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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Poster Session #97
AUT Saturday Poster Session
Saturday, May 29, 2021
1:00 PM–3:00 PM
Online
98. Using Relational Frame Theory to Teach Perspective-Taking Skills
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
BRITTANY DOLAN (St. Cloud State University; Centre for Behavioural Studies, St. Lawrence College), Meaghen Shaver (Centre for Behavioural Studies, St. Lawrence College), Michele R. Traub (St. Cloud State University)
Discussant: Daniel E Conine (Georgia State University)
Abstract:

Perspective taking is a common skillset of interest when considering individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Emerging trends suggest a relational frame theory (RFT) lens can be effective in establishing deictic responding as a generalized operant of behaviour, which is arguably synonymous with improving perspective taking skills, and thought to underlie diverse social skills. The current project seeks to explore the extent to which relational training can improve deictic relational responding, as well as the effect of such training on performance on common Theory of Mind (ToM) tasks. This case study examines the learning trajectory of an 8-year-old boy with ASD via PEAK Equivalence and PEAK Transformation modules. Results suggest an RFT approach is effective for the participant, yielding program mastery and demonstrating relational responding. Despite evidence suggesting relational training may not transfer to performance on common ToM tasks in individuals with ASD, the results discussed in this paper may indicate otherwise. Implications and next steps are discussed.

 
100.

Evaluating an eHealth Case Management System in an Intensive Behavioural Intervention Program

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
AMY PANKEWICH (University of Manitoba; St.Amant), Toby L. Martin (University of Manitoba; St.Amant Research Centre), Kerri L. Walters (St. Amant; University of Manitoba), Charmayne Dube (New Directions; University of Manitoba)
Discussant: Daniel E Conine (Georgia State University)
Abstract:

Early intensive behavioural internvention (EIBI) is a treatment program designed to increase adaptive behaviour and decrease maladaptive behaviours for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. The current standard of data collection used by EIBI programs in Manitoba is paper-and-pencil. Participants were three Autism Consultants and one Autism Senior Tutor currently employed in a large, community-based EIBI program. Differences between accuracy of collecting Discrete Trial Teaching and challenging behaviour data using paper-and-pencil and an eHealth tool (TNAC®) were examined. Questions regarding the social validity of both methods of data collection were also examined. There were no substantial differences in accuracy between collecting DTT and challenging behaviour data using paper-and-pencil or TNAC®. Respondents indicated in the social validity questionnaires that paper-and-pencil was the preferred method to collect data across all categories. These findings suggest that using an eHealth tool for data collection could provide benefits to an EIBI program if the social validity components are addressed.

 
Diversity submission 104.

A Synthesis of Interventions for Children With Autism in East Asia: A Scoping Review

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
JAMES LEE (Department of Special Education, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign ), Hannah Etchison (Georgia State University )
Discussant: Daniel E Conine (Georgia State University)
Abstract:

Children with autism require specific course of psychosocial and educational interventions to reach their full potentials. Often, these interventions are based on the principles of applied behavior analysis, which are reported to be effective regardless of cultural or geographical boundaries. However, relatively little is known about what practices are prevalent in efforts to treat children with autism in many countries and regions outside the United States, particularly in Asian countries, which accounts for a large portion of the world’s population. Therefore, we conducted a scoping review of all single-case research conducted with children with ASD in all of East Asia, and examined what practices are currently being promoted using single-case design, and the overall situation for autism treatment in these countries. Furthermore, we collected data specifically on social validity in order to examine perceptions of participants in these interventions. Through a systematic search of the literature, we identified a total of 27 single-case studies, and we systematically coded, synthesized and analyzed the data from all studies. Implications and recommendation for future research will also be discussed to address the treatment gap of evidence-based practices in these regions.

 
105.

Reduction in Stereotypic Behavior of a 17-Year-Old Student With Autism Through a Self-Management Treatment Package in a School Setting

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
NICOLA CEFALO (Aliter Cooperativa Sociale)
Discussant: Daniel E Conine (Georgia State University)
Abstract:

For individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), a wide variety of treatment techniques have been proposed to decrease stereotypic behaviors. A majority of studies used consequence-based approaches exclusively. I used a self-management treatment package to reduce stereotypic behavior of a 17-Years-Old Student with ASD, in the school setting. The treatment package includes: teaching to emit the target behavior when the therapist says so, teaching to tact the target behavior when the therapist does it, check on a card if the target behavior was emitted using a momentary time sampling measurement procedure; gradually increase of the interval of measurement. I use a withdrawal with a parametric design to show internal validity. Data shows an increase from a mean of 54% of intervals without stereotypic behaviors in baseline, to 100% of intervals without stereotypic behaviors with the treatment package starting from a 1 minute interval until a 3 minutes interval.

 
106.

Teaching Imitation to Young Learners With Autism Spectrum Disorder: Discrete Trial Teaching With Contingent Imitation

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
ALICE BRAVO (Haring Center for Inclusive Education; University of Washington)
Discussant: Daniel E Conine (Georgia State University)
Abstract:

Research has demonstrated imitation to be a pivotal skill in early childhood, serving learning and social interaction functions for young children. Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) frequently experience delays in this skillset, demonstrating challenges in the ability and/or propensity to imitate the actions of others. Current intervention programs frequently use Discrete Trial Teaching (DTT) or Reciprocal Imitation Training (RIT) to teach imitation to young children with ASD. This study combined one component of RIT – contingent imitation – with DTT to enhance learning outcomes related to both the ability and propensity to imitate. A multiple probe design across three preschool children with ASD was conducted within participants’ early learning classrooms. Participants were between 4-years and 4-years, 8-months at study onset. One participant was White, one participant was Black, and one participant was of mixed racial background, Black and White. Response to intervention varied across participants, with participants whose teachers reported observing some appropriate object engagement at onset of intervention experiencing greater outcomes than the participant whose teacher reported observing limited appropriate object engagement. Further research is needed to improve the teaching of imitation to young children with ASD who exhibit low object engagement and an inability to imitate actions with objects.

 
Diversity submission 107.

Behavioral Changes in Individuals With Autism in Latin America During COVID-19

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
ANA RAMIREZ (The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley), Andy U Torres (The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley), Daniel Valdez (Universidad de Buenos Aires), Analia Rosoli (Organización Estados Iberoamericanos para la Educación, la Ciencia y la Cultura ), Gabriela Garrido (Universidad de la República), Sebastian Cukier (PANAACEA), Georgina Perez-Liz (A.J. Drexel Autism Institute), Team REAL - (Red Espectro Autista Latinoamérica )
Discussant: Daniel E Conine (Georgia State University)
Abstract:

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, all affected countries have been forced to implement safeguards to protect their population, such as social distancing, mandatory quarantine, and contact restrictions. These safeguards impose drastic changes in people’s everyday life that may have an effect on their behavioral and mental health. Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are especially vulnerable to these changes, and little is known about the effects of the pandemic on their functioning. This study aimed to explore caregivers’ perceived impact of COVID-19 on individuals with ASD in 15 Latin American (LATAM) countries. 1826 caregivers from the 15 different countries completed an online survey. Participants were asked about behavioral changes in the individual with ASD that occurred after the implementation of COVID-19 safety guidelines. Results indicated that caregivers perceived more irritability (64.9%), anxiety (59.1%), and wandering (46.6%). Changes in aggression, eating and sleeping habits were not as frequently endorsed but still significant. COVID-19 has resulted in increased challenges for individuals with ASD worldwide. Knowledge about the impact of COVID-19 on behavioral and socioemotional functioning among those with ASD is needed to better understand and support their needs during these uncertain times.

 
108.

Special Educator Self-Efficacy for Teaching Students With Autism

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
JULIA M HRABAL (Baylor University), Tonya Nichole Davis (Baylor University), Stephanie Gerow (Baylor University), Tracey Sulak (Baylor University ), MacKenzie Raye Wicker (Baylor University ), Kathleen Hine (Baylor University ), Providence Lively (Baylor University)
Discussant: Daniel E Conine (Georgia State University)
Abstract:

Self-efficacy refers to an individual’s perceived ability to accomplish specific expectations. Research indicates that individuals with higher self-efficacy are more likely to demonstrate persistent behaviors associated with meeting expectations. Special educators are required by law to implement evidence-based practices for students with autism, most of which are rooted in the concepts and principles of applied behavior analysis. Special educators with high self-efficacy are likely to believe that they have the ability implement evidence-based practices for students with autism and behave in a manner that ensures such practices are implemented with fidelity. Therefore, it is pertinent that special educators have high self-efficacy related to the ability to effectively teach students with autism. The Autism Self-Efficacy Scale for Teachers (ASSET) is a reliable and valid measure of special educator’s self-efficacy for educating students with autism. We administered the ASSET to 100 special educators who work with students with autism in public schools. Results indicated variability in responding across and within participants. We evaluated potential moderating variables such as grade level taught, instructional setting, and years of experience. Practical implications and recommendations for future research will be discussed.

 
109. Development of a Measurement System for Teaching Social Inferencing
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
ELIZA DELPIZZO-CHENG (Endicott College), Gabriela Peinado (Universidad Autonoma De Baja California), Michelle Jones (Bexley City School District), Sara Aganowitz Jones (Speech and Language Development Center and School), Marissa Caccavale (Speech and Language Development Center and School), Carrie Wada (Speech and Language Development Center and School), Louanne Boyd (Chapman University)
Discussant: Hannah Lynn MacNaul (University of Texas at San Antonio)
Abstract: One of the hallmarks of autism are the social deficits that affect the everyday lives of these children. Children with autism have minimal intrinsic interest in ongoing everyday relationships. It is agreed upon in the literature that teaching for social understanding, initiation, and responsiveness is a required part of programming. One of the challenges of conducting research and obtaining empirical verification on social competencies for children with autism is the issue of measurement. How do we measure multifaceted skills so we can get a sense of whether or not we are teaching children to see the big picture? Measurement helps therapists to determine whether or not we are providing them with abilities to make socially functional moves in everyday social relationships (Weiss & Harris, 2001). The aim of the present study is to investigate a measurement approach embedded within a teaching methodology to promote social inferencing for two-dimensional images that depict everyday social scenes. Four students with autism gave verbal responses to the prompt “what is the picture about?” A table depicts our initial results. Reliability for scored verbal responses was 83%. This poster will present the details of the measurement approach and results in a multiple baseline design.
 
110. A Review of Response Interruption and Redirection as a Treatment for Stereotypy and Facilitator of Collateral Behavior
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
JOSEPH WILLIAM RYAN (University of Massachusetts Lowell), Rocio Rosales (University of Massachusetts Lowell), Emily Rowe (University of Massachusetts Lowell)
Discussant: Hannah Lynn MacNaul (University of Texas at San Antonio)
Abstract: A review of recently published articles on response interruption and intervention (RIRD) is presented in the present poster. The review extends previous reviews by including the following: 1) only papers that used the term ‘RIRD’; 2) all behaviorally oriented journals with publications on the topic; and 3) articles that evaluated RIRD for both vocal and motor stereotypy; and 4) an evaluation of measures of treatment integrity, social validity, and generality. Suggestions for future research and use of RIRD in clinical practice are discussed.
 
111.

Using the Behavior Flexibility Rating Scale-Revisedto Inform Functional Analysis and Treatment of Severe Problem Behavior

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Katherine Sorensen (May Institute), ALI SCHROEDER (May Institute), Clare Liddon (May Institute)
Discussant: Hannah Lynn MacNaul (University of Texas at San Antonio)
Abstract:

One of the core features of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is restrictive and repetitive behavior. It is also common for individuals with ASD to engage in problem behavior. The Behavioral Flexibility Rating Scale - Revised (BFRS-R), is structured rating scale that may be used to identify the severity of problem behavior that occurs when restrictive and repetitive behavior is somehow disrupted (i.e., demonstrating a lack of flexibility). Previous research suggests the BFRS-R may be used to inform the functional behavioral assessment process (Liddon et al., 2016). The present series of clinical data evaluates the use of the BFRS-R to inform a trial-based functional analysis and systematic treatment evaluation for severe aggression in a young man with ASD. Preliminary results demonstrate that that BFRS-R can be used to identify specific functional analysis conditions, yielding conclusive results (i.e., problem behavior occurrence during near 0% of control segments and 80-100% of test segments) and subsequent, function-based treatment evaluation conditions. That is, the BFRS-R may be informative in the assessment and treatment process of severe aggression with idiosyncratic functions of problem behavior related to behavioral inflexibility.

 
112.

Clinical Evaluation of an Intensive Toilet Training Package With a Young Child With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
AREZU ALAMI (Brock University), Kimberley L. M. Zonneveld (Brock University), Madeline Marie Asaro (Brock University)
Discussant: Hannah Lynn MacNaul (University of Texas at San Antonio)
Abstract:

Children with developmental disabilities often achieve urinary continence later than their typically developing counterparts, or not at all. Incontinence can negatively impact an individual’s independence, hygiene, and physical comfort and can lead to stigmatism and reduced participation in social and community events. In this case study, we used an AB design to evaluate the effects of an intensive toilet training package on the continence of a young boy with autism spectrum disorder. The clinical team implemented a 1-day intensive toilet training package in the child’s home. For all subsequent days of toilet training, the caregivers implemented the packaged intervention. Following the first intensive day of toilet training, the percentage of appropriate urinations steadily increased and reached the mastery criterion of three consecutive days with 100% appropriate urinations and no accidents. We subsequently introduced a phase of enhanced reinforcement for self-initiations and observed a stable number of self-initiations until the treatment concluded. Results will be discussed within the context of practical implications, limitations associated with the weak experimental design used, and suggestions for future clinical applications.

 
113. Treatment of Food Refusal in a Young Child: A Clinical Case
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
SAMANTHA PAIGE KUNO (Brock University ), Kimberley L. M. Zonneveld (Brock University), Arezu Alami (Brock University), Madeline Marie Asaro (Brock University)
Discussant: Hannah Lynn MacNaul (University of Texas at San Antonio)
Abstract: Feeding disorders range in severity from mild selectivity (e.g., picky eating) to complete refusal and can result in serious health ramifications, including weight loss, growth delays, and developmental delays (Flygare et. al., 2018; Freedman et al., 1999; Levy et al., 2019). To date, treatments based on applied behavior analysis have the most empirical support for increasing consumption in children with feeding problems (Peterson et al., 2016; Sharp et al., 2010). In this clinical case, we used a reversal design to evaluate the effects of differential reinforcement of alternative behavior and nonremoval of the spoon on the consumption of nonpreferred foods in a young child with autism spectrum disorder, in his home setting. We subsequently implemented demand fading to resemble a typical meal arrangement in which the child received reinforcement after he consumed all bites of the “meal” and trained the caregivers to implement this treatment. Results will be discussed within the context of practical implications, limitations, and suggestions for future work.
 
114. Delivery of the RUBI Parent Training via Telehealth: Caregiver Training During COVID-19
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
LAUREN ASHLEY NORDBERG (Auburn University), Corina Jimenez-Gomez (Auburn University), Hope Dabney (Auburn University), Jordan DeVries (Auburn University), Lydia Lindsey (Auburn University ), Carolyn Syzonenko (Auburn University)
Discussant: Hannah Lynn MacNaul (University of Texas at San Antonio)
Abstract: Caregiver training is an integral component of behavioral interventions for children with autism. The barriers to conducting caregiver training, such as limited availability of services and conflicting schedules, were exacerbated during the closures resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, which required many service providers to rapidly pivot to telehealth service delivery. During this time, we delivered the RUBI Parent Training for Disruptive Behaviors via telehealth to caregivers of children with autism, decreasing the barrier posed by lockdown restrictions to ensure families in need could access services. We delivered the training according to the RUBI handbook with modifications, including delivery via telehealth and in a group format with individual weekly consultations. A total of 13 caregivers completed the nine-week training. At the end of training, caregivers demonstrated an increase in their knowledge of ABA and reported a decrease in the severity of their child’s challenging behaviors at home, as measured by the Home Situations Questionnaire-Autism Spectrum Disorder.
 
116.

Predicting the Relative Efficiency of Interventions: A Systematic Review of Within-Subject Replicability in Single-Subject Comparisons

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
CHENGAN YUAN (Arizona State University), Lanqi Wang (The University of Iowa), Katherine Nguyen (Arizona State University), Shahad Alsharif (Dar Al-Hekma University), Qing Zhang (Arizona State University)
Discussant: Hannah Lynn MacNaul (University of Texas at San Antonio)
Abstract:

Researchers and clinicians rely on single-subject comparison designs (e.g., alternating-treatment, parallel-treatment designs) to identify efficient intervention procedures that can improve learner outcomes. However, the extant literature has repeatedly noted the poor generality of the outcomes from such comparisons (e.g., Ledford et al., 2019; Johnston, 1988). That is, the efficiency of an intervention procedure is often idiosyncratic among the learners. Despite between-participant inconsistencies, some studies have demonstrated relatively consistent within-participant outcomes when multiple comparisons were conducted (e.g., Carroll et al., 2018; McGhan & Lerman, 2013; Yuan & Zhu, 2020). We will systematically review the studies that included multiple comparisons of the interventions to examine whether and the extent to which within-subject replication was demonstrated. If replication can be reliably achieved, clinicians may be able to utilize an initial comparison of the interventions to predict the relative efficiency of the intervention and can, therefore, inform the treatment-selection decisions.

 
117.

Using Pairing to Teach Response to Name to Children With Autism

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
AMBER R. PADEN (University of Nebraska Medical Center's Munroe-Meyer Institute), Regina A. Carroll (University of Nebraska Medical Center Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Discussant: Hannah Lynn MacNaul (University of Texas at San Antonio)
Abstract:

Response to name (RTN) is often a deficit of children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and is a common treatment goal for children receiving early intervention services. Previous research has evaluated different prompting strategies to increase RTN without using physical guidance, which can be overly intrusive (Connie et al., 2019). The purpose of the current study was to evaluate the use of pairing to teach RTN to preschool-aged children diagnosed with ASD. During pairing sessions, the child engaged with moderately preferred items and the experimenter said the child’s name three times while placing a preferred edible item in the child’s mouth. Following the completion of ten trials, the experimenter began a post-pairing session. During post-pairing, the experimenter stated the child’s name five times. A correct RTN (i.e., looking at experimenter’s eye region for any duration within 5 s) resulted in a brief social interaction (e.g., greeting, comment). Following every three post-pairing sessions, we conducted generalization and control sessions. During control sessions, the experiment stated a name other than the child’s five times. Preliminary results show pairing is effective at increasing RTN with two children with autism. We continue to implement this protocol with additional participants to provide more evidence supporting the effectiveness of this procedure.

 
118.

Functional Communication Training for Toddlers at Risk for Autism

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
SIERRA STEGEMANN (University of Texas at San Antonio), Leslie Neely (The University of Texas at San Antonio), Katherine Cantrell (University of Texas at San Antonio)
Discussant: Hannah Lynn MacNaul (University of Texas at San Antonio)
Abstract:

Functional communication training (FCT) typically consists of determining the function(s) of challenging behaviors and teaching the child an appropriate communicative response that can serve the same function as the challenging behavior once did. In this study, FCT was used to teach infants/toddlers at risk for autism to appropriately request for their caregiver instead of engaging in challenging behaviors when the caregiver left the room. This study expands upon the current literature because of its participant age (under three years old) and “at-risk for autism” criteria (discussed in participant section). Five children were taught a functional communicative response (FCR) for their caregiver and then introduced to a time delay of reinforcement. Problem behavior decreased in all participants while the use of the FCR increased. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, data collection was cut short for 2 participants.

 
119.

Parents Sense of Competency After Receiving Caregiver-Mediated Behavioral Intervention for Toddlers At-Risk for Autism Spectrum Disorder

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
TREY XIMENEZ (University of Texas at San Antonio), Leslie Neely (The University of Texas at San Antonio), Katherine Cantrell (University of Texas At San Antonio)
Discussant: David W. Sidener
Abstract:

Early childhood interventions (e.g. Early Start Denver Model, Naturalist Development Behavioral Intervention), specifically parent or caregiver training for children at -risk of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are prevalent and there is an increasing concern for the caregivers sense of competency. Parent-Led Autism Treatment for At-Risk Young Infants and Toddlers (PLAAY) is a grant funded research initiative which identifies toddlers who are at high-risk for ASD and provides parent-assisted treatment for their children who experience challenging behavior and intervene through Functional Communication Training (FCT). This poster specifically evaluates the pre/post information to measure the change in responses from the Parent Sense of Competency (PSOC) scale. The PSOC will be used as a measure of social validity through a self-reporting questionnaire using a 6-point Likert scale to measure the parent’s competence through efficacy and satisfaction. The aim of this evaluation is to measure the caregivers change in overall competence after the PLAAY 10-week program. The results indicate a significant increase in parent’s competency after receiving caregiver-assisted treatment. This provides more information on the acceptability of early childhood interventions, specifically parent training with toddlers at-risk who display challenging behavior.

 
120.

Self-Managed Sibling-Mediated Intervention for Children With Autism

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Chengan Yuan (Arizona State University), Lanqi Wang (The University of Iowa), NATALIJA MILUTINOVIC (Children's Autism Center; Arizona State University), Qing Zhang (Arizona State University), Qiuyu Min (Shanghai Clover Center for Children)
Discussant: David W. Sidener
Abstract:

Involving typically developing siblings during interventions can be cost-effective and may lead to long-lasting and generalized behavioral outcomes for children with autism. Among the few studies that investigated the effects of sibling-mediated intervention, researchers have found that typically developing siblings were able to learn various procedures to improve learning outcomes of children with autism (Shivers & Plavnick, 2015). However, it may be difficult for typically developing siblings to learn and implement multiple interventions with varying protocols at a high level of integrity when teaching different skills to children with autism. Using a multiple baseline across behavior design, we investigated if 1) self-management could be used to maintain a high level of integrity when the typically developing sibling implemented a model-lead-test strategy and 2) the sibling-mediated model-lead-test strategy could effectively improve skills across multiple domains for children with autism. Our results showed that the self-management tactic effectively led to the correct implementation of the model-lead-test strategy and, in turn, resulted in improvement of the target skills across domains.

 
121.

Evaluating Comparative Research on Augmentative and Alternative Communication Systems for Individuals With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
BRENNA R GRIFFEN (University of Arkansas), Cody Lindbloom (University of Arkansas), Elizabeth R. Lorah (University of Arkansas), Christine Holyfield (University of Arkansas), Jessica Miller (Early Autism Services)
Discussant: David W. Sidener
Abstract:

Because 30% of individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) experience difficulties with vocal communication, augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) systems provide a means for those persons to communicate with others. When making a recommendation for a suitable AAC for an individual with communication impairments, practitioners must have access to the most current data. This systematic review screened various academic and professional data bases which yielded nine (n=9) alternating treatment design single case studies. These studies were compared to evaluate the efficacy of various AAC modalities using the TauU method of data non-overlap. This study also compared operants, evidence-based best practices, quality indicators, and modality preferences of participants. Visual and statistical analyses indicate most of the participants both preferred and performed better using a speech generating device (SGD) compared to picture exchange systems and manual sign. The findings of this study suggest that practitioners should consider using SGD systems to facilitate verbal behavior in children who experience ASD with limited or no vocal communication and that there is a need for SGD research beyond the utilization of mand training and participants 13 or younger.

 
122.

Reducing Vocal Stereotypy Using Response Interruption and Redirection With Mindfulness

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
COREY OLVERA (The Center for Discovery), Johanna F Lantz (The Center for Discovery)
Discussant: David W. Sidener
Abstract:

Vocal stereotypy often interferes with an individual’s ability to acquire adaptive skills and can be socially stigmatizing (Gibbs et al., 2018). Vocal stereotypy is often maintained through automatic reinforcement. Response Interruption and Redirection (RIRD) is often used to address automatically maintained behavior. However, vocal stereotypy can be difficult to physically redirect. This study investigated the impact of RIRD on reducing vocal stereotypy on a student with ASD, whose stereotypies often pertained to past and future events. The intervention included a mindfulness component that required the student to engage in three verbal responses answering questions regarding the immediate environment or engaging the five senses. The study utilized a multiple baseline across settings design. The settings were a) sensory room where student is alone with preferred items, b) group lesson in which the student engaged in an activity with peers, and c) during workstations/independent work in which direct 1:1 instruction is given. The results showed decreased rates of vocal stereotypy in all settings. A withdrawal design demonstrated a return to increased rates of vocal stereotypy. The intervention appears to keep the student engaged with their immediate environment, reducing the likelihood of engagement in vocal stereotypy.

 
123.

Neurological Contextual Difference in Children With Autism: Executive Functioning and Derived Relational Responding

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
TAYLOR MARIE LAUER (Missouri State University), Jordan Belisle (Missouri State University), Carly Yadon (Missouri State University)
Discussant: David W. Sidener
Abstract:

Autism is a neurological disorder that presents marked differences in behaviors in individuals. The external context which surrounds both the neurotypical population and individuals with autism is similar, yet there are consistent differences between these two groups. We have proposed a model which allows a functional contextualistic account of behavior that emphasizes the interaction between a neurological context, the external context, and behavior, to allow behavior analysts in conjunction with neuroscientists an equivalent approach for behavior. We reviewed the existing literature comparing neurological differences between individuals with autism and matched typically developing peers during executive functioning tasks that may require verbal relational responding. Neurological activity within the neurotypical population involves activation in the frontoparietal regions, which appears to overlap with regions of deficits within the autism population. These results support a potential complex interaction between neurological contextual differences and external contextual similarities that predicts performance difference in individuals with autism.

 
124. Comparing Traditional and Automated PEAK Programming: TelePEAK
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
MEREDITH MATTHEWS (Missouri State University ), Lindsey Nicole Holtsman (Emergent Learning STL Center ), Taylor Marie Lauer (Missouri State University ), Jordan Belisle (Missouri State University)
Discussant: David W. Sidener
Abstract: Discrete trial training is a long-supported method of teaching various skills by breaking those skills down into small, chain-like increments while reinforcing those steps with preferred items (Elder, 2018). While this approach is widely used and accepted, using physical stimuli can reduce the efficiency during trial blocks, can become redundant or repetitive and often consumes far more time and resources when compared to similar gamified programs. In the present study, we utilized a multi-element design across three sets to determine if a computerized, or gamified, version of PEAK achieves the same or better outcomes when compared to the traditional discrete trial training delivery mode, versus a control set. The stimuli utilized for all three sets were arbitrary symbols to guarantee that no previous relationships had been established, and each set contained unique symbols to ensure that no symbols received reinforcement from the other trials. Both methods exceeded the control, suggesting that the automated programming will produce similar outcomes than those achieved through the traditional “tabletop” programming. Additional benefits conferred treatment implementation fidelity because it’s all programmed as well as reducing the need to develop physical stimulus materials.
 
125.

An Evaluation of Systematic Prompting in Augmentative and Alternative CommunicationResearch for Individuals With Autism

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
ASHLEY MCCOY (Bowling Green State University)
Discussant: David W. Sidener
Abstract:

Prompting is classified as an evidence-based practice for individuals with autism (National Autism Center, 2015). Within the last ten years there have been several reviews on augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) for individuals with autism that commonly report prompting. However, there exists a need for further research to focus exclusively on prompting in AAC intervention research that provides details on the systematic prompting procedures and procedural parameters. This project reviewed six literature reviews published since 2011 on AAC and autism. From these six reviews, there were 125 included studies; 71 after duplicates were removed. These original 71 studies were reanalyzed to extract prompting elements from the intervention procedures. Thirty-three studies provided sufficient detail to be included in this analysis. Results suggest that the most commonly reported prompting procedure was system of least prompts (n=14) followed by constant time delay (n=8). Additional procedural parameters evaluated include: prompt levels, the types and arrangement of prompts, as well as time components. Results are also reported for the types of AAC systems and the targeted communication skill. The identification of these elements can aid practitioners in making informed decisions when utilizing prompting, as well as highlighting additional areas of need for future research.

 
Diversity submission 126. Virtual Behaviour Skills Training: Teaching Parents to Conduct a Functional Analysis
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
AMALIA COZZARIN (ErinoakKids Centre for Treatment and Development), Nathan Vieira (ErinoakKids Centre for Treatment and Development)
Discussant: David W. Sidener
Abstract: Emerging literature surrounding telehealth services indicates a potential alternative for individuals receiving behavioural analytic services and supports. With the surfacing of the COVID-19 pandemic, many practitioners were forced to use a telehealth model to provide ABA services. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of using telehealth video conferencing to support skill acquisition and competency for two individuals to implement functional analysis (FA) for their family member diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The participants resided in Saudi Arabia and were unable to return to Canada to receive services. Coaching involved using behaviour skills training (BST) and fidelity checklists to support the acquisition of skills necessary to conduct a functional analysis across five conditions (tangible, escape, alone, play, attention). Results indicate that the two participants mastered the skill across all five conditions and demonstrated treatment fidelity during implementation of FA across conditions. Discussion includes implications of rapidly improving quality of telehealth services and potential for additional opportunities.
 
127.

Decreasing Hand Flapping Stereotypy Using Behavior Intervention Package

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
TRACY YIP (N/A), Ying Hu (N/A)
Discussant: David W. Sidener
Abstract:

Self-stimulatory behaviors in the form of hand flapping is a common form of stereotypy found in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. The participant in the study engaged in this form of stereotypy so often that it was directly impeding with his learning and affecting his ability to form social relationships with others. Data collection and analysis indicated that the behavior may be primarily functioning as self-stimulation. Using a behavioral intervention package involving DRI, response interruption, and DRO strategies, the behavior was significantly reduced. The participant was able to engage in classroom activities and independent activity schedules with minimal engagement of hand flapping. His on task behavior and rate of skill acquisition has increased and maintained as the plan was systematically faded out.

 
128.

Relations of Learning Abilities, Task Characteristics, and Acquisition of Skills in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
MARIA PONGOSKI (Manitoba Association for Behaviour Analysis, University of Manitoba), Geneviève N. Roy-Wsiaki (Université de Saint Boniface), C.T. Yu (University of Manitoba)
Discussant: David W. Sidener
Abstract:

The current study sought to establish whether rate of task acquisition may be affected by the interaction between learning ability and task difficulty for children with autism spectrum disorder enrolled in an early intensive behavioural intervention (EIBI) program. To do so, specific teaching tasks selected from the Assessment of Basic Language and Learning Skills-Revised (ABLLS-R) that were previously categorized into learning ability levels were taught to two children recruited from an EIBI program. Each participant, P05 and P07, was assigned three teaching tasks that were programmed as a match, a mismatch above, and a mismatch below their current learning ability level. Teaching tasks were taught using discrete trial teaching methods for a maximum of 64 trials per task. A single teaching task, mismatched below P05’s learning ability, was mastered after 25 trials. No other teaching task was mastered within 64 trials for either participant. As this was only the first study to assess the rate of task acquisition for ABLLS-R tasks categorized into learning ability levels through direct observation, future researchers should continue to explore the effects of task difficulty on rates of task acquisition.

 
129.

Using Reinforcement to Increase Independence While Eating

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
CAITLIN BELTRAN (Millstone Township School District), Emily Lurie (Millstone Township School District)
Discussant: David W. Sidener
Abstract:

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disorder characterized by challenges in social skills, repetitive behaviors, and communication. Feeding problems are highly prevalent in children with autism spectrum disorders. Feeding problems can include food selectivity, prompt dependence, and refusal during meals.These behaviors are socially stigmatizing and can negatively impact an individual’s nutritional status. Research has demonstrated that strategies based on applied behavior analysis are effective for increasing appropriate behavior and decreasing inappropriate behavior in children with autism; however, there is little research on treatment of feeding problems in children with autism. The current study examined the effects of using reinforcement and systematic prompting to increase independence while eating. A reversal design (ABAB) was utilized in which treatment consisted of the therapist presenting a token board containing 3 tokens and a picture of chosen reinforcer, along with the verbal cue, “Time to Eat, 3 tokens for ___.” A vibrating timer was set for 10 seconds. If ten seconds elapsed with no independent bite, a gesture prompt (in the form of therapist pointing to fork) was provided. No verbal prompts were provided. The present study demonstrated that using systematic reinforcement was effective in increasing independence in eating. Additional sessions should be run to systematically fade the number of responses required for reinforcement, and to demonstrate maintenance.

 
130.

Establishing Auditory Discrimination and Echoic Stimulus Control With an Auditory Matching Procedure

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Clare Marie Christe (Western Michigan University), Richard W. Malott (Western Michigan University), MOLLY MATTES (Western Michigan Universtiy )
Discussant: Regina A. Carroll (University of Nebraska Medical Center Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Abstract:

The present study used a variation of the go/no-go procedure (Serna, Dube, & McIlvane, 1997) to teach auditory matching to four preschool-aged children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders. Two sounds were presented in a continuous, alternating fashion at the start of each trial. If the sounds were the same, students indicated a match by touching a button; if they were different, students would refrain from touching that button for the duration of the trial. Phases of the intervention began with sound discriminations that became successively more complex, until they involved word discriminations. We used a nonconcurrent multiple-probe design to assess each participant’s performance on a list of echoics before, during, and after the intervention. Two students acquired a generalized echoic repertoire, one improved his articulation, and one acquired some vocal imitation skills; all four students could receptively identify matching sounds and words by the end of the intervention.

 
131.

Engaging Young Children with Autism in Caregiver-implemented Shared Reading: A Review and Call for Research

Area: AUT; Domain: Basic Research
XIAONING SUN (Ohio State University), LING YI (NingBo College of Health Sciences)
Discussant: Regina A. Carroll (University of Nebraska Medical Center Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Abstract:

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, children with ASD have limited access to therapy sessions which would lead to worse behavioral and cognitive outcomes (Zwaigenbaum et al., 2015). Therefore, it is important to train parents on delivering evidence-based practices. As a regular practice in early education as well as home settings (Mucchetti, 2013), shared reading offer adults opportunities to read aloud to children while using strategies asking questions, commenting about the story, or expanding on the child’s utterance to promote interaction between the adult and child, as well as support the child’s language and literacy development (NELP, 2008). This systematic review provides evidence that actors as reading quality, duration as well as book types may impact children’s performance. In addition, prompt, repeated reading, praise, expand, evaluate as well as question prompts will contribute to language acquisition as well as communication. Also, behavior skill training which includes instruction, modeling, role-play, feedback is still the main and effective parent training method. However, the limited studies included in this review also indicate that more research needs to be conducted to explore effective interventions on supporting engagement and verbal behavior of children with ASD in home setting.

 
132.

The Use of Immersive Virtual Environments to Encourage Social Interaction Between Children With Autism and Their Siblings During Game Time

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
EMILY SCARBOROUGH (Tennessee Tech University), Krystal Kennedy (Tennessee Technological University)
Discussant: Regina A. Carroll (University of Nebraska Medical Center Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Abstract:

This poster presents a service delivery model for using Immersive Virtual Environments (IVEs) to teach children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) social interaction opportunities with their typically developing siblings. The relationships between children with ASD and their typically developing siblings are often strained due to the lack of social skills and other problem behaviors (Hastings, 2003, O’Brien, Cuskelly, & Slaughter, 2019; Ward, Tanner, Mandleco, Dyches, & Freeborn, 2016). Immersive Virtual Environments consisting of putting children with ASD into different social scenarios is a method that can be used to teach them appropriate social skills. This session will guide the audience through procedures used to teach children with ASD different skills used during play and social interaction through Immersive Virtual Environments. Specific procedures include children with ASD reviewing virtual scenarios prior to play opportunities then demonstrating observed skills with their siblings. Preliminary results indicate virtual reality is an effective way to teach children with ASD different social skills. Data will be shared if available by conference date.

 
134.

Experience of Parents Receiving In-Home Behavioral Treatment for Their Child With Autism

Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
GERALD LAVARIAS (MAPSS)
Discussant: Regina A. Carroll (University of Nebraska Medical Center Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Abstract:

In-home applied behavior analysis (ABA) treatment has well-documented results and is widely recommended for children with autism. Since 1987, parents have sought and implemented ABA treatment in their homes for their children with autism. However, research on parents’ lived experiences with in-home ABA treatment is limited. As such, there is a need to study the impact and influence of ABA treatment on parents’ quality of life (e.g., challenges, scheduling, parenting). This qualitative study explored parents’ lived experiences while their children with autism received in-home ABA treatment using a phenomenological approach. Five parents participated in a 60-minute interview about in-home ABA treatment for their child with autism. Data was processed and analyzed using structural and descriptive textures. Results revealed 5 themes: perceptions of the child’s ABA clinicians, knowledge of in-home ABA services, satisfaction with child’s progress, facing challenges, and commitment to child’s in-home ABA treatment. These results may help ABA professionals improve their understanding of parents’ lived experiences involving their children’s in-home ABA treatment. Additionally, the study may help parents understand the empirical implications of seeking and receiving in-home ABA treatment and help extend knowledge, support, and treatment integrity for positive change in the effectiveness of in-home ABA treatment.

 
135.

Values-Oriented Parent Training Improves Outcomes for Children With Autism and Their Families

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
BLAKE HANSEN (Brigham Young University)
Discussant: Regina A. Carroll (University of Nebraska Medical Center Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Abstract:

Parent training has a strong research-base in behavior analysis and is a viable solution for problems associated with raising a child with a disability. The present study is a single-case parent training study conducted in a university-based clinic. The participants were a mother of three boys, one of whom was diagnosed with autism. The parent training involved assessing the parent’s values and aligning the training to the parent’s values. Over ten weeks, the parent was trained on implementing a naturalistic teaching program. Each training and feedback session included an assessment of values, progress, and committed action. Measures included the child’s communication and problem behaviors. The parent’s implementation fidelity was measured each session along with levels of acceptance and fusion. The study utilized an ABCB reversal design. The B condition involved parent training with the child’s two siblings present, while the C condition was conducted without the siblings present. The study demonstrated that increases in implementation fidelity were related to improvements in psychological flexibility and committed action. Concurrent changes in the child’s communication and reduction in problem behaviors were likewise observed. These findings are discussed in light of current research on integrating components of acceptance and commitment therapy in parent training programs.

 
136.

Playing Games with "No": Teaching Delayed and Denied Access

Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
AMBER N. VARELA (Firefly Autism), Elyse Murrin (Firefly Autism)
Discussant: Regina A. Carroll (University of Nebraska Medical Center Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Abstract:

The current study used a multiple-probe design to examine the effects of a treatment package, including systematic desensitization, demand fading, and behavioral momentum, on increasing tolerance to delayed and denied access. The intervention was presented to a child diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder receiving center-based one-on-one applied behavior analysis therapy who engaged in high rates of screaming, property destruction, physical aggression, and self-injurious behavior when presented with demands to wait or denied access to items or activities. The participant was given demands to wait or denied access to items or activities by being told “no” in a game format using items of varying preference in a classroom setting. Maladaptive behaviors were defined according to the participant’s individualized behavior intervention plan. Results indicated that the treatment package increased the participant’s tolerance to delayed and denied access and decreased rates of behavior targeted for reduction. The study was extended to a generalization phase where the game format was faded and being told to “wait” and/or “no” were applied to naturally occurring opportunities. Data from this study suggests that the treatment package was effective in reducing problem behavior, increasing tolerance for “wait” and “no,” and generalizable to natural settings.

 
138. The Effectiveness of A Therapist-Robot Interactive(TRI) Model to Teach Autistic Children
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
YINGYING SHE (Xiamen University), Hang Wu (Together Education Institute)
Discussant: Regina A. Carroll (University of Nebraska Medical Center Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Abstract: Abstract: This experiment investigated the effectiveness of Therapist-Robot Interactive(TRI) Model training program teaching three autistic children under One-on-One condition to improve receptive and expressive language,social skill, and concept form learning. TRI Model training program was introduced to three autistic children at staggered times to form a multiple baseline design. The first finding was TRI Model was effective in DTT setting to improve matching, labeling, instruction following and manding via calculating the correct percentage of correct response. The second finding was TRI Model was effective in generalization. Social validity was evaluated by the therapists, the social robot could serve as a natural and friendly companionship with autistic children and assist the therapist easily. Results suggest that TRI Model produced an increase learning by the three autistic children. Furthermore, continued use of TRI Model under naturalistic condition, high social validity ratings,and extended TRI Model use under One-on-More condition suggest that use of TRI model may be sustainable.
 
 

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