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.


46th Annual Convention; Online; 2020

Event Details

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Paper Session #45
Token Economies Used for Adults With Intellectual Disabilities: A Review of the Literature
Saturday, May 23, 2020
11:30 AM–11:50 AM
Area: DDA
Chair: Marren Marie Leon-Barajas (The University of Kansas)

Token Economies Used for Adults With Intellectual Disabilities: A Review of the Literature

Domain: Service Delivery
MARREN MARIE LEON-BARAJAS (The University of Kansas)

Token economies are used in a variety of settings for a range of populations. For example, token economies have been used with patients in psychiatric treatment facilities (e.g., Baker, Hall, Hutchinson, & Bridge, 2018), children in educational settings (e.g., Shillingsburg, Lomas, & Bradley, 2012), delinquents in detention centers (e.g., Phillips, Phillips, Fixsen, & Wolf, 1971), incarcerated individuals in prisons (e.g., Milan, Wood, & McKee, 1979), and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) in residential settings (e.g., Reese, Sherman, & Sheldon, 1998). Given that the broad aim of token economies is to decrease problem behavior and increase adaptive behavior, better client outcomes rely on the implementation of these token economies to be carried out with high fidelity (Bailey, Gross, & Cotton, 2011). Staff implementation of token economies is one of the most noted barriers in their effectiveness (e.g., Bailey, Gross, & Cotton, 2011; Bassett & Blanchard, 1977; Drabman & Tucker, 1974). Thus, the purpose of this talk is to review the literature using token economies with this population and the importance of reporting fidelity measures used with adults with IDD. Recommendations for future research to inform the implementation of token economies will be discussed.




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