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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46th Annual Convention; Washington DC; 2020

Event Details

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Symposium #492
CE Offered: BACB
Novel Applications of Functional Analysis: Topographies, Twins, and Telemedicine
Monday, May 25, 2020
11:00 AM–11:50 AM
Walter E. Washington Convention Center, Level 2, Room 202B
Area: AUT/DDA; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Eileen M. Roscoe (The New England Center for Children)
CE Instructor: Eileen M. Roscoe, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Functional analysis (FA; Iwata, Dorsey, Slifer, Bauman, & Richman, 1982/1994) advanced the field of applied behavior analysis by offering a technology for identifying behavioral function, allowing for the development of individualized and effective interventions. The generality of FA has been demonstrated in hundreds of replications across various clinical populations, forms of problem behavior, and settings. In the current symposium, three papers will be presented that offer refinements or novel applications of FA methodology. The presenter of the first paper will describe a modified FA to address a problematic form of vocal behavior, immediate echolalia, exhibited by individuals with autism. The presenter of the second paper will describe refinements of a trial-based FA conducted with multiples (i.e., twins). The presenter of the third paper will describe use of a telemedicine model to conduct a trial-based FA of problem behavior exhibited by individuals with a rare condition (SYGNAP1-related intellectual disability).

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Target Audience:

Individuals who have familiarity with functional analysis and wish to learn more about procedural refinements and novel applications of this approach.

Learning Objectives: 1. Audience members will be able to describe how to modify a functional analysis to assess the function of immediate echolalia, a problematic form of vocal behavior exhibited by individuals with autism. 2. Audience members will be able to describe refinements of a trial-based FA for assessing problem behavior of multiples (i.e., twins). 3. Audience members will be able to describe how to use a telemedicine model to conduct a trial-based FA of problem behavior exhibited by individuals with a rare condition (SYGNAP1-related intellectual disability).
 
A Functional Analysis of Immediate Echolalia
ZOE NEWMAN (The New England Center for Children; Western New England University), Eileen M. Roscoe (The New England Center for Children; Western New England University), Sarah Lundstrom (New England Center for Children; Western New England University)
Abstract: Immediate echolalia is a type of vocal stereotypy that involves noncontextual repetition of auditory stimuli that has just been spoken. Immediate echolalia is prevalent among individuals with autism (Charlop, 1992) and has been found to hinder acquisition of verbal behavior (McMorrow, Foxx, Faw, & Bittle, 1987). The purpose of the present study was to conduct a sequential test versus control functional analysis of immediate echolalia for three individuals with autism. It can be difficult to identify the function of this behavior because it requires additional controls during a functional analysis. For example, in the current study, a script of comments or questions was presented over a speaker or read by a therapist during all conditions to ensure equal opportunity for responding. Although functional analysis results for all participants suggested that immediate echolalia was likely maintained by automatic reinforcement, different patterns of responding were observed. The implications of the findings for conducting functional analysis and treatment of immediate echolalia will be discussed. Interobersever agreement was collected for 34.4% of sessions and averaged 95.9%.
 

Trial-Based Functional Analyses With Multiples With Autism Spectrum Disorder

MEGHAN DESHAIS (Caldwell University), Timothy R. Vollmer (University of Florida), Eliana M. Pizarro (University of Florida), Brandon C. Perez (University of Florida)
Abstract:

Research on the assessment of problem behavior in multiples (i.e., twins, triplets, etc.) has been limited. The primary aim of this study was to report trial-based functional analysis outcomes for two sets of multiples with autism spectrum disorder who are participating in an ongoing, longitudinal study that our research group is conducting. Within each pair of multiples, we found considerable similarity in terms of behavioral sensitivity to specific stimuli. A secondary aim of this study was to present a novel method for graphing and analyzing trial-based functional analysis outcomes. Rather than graphing occurrence/nonoccurrence data in bar graphs as is traditional in trial-based functional analyses, we measured participants’ latency to respond during trials and graphed those data in line graphs. This method revealed across- and within-trial patterns of responding that were useful in our analysis. The current study extends previous research on the assessment of problem behavior in multiples and extends trial-based functional analysis research by presenting an alternative method for graphing and analyzing results.

 

Trial-Based TeleFunctional Analysis for Individuals With SYNGAP1-Related Intellectual Disability

GRIFFIN ROOKER (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Constance Smith-Hicks (Kennedy Krieger Institute; Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine), Molly K McNulty (Kennedy Krieger), Michael Kranak (Kennedy Krieger Institute, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine)
Abstract:

Functional behavioral phenotyping (FBP) involves the cataloguing the behaviors and determining the reasons why these behaviors occur in specific genetic disorders and psychological conditions. This manner of phenotyping offers great promise in the area of intellectual and developmental disabilities, as understanding a FBP may lead to the discovery of generalized response patterns (ways of responding that are characteristic) present in a population. The development of a FBP for a population would have immediate practical significance in clinical assessment and treatment. However, when a disorder or condition is rare, it may be very difficult to develop a FBP for that population. The current study offers a potential solution to this barrier, by using a telemedicine model to assess the problem behavior of individuals with SYNGAP1-related intellectual disability (a rare condition). Further, the current study offers a proof-of-concept demonstration for how the data required for a FBP may be gathered in a time- and resource-sensitive manner by conducting caregiver-implemented, trial-based functional analyses with three individuals diagnosed with SYNGAP1-related intellectual disability. Implications of this demonstration will be discussed.

 

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