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).

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Poster Session #261
DDA Sunday Poster Session
Sunday, May 30, 2021
1:00 PM–3:00 PM
Online
78.

Clinical Evaluation of a Nonsequential Approach to Studying Operant Renewal

Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
RAYMOND ANTHONY CECORA (Upstate Medical University), William Sullivan (Upstate Medical University), Andrew R. Craig (SUNY Upstate Medical University), Nicole M. DeRosa (SUNY Upstate Medical University), Charlene Nicole Agnew (Upstate Medical University), Henry S. Roane (Upstate Medical University)
Discussant: Brandon May
Abstract:

Renewal assessments typically arrange reinforcement for target behavior in one context (Context A), extinction in a second context (Context B), and a renewal test by returning to Context A with extinction still enforced. During outpatient behavioral treatment, however, Context A (e.g., home) associated with reinforcement for challenging behavior and Context B (e.g., clinic) associated with extinction alternate. We developed a “nonsequential” renewal assessment wherein Contexts A and B, associated with reinforcement and extinction for target behavior respectively, alternate during treatment to more closely approximate outpatient treatments. Here, we extended this procedure to an individual who engaged in posturing maintained by escape from demands. Contexts A and B were signaled by different treatment rooms and therapists. During baseline in Context A, posturing produced escape. Next, we arranged sessions of functional communication training (FCT) in Context B that alternated with sessions of reinforcement for posturing in Context A. We assessed renewal of posturing by re-presenting Context A with FCT in place. We subsequently exposed the participant to a standard renewal assessment. As in our previous research with college students and rats, our nonsequential approach resulted in more renewal than the standard laboratory approach. Implications of these findings for practice will be discussed.

 
79. Analysis of Competition Factors in the Reduction of Automatically Maintained Self-Injury
Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
CHRISTOPHER M DILLON (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Louis P. Hagopian (Kennedy Krieger Institute; Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine), Griffin Rooker (Kennedy Krieger Institute; Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine)
Discussant: Brandon May
Abstract: Research shows that self-injurious behavior (SIB) is most often maintained by social reinforcement; however, for about 25% of individuals who engage in SIB, it occurs independent of social reinforcement (“automatically maintained SIB”). Hagopian et al. (2015) reported that ASIB could be delineated into subtypes based on patterns of responding during the functional analysis and the presence of self-restraint. SIB that varies inversely with the level of ambient reinforcement is classified as Subtype 1, while SIB that is undifferentiated is classified as Subtype 2. Research shows that the level of differentiation in the functional analysis predicts response to treatment using reinforcement alone. These findings suggest that the sensitivity to disruption by alternative reinforcement is a critical dimension of automatically maintained SIB. Rooker et al. (accepted, in revision) unexpectedly observed little to no SIB when participants with Subtype 2 performed an operant task engendering high rates of responding that produced food. The researchers speculated that the observed reductions could be due to reinforcer or response competition. The present study examined the role of reinforcer or response competition as the possible mechanisms for reductions in SIB across two participants. To do so, rates of SIB were compared across a contingent reinforcement (CR), a yoked noncontingent reinforcement (NCR), and no reinforcement conditions. Lower levels of SIB were observed in the CR and NCR conditions relative to the control condition, suggesting the observed effects with these two cases were due to reinforcer competition.
 
80.

A Comparison of One-to-One and Embedded Group Instruction on Discrete Trial Teaching for Students With Severe Disabilities in Taiwan

Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
PEI-FANG WU (National Kaohsiung Normal University), Siang-Wun Yue (National Taichung Special Education School), Li-Ting Liao (National Taichung Special Education School)
Discussant: Brandon May
Abstract:

Discrete Trial Teaching (DTT) is an evidence-based intervention for various students with disabilities. Traditional DTT is implemented in a one-to-one instructional format. However, one-to-one pull-out instruction is not fully feasible in Taiwan. Nearly all special education instruction is implemented in group, especially for self-contained special education classes in Taiwan. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to explore whether DTT embedded in group instruction is as effective as one-to-one DTT (1:1 DTT). Two students with severe disabilities (autism and intellectual disabilities) were participated in the study. An alternating treatment design was implemented to compare the two instructional formats. Adam was working on categorization in 1:1 DTT, and matching in embedded group DTT. James was working on two objectives. One was categorization and matching; another one was looking at pictures in 1:1 DTT, and looking at teacher in embedded group DTT. Results indicated that 1:1 DTT was more effective than embedded group DTT for both students. Adam met instructional objectives in both conditions, but mastered faster and more effectively in 1:1 DTT. James mastered both objectives in 1:1 DTT, but failed in embedded group DTT. However, the teacher reported that James eye contact was improved from 1 second to 2.5 seconds duration, although in a slow rate. Social validity data showed the classroom teachers preferred embedded group DTT than 1:1 DTT.

 
81. Self-Control Equipment Assessment: Identification of Appropriate Forms of Self-Control via the Use of Competing Equipment
Area: DDA; Domain: Basic Research
DREW E. PIERSMA (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Louis P. Hagopian (Kennedy Krieger Institute; the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine), Griffin Rooker (Kennedy Krieger Institute; the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine), Michelle A. Frank-Crawford (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Alyssa Fisher (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Jonathan Dean Schmidt (Kennedy Krieger Institute; the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine), Ashley N. Carver (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
Discussant: Brandon May
Abstract: Some individuals who engage in self-injurious behavior (SIB) also engage in self-restraint (SR), generally defined as behaviors that interfere with the occurrence of SIB (including holding onto objects or others, wrapping hands in clothing, sitting on hands). Although SR can reduce the occurrence of SIB, it can be maladaptive when it limits hand use or has other detrimental consequences (e.g., decreased circulation, skin breakdown). Self-restraint appears to be maintained by the avoidance of SIB, thereby suggesting that it can serve as a maladaptive form of self-control. It is possible that alterations to the topography of SR can mitigate these detrimental consequences while maintaining low levels of SIB. As part of a clinical trial investigating treatment-resistant subtypes of SIB, three participants completed a self-control equipment assessment (SCEA) in order to identify equipment that would compete with SR. The assessment examined the effects of the equipment when it was freely available, when its use was prompted, and when its use was prompted while SR was blocked. Preliminary results suggest that empirical identification of equipment that competes with SR is possible in the context of brief sessions. Implications for the extended use of these procedures are described.
 
82.

Comparison of Social Cognition in Individuals With Autism Spectrum Disorder and Down's Syndrome: A Review

Area: DDA; Domain: Theory
Amelia Yanchik (Montclair State University), SADAF KHAWAR (Montclair State University/Helping Hands Therapeutic Services, Inc), Michelle Grazioli (Montclair State University), Ghowash Irshad (Montclair State University), Peter M Vietze (Montclair State University)
Discussant: Brandon May
Abstract:

Impairments in social cognition is a key symptom of ASD and Down’s Syndrome. Individuals with these developmental disabilities have a dif?culty understanding the beliefs and desires of other people. In recent years, literature has begun to examine the link between impairments in social cognition and abilities that demand spatial and social skills, such as visual perspective taking (VPT). Flavell (1977) de?ned two levels of perspective-taking: VPT level 1 is the ability to understand that other people have a different line of sight to oneself, whereas VPT level 2 is the understanding that two people viewing the same item from various points in space see different views. Additionally, some theorists believe that Theory of Mind and VPT share standard cognitive processes (Hamilton et al., 2009). Both skills involve the simultaneous representation of two differing points of view (Aichhorn et al., 2006). We aim to compare the social-cognitive processes in individuals with ASD and Down’s Syndrome based on a thorough literature review of research conducted in the last decade. As VPT is a sociocognitive ability that impacts social interaction, the study will lay a theoretical framework for clinical interventions to meet underlying perspective-taking deficits causing social skill impairments.

 
83.

Effects of Session-End Criteria on Break Points and Problem Behavior during Progressive Ratio Assessments

Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
GABRIELLE BALZANO (University of Miami), Yanerys Leon (University of Miami), Nicolette Duffin (University of Miami), Juan Flagge (University of Miami), Kamila Garcia (University of Miami), Franchesca Izquierdo (University of Miami)
Discussant: Brandon May
Abstract:

Basic research has shown that session-end criteria can influence break points obtained for pigeons responding on progressive-ratio schedules. Although applied researchers have used progressive ratio schedules to assess reinforcing efficacy of stimuli in clinical populations, there remains a dearth of evidence on optimal parameters (i.e., step-size, session-end criteria) of progressive ratio schedules in this context. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the extent to which session-end criteria impact breakpoints and problem behavior of 5 children diagnosed with a developmental disorder responding on progressive ratio schedules. We retroactively examined data obtained in Leon et al. (2020) and applied the following session-end criteria to second-by-second data streams: 1-min, 2-min, and 3-min of no target response. Breakpoints were nearly identical in the 2- and 3-min criteria sessions for all 5 participants; whereas, breakpoints were slightly lower in 33- 50% of sessions in the 1-min criteria phase. Additionally, for 2 of 3 participants that emitted problem behavior during the study, more problem behavior was observed in the longer session end criteria sessions (i.e., more problem behavior in 3-min relative to 2-min and more problem behavior in 2-min relative to 1-min).

 
84.

Evaluating Mask Preference to Increase Cooperation With COVID-19 Health Precautions

Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
LINDSAY COHEN (University of North Texas), Elizabeth Joy Houck (University of North Texas), Joseph D. Dracobly (University of North Texas), Richard G. Smith (University of North Texas)
Discussant: Mindy Christine Scheithauer (Marcus Autism Center)
Abstract:

People with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) and autism spectrum disorders (ASD) often have difficulty in tolerating new or infrequently contacted stimuli (e.g., Fisher et al., 2019; Woodcock & Humphreys, 2009). Limited tolerance for health-related behavior, such as nail cutting, haircuts, and dental cleanings can cause distress for these individuals and their families (e.g., Cavalri et al., 2013). During the Covid 19 pandemic, face masks are a new stimulus that may cause distress for many people, especially those who may not understand the need for a mask. The inability to tolerate face masks could limit safe access to public locations for people with IDD and ASD. Therefore, we evaluated preference for different types of face masks with three adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities and limited verbal communication skills. Using a multielement design, we assessed the duration each participant wore five different face masks. Our data indicate that, for two of three participants, a single stimulus assessment using a multi-element design is an effective way to assess preference for different types of face masks. This assessment was also helpful in determining appropriate, individualized treatment steps for increasing cooperation with wearing a face mask.

 
85.

A Meta-Analysis of Money Management Intervention on Students With Developmental Disability

Area: DDA; Domain: Theory
SUNGWOO KANG (Purdue University), Ben A Mason (Purdue University), Marie David (Purdue University)
Discussant: Mindy Christine Scheithauer (Marcus Autism Center)
Abstract:

Money management skill is essential to student with developmental disabilities that assist them to successfully transition to local community environment. This paper analyzes 20 published articles that report the results from research conducted on money management skill training for students with developmental disabilities that were published between 1997 and 2020. No studies that met inclusion criteria investigated or attempt to improve budgeting or financial planning skills. From this research synthesis, guidelines are offered for research and practice. Future research should consider the importance of meta skill in money management.

 
86.

A Preliminary Evaluation of the Performance-Based, Interview-Informed Synthesized Contingency Analysis

Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
TESS FRUCHTMAN (Queens College, City University of New York), Joshua Jessel (Queens College, City University of New York), Natasha Raghunauth-Zaman (Queens College), Aaron Leyman (Queens College)
Discussant: Mindy Christine Scheithauer (Marcus Autism Center)
Abstract:

Functional analyses are conducted to understand problem behavior and inform function-based treatments. The performance-based, interview-informed synthesized contingency analysis (IISCA) is a brief model that has recently been developed with the intent of improving practicality and acceptance of functional analysis procedures among clinicians. However, the efficacy of the performance-based IISCA for identifying environmental contributors to problem behavior has yet to be fully evaluated. We compared the relative efficacy of the performance-based IISCA with the full IISCA in a single-subject design with two participants who exhibited problem behavior. We began by conducting open-ended interviews with the caregivers to identify the unique contingency to be incorporated in the functional analysis process. The performance-based IISCA involved a single session in which the putative reinforcers were presented following problem behavior and removed following 30-s of calm behavior. A socially mediated function was implicated after five instances of problem behavior was observed each time a reinforcer was removed. The two participants then experienced the full IISCA that included a single test condition compared to a matched control with five, 3-min sessions conducted total. The results of both analyses corresponded and informed a subsequent function-based treatment that eliminated problem behavior and strengthened communicative responses.

 
87.

A Survey of Practitioners' Use of Stimulus Preference Assessments

Area: DDA; Domain: Service Delivery
BRIANNA MARY ZEY (University of Nebraska at Omaha), Jordan David Lill (University of Nebraska - Medical Center), Macy Collins (University of Nebraska at Omaha), Sara S. Kupzyk (University of Nebraska Omaha)
Discussant: Mindy Christine Scheithauer (Marcus Autism Center)
Abstract:

Stimulus preference assessments (SPA) are routinely used by behavior analysts to identify stimuli that are likely to function as reinforcers (Graff & Karsten, 2012). Although SPAs are routine, decision-making criteria on which SPA procedure is most effective within a specific context is limited. Lill and colleagues (in press) proposed an a priori decision-making tree, Stimulus Preference Assessment Decision-Making System (SPADS), to aid practitioners in selecting an appropriate SPA based on a summary of published, peer-reviewed research up to 2018. Decisions are derived from peer-reviewed research that includes stimulus dimensions, client characteristics, and outcome. We surveyed 24 BCBAs about their use of SPAs, how they select items to include, and which SPA they would select for specific scenarios based on the SPADS. Results showed that practitioners use SPA on a routine basis with clients. BCBAs most frequently reported using observations and structured interviews to determine which stimuli to include. Overall, respondents reported most confidence with use of Paired Choice and Multiple Stimulus without Replacement. Selection of the most appropriate and efficient SPA for each scenario did not consistently align with recommendations based on the SPADS. The data indicate that it is important to identify ways to encourage practitioners to make evidence-based decisions. Reference Graff, R. B., & Karsten, A. M. (2012). Assessing preferences of individuals with developmental disabilities: a survey of current practices. Behavior Analysis in Practice, 5, 37–48. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF03391822 Lill, J. D., Shriver, M. D., & Allen, K. D (in press). SPADS: Stimulus Preference Assessment Decision-Making System: A practical decision-making model for practitioners. Behavior Analysis in Practice.

 
Diversity submission 88.

Assessing the Efficacy of Telehealth Coaching of Behaviors Interventions and Assessment: A Review

Area: DDA; Domain: Theory
ARGNUE CHITIYO (Ball State University), Chaidamoyo Dzenga (Tennessee Technological University)
Discussant: Mindy Christine Scheithauer (Marcus Autism Center)
Abstract:

Since the beginning of the Corona Virus pandemic, access to behavioral healthcare services has become significantly different following the closure of most clinical facilities. Telehealth technologies have become an increasingly common strategy in accessing behavioral interventions services among families of children with disabilities. This study presents a review of interventions research on telehealth training in applied behavioral interventions. Twenty-eight studies meeting inclusion criteria were reviewed to assess the types of techniques taught, including behavioral assessments and interventions, procedures for administering the trainings, effects of the intervention on behavioral outcomes, and their social validity. Preliminary findings showed that many interventions were trained, including ABC data recording, functional analyses, functional communication training, activity schedules, picture exchange communication, and many others. Improvements in behaviors were observed for both caregivers and clients. Social validity assessments showed that telehealth training were cost efficient, convenient, and easy to access. Implications of the review for policy and future research are provided.

 
89.

Effectiveness of anApp-Based Cognitive Rehabilitation Program for Youths With Neurodevelopmental Disorders and Intellectual Disability

Area: DDA; Domain: Applied Research
KYONG-MEE CHUNG (Yonsei University), Narae Shin (Yonsei University)
Discussant: Mindy Christine Scheithauer (Marcus Autism Center)
Abstract:

One-on-one training based on ABA has been shown to be effective in cognitive rehabilitation in children with intellectual disabilities (ID). However, its high costs, extensive training hours as well as shortage of professionals limit the expansion of the one-on-one training method. Recently, various computerized training programs such as Cogmed, Cognifit, and Rehacom have been developed, yet their usage are limited for children with ID in terms of task difficulty and scope of training. In this study, an app-based cognitive rehabilitation training program combined with token economy, YESS, was developed and its effectiveness was evaluated. In study 1, 48 children with ID were assigned to either YESS or control group. YESS group completed 6 games per day while the control group did not receive any training for 5 months. Participants’ executive functions (EF) and their parents’ parental stress were assessed before and after the training. Results showed that YESS is effective for enhancing EF (cognitive flexibility and planning) of children with ID and decreasing parental stress. The issues found in the process of study 1, such as difficulty problems and monotonous design, were modified, and the effectiveness of the updated program is being reevaluated in study 2.

 
 

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