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.


45th Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2019

Event Details

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Symposium #469
CE Offered: BACB
Save the Children: Efficient Ways to Teach Safety Skills
Monday, May 27, 2019
11:00 AM–12:50 PM
Swissôtel, Event Center Second Floor, Vevey 3/4
Area: CBM; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Marissa A. Novotny (University of South Florida)
Discussant: Richard Wayne Fuqua (Western Michigan University)
CE Instructor: Marissa A. Novotny, M.A.

This symposium includes four papers that evaluate interventions for efficiently teaching safety skills to children. Novotny and Miltenberger discuss the use of a website to train parents on how to conduct BST to teach firearm safety skills to their children. Maxfield and Miltenberger discuss research using small-scale simulation to teach firearm safety skills to young children. Grill and Leon discuss using social stories to teach a range of safety skills to children. Barchbill and Hurst discuss research using teacher conducted BST to teach preschool aged children appropriate safety skills in the presence of chemical bottles. Wayne Fuqua will serve as discussant.

Instruction Level: Basic
Keyword(s): Safety Skills, Small-Scale Simulation, Social Stories
Target Audience:


Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) describe efficient ways to teach safety skills ; (2)assess children's engagement in safety skills; (3) list ways to train others to conduct BST.
An Evaluation of Parent Implemented Web-Based Behavior Skills Training for Firearm Safety Skills
MARISSA A. NOVOTNY (University of South Florida), Raymond G. Miltenberger (University of South Florida), Trevor Maxfield (University of South Florida )
Abstract: This study evaluated a web-based manualized intervention implemented by parents for teaching firearm safety skills. A multiple-probe across participants design was used to assess the effectiveness of parent conducted BST. Children aged 4 to 7-years old received BST and firearm safety skills were assessed during in-situ assessments. Any child that does not respond correctly during the in-situ assessment will receive in-situ training. Results demonstrated the parent conducted BST was effective for two participants while an additional two participants required in-situ assessments.
Teaching Safety Skills to Preschool Children: An Evaluation of Teacher-Implemented Behavioral Skills Training
Kayla Brachbill (Southern Illinois University), Erica Jowett Hirst (Southern Illinois University), PAIGE BOYDSTON (Southern Illionois University)
Abstract: The present study evaluated the effectiveness of a teacher-implemented behavioral skills training (BST) procedure for teaching preschool students to exhibit an appropriate safety response in the presence of chemical bottles. Students’ safety responses were evaluated during baseline and teacher lessons (before and after BST) for each classroom. Prior to training, teachers were prompted to give a lesson including three safety steps (don’t touch, walk away, tell a teacher). No additional instructions were provided. Next, teachers received training from a researcher on how to implement BST in a classroom setting. Results indicated that the training procedure utilized was effective for increasing the number of BST components used by teachers. Further, teacher-implemented BST resulted in increases in preschool children’s appropriate responses to chemical bottles for two classrooms; however, the increase for one of the two classrooms was only moderate, and no increase was observed for children in a third classroom. Therefore, in-situ feedback was required for these two classrooms. In addition, the procedures resulted in generalized responding to a novel set of chemical bottles, as well as, a novel category of dangerous item (medicine bottles).

Evaluating the Utility of Social Stories to Teach Safety Skills to a Child With Autism Spectrum Disorder

NICOLE GRILLE (Florida Institute of Technology), Yanerys Leon (Florida Institute of Technology)

We evaluated the utility of social stories to teach safety skills to a pre-school aged boy with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The safety responses targeted were: a) saying no to a stranger, b) looking both ways before crossing the street, and c) waiting for an adult at the door. During intervention, the participant was read social stories and then asked various questions regarding the safety situations. Prior to baseline and after the social story interventions, in-situ probes were conducted. The participant failed to emit the correct safety response in 2 of the 3 contexts after intervention (i.e., abduction prevention and waiting at the door). Next, behavioral skills training (BST) was implemented to teach the remaining two skills. After BST, in-situ probes were conducted, and the participant emitted the correct safety response in the following in-situ probes. Thus, results suggested that although social stories taught participants how to answer questions about safety, they were not an effective teaching method to produce actual safety skills. These results further highlight the need for in-situ probes to test for skill acquisition in this context.

Evaluating Small-Scale Simulation for Training Firearm Safety Skills
TREVOR MAXFIELD (University of South Florida ), Raymond G. Miltenberger (University of South Florida), Marissa A. Novotny (University of South Florida)
Abstract: There is limited research using small-scale simulation in applied behavior analysis. We used small-scale simulation to train firearm safety skills to 3 to 5-years-old children and assessed whether the skills generalized to the natural environment through in situ assessment. Three participants completed the training and all participants learned the safety skills from simulation training. Two of the participants acquired the safety skills after the first simulation training and the third participant required one booster training before demonstrating the safety skills in the natural environment.



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