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.


49th Annual Convention; Denver, CO; 2023

Event Details

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Symposium #324
CE Offered: BACB
The Proof is in the Pudding: Treatment Integrity Considerations
Monday, May 29, 2023
9:00 AM–10:50 AM
Convention Center 405
Area: EDC/VRB; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Regina A. Carroll (University of Nebraska Medical Center Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Discussant: Samantha Bergmann (University of North Texas )
CE Instructor: Regina A. Carroll, Ph.D.
Abstract: The current symposium reviews research investigating treatment integrity in research and clinical practice, including the influence of treatment integrity errors on the efficacy and efficiency of interventions, the role of enhanced data sheets on treatment fidelity, and a review of the literature related to treatment integrity in verbal behavior research. First, Olivia Harvey will present a study investigating the effects of commission errors on behavior intervention plan outcomes for students. Second, Sharrukina Tamrazi will present a study comparing the effects of reinforcement treatment integrity errors of omission and commission during tact training conducted via telehealth. Third, Mary Halbur will present a study comparing an enhanced data sheet to a standard data sheet on treatment fidelity during tact training. Fourth, Elizabeth Preas will present a systematic review of The Analysis of Verbal Behavior to evaluate trends in treatment integrity reporting from 2007 to 2021. Finally, Samantha Bergmann will discuss interesting components of each study, and describe future areas of research on treatment integrity.
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): Treatment Fidelity, Treatment Integrity
Target Audience: Master's and doctoral level researchers, educators, or practitioners. Pre-requisite skills would include an understanding of treatment integrity, how it can be measured in practice and research, and how it can impact the efficacy of behavioral interventions.
Learning Objectives: (1) Discuss common treatment integrity errors of commission and omission (2) Describe how errors of commission and omission can impact behavioral outcomes (3) Utilize an enhanced datasheet to improve treatment fidelity (4) Describe themes in treatment integrity reporting in verbal behavior research
The Effects of Commission Errors on Behavior Intervention Plan Outcomes
OLIVIA HARVEY (West Virginia University), Claire C. St. Peter (West Virginia University)
Abstract: When implemented well (with fidelity), behavior intervention plans (BIP) result in improved behavioral outcomes. Teachers tend to implement BIPs with poor fidelity, but little is known about the prevalence or types of errors occurring during BIP implementation or the subsequent impacts these errors have on student outcomes. One type of error is a commission error, or implementing additional steps not specified in the BIP. The purpose of the present study is twofold. During Study 1, we identified the prevalence and types of errors that 3 teachers make when implementing BIPs. A frequent commission error was selected for each student-teacher dyad to be assessed in Study 2. During Study 2, we manipulated the identified error to determine its impacts on student outcomes. We compared rates of challenging behavior when the error is present or absent during implementation of the BIP by a behavior analyst, using a reversal design. Teachers engaged in frequent errors and at least one of these errors enhanced efficacy of the BIP.
Effects of Omission and Commission Errors During Tact Training
SHARRUKINA TAMRAZI (California State University, Stanislaus), Katie Wiskow (California State University Stanislaus)
Abstract: The purpose of the current study was to compare the effects of reinforcement treatment integrity errors of omission and errors of commission during tact training via telehealth with 3 children, 6 to 7 years of age, who were diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. We used an adapted alternating treatment design to evaluate skill acquisition of target stimuli across high integrity, commission errors, and omission errors conditions. The high integrity condition reached mastery criteria in fewer sessions compared to the integrity error conditions in 3 of 6 comparisons and the omission condition reached mastery criteria in fewer sessions than the commission condition in 5 of 6 comparisons.
A Review of Treatment Integrity and Related Variables in The Analysis of Verbal Behavior
ELIZABETH J. PREAS (Austin College), Mary Halbur (University of Nebraska Medical Center, Munroe-Meyer Institute), Regina A. Carroll (University of Nebraska Medical Center Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Abstract: Treatment integrity refers to the degree to which procedures for an assessment or intervention (i.e., independent variables) are implemented consistent with the prescribed protocols. Treatment integrity is an important factor in demonstrating internal validity of an experiment and clinical treatments. Previous reviews evaluating the inclusion of treatment integrity in published empirical articles demonstrated underreporting of treatment integrity procedures and measures within specific journals. We conducted a systematic review of The Analysis of Verbal Behavior (TAVB) to evaluate the trends in treatment integrity reporting from 2007 to 2021. Of the 253 published TAVB articles during the reporting period, 57% of the articles met inclusionary criteria for further analysis. Our initial analysis suggests a low and variable trend of treatment integrity reporting of empirical articles with approximately 34% of studies meeting criteria for high risk of treatment integrity errors. Further discussion of results and applied research implications will be included.
Effects of Enhanced and Standard Data Sheets on Treatment Fidelity and Data Collection
MARY HALBUR (University of Nebraska Medical Center, Munroe-Meyer Institute), Jessi Reidy (Marquette University), Tiffany Kodak (Marquette University), Landon Cowan (Marquette University)
Abstract: Specifically designed data sheets have been recommended to assist with the fidelity of implementation of treatment procedures. The present study extended previous research (e.g., Bottini et al., 2021; LeBlanc et al., 2020) by comparing an enhanced data sheet (i.e., the inclusion of randomized targets, prompts for treatment components of securing attending and reinforcement) to a standard data sheet (i.e., targets not pre-set, no prompts for treatment components) on the fidelity of tact training of features. Ten behavior technicians participated in each condition (n= 20). Participants first watched a brief instructional video explaining the teaching procedure and their assigned data sheet, followed by conducting a treatment session with a confederate serving as a child with autism spectrum disorder. The enhanced data sheet resulted in higher fidelity on multiple variables including randomizing of targets, data collection, and providing reinforcement. Future research and clinical implications will be discussed.



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