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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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 #451
CE Offered: BACB
Diversity submission Further Evaluation of Critical Aspects of Augmentative and Alternative Communication for Individuals With Developmental Disabilities
Monday, May 31, 2021
3:00 PM–3:50 PM
Online
Area: VRB/DDA; Domain: Translational
Chair: Rachel Cagliani (University of Georgia)
CE Instructor: Rachel Cagliani, Ph.D.
Abstract:

This symposium is comprised of three data-based presentations evaluating the implementation of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) with individuals with various developmental disabilities (i.e. Rett syndrome, autism spectrum disorder, and Down syndrome) and verbal operants in the context of home and school. The three applied studies sought to evaluate critical aspects of high- and low-tech AAC including accurate and independent responding, navigation, comprehension, and vocal development. First, Shawn Girtler will present findings from a study evaluating the effects of behavior chaining, prompt delay, and prompt fading on AAC navigation with individuals with Rett syndrome. Next, Emily Unholz-Bowden will present on the effect of device type (low-tech vs. high-tech) on accurate and independent responding with similar participants. Following, Kavya Kandarpa will present findings from a study evaluating the effects of magnitude on AAC and vocalizations. Finally, Rachel Cagliani will discuss the presentations in terms of implications for practice and future research.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): AAC, developmental disabilities, Rett syndrome
Target Audience:

Audience participants should have a basic understanding of augmentative and alternative communication, intellectual and developmental disabilities, and principles of reinforcement.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: 1. apply prompt fading and behavior chaining strategies to AAC instruction. 2. describe the effects of device type on accurate and independent responding. 3. describe the effects of reinforcement parameters on response allocation of mand modality.
 
Diversity submission 

Evaluating the Impact of Reinforcer Magnitude on Response Allocation Across Two Communication Modalities Under a Concurrent Schedule Arrangement

(Applied Research)
KAVYA KANDARPA (University of Cincinnati), Rachel Cagliani (University of Georgia), Joel Eric Ringdahl (University of Georgia)
Abstract:

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the impact of reinforcer magnitude on response allocation across two different communication modalities (vocalizations and picture exchange). A single-subject reversal design was used to evaluate the effects of altering the magnitude of requested items with one male participant in a classroom setting who engaged in limited and inconsistent vocalizations. This study took place in a classroom that served students with intellectual disabilities and autism spectrum disorder for kindergarten to second grade students, as well as in a teachers’ workroom. In the first intervention, the participant received the larger magnitude reinforcement for vocalizations and small magnitude reinforcement for picture exchange. In the second intervention, the participant received small magnitude reinforcement for vocalizations and the large magnitude reinforcement for picture exchange. The results showed that the participant allocated responding to the communication modality that received the larger magnitude of the requested item.

 
Diversity submission 

A Comparison of Procedures to Promote Page-Linking With Alternative and Augmentative Communication Devices for Three Girls With Rett Syndrome

(Applied Research)
SHAWN NICOLE GIRTLER (University of Minnesota), Emily Katrina Unholz-Bowden (University of Minnesota), Jennifer J. McComas (University of Minnesota), Rebecca Kolb (University of Minnesota ), Alefyah Shipchandler (University of Minnesota)
Abstract:

There is emerging evidence that individuals with Rett syndrome (RTT) can learn to use alternative and augmentative communication (AAC) devices. The purpose of the current study is to evaluate the use of behavior chaining with a prompt delay and prompt fading on acquisition of software navigation, specifically page-linking, skills with three individuals with RTT using both low-tech and high-tech AAC devices. For one participant, page-linking was taught utilizing a high-tech AAC device. For the other two participants, page-linking was taught utilizing both a high-tech and low-tech AAC devices. We used both multi-element and multiple probe designs across contexts to evaluate independent and accurate responding. All sessions were conducted in the participant’s home by their parents with remote coaching from a research assistant via telecommunication. Results indicated that for two participants, prompt delay was an effective procedure to teach page-linking using both a high-tech and a low-tech AAC device. For the other participant, behavior chaining with a prompt delay was an effective procedure to teach page-linking using a high-tech AAC device. Future research should utilize experimental methods to expand on navigation to include page-linking for multiple word phrases.

 
Diversity submission 

Analysis of Communication Using Low- and High-Tech Devices With Individuals With Rett Syndrome

(Applied Research)
EMILY KATRINA UNHOLZ-BOWDEN (University of Minnesota), Shawn Nicole Girtler (University of Minnesota), Jennifer J. McComas (University of Minnesota), Rebecca Kolb (University of Minnesota ), Alefyah Shipchandler (University of Minnesota)
Abstract:

The vast majority of individuals with Rett syndrome (RTT) do not have vocal, expressive language and therefore require alternative and augmentative communication (AAC). The purpose of the current study was to investigate the effects of instruction on the independent and accurate use of communication modalities emitted by two individuals with RTT using a low-tech and high-tech communication device. We used a multiple probe design across categories with the one participant and a multielement design with the other participant in teaching use of both high-tech and low-tech AAC devices. Parents conducted all sessions with remote coaching from a research assistant via telecommunication. For one participant, following exposure to either contingent reinforcement or behavior chaining on her high-tech device, fewer sessions were required to meet performance criteria for requesting on her low-tech device and subsequently following reintroduction of the high-tech device with new requesting criteria. For the second participant, some differences in acquisition were observed between the high-tech and low-tech communication devices. Future research should use experimental methods to measure relative preference for communication modalities.

 

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