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 #401
CE Offered: BACB
Assessment and Intervention: Adjusting the Lens
Monday, May 27, 2019
8:00 AM–8:50 AM
Hyatt Regency West, Ballroom Level, Regency Ballroom D
Area: AUT/DDA; Domain: Translational
Chair: Cynthia P. Livingston (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
CE Instructor: Cynthia P. Livingston, Ph.D.

Both clinicians and applied researchers describe themselves as applied behavior analysts. This symposium includes three presentations that provide information and strategies that are relevant to both. The first presentation is on the use of praise in the demand condition of an FA, and examines its effect on escape as a reinforcer. The second examines a strategy to increase the range of preferred and reinforcing stimuli for children with autism. The third presents an alternative way to examine data that can both clarify results for researchers and provide useful information for clinicians.

Instruction Level: Advanced
Keyword(s): data analysis, escape, functional analysis, video modeling
Target Audience:

Behavior analysts who work with children with disabilities including autism.

Learning Objectives: 1. What alternatives are there to examine latency data? 2. What, if any, are the effects of video modeling on preference? 3. What effect does praise during the demand condition of an FA have on rate and establishing operations.

Effects of Video Modeling on Preference and Reinforcer Value in Children With Autism

(Applied Research)
CYNTHIA P. LIVINGSTON (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Andrew L. Samaha (University of South Florida)

Autism Spectrum Disorder is a developmental disability characterized by social, behavioral, and communicative impairments. A primary characteristic of Autism includes restrictive and repetitive patterns of behavior. Because having few preferred items and activities can lead to educational, social, and communication barriers, it is important to identify additional preferred stimuli to incorporate into the individual’s environment. One way to identify potential reinforcers is via preference assessments. Although substantial literature exists on ways to identify preferred stimuli there may be occasions when those methods fail to identify a large variety of preferred items, or items that function as reinforcers . In these cases, another approach to increasing the variety and number of preferred and reinforcing stimuli may be to increase preference and reinforcer value for items that are readily available, but low preferred. One novel approach to doing this includes video modeling. The purpose of the current study was to assess effects of video modeling on preference and reinforcer value of previously low-preferred stimuli.


Instantaneous Rate: A Method to Assist Visual Analysis of Latency-Based Data

(Applied Research)
ANTHONY CONCEPCION (University of South Florida), Andrew L. Samaha (University of South Florida), Paige Talhelm (University of South Florida)

Recent studies have demonstrated the use of latency as an index of response strength in the assessment and treatment of behavior (e.g., Thomason-Sassi et al., 2011). However, latency-based single subject designs may be difficult to interpret given how latency values are depicted graphically. Although visual inspection is the primary method of analyzing single-case subject designs, previous studies have primarily focused on interrater agreement of rate or frequency as primary measures. An alternative method to depicting latency-based measures and instantaneous rate may be a useful tool for clinicians to interpret latency-based graphs and in comparing latency to non-latency-based graphs.

Some Effects of Praise During the Escape Condition of the Functional Analysis
(Applied Research)
JENNIFER REBECCA WEYMAN (University of South Florida), Sarah E. Bloom (University of South Florida), Claudia Campos (Florida Institute of Technology), Anna Garcia (University of South Florida)
Abstract: Many researchers provide praise for complying with demands during the escape condition of the functional analysis. However, praise may function as a reinforcer for some individuals diagnosed with autism and intellectual disabilities. This may reduce the aversiveness of task presentation or increase behavior that competes with problem behavior (e.g., compliance with demands). In general, this may result in lower or less stable levels of problem behavior and decrease the efficiency of the functional analysis. Thus, the purpose of the current study was to evaluate some effects of praise on the rate of problem behavior and compliance during the escape condition of the functional analysis in children diagnosed with autism and intellectual disabilities. We found that there may be a slight advantage to not providing praise for compliance during the escape condition of the functional analysis for some individuals. We will discuss the implications of our results and future research directions.



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