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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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44th Annual Convention; San Diego, CA; 2018

Event Details

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Poster Session #83
Saturday, May 26, 2018
1:00 PM–3:00 PM
Marriott Marquis, Pacific Ballroom
Chair: John M. Guercio (Benchmark Human Services)
49. Ethical Consideration for Applied Behavior Analysis With Asian Families
Area: CSS; Domain: Service Delivery
SUNGEUN KANG (The University of Iowa)
Abstract: Applied behavior analysis is on the basis of behaviorism which stems from western philosophies, and was developed in the Anglo-European context. The principles of behaviorism themselves, could be challenging to understand for some families from different educational and cultural backgrounds even if professionals explain them with everyday language. Behavioral consultation involves technical jargon that are not commonly used by families, such as antecedents, reinforcement, or positive punishment. Some of the terms used in this field are not utilized in the same way as our typical usage. Additionally, parenting styles and family values vary depending on cultures and they may not feel comfortable asking for clarification due to cultural differences due to fear of authorities or sense of shame of ignorance. Thus, professionals delivering ABA services should be culturally competent to work with Asian families and their children. Ethical issues and suggestions will be provided when professionals work with Asian families, thereby enhancing multicultural competencies for professionals.
50. Decreasing Inappropriate Sexual Arousal in Adolescent Males Through Instruction and Self-Control
Area: CSS; Domain: Service Delivery
KRISTEN BROGAN (Auburn University), John T. Rapp (Auburn University), Amanda Niedfeld (Auburn University)
Abstract: One population that may benefit from behavior analytic services are adolescents who engage in illegal sexual behavior. Reyes, Vollmer, and Hall (2011) first identified pictures that sexually aroused male sex offenders with intellectual disabilities. Thereafter, Reyes et al. then taught two arousal suppression strategies, one of which was to count backwards from 100 to zero when aroused. Reyes et al. found these instructions decreased penile tumescence during sessions. In the current study, we taught three adolescent males who had been adjudicated for illegal sexual behavior to self-report arousal when they were presented with arousing visual stimuli. As in the Reyes et al. study, we taught participants to count backwards from 100 to zero when they verbally reported sexual arousal in the presence of visual media. Subsequently, we gradually faded therapists’ instructions until participants independently identified inappropriate arousal and used the counting procedure independently. The relative merits of using self-report measures are discussed.
51. Delay Discounting Procedures to Increase Self-Control of Adjudicated Male Adolescents
Area: CSS; Domain: Service Delivery
KRISTEN BROGAN (Auburn University), John Falligant (Auburn University), John T. Rapp (Auburn University)
Abstract: Adolescents who have been adjudicated for illegal sexual behavior may engage in impulsive behavior. Impulsive behavior is that which is controlled by smaller, sooner consequences, over larger, but more temporally distant consequences. Impulsive behavior may lead to negative consequences that restrict an individual’s access to reinforcing environments. Many delay discounting preparations involve self-report measures which may be unreliable. Dixon, Rehfeldt and Randich (2003) described a preparation in which researchers presented participants with a choice between a smaller, more immediate food item and a larger, more temporally distant food item. Researchers measured choice and waiting duration, allowing the training of self-control based on behavior that more closely represents the target behavior than self-report alone. The preparation used by Dixon et al. successfully increased each participants’ self-control behavior. Adolescents who have been adjudicated for illegal sexual behavior may benefit from a similar preparation. We implemented delay discounting training using rules and intervening activities across two detained adolescents and increased each participants’ self-control behavior relative to baseline.
52. A Review of Item Inclusion Procedures for Multiple-Stimulus Without Replacement Preference Assessments for Adolescents With Developmental Disabilities
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
SARA RAZIA JEGLUM (University of Wisconsin-Madison), Jennifer M. Asmus (University of Wisconsin-Madison), Andrea Ruppar (University of Wisconsin-Madison)
Abstract: Direct preference assessments have been well-documented as evidence-based methods of identifying reinforcers to occasion desired behavior. The multiple-stimulus without replacement (MSWO) has been shown in the extant literature as producing stable and valid results. MSWOs begin with an array of items presented to the consumer. This stimulus array is typically chosen through structured interviews, experimenter selection, observation, informal interview with caregivers or teachers, or self-report. However, informal report may not be congruent with the consumers true preferences, and thus do not identify appropriate reinforcers. While MSWO preference assessments are efficacious, the methods by which the initial items selected for an MSWO array are identified are less clear in the extant literature. This systematic literature review explores the various methods of identifying items for the MSWO stimulus array for adolescents (ages 10-21) with autism and other developmental disabilities. Out of 277 studies identified, 30 met inclusion criteria. Results indicate that item inclusion is typically derived from informal report, although most do not report how items were included. Structured interviews were done primarily in the context of evaluating the MSWO itself. Self-report of preferences was found in only 2 of 30 studies. Future research and implications are discussed.
53. Teaching Discrete Trial Training in a Virtual Reality Environment
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
BERGLIND SVEINBJORNSDOTTIR (Reykjavik University), Snorri Johannson (Reykjavik University), Asa Ingimarsdottir (Klettaskóli), Hannes Vilhjálmsson (Reykjavik University)
Abstract: Staff training is an essential component when implementing an effective behavior change procedure to children with autism and developmental disabilites. Unfortunately due to the lack of resources and time constraints many institutions or schools may not be able to sufficiently train staff. Virtual Reality is a viable alternative to train various skills. In a VR environment one can both actively practice skills as well as receive feedback while engaging in the activity. The purpose of the current study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a VR environment in training staff to implement steps in Discrete Trial Training (DTT). Participants were teachers in a school for children with developmental disabilities. Performance in DTT was compared and evaluated after baseline, lecture, and VR training in a multiple baseline design across participants. All participants mastered the steps of DTT after VR training. This study is the first in examining the effectiveness of VR environment in training DTT skills. We discuss implications as well as future research in the area.
54. An Evaluation of the Efficacy of Behaviour Therapy on Deferring Emergency Department Visits as a Result of Behaviour in Dementia Care
Domain: Service Delivery
NICK FELTZ (ONTABA; The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre)
Abstract: The Champlain Behavioural Support System received enhanced funding in August 2016 from the Behavioural Supports Ontario (BSO) initiative for BSO staffing resources to long-term care homes (LTCHs) and to other health service providers. With direction from the Champlain Local Health Integrated Network (LHIN) came the development of the Behaviour Therapy program within the Royal Ottawa’s Geriatric Psychiatry Program. The Behaviour Therapists (BTs) are now integrated within a collaborative model of service delivery in the Geriatric Psychiatry Outreach and BSO teams in LTCHs across the Champlain LHIN. Since Behaviour Therapy aims to provide effective evidence based and non-pharmacological services to maintain and/or improve the quality of life for the populations in which they serve. Therefore, the purpose of the current evaluation is to isolate BSO data recorded by the BTs, in an attempt to identify the efficacy of the BT role at deferring emergency department (ED) visits for behaviour within the collaborative model of service delivery. New to Dementia care, this discipline is yielding preliminary results in effectively addressing socially significant behaviour as part of a collaborative model of service delivery. Further isolation of the independent variables responsible for deferring ED visits is necessary to hypothesize BT efficacy within the program’s collaborative model of service delivery. However, the BTs have been effective thus far in maintaining near zero rates of ED visits while triaging the increasing number of BT referrals. An exhaustive evaluation of this new role and program is ongoing.
55. A Comparison of Accuracy and Frequency Building on the Emergence of Stimulus Equivalence
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
ADAM MICHAEL PEAL (Bierman ABA; The Pennsylvania State University), Richard M. Kubina (Penn State), Patrick Haren (Haugland Learning Center)
Abstract: Behavioral fluency is that combination of speed plus accuracy that allows competent individuals to perform effectively and efficiently in their natural environment. Frequency building is a commonly used practice method for developing behavioral fluency. Accuracy building is a procedure used frequently in classic discrete trial training paradigms. The present study compared the impact of a frequency building procedure to that of an accuracy building procedure on the emergence of stimulus equivalence relations. Using a match-to-sample procedure within an alternating treatments design, the frequency building condition consisted of 10, 4-minute practice blocks with 1-minute of error correction directly after each 1-minute practice trial. The accuracy building condition consisted of 10, 5-minute practice blocks with error correction following each incorrect response. A control condition (no feedback) consisted 10, 5-minute practice blocks. Findings from alternating the conditions demonstrate mixed results. However, when evaluating cross-phase measures, the frequency building condition resulted in the desirable change in learning, in terms of correct incorrect deriving of equivalence relations for four of the five participants. The findings for the four participants support the conclusion that frequency building promoted more robust accuracy plus speed and decreased the likelihood of responding.
56. Does sex influence Board Certified Behavior Analysts use of Evidence-Based Principles
Domain: Service Delivery
AMANDA HENDERSON (Ball State University), Susan Wilczynski (Ball State University)
Abstract: Evidence-based practice (EBP) is a decision making model for Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) to implement when selecting treatments for clients. Because BCBAs are faced with the difficult task of selecting appropriate treatments for their individual clients, they must often use their professional judgment to integrate the best available evidence with relevant client variables in order to select, retain, adapt, and/or reject a treatment (Wilczynski, 2017). Our survey asked BCBAs to rate how often, based on percentage of time, they used different sources of evidence before selecting a treatment. Relevant sources of evidence to consider before selecting a treatment include: narrative reviews, systematic reviews, client history, and current client data (Wilczynski, 2017). Results indicate significant differences (p <.01) in the use of client data, historical or current, among male and female BCBAs when selecting a treatment. EBP practitioners are data-driven and historical or current client data is an invaluable source of evidence that when combined with other sources of evidence (i.e., narrative or systematic reviews, or client history) can lead to selecting a more appropriate treatment for the individual client (Wilczynski, 2017).
57. The Effects Of Visual and Verbal Prompts and Behavioral Economics To Increase On-Task Behaviors In Physical Education Class
Area: EDC; Domain: Service Delivery
DYLAN PALMER (Judge Rotenberg Educational Center and Simmons College), Doreen Fletcher (Judge Rotenberg Educational Center), Anthony Green (Judge Rotenberg Educational Center), Allison Rosenberg (Judge Rotenberg Educational Center)
Abstract: A treatment package was developed targeting physical education sessions for individuals diagnosed with emotional behavior disorders, in an effort to increase on-task behaviors and decrease challenging behaviors. The setting was a residential facility for individuals with intellectual disabilities and emotional behavior disorders, and the treatment package was developed in collaboration with the APE Teachers and Clinicians. The initial challenge expressed was that students would have excessive latency getting changed during a 30 minute session, and would impede both their personal and classroom performances in PE class, as it would prevent the staff from running the class. The treatment package included establishing rules for the classroom, including verbal cues, visual cues, and ultimately running the contingency twice (once at the beginning of class and once at the end). This was done additionally as a generalization of a behavioral economic system that was currently in place within the classroom. The conditions to pass the contingency were established at the individual level. Data will be provided for the individual as well as overall classroom performance. Although in the initial phase of service delivery implementation, the initial results appear positive and the APE Teachers are reporting an increase in overall performance across their sessions.
58. Impact of Training plus Implementation Support on Preschool Teachers’ Use of Naturalistic Instruction
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
SALIH RAKAP (Ondokuz Mayis University, Samsun, Turkey), Sinan Kalkan (Ondokuz Mayis University, Samsun, Turkey ), Serife Balikci (Dumlupinar Primary School, Samsun, Turkey), Burak Aydin (Recep Tayyip Erdogan University, Rize, Turkey )
Abstract: Supporting development and learning of young children with disabilities in inclusive early childhood settings is a priority for the field of early childhood special education. Purpose of this study was to investigate impacts of a professional development package consisting of training+implementation support on preschool teachers’ implementation of embedded learning trials (ELTs) within context of naturalistic teaching and examine corollary relationships between teachers’ implementation and child learning outcomes. A multiple probe across participants design was used with four preschool teachers and four children with developmental disabilities. Following baseline phase that lasted 5 sessions, teachers participated in two training sessions on naturalistic instruction. Next, the first teacher entered into intervention phase and began receiving implementation support from a trained coach while others remained in post-training phase where they implemented ELTs based on what they learned in trainings. Once the first teacher reached criterion performance, the second teacher entered into intervention phase and same procedure were applied until the last teacher reached to criterion and two sessions of maintenance data were collected from all participants. Findings showed that for all four teachers, training+implementation support was effective in increasing their correct implementation of ELTs; as teachers’ implementation increased, children’ unprompted correct responding also increased.
59. Knock knock, who’s there?: Use of Jokes as Reinforcement within Shaping to Increase Social Interactions
Domain: Service Delivery
RYAN CHARLES BLEJEWSKI (University of North Carolina Wilmington ), Tiffany Phasukkan (UNC-Wilmington), Ruth M. Hurst (Central Regional Hospital)
Abstract: Shaping may be an effective intervention for individuals that engage in very little behavior, such as those with catatonia or selective mutism. This intervention evaluated the use of a shaping procedure to increase duration of training sessions and spontaneous verbal behavior for a patient who routinely responded to all interaction attempts by saying, “I would rather not participate.” A preference assessment indicated that being told a joke was a potential reinforcer. Thus, for phases 1 and 2, jokes were first used to reinforce increases in duration and then for answering simple questions. Session duration and questions asked gradually increased across sessions, but responses were limited to one or few word answers. Eventually, the goal shifted to increase instances of spontaneous verbal behavior, or those not prompted via questions. As the individual sustained interaction without the jokes, jokes and questions were removed. As a result, instances of spontaneous verbal behavior increased as a function of the removal of jokes and questions, and an increase in the duration of sessions. Generalization and maintenance sessions are currently being conducted. Results indicated that shaping may be an effective intervention for individuals with catatonia or selective mutism to increase behavior such as social interactions.
60. A Promising New Functional Assessment of Behavior Questionnaire for use in an In-Patient Psychiatric Setting
Domain: Service Delivery
TIFFANY PHASUKKAN (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Ruth M. Hurst (Central Regional Hospital)
Abstract: Determining relationships between disruptive behaviors and their consequences is important when developing behavioral interventions for psychiatric patients. This project evaluated variables maintaining a patient’s disruptive behaviors using the Questions about Behavior Function – Mental Illness and a new Functional Assessment of Behavior (FAB). The attention function ranked first as a maintaining variable for this patient’s disruptive behaviors on both questionnaires. This information was used to create an intervention to increase the instructor’s frequency of interactions when the patient was not engaging in disruptive behavior. As the frequency of appropriate interactions increased there was an overall decrease in disruptive instances across sessions. The similar results of the two functional assessments suggest the FAB’s validity. The decreasing trend of disruptive instances as a function of increased interactions suggests that the attention function was a valid result of the FAB. These results suggest that the FAB is a promising assessment tool for psychiatric patients.
61. An Analysis of the Relationship Between the Professions of Behavior Analysis and Psychology: Texas
Area: PCH; Domain: Service Delivery
GORDON BOURLAND (Trinity Behavioral Associates), Jan Aiello (MHMR of Tarrant County)
Abstract: A procedure for exploring the relationship between the professions of behavior analysis and psychology within a state or province was examined. The analysis used information publicly available online. Comparisons made included: competencies/tasks states as required for the professional examination for behavior analysis and psychology (respectively, the Behavior Analysis Certification Board [BACB] examination and the Examination of Professional Practice of Psychology [EPPP]), credentials (BACB credentials and state psychology licensure) of leaders of the respective state professional organizations and faculty of programs with BACB approved course sequences and of APA-approved psychology graduate programs in the state. Additionally, apparent behavior analytic content of course of courses in the graduate programs was rated (based on online course descriptions).
62. Identifying and Responding to Suicidal Clients and Caregivers: Practical, Evidence-based Strategies for Suicide Gatekeeping for Behaviorl Analysts
Area: CBM; Domain: Service Delivery
EMILY M LUND (St. Cloud State University), Tyra P. Sellers (Utah State University), Timothy A. Slocum (Utah State University)
Abstract: Suicide is a major public health crisis; seventeen percent of high school students and 3.9% of adults in the United States reported having had suicidal thoughts in the past year. Furthermore, individuals with autism spectrum disorder and other disabilities are at increased risk for suicidality, and parents and guardians of children with disabilities may face high levels of caregiver stress that increase their risk for suicidality. Accordingly, behavior analysts may interact with suicidal clients or family members in the delivery of clinical services and thus may be in a prime position of notice and respond to the warning signs of suicidality. However, most behavior analysts do not receive training on the identification of these warning signs, nor do they receive training on strategies for responding to either direct or indirect indications of suicidality. As direct clinical service providers to high-risk populations, behavior analysts may benefit from learning practical strategies for identifying individuals who may be experiencing suicidal thoughts and responding appropriately to individuals who disclose such thoughts (i.e., suicide gatekeeping). This presentation will provide evidence-based strategies for suicide gatekeeping in the context of the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB) scope of practice and code of professional ethics.
63. Central Regional Hospital Functional Assessment of Behavior: A Functional Assessment Tool for the Psychiatric Setting
Domain: Service Delivery
BRITTANY WILLIAMS (Central Regional Hospital), Ruth M. Hurst (Central Regional Hospital), Tiffany Phasukkan (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Anna Tillery (University of North Carolina at Wilmington), Ryan Charles Blejewski (University of North Carolina Wilmington )
Abstract: Functional assessments are used in the field of behavior analysis to aid in the development of behavioral interventions based on the identified function(s) of problem behavior. Numerous assessment tools have been used, including the Questions about Behavioral Function for Mental Illness (QABF-MI). The QABF-MI is a questionnaire with acceptable psychometric properties containing questions related to attention, tangible, escape/avoidance, and nonsocial/sensory functions. Central Regional Hospital developed its own functional assessment questionnaire called the Functional Assessment of Behavior (FAB). The FAB uses language familiar to those in the psychiatric hospital setting to identify the possible function of problem behavior. The FAB and QABF-MI were administered via staff interview for eleven patients. The results from the assessments were compared to determine if they resulted in similar functions of problem behavior. The results from the FAB followed closely with the QABF-MI. Based on the findings, the FAB appears useful for identifying the potential function of problem behavior in a psychiatric setting. Further assessment should occur to determine whether interventions based on FAB results have the expected effects.
64. Attention Maintained Vocal Stereotypy: A Clinical Demonstration
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
KENDRA GUINNESS (The Autism Community Therapists, LLC), Samantha LaPointe (The Autism Community Therapists, LLC), Nancy B Hlystek (The Autism Community Therapists, LLC), Kevin J. Schlichenmeyer (The Autism Community Therapists, LLC )
Abstract: Stereotypy typically presents as repetitive and non-functional. Previous research implies that stereotypy is often maintained by automatic reinforcement in that reinforcement occurs absent of social mediation. However, there may be cases wherein stereotypy is maintained by social contingencies. The current analysis examined the vocal stereotypy of an adult male diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. First, an alone screen was conducted to determine if vocal stereotypy in the form of scripting persisted in the absence of social contingencies. During the repeated alone conditions, scripting reduced to near zero levels, indicative of an extinction pattern. Next, a single-function test was conducted in which contingent and noncontingent attention conditions were alternated via a multielement design. Scripting was consistently elevated during the contingent attention condition relative to the noncontingent attention condition, suggesting scripting was maintained by access to attention in the form of matched scripting. This clinical demonstration shows the importance of validating pre-treatment hypotheses prior to moving to treatment. Interobserver agreement was collected for 100% of sessions (M = 91%; range, 81%-100%).
65. A Component Analysis of Behavioral Skills Training with Preschool Teachers
Domain: Applied Research
PAIGE BOYDSTON (Southern Illinois University, Carbondale), Erica Jowett Hirst (Southern Illinois University, Carbondale), Kayla Diane Brachbill (Southern Illinois University, Carbondale), Samantha Lee Smock (Southern Illinois University, Carbondale)
Abstract: Behavioral skills training (BST) as a treatment package has been shown as an effective teaching strategy; however, the influence of individual components within BST (e.g., instruction, feedback, etc.) is less well known. The purpose of the current study was to determine if components of BST could be used in isolation to increase appropriate proactive responses and decrease inappropriate reactive responses within a classroom setting. Data indicate the component that resulted in the greatest changes in behavior was feedback for both proactive and reactive responses. Follow-up probes indicated low maintenance of proactive responses but stable maintenance of reactive responses for both teachers. Overall, the results of this study suggest individual components of BST have the potential to create behavior change, independent of the application of the entire, standard sequence of training components. However, conclusions are limited due to lack of replication.



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