maintained by automatic reinforcement for 28 out of 30 cases. However, it is unclear how many sessions are needed in extended alones to make conclusions. The purpose of this study is to determine the length of observation in extended alones/ignores needed for clinicians to decide the data are stable enough to conclude whether problem behavior is maintained by automatic reinforcement. Data from over 20 clients in a day treatment program who completed extended alone or ignore sessions were evaluated. A group of raters judged the graphs, one data-point at a time, to decide if they could make a conclusion about an automatic function. Conclusions were also compared to a second decision made with all available data. The results differed based on the level and variability in the clinical data, but often more sessions were conducted than necessary to come to a conclusion. Results are discussed in the context of maximizing efficiency in assessments.
47. The Assessment of Destructive Behavior During Transitions Between High-, Moderate-, and Low-Preferred Contexts
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
ALICIA SWANSON (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Wayne W. Fisher (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Alex O'Donnell (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Kendra Smallwood (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Ryan Mohs (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Billie Retzlaff (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center)
Abstract: Behavior analysts commonly employ functional analyses to determine the function of destructive behavior (Iwata, Dorsey, Slifer, Bauman, & Richman, 1982/1994). However, a traditional functional analysis is sometimes insufficient to clearly identify the function of destructive behavior. We evaluated the use of a transition assessment with two children for whom a traditional functional analysis produced inconclusive results. We first conducted an activity preference assessment to determine a hierarchy of preference for a variety of activities. We selected low, moderate, and high-preferred activities to use in the evaluation. We then systematically manipulated which of those activities were available in different contexts in which the client was required to transition to and from. Results indicated that both children engaged in destructive behavior when required to transition from a context with a high-preferred activity to a context with a low-preferred activity. We discuss the implications of the results and provide suggestions for future research.
48. The Use of Demand Assessments in the Assessment and Treatment of Challenging Behavior: A Review of the Literature
Area: DDA/AUT; Domain: Applied Research
SUZANNAH AVERY (Baylor University), Stephanie Gerow (Baylor University), Kristen Williams (Baylor University)
Abstract: Selection of demands without a demand assessment could result in a failure to identify an escape function for escape-maintained challenging behavior (Kodak et al., 2007). The purpose of the literature review was to synthesize articles that conducted a demand assessment prior to or following a functional analysis. Articles were synthesized based on participant characteristics, demand assessment characteristics, the order of functional behavior assessment and demand assessment, and the study outcomes. Five articles were identified that conducted a demand assessment for escape-maintained challenging behavior. Experimenters typically conducted an indirect assessment to identify demands prior to conducting an observational demand assessment. Demand assessments consisted of 6 to 30 trials, which were typically 10 minutes in length. For each of the studies that conducted a demand assessment prior to the functional analysis, demands associated with more challenging behavior in the demand assessment were also associated with challenging behavior in the demand condition of the functional analysis. Implications for practice and directions of future research will be presented.
49. Social-Negative Reinforcement: Assessments and Fading Procedures to Increase Tolerance and Decrease Problem Behavior
Area: DDA/AUT; Domain: Applied Research
ASHLEY CARVER (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Nicole Lynn Hausman (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Molly K. Bednar (Kennedy Krieger Institute), SungWoo Kahng (University of Missouri)
Abstract: Individuals with developmental disabilities may engage in severe problem behavior to escape social interaction. Patterns of responding within a standard functional analysis can serve as a source of evidence for social avoidance as reinforcement of problem behavior (Harper, Iwata, & Camp, 2013). In the current case study, an adolescent male admitted to an inpatient unit for assessment and treatment of severe problem behavior displayed frequent aggressive behaviors during the toy play and demand conditions of a functional analysis. Therefore, a social avoidance assessment was conducted to identify the antecedent condition that served as an establishing operation (EO) for problem behavior. High-quality social attention provided by a therapist while near the client was the condition with the shortest average latency to problem behavior. This condition was incorporated into an assessment to evaluate problem behavior related to escape from the proximity of individuals or their social attention. Results suggested the client engages in problem behavior to escape social attention, specifically when individuals are near him. Treatment targeted functional communication and proximity fading of low-preferred staff across different activities. Additional fading procedures were conducted in a demand context to decrease problem behavior maintained by escape from the presentation of demands by low-preferred staff.
50. Operant Reasons for Effectiveness of Escape Extinction: A Preference Assessment
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
PEI HUANG (The University of Iowa; Center for Disabilities and Development, University of Iowa Stead Family Children's Hospital), Bill Weaver (The University of Iowa), Linda J. Cooper-Brown (The University of Iowa), David P. Wacker (The University of Iowa), Wendy K. Berg (The University of Iowa), Kenzie Marie Miller (The University of Iowa), Matthew J. O'Brien (The University of Iowa)
Abstract: Escape Extinction (EE) is a component in effective reinforcement-based treatments (Reed et al., 2004) such as Differential Reinforcement of Alternative Behavior for pediatric feeding disorders. Investigations of why extinction works have analyzed procedural form based on function of targeted behavior (Iwata, Dorsey, et al., 1994; Piazza, Fisher, et al., 2003). However, few studies evaluated the mechanisms underlying the effectiveness of extinction. The current study hypothesized that EE would result in exposure to foods and change preferences for the targeted foods; compliance would result in positive reinforcers. The hypothesis was tested using preference assessments (Pace et al., 1985) conducted before and during EE treatment. Participants are three individuals who engaged in inappropriate mealtime behaviors. Treatment results indicated that EE resulted in decreases in food refusal during treatment. Preference assessment results showed that the food targeted during the EE treatment changed from a nonpreferred food at the start of treatment to a preferred food during treatment, suggesting that positive reinforcement may have a role in maintaining food acceptance. These results support the hypothesis that positive reinforcement may play a role in the maintenance of food acceptance. Future research could evaluate the role of attention as a reinforcer for food acceptance.
51. The Role of Preference for Communicative Modality in Skill Acquisition
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
ANNA RYAN (Kennedy Krieger Institute, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine), Stephen E. Ryan (Kennedy Krieger Institute, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine), Patricia F. Kurtz (Kennedy Krieger Institute, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine), RaSheeda Sanders (Kennedy Krieger Institute, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine)
Abstract: Functional communication training (FCT) is an empirically-supported treatment for severe problem behavior in persons with intellectual disability. During FCT, a communicative response is differentially reinforced to provide an appropriate alternative to problem behavior. Selection of a communicative modality for FCT is often based on the individual's current skills and/or caregiver preference. However, research suggests that an individual's preference for communication modality can impact treatment outcome. In this study, a nonverbal 6-year-old male with a degenerative neurological disorder was trained to request a preferred item using two modalities: a picture card and an augmentative communication device (i.e., GoTalk). Proficiency was demonstrated with both modalities, and decreases in problem behavior were observed during FCT with both the picture card and the GoTalk. However, when both modalities were presented concurrently a clear preference for the GoTalk emerged. Additionally, when a blank distractor card was paired with each modality, accurate discrimination between the target and distractor card was observed with the preferred modality, but never with the non-preferred modality, even after multiple training exposures. Results suggest that including preferred communicative modalities into communication-based treatment packages may increase the speed of skill acquisition. Implications for assessment and treatment are discussed.
52. An Evaluation of Stimulus Avoidance Assessment Stability
Area: DDA/AUT; Domain: Applied Research
EMILY GOTTLIEB (Marcus Autism Center; Children's Healthcare of Atlanta), Colin S. Muething (Marcus Autism Center; Children's Healthcare of Atlanta; Emory University), Mindy Christine Scheithauer (Marcus Autism Center; Children's Healthcare of Atlanta; Emory University)
Abstract: Stimulus avoidance assessments (Fisher et al., 1994) are used to establish a hierarchy of what potential procedure is most aversive and therefore most likely to function as a punisher. In most applications, a measure of aversiveness, called the avoidance index, is averaged across multiple series of each potential punisher. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the stability of avoidance indices for each procedure across series in order to determine if multiple exposures to potential punishers are required. Stability would suggest that multiple series may be unnecessary. Similar to results of multiple preference assessments, results of the current study indicate that avoidance indices were not stable across series, suggesting that multiple series need to be run in order to identify the appropriate procedure. Fisher, W. W., Piazza, C. C., Bowman, L. G., Kurtz, P. F., Sherer, M. R., & Lachman, S. R. (1994). A preliminary evaluation of empirically derived consequences for the treatment of pica. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 27(3), 447-457.
53. Preference for Food and Non-Food Items of Known Reinforcing Values in People With Developmental Disabilities
Area: DDA; Domain: Basic Research
RYAN HECKERT (University of Manitoba), C. T. Yu (University of Manitoba), Michelle Barca (University of Manitoba)
Abstract: When presenting reinforcers to individuals with developmental disabilities, many researchers use food. One issue with using food as a reinforcer is that there may be other types of reinforcers which may be equally or more effective. Although preference assessment methods have been well-researched, one area that has not yet been resolved is concerned with whether food reinforcers are always more preferred than non-food reinforcers, when both are used in the same assessment. This study compared preference for food and non-food items with similar and dissimilar reinforcing values in people with developmental disabilities, in order to understand how food and non-food stimulus groups interact with reinforcing value. Participants were four individuals with developmental disabilities. The study first involved measuring the reinforcing value of each food and non-food item through the use of a reinforcer test. The food and non-food reinforcers identified were then paired based on their known reinforcing values, and a paired-stimulus preference assessment was conducted. The data from each participant was examined to determine how frequently each item was selected. A better understanding of how choice options from different reinforcer groups interact may provide insight on the best methods to select and present reinforcers to people with developmental disabilities.
54. The Assessment and Treatment of Problem Behavior Maintained by Escape From Corrective Feedback
Area: DDA/AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
KATHLEEN MCCARTHY (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Cara L. Phillips (Kennedy Krieger Institute, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine), Allen Porter (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Jennifer Rebecca Weyman (University of South Florida), Marissa Erin Daly (University of Maryland, Baltimore County), Lauren Veirs (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Jennifer R. Zarcone (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
Abstract: Some individuals engage in aggression and self-injury to avoid challenging instructional situations (Horner et al., 1991). We used a multi-element design to evaluate the role that different forms of corrective feedback on frequency of problem behavior with four individuals admitted to an inpatient unit for the assessment and treatment of severe problem behavior. All participants engaged in problem behavior when presented with feedback during demand situations. During the control sessions, only praise was provided. In the test conditions, verbal (4 of 4 participants) or physical (3 of 4 participants) corrective feedback was provided, regardless of response accuracy. Contingent on problem behavior during all tests conditions, the participants were allowed to finish the task their way. This suggested that problem behavior was maintained by negative reinforcement in the form of escape from corrective feedback. Treatment for all four individuals consisted of positively-stated feedback with verbal and gestural error correction. With the treatment in place, overall rate of problem behavior decreased for all four participants as compared to baseline (see figure). These results suggest that positively-stated feedback with verbal and gestural error correction may be an effective treatment for individuals who exhibit problem behavior when corrected during demand contexts.
55. Finger-To-Spoon Fading to Increase Spoon Acceptance
Area: DDA/AUT; Domain: Applied Research
KATHRYN ELIZABETH CHUMNEY (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Taylor Klingelhofer (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Alison Kozlowski (Kennedy Krieger Institute; Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine)
Abstract: Spoon acceptance, defined as full lip closure over the spoon resulting in the bite being deposited into the mouth, is an important factor for children with feeding disorders. Although food can be deposited using alternative strategies, such as physical prompts, these procedures are unnatural and invasive, and may lead to increased meal durations and levels of refusal. The purpose of the current study was to increase spoon acceptance through the use of finger-to-spoon fading when escape extinction (EE) and differential reinforcement of alternative behavior (DRA) were ineffective. We used a reversal design with probe reversals to baseline following each fading step. The study included one 4-year-old male diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder and severe food selectivity who consumed nonpreferred foods with behavioral treatment, but required an invasive procedure (i.e. finger prompt and side deposit) in order to accept each bite because he would not accept any bites from a spoon. Prior to finger-to-spoon fading, spoon acceptance was 0% during baseline with EE and DRA, and increased to 100% following the intervention. These results indicate that using finger-to-spoon fading may be an effective intervention to increase spoon acceptance when other commonly used interventions, such as EE and DRA, are ineffective.
56. Using a Differential Reinforcement of Alternative Behavior Procedure to Increase Food Consumption in a Child With Food Refusal
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
ANDREW SODAWASSER (University of Nebraska Medical Center; University of Nebraska-Omaha), Billie Retzlaff (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Wayne W. Fisher (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Nathaniel Marshall (University of Nebraska Medical Center), Amanda Zangrillo (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center)
Abstract: This study evaluated the use of a differential reinforcement of alternative behavior without extinction procedure to treat food refusal and oppositional behavior for an 8-year-old boy being treated through a combination of pharmacological and behavioral interventions. For this individual, we hypothesized escape from food and escape from instructions maintained refusal behavior. In addition, potential side effects due to psychotropic medications may have decreased appetite (Barkley, McMurray, Edelbrock, & Robbins, 1990). Specific reinforcement contingencies included negative reinforcement (i.e., removal of feeding context) and positive reinforcement (i.e., access to highly preferred activity). In baseline, the child consumed near zero levels of food. In treatment, completion of the response requirement resulted in access to a highly preferred activity (e.g., playground). Initial implementation of treatment procedures resulted in consistent consumption of the requisite response requirement (e.g., 10 g.). The child's food consumption was systematically increased to an age-appropriate serving size (e.g., 300 g.) using a changing criterion design. This study provides one example of the use of differential reinforcement of alternative behavior without extinction procedures to reduce food refusal behavior. These results offer an approach to treatment of food refusal, without the use of escape extinction.
57. Decreasing Food Selectivity Using the High-Probability Request Sequence: A Review
Area: DDA/PRA; Domain: Applied Research
NANCY LEATHEN (Brock University), Kimberley L. M. Zonneveld (Brock University)
Abstract: The high-probability (high-p) request sequence is a non-intrusive procedure that consists of the presentation of a series of high-probability requests followed by the presentation of one low-probability request (Mace et al., 1988). It has been shown to effectively increase food acceptance, academic and social instructions, and compliance with medical tasks across a variety of populations (e.g., Lee, Belfiore, Scheeler, Hua, & Smith, 2004; Patel, Reed, Piazza, Muellwe, Bachmeyer, & Layer, 2007; Riviere, Becquet, Peltret, Facon, & Darcheville, 2011; Wilder, Majdalany, Sturkie, & Smeltz, 2015). To date, only eight studies have examined the effectiveness of the high-p request sequence to increase food acceptance, and this research has produced mixed results. It is possible that the existing research has produced mixed results because researchers used different (a) types of high-p requests (e.g., an empty spoon, food on a spoon, or a motor task) and (b) reinforcement procedures for compliance with the high-p and low-p requests. In this poster, we examine the current literature on the high-p request sequence to treat food selectivity, highlight and discuss procedural differences across studies, and provide directions for future research.
58. Treatment Relapse: A Summary of 61 Inpatient Readmissions
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
STEPHEN E. RYAN (Kennedy Krieger Institute, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine), Michelle D. Chin (Kennedy Krieger Institute, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine), Patricia F. Kurtz (Kennedy Krieger Institute, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine)
Abstract: The failure to maintain clinically significant reductions in problem behavior under prevailing treatment conditions is a recurring challenge for behavior analysts. Lerman et al. (1994) examined contributing factors for treatment relapse and suggested that degradation of treatment efficacy may be attributed to a change in function for problem behavior over time. To evaluate this hypothesis, functional analysis (FA) outcomes were examined for 61 cases readmitted to an inpatient unit for severe problem behavior. Participants were ages 2-24yrs; 68% were diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. Time between admissions ranged from nine months to nine years. An exact match in function of problem behavior across admissions occurred in only 18% of cases. A partial function match (i.e., at least one correspondence and one noncorrespondence of function across admissions) occurred in 36% of cases, and a different function for problem behavior occurred in 46% of cases. Thus, 82% of cases had at least one new function for problem behavior identified at readmission. Finally, 75% of cases had either problem behavior maintained by automatic reinforcement, or undifferentiated FA outcomes. Results suggest that treatment relapse may occur with change in behavioral function, but may also be due to treatment challenges with specified behavioral functions.
59. Is Pairing a Focus in Behaviour Analytic Treatments for Individuals With Developmental Disabilities: A Systematic Review
Area: DDA; Domain: Service Delivery
REBECCA ENSOR (Brock University), Priscilla Burnham Riosa (Brock University)
Abstract: Pairing, which may improve the therapeutic alliance or bond between therapist and client, has been positively related to enhanced treatment outcomes for individuals with developmental disabilities. These include improvements in emotional problems and challenging behaviours. While pairing is an important treatment consideration, it does not appear to be explicitly examined in behavior analytic treatment studies. Using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses (PRISMA) guidelines, the aim of this systematic review is to identify how and at what frequency pairing is incorporated within behaviour analytic treatment studies. Databases searched were: PsycINFO, Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature, Proquest Nursing and Allied Health Database, and Web of Science Core Collection. Individual journals searched were: Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, The Behavior Analyst, Behavior Analysis in Practice, and Behavioral Interventions. Study inclusion criteria included the following: published in English, peer-reviewed, included a pre- and post- measure, included a treatment component, and targeted individuals with a developmental disability diagnosis. Results from the initial search included 360 journal articles. After removal of duplicates and screening, 17 articles remained for the analysis. Results of this review will be discussed with potential research and treatment implications for individuals with developmental disabilities receiving behavior analytic intervention.
60. Intensive Toileting Protocols and Strong Learning Histories: Does Age Impact Rate of Acquisition for Successful Elimination Training?
Area: DDA/DEV; Domain: Applied Research
KELLY CARRERO (Texas A & M University-Commerce)
Abstract: Most children are successfully toilet trained by the time they are 36-months-old (Brazelton et al., 1999). Literature investigating efficacious toilet training procedures for young children with developmental disabilities has identified recommended practices (Greer, Neidert, & Dozier, 2016; LeBlanc, Carr, Crossett, Bennett, & Detweiler, 2005). All of the research published about this protocol has been conducted in clinical or educational settings and is specific to young children; research examining this protocol for young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) is scant, at best. In this poster presentation, findings of two cases of successful elimination are presented. The first case examines data of a three-year-old child with ASD trained in the home setting. The second case examines data for a 20-year-old male with IDD trained in the school setting. Treatment components implemented to toilet train were: (1) a dense sit schedule, (2) reinforcement schedule, (3) fluid loading, (4) communication training, and (5) positive practice following accidents. Results indicated that all components, especially when used in conjunction, increased toileting performance and successful eliminations for both participants. Visual analysis indicates rates of acquisition did not substantially vary, despite the difference in age and learning histories of each of the participants.
61. Increasing Eye Contact in Children and Adolescents With Autism and Related Disabilities
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
ANNA KATE EDGEMON (Auburn University), John T. Rapp (Auburn University), Joseph Bardeen (Auburn University)
Abstract: In humans, eye contact is one of the most important nonverbal communicative behaviors. However, deficits in eye contact are characteristic of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other neurodevelopmental disabilities. Previous research has used a variety of procedures to increase eye contact in this population with limited success and has been dependent on human resources. Thus, the purpose of the present research was to evaluate the effect of eye tracking software on increasing eye contact in individuals with developmental disabilities using a nonconcurrent multiple baseline across participants design. This intervention included the following conditions: contingent video, contingent praise, manual acceptance, gesture prompts, stimulus prompts, and increased reinforcer access. Generalization assessments were conducted before and after intervention to assess generalization of eye contact across settings and over time. Limitations of this intervention are discussed along with suggestions for future research on the use of eye tracking software for increasing eye contact in individuals with developmental disabilities.



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