Reading and writing skills refer to a network of equivalence relations between stimuli (e.g., printed words, dictated words, and pictures) and between stimuli and responses (e.g., picture naming, textual responding, writing, etc.). This conceptual framework has served as a foundation to the development of assessment tools and teaching procedures. Concerning the assessment of repertoires, this presentation will describe empirical data on the network of S-S and R-S relations, as measured by an online instrument, comprised of 15 tasks assessing auditory-visual and visual-visual matching-to-sample, picture naming, reading and writing skills. The goal was to characterize the performance of beginning readers. The instrument was administered to approximately 2300 students (6- to 12-year-olds), and results suggest that the matching skills were significantly correlated with textual behavior and dictation-taking. An "integration" index showed, as predicted by the stimulus equivalence paradigm, that accuracy increased as the entire repertoire developed. The integration index may be a useful tool for the prediction and evaluation of the effects of teaching programs for establishing this repertoire in non-readers. The presentation will also summarize the main results of two procedures designed to teach arbitrary relations between dictated words and printed words, namely, the exclusion procedure and the stimulus-pairing with orientation response procedure. Both procedures can be easily implemented via computers, and the results have shown that they can be effectively used for the systematic teaching of a large set of the target relations.
Deisy de Souza is Full Professor at the Psychology Department, Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCar), Brazil, where she teaches behavior analysis in graduate and undergraduate courses in Psychology, and in Special Education. She obtained her Ph.D. in experimental psychology at Universidade de São Paulo (USP), under the direction of Carolina Bori, and held a post-doctoral position at the University of Maryland Baltimore County, working with Charlie Catania. She has published articles and book chapters on non-human and human relational learning, including studies applying the stimulus equivalence paradigm to investigate the acquisition of symbolic relations involved in reading and writing, and in developing curricula to teach those skills. She is past-Editor of the Brazilian Journal of Behavior Analysis (BJBA), past-Associate Editor of Acta Comportamentalia, and she is currently a member of the Board of Editors of JEAB. She was designated as ABAI Fellow (2018) and is the recipient of the 2015 Award for Distinguished Contributions to the Experimental Analysis of Human Behavior by the Experimental Analysis of Human Behavior Special Interest Group.