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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45th Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2019

Event Details

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Poster Session #501
Monday, May 27, 2019
1:00 PM–3:00 PM
Hyatt Regency East, Exhibit Level, Riverside Exhibit Hall
Chair: Einar T. Ingvarsson (Virginia Institute of Autism)
99. Assessing Generalization When Training Prepositions as Mands
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
ALYSSA P. SCOTT (Marquette University ), Tiffany Kodak (Marquette University), Mary Halbur (Marquette University), Jessi Reidy (Marquette University), Marisa E. McKee (Marquette University)
Discussant: Einar T. Ingvarsson (Virginia Institute of Autism)
Abstract: A preposition is a tact of a spatial relationship between two items. Prepositions have been taught with incidental teaching (McGee, Krantz, & McClannahan 1985), error-correction strategies (Kodak et. al., 2016), and discrete trial training (Frisch & Schumaker, 1974). Although these methods have been efficacious, there is limited research on using the putative reinforcer to teach the preposition in a discrete trial format. The present evaluation extended previous research to a clinical application by teaching a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) to mand for preferred items by engaging in a tact of its location relative to a container. We assessed generalization by probing different preferred items and novel containers. We also assessed transfer of the preposition to a tact. During generalization sessions we observed high levels of independent correct responses without direct training. Furthermore, a replication is currently being conducted with a second set of targets. The present method was an efficacious and efficient procedure for teaching prepositions. Results will be discussed in relation to providing efficient training to children with ASD when teaching prepositions.
 
100.

Increasing Mands in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder by Manipulating the Motivating Operations

Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
DANIEL WAGNER (California State University Northridge), Crystal Diaz (California State University Northridge), Debra Berry Malmberg (California State University, Northridge), Megan Aclan (California State University Northridge)
Discussant: Einar T. Ingvarsson (Virginia Institute of Autism)
Abstract:

Mands, under the control of motivating operations, are commonly taught using function-based interventions to replace maladaptive behaviors exhibited by children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD; Carr & Durand, 1985, Michael, 1988). This study sought to evaluate the effects of manipulating motivating operations during mand training in order to decrease grabbing behavior in 3 male participants diagnosed with ASD and between the ages of 7 and 11. The first phase of this study consisted of an abolishing operations (AO) phase, where participants were given free access to preferred items. The second phase of the study consisted of an establishing operations (EO) phase, where preferred items were placed in a clear box that was visible but out of reach. Through visual inspection, the preliminary data of this study demonstrated that the AO phase evoked high levels of problem behavior and low levels of manding while the EO phase evoked low to zero levels of problem behavior and high levels of independent mands. The implications of this study demonstrate the importance of motivating operations during mand training and may be of use to practitioners during mand training.

 
101.

The Effects of Staff Training on Increasing Mand Repertoire on Children With Autism in Ecuador

Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
Maria Chang (ABAI), RICARDO HIDALGO (CENTRO ENIGMA), Dánika Andrea Aguirre (student )
Discussant: Einar T. Ingvarsson (Virginia Institute of Autism)
Abstract:

Language acquisition in South American countries is based on the traditional theorists such as Chomsky, Piaget, or Brunner in which its development is taken as being innate, a biological process, and that it is controlled by internal cognitive mechanisms. Little is known on evidence based treatment and verbal behavior to improve language acquisition. For this reason we trained and evaluated the effects of staff training on increasing mand repertoires on children with Autism in Ecuador based on the principles of verbal behavior and applied behavior analysis. The evaluations and trainings included instructions, feedback, modeling, rehearsal and video modeling to conduct and training. The training must result in an increase in mand repertoire on 3 non-verbal children with autism ages two to four. As a result staff training on manding will help generalized staff skills to other patients.

 
102.

Acquisition, Generalisation, and Maintenance of Manding Using the Software Application Proloquo2Go(TM)

Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
ANNA CHUNG (Super Kids Behavioural Consulting; Monash University), Renee Any Collins (Super Kids Behavioural Consulting), Erin S. Leif (Monash University )
Discussant: Einar T. Ingvarsson (Virginia Institute of Autism)
Abstract:

Mands are the first type of language acquired by children (Bijou & Baer, 1965). However, children with developmental disabilities and language delays may not acquire mands through exposure to language in the natural environment and may need early intervention to acquire this skill. The purpose of the current study was to evaluate a procedure for teaching mands to one 5-year-old child with autism. The participant was non-vocal and mand training was conducted using a speech generating device (SGD; a selection-based response). Mand training included the following components: (a) strategically altering the environment to create communication opportunities, (b) providing least-to-most prompting for the three-step selection-based communicative exchange (searching for and selecting the correct icon on the SGD, pressing the sentence strip, and making eye contact with the communication partner), and (c) differential reinforcement. During baseline and intervention sessions, data were recorded on the percent of correct and independent mands for preferred items, and eye contact. Mand training was conducted in the home setting, and generalisation was assessed in the school setting. Results showed that the participant rapidly acquired mands but required additional prompting to make eye contact. These findings add to the existing body of research (e.g., Adkins & Axelrod, 2001) showing that children with developmental disabilities and language delays can learn to mand using a selection-based response, and that selection-based responses can be taught using an SGD.

 
103.

Decrease Response Time When Using an Augmentative and Alternative Communication Device

Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
Christina Lindberg (Quality Services for the Autism Community (QSAC)), MEGAN FAVALE (Quality Services for the Autism Community (QSAC)), Gina Feliciano (Senior Director of Education Services Quality Services for the Autism Community (QSAC)), Lindsay Maffei Almodovar Almodovar (Quality Services for the Autism Community (QSAC))
Discussant: Einar T. Ingvarsson (Virginia Institute of Autism)
Abstract:

A nineteen year old male diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) engages in self-stimulatory behavior on his augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) device. This behavior resulted in increased response time when communicating with staff and peers and, interfered with his ability to communicate effectively. The purpose of the study was to determine what effect utilizing a self-monitoring checklist plus reinforcement would have on decreasing response time when using an AAC device. A self-monitoring checklist and reinforcement was used to decrease the duration of the student’s response time when responding to intraverbal questions during different areas of instruction. A multiple baseline design across three different academic areas was implemented throughout the school day. During intervention when the student met criteria in one phase, the schedule of reinforcement was thinned. Results demonstrated that the student’s average response time decreased in each condition due to implementation of the self-monitoring checklist combined with reinforcement. Future studies will measure if this skill will generalize outside in the community, in natural conversation, and in other academic areas.

 
104. Selecting Communication Modality by Preference and Acquisition
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
BRIDGET KEOUGH (Elwyn), Samantha Volpe (Endicott College / Elwyn NJ ), Alexandra Held (Elwyn)
Discussant: Einar T. Ingvarsson (Virginia Institute of Autism)
Abstract: Language and communication impairments are one of the hallmark challenges of individuals with autism spectrum disorder (APA, 2000). Individuals with autism may have delayed language or may be unable to communicate using vocal verbal language. The use of Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) Devices has been demonstrated in the literature to be an effective method of increasing functional communication in individuals with autism (Mirenda, 2003). The current study is an evaluation of different modalities of communication in order to identify the most effective and efficient AAC system. The participant is a 34-year old female diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. At the onset of the study, she had limited functional communication with 5-10 approximations of American Sign Language (ASL). This study consisted of two phases: Phase I used an alternating treatment design, and Phase II used a multi-element design. During Phase I, requests for three different preferred food items were taught via Picture Exchange System (PECS), iPad, and sign language systematically until acquisition or termination criteria had been met. During Phase II a brief preference assessment was conducted, and all modalities were made available to use for 10 trials.
 
105.

The Effect of Tact Training on the Acquisition of Nonvocal Tacting by Two Two-Year-Old Students with a Disability and Vocal Tacting by One Two-Year-Old Student With Developmental Delays in a Preschool

Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
JENNIFER M NEYMAN (Gonzaga University), Samantha Romeo (Gonzaga University), Anjali Barretto (Gonzaga University)
Discussant: Einar T. Ingvarsson (Virginia Institute of Autism)
Abstract:

Many children diagnosed with a disability have a language deficit and require interventions to improve their language skills (Sundberg and Partington, 1998). Communication skills are imperative to be effective because one must understand what is said while also express themselves with words or gestures (Morreale, Valenzano, & Bauer, 2017). Tacting or labeling is a first language skill learned and often used in many programs for individuals with developmental disabilities (Marchese, Carr, Leblanc, Rosati, & Conroy, 2012). The purpose was to evaluate the effects of tact training on the acquisition of nonvocal tacting by two two-year-old male students with a disability and vocal tacting by one two-year-old male student with developmental delays in an early intervention classroom. Each participant was assessed using event recording within a multiple baseline design across tacting groups. During both procedures, the target tact flashcards were paired or mixed with mastered ones. Verbal Behavior tact training consisted of fading prompts and model, lead, test to either touch the specified flashcard (nonvocal) or say the name of the shown flashcard (vocal). Every participant achieved mastery across all three groups. Using the appropriate communication mode, appropriate words, and tailored Verbal Behavior intervention were all components to this study’s success.

 
106. Increasing Reciprocal Vocal Behavior in Toddlers and Daycare Staff
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
HANNAH PLANINSHECK (St. Cloud State University), Michele R. Traub (St. Cloud State University), Benjamin N. Witts (St. Cloud State University)
Discussant: Einar T. Ingvarsson (Virginia Institute of Autism)
Abstract: The current project took place at a university-based child care center and examined the rate of staff prompting the toddler’s vocal verbal behavior. Baseline observations were initially taken for two weeks to determine how involved the staff were with prompting the toddlers’ vocal verbal behavior. After analyzing the results, a training was created and given to staff on how to provide prompts to the toddlers for echoics or mands. Then, observations were taken again shortly after the training for two weeks to see if the staff’s rate of prompting echoics and mands had increased. The results determined that the training was helpful in increasing the rate of the staff’s performance of prompting vocal verbal behaviors as well as increasing the toddler’s vocal verbal behavior. Further implications as well as possible limitations of the study are presented; the knowledge obtained can be used to implement similar trainings to help increase toddlers vocal verbal behavior.
 
107.

Teaching Pronouns and Perspective Taking to Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder: Implications from Behavioral Fluency

Area: VRB; Domain: Service Delivery
Adam Peal (Bierman ABA; Penn State University), Christina Gallagher (Bierman ABA), KELLY LEBLANC (Bierman ABA)
Discussant: Einar T. Ingvarsson (Virginia Institute of Autism)
Abstract:

Perspective taking involves commenting on a situation from someone else’s point of view. Correct use of pronouns, especially “you” and “I”, is essential to perspective taking. Fluency-based instruction was implemented to teach two children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), ages 5 and 6, to use pronouns fluently and generatively within their environment. Both participants demonstrated inappropriate pronoun usage throughout their day prior to instruction. For the first participant, discrete trial training and differential reinforcement in the natural environment failed to result in correct pronoun usage in the natural environment. Fluency-based instruction is typically used to build the frequency of a particular behavior, resulting in retention, endurance, stability, and application. Following fluency-based instruction, both participants demonstrated improvement in correct pronoun usage during practice sessions. In addition, the frequency of correct pronouns emitted by both participants outside of the practice sessions increased. For one participant, erroneous pronoun usage was reduced to zero instances per day. Generalized pronoun usage and perspective taking emerged for both participants across a variety of environmental conditions. These data lend support to the view that generalization and maintenance of pronoun usage and perspective taking can be enhanced through the use fluency-based instruction, and that commonly reported deficits related to ASD can be remediated via effective, science-based, instructional techniques. Data presented on Standard Celeration Charts, video of outcomes, and future directions will be discussed.

 
108. An Investigation of Fluency in the Development of Basic Language and Learning skills
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
LORI L. CHAMBERLAIN (PaTTAN Autism Initiative ABA Supports), Mary Caruso-Anderson (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology)
Discussant: Einar T. Ingvarsson (Virginia Institute of Autism)
Abstract: As behavior analyst embark on the practice of using the principles of applied behavior analysis and specifically the work of B.F. Skinner in the field of education it is crucial to teach skills as efficiently as possible. The use of fluency trials is an effective method for teaching skills to mastery. Currently, there are no developmental norms for typically developing children that serve as a guide for fluency instruction with basic building blocks of behaviors or atomic repertoires. This study reviews typically developing preschool children to determine rates of responses for imitation, echoic and tacting skills. The data suggest a potential fluency aim sequence to aid the mastery of basic language skill sets which will aid educators in instruction with regards to verbal behavior and imitation. The data of fluency for 28 typically developing children shows that there is an increasing trend with responses per minute of tacts, echoics and imitation skills with preschoolers between 15 and 48 months.
 
109.

Self-Controlled Choice as a Function of Rule Completeness

Area: VRB; Domain: Basic Research
NOHA ALMARZOOQ (University of Nevada, Reno), Will Fleming (University of Nevada, Reno), Linda J. Parrott Hayes (University of Nevada, Reno)
Discussant: Einar T. Ingvarsson (Virginia Institute of Autism)
Abstract:

Self-control is important because it minimizes a person’s contact with the consequences of impulsive choices. This study examined the extent to which impulsive choices were able to be controlled by rules which varied in completeness and correspondence with prevailing contingencies. 15 undergraduate students participated in the study. In this experiment, participants engaged in a choice task that appeared on a computer screen for approximately 30 minutes in duration. During these periods, a rule specifying the way to increase the amount of money earned by performance appeared on the screen. Participants were randomly assigned to one of four experimental conditions differing on the degree of rule completeness: high completeness, medium completeness, low completeness, and no rule. We examined the relative effectiveness of different levels of rule completeness on self-control responses and the extent to which this control sustained self-control in the face of competing contingencies of reinforcement. Preliminary results demonstrated differential influence of rule completeness on self-controlled choice.

 
 

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