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.


47th Annual Convention; Online; 2021

All times listed are Eastern time (GMT-4 at the time of the convention in May).

Event Details

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Symposium #80
Diversity submission Recent Advances and Applications of Telehealth in Applied Behavior Analysis During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Saturday, May 29, 2021
12:00 PM–12:50 PM
Area: DDA/AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Hedda Meadan (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

Numerous professionals, including board-certified behavior analysts (BCBAs), have had to pivot to delivering ABA therapy via telehealth due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The lessons learned from these experiences can provide insights to researchers and practitioners about the state of telehealth practice in the community. This symposium includes a series of presentations to inform the field and support the application of telehealth services during times of crisis. The first presentation will describe results from a convergent mixed-methods survey study of the experiences of 657 BCBAs, three months after stay at home orders went into effect. The second will describe the results of a single-case, multiple probe design study across three BCBAs who were provided professional development via telehealth on strategies for building better rapport with caregivers and coaching them to bring about maximum clinical efficacy. The third will describe results of a randomized controlled trial on the effectiveness of a series of online parent training modules on caregiver’s use of behavioral principles with their young child with challenging behaviors.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): service delivery, telehealth, telepractice
Diversity submission ABA Professionals Expedited Delivery of Therapeutic Services via Telehealth During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Lessons Learned
ANA DUENAS GARCIA (Lehigh University ), Sophia R D'Agostino (Hope College)
Abstract: Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is recognized as a medically necessary treatment for individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) (Association of Professional Behavior Analysts, [APBA] 2020). The use of telehealth to deliver ABA services has been on the rise over the past decade, but at the time of the COVID-19 stay home orders, there continues to be limited literature on telehealth implementation guidelines for providers. Most of the existing literature outlines the barriers to implementation but few studies offer solutions. The purpose of this survey study is to inform researchers and practitioners regarding the use of telehealth to deliver ABA therapy during unprecedented times. A convergent mixed methods research design was utilized to examine the experiences of ABA professionals as they deliver ABA techniques via telehealth to individuals with developmental disabilities and their families. Findings include ABA service providers’ decision-making process for determining the modality of service, therapeutic structure via telehealth, usability and troubleshooting of telehealth, and professional development related to telehealth. Results will be discussed along with recommendations for research and practice.
Diversity submission 

Supporting Professionals to Coach Caregivers Who Have Children With Autism During Pandemic: A Single-Case Study

MOON YOUNG CHUNG (University of illinois at Urbana-Champaign), James Lee (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), Hedda Meadan (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), Michelle Sands (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), Ben Sleiman (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

The importance of family engagement in their children's education and treatment is emphasized by researchers, professional organizations, and legislations. Providing services with caregivers via telepractice has gained more support and is becoming especially timely due to the current pandemic and social distancing requirements. Professionals, such as board-certified behavior analysts (BCBAs), who work with caregivers with children with disabilities may benefit from receiving professional development on strategies for building better rapport with caregivers and coaching them to bring about maximum clinical efficacy. The current study replicated an earlier study by Meadan et al. (2020) to examine the effects of the Coaching Caregiver Professional Development (CoCarePD) program, in which (a) BCBAs received training and coaching from researchers via telepractice on their caregivers coaching practices, (b) BCBAs coached caregivers of children with autism. A single-case, multiple-probe design study across three BCBAs was conducted. Findings support a functional relation between the CoCarePD and BCBAs' use of coaching practices. Participating BCBAs were also satisfied with the goals, procedures, and outcomes of the program. The detailed method, findings, limitations, and implications will be discussed.

Diversity submission 

Effects of Online Modules on Challenging Behaviors for Korean Families: A Randomized Controlled Trial

JAMES LEE (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), Hedda Meadan (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

Consistent challenging behaviors of young children are known to have significant impact on the child’s optimal development, such as social-emotional development or communication skills (Dunlap et al., 2006). Furthermore, some parents who live in Korea have exacerbated hardships due to limited opportunities for treatment for their children with autism. Intervention delivery using telepractice is supported with more research in these cases. To strengthen the capacity of parents in Korea, we developed and examined the effectiveness of a series of online parent training modules on behavioral principles using a randomized controlled trial with a waitlist control group (N = 88). We found significant interaction effects of Group X Time for (a) parental knowledge of behavioral principles, (b) positive parenting practices, and (c) parental stress, with no preexisting differences between the two groups. Furthermore, qualitative social validity data indicated that parents were highly satisfied with the goals, procedures, and outcomes, and that the modules affected their parenting styles, increased knowledge leading to better child outcomes, and recommendations for future research.




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