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.


48th Annual Convention; Boston, MA; 2022

Event Details

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Poster Session #516
CBM Monday Poster Session: Odd-Numbered Posters
Monday, May 30, 2022
1:00 PM–2:00 PM
Exhibit Level; Exhibit Hall A
Chair: Jeannie A. Golden (East Carolina University)
73. Biofeedback & Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation: The Impact Of Passive Versus Active Muscle Recruitment
Area: CBM; Domain: Basic Research
GABRIEL LUKE ARMSHAW (University of North Texas), Brennan Patrick Armshaw (University of North Texas), Manish Vaidya (University of North Texas)
Discussant: Jeannie A. Golden (East Carolina University)
Abstract: Approximately 50% of individuals who undergo Total Knee Arthroplasty surgery (TKA) fail to achieve a full functional recovery. Several factors such as severe muscle atrophy and inhibited proprioception contribute to the current gap in recovery. These neuromuscular deficits can be behaviorally conceptualized as resulting from a learning problem. Current physical therapy practices commonly utilize Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation (NMES) to passively activate quadricep muscles. This passive approach does not directly reteach the lost response but can strengthen the atrophied muscle. This study compares the passive NMES approach to an active biofeedback approach using the FlexDot, a surface electromyogram (sEMG) to shape the response among healthy college-aged students. We compare the passive and active approach within-subject, across knees, and across groups while controlling for condition order and leg dominance. Each participant receives both NMES and the shaping procedure. Each condition lasts five minutes and consists of 30 muscle contractions. Each contraction lasts 5 seconds and was followed by a 5-second rest. We compare a pre and post maximal voluntary isometric contraction (MVIC) tests to determine the effectiveness of each condition. Preliminary results indicate that the active approach may be a more effective method to quickly reteach and recruit voluntary muscle contraction.

The use of a behavioral contract to eliminate smoking

Area: CBM; Domain: Service Delivery
MONICA VANDBAKK (Norwegian Association for Behavior Analysis/Oslo Metropolitan University), Aina Hay-Hansson (Oslo Metropolitan University)
Discussant: Jeannie A. Golden (East Carolina University)

A behavioral contract is an agreement between two or more parties and is used to motivate the execution of desired appropriate activities and to-dos. Such agreements can be a clear and structured way to arrange appropriate conditions for behavioral changes. This study examined the extent to which the use of behavioral agreements contributed to the reduction in the number of consumed tobacco cigarettes per day for a participant already in treatment for serious drug addiction. In addition to cutting out drugs, he was motivated to quit tobacco smoke altogether. To gradually reduce smoke, a changing criterion design was used over six weeks. The participant registered the number of smokes per day in a token economy form. Through the economy system, the participant collected tokens and exchanged them in backup reinforcers and finally a bonus reward. The results showed a stable, downward trend with the immediate effect of the behavioral agreement. The participant eliminated his smoking consumption during the intervention phase. Ethical dilemmas and implications from the results are discussed, and also the study discusses whether quitting smoking should be included in substance abuse treatment. Keywords: Behavioral agreements, token economy, termination of smoking, changing criterion design, substance abuse treatment.

77. Alcohol, Suicidality, and Behavioral Economics: Exploratory Data Analysis of Individuals Seeking Treatment for Alcohol Consumption
Area: CBM; Domain: Applied Research
MARK JUSTIN RZESZUTEK (University of Kentucky), Mikhail Koffarnus (University of Kentucky College of Medicine)
Discussant: Jeannie A. Golden (East Carolina University)
Abstract: Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the US and the 2nd leading cause of death for young adults. Up to half of all suicide attempts involve alcohol intoxication, and heavy alcohol use is often correlated with suicidal thoughts and behaviors. Decision-making deficits have individually been associated with alcohol use and suicidality, but there has been minimal research on the intersection of these three areas. Screener data from participants recruited for alcohol treatment clinical trials were used in the exploratory data analysis. Alcohol use, monetary discounting, and alcohol demand were compared to reported history of suicide attempts, plans, and current suicidal ideation. Suicidality was positively related to measures of alcohol use and a trend for increased demand intensity for alcohol based on suicidality was identified. Discounting measures did not appear to be related to suicidality or alcohol use. Potential risk factors for suicidality were identified based on alcohol use measures, with emerging evidence for behavioral-economic indices of suicidality. Further research is needed to better understand the relationship between alcohol use, suicidality, and decision-making. This could lead to better identification of those at risk of suicide, as well as potential targets for suicide prevention.
79. Evaluation of the Healthy Information Thinking Control for Episodic Future Thinking in Individuals with Diabetes
Area: CBM; Domain: Basic Research
JEREMIAH MICHAEL BROWN (Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at Virginia Tech Carilion; Department of Human Nutrition, Foods, and Exercise, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University), Leonard Epstein (University at Buffalo Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences), Warren K. Bickel (Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at Virginia Tech Carilion; Department of Psychology, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University), Jeffrey S. Stein (Fralin Biomedical Research Institute)
Discussant: Jeannie A. Golden (East Carolina University)
Abstract: Episodic Future Thinking (EFT) reduces delay discounting and may have potential as a clinical tool to increase the likelihood of health-promoting behaviors; however, evaluations of EFT in clinical settings require control conditions that match for cue generation and engagement schedules, as well as participants’ expectations of improvement. The Healthy Information Thinking (HIT) control addresses these issues, but it is unclear how this approach translates to individuals with diabetes and obesity when utilizing diabetes-management specific health-information vignettes. To this end, we examined the impact of EFT, HIT, and a no-cue secondary control condition on delay discounting in 396 obese adults with type 2 diabetes recruited using Amazon Mechanical Turk. Participants completed a survey assessing eligibility, demographic characteristics, and were randomized to EFT, HIT, or no-cue control conditions. Following generation of seven EFT or HIT cues, participants assigned to EFT or HIT conditions completed a delay discounting task while imagining EFT or HIT cues; no cue participants completed the task without cues. Preliminary data of 23 participants suggest that the HIT control does not decrease delay discounting relative to EFT in this sample, further supporting its use as a clinical control.
81. Behaviorally Based Specific Approaches to Improve Interactions and Results of Parent/Teen Homework Assistance
Area: CBM; Domain: Service Delivery
EMILY COOK (Bishop McDevitt High School - Harrisburg, PA), Richard Cook (Applied Behavior Medicine Associates of Hershey)
Discussant: Jeannie A. Golden (East Carolina University)
Abstract: The experience of a parent helping their teenager with homework can be tremendously helpful and rewarding for both, but can also be fraught. While guidance abounds, the points included in such lists are often excellent concepts, but are lacking the details required for successful implementation to achieve the desired effects. Changes in overt behaviors are often facilitated by changes in component behaviors, including “private” behaviors of attitudes, opinions, and beliefs. It is worthwhile to consider specific influences of “context” as well as those of the role of parent child homework interactions within the parent child “learning history,” as these both influence the homework help setting, and can serve as vehicles to leverage improvements in such relationships. Important behavioral concepts to be addressed will include but not be limited to escape/avoidance prevention, successive approximations and behavioral momentum, remembering to continue to reinforce, and being mindful that reinforcers must be relevant and valued to the targeted individual. This presentation outlines behaviorally sound strategies for increasing the likelihood of meaningful impact of many worthwhile but behaviorally poorly defined homework help ideas, and includes specific suggestions in antecedents, topography, and consequences for commonly encountered problems. The relevance of the behavioral suggestions to the targeted individuals offered is enhanced by the high school student and parent perspectives of the authors.



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