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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Paper Session #92
CANCELLED: Intervention Recommendations: Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) for Autism
Saturday, May 27, 2023
5:00 PM–5:25 PM
Convention Center Mile High Ballroom 4C/D
Area: AUT

Individuals diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) commonly experience difficulties maintaining social gaze during interactions. Although behavioral interventions targeted to promote social gaze in ASD are evident in the literature, to our knowledge, no review of the literature has been conducted on this topic. We reviewed and summarized studies designed to promote social gaze in individuals diagnosed with ASD and other developmental disabilities published in English between 1977 and January 2022 using PsychINFO and PubMed databases. A total of 41 studies met the inclusion criteria describing interventions conducted with 608 individuals. A variety of intervention strategies were employed including discrete trial instruction, prompting, modeling, and imitation. Most studies employed single-case research designs and reported successful outcomes. An increasing number of studies utilized technology-based procedures including computer application gameplay, gaze-contingent eye tracking devices and humanoid robots. The present review indicates that behavioral interventions can be successfully employed to promote social gaze in individuals with ASD and other developmental disabilities. However, future research is needed to establish the generalization, maintenance, and social validity of these interventions. There are also important ethical issues to be addressed given the increasing divide between treatment advocates and proponents of the neurodiversity movement, which will be discussed.


Behavior analysts have long relied on hours of treatment as the exclusive indicator of treatment intensity. Unfortunately hours of treatment is a crude metric for estimating intensity and cannot be easily manipulated to determine client needs. A more sensitive metric, opportunities to respond, is a superior way to measure treatment intensity and can be measured similar to dose, dose frequency, treatment duration, and overall intensity. These metrics may aid treatment decisions and insurance approvals. This session describes intensity and provides practical guidance to professional behavior analysts interested in strategic measurement of treatment intensity.




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