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.

10th International Conference; Stockholm, Sweden; 2019

Program by Day for Monday, September 30, 2019


 

Symposium #65
CE Offered: BACB
Measuring the Effects of Psychotropic Medication on Behavioral Outcomes
Monday, September 30, 2019
8:00 AM–8:50 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 6, A3/A4
Area: DDA/BPN; Domain: Translational
Chair: Jennifer R. Zarcone (The May Institute)
CE Instructor: Jennifer R. Zarcone, Ph.D.
Abstract:

This symposium will cover several aspects of measuring behavioral outcomes when individuals have been prescribed psychotropic medication. While the focus is on individuals with developmental disabilities, this information could be used with a wide range of individuals with a variety of diagnoses. The presentations will focus on methods for collecting data via several different analog (e.g., functional analysis) and assessment procedures that can inform decision making about whether the psychotropic medication is having the intended effect. The goal is to provide practitioners with assessments that they are able to implement in a variety of settings.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Target Audience:

graduate students, faculty, clinical providers, educators, administrators, researchers

 
The Impact of Medication Changes on Functional Analysis Outcomes
(Applied Research)
LYNN G. BOWMAN (Kennedy Krieger Institute and Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine)
Abstract: Numerous studies have demonstrated drug specific effects on functional analysis (FA) outcomes (i.e., Crosland et al 2003; Zarcone et al 2004); however, few descriptive studies have examined how medication changes impact the clarity (i.e., differentiation) or results (i.e., masked functions) of subsequent FAs conducted with the same participant. The purpose of this study was to examine the extent to which psychotropic medication changes altered FA outcomes on an inpatient unit. A review of electronic medical charts was conducted between the years 1995-2014. Twelve cases had sufficient evidence (i.e., multiple FAs, detailed medication changes) for further review. Participants were aged 7 to 21 years and were diagnosed with IDD. Attending psychiatrists directed medication changes with the guidance of the senior behavior analyst, and therapists who collected data during the FAs remained blind to medication changes. To determine differentiation, criteria were established similar to Hagopian et al. (1997), and a quotient score was generated. In half of the cases, alterations to medication (dosage and/or type) led to different conclusions, while the other half did not. In 10 of the 12 cases quotient scores were improved following medication changes. Implications for practicing clinicians will be offered.
 

Polypharmacy and Problem Behavior: An Evaluation of Behavior When Medication Regimens are Altered

(Applied Research)
MARIA G. VALDOVINOS (Drake University)
Abstract:

Psychotropic medications are commonly prescribed in a polypharmacy fashion to adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities who engage in problem behavior to treat and reduce behavior; however, the impact these medications (and subsequent changes in medication) have on the behavior they are intended to treat are not well understood. A study was conducted to evaluate the extent to which changes in psychotropic medication regimens altered functional relations between problem behavior and the environment for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. This presentation will provide data for two of the participants whose behaviors (i.e., aggression, self-injurious behavior, stereotypy, and presence of adverse side effects) were monitored over several months (7 and 23 month) via direct observation and functional analyses. The results of this study revealed that changes in medication were associated with changes in assessment results. These findings suggest continued surveillance of behavior function when using psychotropic medication to address problem behavior (Funding: NICHD grant #: 1R15HD072497-01).

 
Behavioral Indicators to Measure the Impact of Psychotropic Medication
(Applied Research)
JENNIFER R. ZARCONE (The May Institute), Cara L. Phillips (The May Institute)
Abstract: This presentation will focus on two innovative analog assessments that we developed to evaluate the behavioral effects of medication for individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities. These analogs were developed to measure specific behavioral effects that go beyond measures of frequency of problem behavior. In the first case, we will describe a behavioral analog that we developed to measure the impact of two attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) medications on out of seat and problem behavior. The trial showed that the initial medication (atomoxetine) was more effective than methylphenidate on out of seat behavior but had no significant impact on problem behavior. In the second case, we measured the effects of two antipsychotic medications on reinforcement choice in a self-control analog. Results showed that neither medication affected the individual’s choice or ability to engage in self-control. These data indicate that we may be able to use analog conditions to determine how medications are affecting problem behavior and other related behavior within relevant contexts. These analogs assessments can be useful in clinical and educational settings.
 
 
Panel #66
CE Offered: BACB
Retaining Qualified Behavior Interventionists: Assessing Variables and Addressing Barriers
Monday, September 30, 2019
8:00 AM–8:50 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C3
Area: OBM/AUT; Domain: Translational
CE Instructor: Meghan Herron, M.S.
Chair: Paula Pompa-Craven (Easterseals Southern California)
RICK GUTIERREZ (Easterseals Southern California)
MEGHAN HERRON (Easterseals Southern California)
ALYSSA KAVNER (Easterseals Southern California)
Abstract:

Staff turnover negatively affects the quality of interventions that clinicians provide to individuals diagnosed with autism. The turnover rate for Behavior Interventionists providing applied behavior analysis (ABA) services to individuals with autism is exceptionally high, and a significant percentage are voluntary resignations. A frontline Behavior Interventionist’s job duties are typically characterized by variables that have been correlated with high turnover rates in other industries. One such variable is consistency of work. This panel will present retention rates across a representative sample of US clinics that provide behavioral interventions to individuals with autism. The presenters will provide results of a study that evaluated the role of consistency of work as represented by parent and staff session cancellations on staff turnover. Finally, strategies in the areas of work/pay stability, leadership, and new-hire turnover that have helped increase retention will be presented. Based on the retention status within the organization, next steps will be discussed.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Target Audience:

Board Certified Behavior Analysts, service providers, and academic faculty.

Learning Objectives: 1. Attendees will learn demographics and characteristics of Behavior Interventionists that correlate to high turnover rates in applied behavior analysis services for individuals with autism. 2. Attendees will learn the relationship between consistency of work, as defined by session appointment cancellations, and retention of Behavior Interventionists providing ABA services. 3. Attendees will learn strategies to reduce turnover rates for staff members providing ABA services.
Keyword(s): ABA Staff, Behavior Interventionists, Retention, Staff Turnover
 
 
Symposium #67
CE Offered: BACB
Using Behavior Analysis to Increase Complex Thinking Behavior
Monday, September 30, 2019
8:00 AM–8:50 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C1
Area: TBA/DEV; Domain: Translational
Chair: Christine Hoffner Barthold (George Mason University)
Discussant: Erik Arntzen (Oslo and Akershus University College)
CE Instructor: Darlene E. Crone-Todd, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Critical, or higher-order thinking, is the hallmark of higher education. It is important to go beyond training in education, and develop a more complex behavioral repertoire. In this symposium, the presenters will be discussing their work on the use of interteaching, and combining interteaching with equivalence based instruction (EBI). It will be argued that either of these approaches alone produce better teaching outcomes, and that some topics lend themselves to additional methods such as using EBI to teach more complex topics. These approaches are efficient, and can be modified for use in face-to-face, and online, courses. Finally, using either or both in combination with programmed instruction will be discussed.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): complex repertoire, equivalence-based instruction, interteaching, programmed instruction
Target Audience:

Any student, professor, or individuals who train professionals.

Learning Objectives: * Define interteaching * Define equivalence-based instruction * State at least two dependent variables that can be used to operationally define (behaviorally) complex thinking
 

The Effects of Instructor Presence During Synchronous Interteaching Discussions in an Online Behavior Analysis Course

(Applied Research)
CHRISTINE HOFFNER BARTHOLD (George Mason University)
Abstract:

Interteaching is an active learning strategy based upon Personalized System of Instruction. Pairs or groups discuss a series of questions based upon the readings and other course materials. While there is a rich body of literature supporting interteaching, only two articles are available that look at the implementation of interteaching in an online environment. Given that online courses are often asynchronous, many discussions occur without the instructor present to provide feedback. The current study will examine whether the presence of an instructor during online synchronous meetings of small groups affects the participation and quality of discussion in these groups. Two 8-week online courses were examined. For 4/8 synchronous sessions scheduled, the instructor will log in and provide approximately 20 minutes of guidance and feedback to the students. Percentage of intervals on task, as defined as discussing the interteaching assignment or related topics (i.e., excluding other assignments, personal discussion, instructor requirements, or general course information) will be measured for each student.

 
Interteaching, Equivalence-Based Instruction, and Outcomes
(Applied Research)
DARLENE E. CRONE-TODD (Salem State University), Ryan Loring (Salem State University)
Abstract: Behavior analysis provides several systematic procedures for teaching in all levels of education. Keller's Personalized System of Instruction has given rise to the use of Interteaching, which may or may not incorporate mastery-based learning. However, both interteaching and equivalence-based instruction (EBI) can be used to teach, reinforce, and test for generalization in terms of conceptual behavior. This is especially true when it comes to textual behavior, as evidenced by the percentage of students who undermatch, match, or overmatch the level of complexity identified in exam questions. In this talk, data will be presented from an ongoing program of research that includes comparisons within interteaching, teaching specific concepts using EBI, and how teachers, professors, and professionals might use a combination of both methods to increase complex thinking behavior on the part of those who they teach and/or train.
 
 
Paper Session #68
Single Case Design
Monday, September 30, 2019
8:00 AM–8:50 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C2
Chair: Kimberly Vannest (Texas A & M University)
 

Learning Single-Case by Doing Single-Case: 150 Experiments by Clinical Master Students

Area: TBA
Domain: Applied Research
LARS KLINTWALL (Stockholm University), Jonas Ramnero (Stockholm University)
 
Abstract:

As part of the masters program in clinical psychology, students at Stockholm University are required to design and conduct a Single-Case Experimental Design (SCED). The behaviors chosen by students range from verbal behaviors investigated using online chats, to toddler morning routines. Interventions range from chemical (e.g. caffeine) to positive reinforcement (e.g. token systems). Given the large number of studies conducted, some tentative conclusions can be drawn about which behaviors and interventions tend to be the most effective, and what instructions and course requirements that are needed to enable students to conduct studies with both social validity and scientific rigor. Our results show that students can design and conduct SCEDs. The majority of the studies achieve substantial effects on target behaviors, and it is likely that that this experience of a successful manipulation of a clinically relevant behavior is a powerful reinforcer, thus making this assignment an effective introduction to behavior analysis.

 
The Role of Visual Analysis in the Meta-Analysis of Single Case Designs
Area: EDC
Domain: Theory
KIMBERLY VANNEST (Texas A & M University)
 
Abstract: Visual analysis is widely touted as a “gold-standard” for the analysis of individual single case research, yet many syntheses indicate reliability is poor, inconsistent, and heavily dependent on contextual clues. The role (if any) of visual analysis in meta-analysis is widely overlooked. This study reviews relevant literature on the use of visual analysis in meta-analytic work across fields of education, rehabilitation, and medicine to summarize the current state of the art standards. The paper then proceeds to a). illustrate potential methods for the inclusion of visual analysis, b) empirically demonstrate benefits and limitations of VA in meta-analytic work, and c) discuss the exclusion of visual analysis from current practices of meta-analysis and implications for scientific inquiry.
 
 
 
Paper Session #69
Methods for Teaching Soft and Social Skills to Individuals With Autism Spectrum Disorder
Monday, September 30, 2019
8:00 AM–9:20 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C4
Area: AUT
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Chair: Laci Watkins (University of Alabama)
 

CANCELED: Social Skills Training For Beginning Learners With Autism

Domain: Service Delivery
DAISY WANG (Social Collaborative)
 
Abstract:

In addition to core deficits of autism in the communication, behavioral, social domains, learners with low-functioning autism likely experience a myriad of additional challenges such as mobility and other sensory issues. These greatly impact their meaningful participation in daily activities in the realms of personal, family, and community. There is a stark contrast in available information in current literature on teaching basic social skills to individuals in this population, as compared to the population with high-functioning autism. Basic social skills is still, however, paramount to an individual’s access to and participation in activities in the greater community. The current study utilizes a multiple baseline design to explore teaching beginning social skills to children with low-functioning autism and seeks to identify core elements that contribute to successful acquisition of beginning social skills. Social validity is also collected and discussed.

 
Intervention Package to Increase Interaction Between Siblings With and Without Autism: A Replication and Extension
Domain: Applied Research
LACI WATKINS (University of Alabama; University of Alabama Autism Cluster), Mark O'Reilly (The University of Texas at Austin), Theodore Tomeny (University of Alabama; University of Alabama Autism Cluster), Katie Gurecki Sillis (Cultivate Behavioral Health & Education; The University of Texas at Austin), Claudia Zamora (The University of Texas at Austin)
 
Abstract: Research suggests that including typically developing siblings in interventions for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) may be particularly advantageous. Despite support for sibling involvement, studies have reported limited evidence of generalizability of results, predominantly involved only participants with mild symptoms of ASD, and have not reported outcomes for the typically developing sibling as well as the child with ASD. The purpose of this series of experiments was to address these gaps in the literature by replicating and extending an intervention package to improve social interaction consisting of interest-based play activities, adult instruction and modeling, and response to child questions. A reversal design across two sibling dyads was used to demonstrate the effects of the intervention on the social interaction behaviors of the child with ASD and typically developing sibling. Social initiations and responses increased for both sibling dyads, and results generalized across setting. In addition, multiple measures indicated a high level of social validity. Recommendations for practitioners and caregivers working with children with ASD and potential areas of future research are discussed.
 

Bringing Applied Behavior Analysis to China: A Comprehensive Model for Treating Children With Autism

Domain: Service Delivery
EITAN ELDAR (Kibbutzim College, Israel)
 
Abstract:

A comprehensive program has been designed and implemented in Beijing since 2007. The program was offered by an organization supportive of children with Autism arriving from all over China. The clinical model is based on ABA principles and procedures. Students stay at the center with a parent for a minimal period of 3 months, during which they are provided with individual and social skill training. Parents take part in the process and receive guidance for future implementation. The individual curriculum is modular and tailored to the characteristics of the student and to the capability of the parents. The program is comprised of three core lessons followed by flexible integrative experiences that are continuously modified according to the student's progress. The model includes the following core components: Individual basic training, small group teaching and motor learning through which communication skills are promoted. Additional elective courses offered: ADL training, music, art, inclusion preparation for advanced students, parents training and more. This presentation will portray the clinical model with examples showing its various components and conclusions deriving from the author's involvement in its implementation for five years.

 
 
 
Invited Symposium #70
CE Offered: BACB
Culturo-Behavioral Science: Philosophical, Structural, and Application Considerations
Monday, September 30, 2019
8:00 AM–9:50 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 4, A1
Area: CSS; Domain: Theory
Chair: Jenna Mrljak (Association for Behavior Analysis International)
Discussant: Jonathan Krispin (Valdosta State University)
CE Instructor: Jenna Mrljak, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Many have been inspired by B. F. Skinner’s vision of how the science of behavior can improve culture. However, the understanding of “culture” has different meanings within our scientific community, challenging our conceptual framework and interpretation of applied work. This symposium explores ontological and epistemological aspects of “cultural analysis” from a behavioral perspective; discusses “culture” as a complex adaptive system, with many integrated moving parts; and illustrates how culturo-behavioral analysis can complement the work of Nobel-prize winner Elinor Ostrom in the management of common pool resources.

Instruction Level: Basic
Target Audience:

Board certified behavior analysts; licensed psychologists; graduate students.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, attendees will be able to: (1) identify at least two approaches behavior analysts have taken in addressing relations of behavioral and cultural phenomena; (2) distinguish the identifying characteristics of behavioral and cultural phenomena; (3) formulate their own answer to the question regarding how to view culturo-behavioral science; (4) identify the functional relation between a culture-behavioral unit and its environment, (5) discuss the impact of structural phenomena; (6) distinguish between the deliberately designed and the evolving systems from an applied perspective; (7) identify the differences between institutional and culturo-behavioral analysis.
 
Some Philosophical Questions for Culturo-Behavioral Science
SIGRID GLENN (University of North Texas)
Abstract: Science and philosophy are inextricably linked in intellectual history. One might argue that science has increasingly assumed the philosophical tasks of addressing ontological and epistemological questions. Indeed, B. F. Skinner began his career by considering the ontology of behavior (Skinner, 1935) and he insisted throughout that the science of behavior offered a scientific epistemology (Skinner, 1945; 1974). In this paper, I will consider several philosophy of science questions pertaining to investigation of the phenomena of behavior and culture. How are behavioral and cultural phenomena related in nature? What approaches have behavior analysts taken in addressing those relations? Are any of the currently proposed unifying frameworks likely to be useful in an integrative approach? Is culturo-behavioral science an emerging discipline, an amalgamation of previously established disciplines, or simply behavior analysis in the context of cultural phenomena?

Sigrid Glenn is Regents Professor Emeritus at the University of North Texas.  She was the founding chair of UNT’s Department of Behavior Analysis and the founder and former director of UNT’s Behavior Analysis Online program. Her published research includes work in conceptual, experimental and applied areas; current interests are primarily conceptual and philosophical, especially as these pertain to culturo-behavioral systems. Dr. Glenn is past president of ABAI and a founding fellow of the Association. She was the 2015 recipient of the Award for Distinguished Service to Behavior Analysis. Other awards include TxABA Award for Career Contributions to Behavior Analysis in Texas; CalABA’s Award for Outstanding Contributions to Behavior Analysis; the Michael Hemingway Award for Advancement of Behavior Analysis; the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies Ellen P. Reese Award in Recognition for Significant Contributions to Communication of Behavioral Concepts; and--most important to her--the ABAI 2008 Student Committee Award for Outstanding Mentorship of students.

 
Structure Matters
INGUNN SANDAKER (Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences)
Abstract: Culture can be defined as a complex social system with observable characteristics that are evolving and relatively stable over time, even as members of the culture are replaced. This implies that what are replicated are not individuals, but relatively stable contingencies of reinforcement. A system, also a social system, is maintained by its functional relation to its environment. This may be for good or bad. As for behaviors in general, selection is blind. The within-systems processes (interlocking behavioral contingencies: IBCs) and structures maintain the functional relation to the system’s environment, even though individual members will be replaced. The concept of metacontingencies offers a behavioral approach to cultural systems by describing the processes (IBCs) and the functional relation to the environment (aggregate product and receiving system) while network analysis may offer a means to analyze how contingencies of reinforcement are nested structurally. All three basic properties of a system (function, processes, and structure) will guide us when it comes to understanding and influencing behaviors in cultural units.
Dr. Ingunn Sandaker is a professor and program director of the Master and Research Program Learning in Complex Systems at Oslo and Akershus University College. She also initiated the development of the first Ph.D. program in behavior analysis in Norway. She has been the program director since it was established in 2010. She received her Ph.D. in 1997 at the University of Oslo with a grant from the Foundation for Research in Business and Society at the Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration. Her thesis was a study on the systemic approach to major changes in two large companies; one pharmaceutical company and one gas and petroleum company. During preparations for the Olympic games in Sydney, Australia, and Nagano, Japan, she was head of evaluation of a program aiming at extending female participation in management and coaching and assisting the Norwegian Olympic Committee’s preparations for the games. For a number of years, Dr. Sandaker worked as an adviser on management training and performance in STATOIL and Phillips Petroleum Co. in Norway. She also was project manager for Railo International who in cooperation with the Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration ran a project preparing the electricity supply system in Norway for marked deregulations. Serving as a consultant on top level management programs in Norwegian energy companies, her interest has been focused on performance management within a systems framework. Trying to combine the approaches from micro-level behavior analysis with the perspective of learning in complex systems, and cultural phenomena, she is interested in integrating complementary scientific positions with the behavior analytic conceptual framework.
 
Integrating Institutional and Culturo-Behavioral Analyses to the Management of Common Pool Resources
MARIA MALOTT (Association for Behavior Analysis International)
Abstract: The “tragedy of the commons” describes a depletion of resources that have been appropriated by a group of people. Previous scholars concluded that the only ways to avoid depletion of resources were private ownership or external governmental control. In Ostrom’s institutional analysis, she identified a third solution to the tragedy of the commons. She analyzed multiple small communities lasting hundreds, even thousands, of years in which the appropriators themselves managed their common pool of resources without external government control or privatization. She also identified eight design principles that characterize successful management of shared resources. Later, she developed additional principles analyzing more complex social systems. We bring behavioral and cultural selection perspectives to complement her work. We analyze appropriators’ management of common pool resources in terms of metacontingencies and macrocontingencies operating within larger external systems. We conclude with a description of complementary principles to guide management of shared resources.
After completing undergraduate work at Universidad Católica Andrés Bello in Venezuela, Maria E. Malott immediately began what can only be termed a distinguished career in large scale performance management. After 2 years as performance systems analyst for the Central Office of Personnel in Venezuela, she entered the graduate program in applied behavior analysis at Western Michigan University, obtaining her Ph.D. in 1987. In 1989 she was hired as production manager at Ronningen Research & Development and within 2 years was vice-president of manufacturing for that company. In 1993, she began a consulting career, and has consulted in the areas of advertising, restaurants, retail, manufacturing, hotels, banking, government, and other institutions. Her clients have included General Motors Corporation; Meijer, Inc.; Kellogg's; Pharmacia & Upjohn; the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration; and the Cancer Prevention Research Institute at the University of Arizona. In all of this work, Dr. Malott combines systems analysis with the analysis of individual behavior within systems and, in the process, has taught dozens of corporate executives to appreciate the power of behavioral principles.    Dr. Malott has been a visiting scholar at 32 universities in 15 different countries and has served as an affiliated faculty member at five universities. She has served on four editorial boards and is the author of a book on organizational change, published in Spanish and in English, and co-author of 2nd, 3rd, and 4th editions of one of the most widely used and often-translated textbooks in behavior analysis, Elementary Principles of Behavior. Dr. Malott was the recipient of the 2003 Award for International Dissemination of Behavior Analysis and the 2012 Award for Distinguished Service to Behavior Analysis from the Society for the Advancement of Behavior Analysis, as well as the 2004 Award for Outstanding Achievement in Organizational Behavior Management. In 1993, she agreed to serve as part-time executive director of the Association for Behavior Analysis and is now its CEO. Within a few short years, the association rose from near-bankruptcy to become a financially stable scientific and professional organization. Her organizational behavior management skills have been applied to every aspect of the operation of ABAI, which serves more than 6,000 members and is the parent organization of more than 80 affiliated chapters.
 
 
Symposium #71
CE Offered: BACB/QABA/NASP
Reinforcement in Nonhuman Animal Social Behaivor
Monday, September 30, 2019
8:00 AM–9:50 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, Meeting Room 24/25
Area: EAB/CSS; Domain: Basic Research
Chair: Kennon Andy Lattal (West Virginia University)
Discussant: Phil Reed (Swansea University)
CE Instructor: Phil Reed, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Although the operation of social reinforcement is widely cited as an important variable in social interactions, there is relatively little basic research on its controlling variables. One way of isolating these variables is with nonhuman animals under controlled laboratory conditions. The papers invited for this symposium are examples of doing just that. Ackerman examines social contingencies that might determine the sharing of a single source of reinforcement. Hackenberg and colleagues consider social reinforcement in an economic context and compare its effects to those of food reinforcement. Okouchi and his colleagues addresses the problem of mutual reinforcement and some of the factors that determine whether or not it is a viable concept when examined experimentally. Saeki and his colleagues examine the effects of sharing reinforcement sources or not on choice behavior. The studies in this symposium also illustrate the multidimensional nature of social reinforcement and suggest the importance of developing clear definitions when invoking it in discussions of human behavior. (159 words)

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Target Audience:

This symposium is suitable for a wide range of audiences, from beginning practitioners to seasoned ones.

Learning Objectives: 1. Develop insights as to how behavior analysts might account for interactions between two people. 2. Develop a better understanding of how social relations might be studied using behavior-analytic methods and concepts. 3. Learn about the current status of research on social behavior in behavior analysis.
 

You Raise My Hopper, I’ll Raise Yours: Training Cooperation Between Pigeons

AMANDA ACKERMAN (West Virginia University), Kennon Andy Lattal (West Virginia University)
Abstract:

Cooperation requires that the reinforcers for each participant be equitable and that they depend on the other’s behavior. In this study, cooperation between two pigeons was trained in a systematic replication of an earlier study using rats and electric shock avoidance. Standing on a platform was reinforced with food from a hopper 30 cm away. After standing occurred consistently, two stimulus conditions were added such that in the presence of one hopper approach was reinforced and in the presence of the other standing on the platform was reinforced. The functions of these stimuli was reversed for the two pigeons. That is, the light that was the S+ for hopper approach for Pigeon A was the S+ for standing on the platform for Pigeon B. When behavior was under stimulus control, the pigeons were placed together in the study space. Over sessions, the lights were gradually removed and stimulus control was transferred to the co-actor’s behavior. Thus, the terminal performance was two interlocking response chains: as one pigeon approached the hopper the other approached the platform. After one pigeon ate for a time-limited period, the two switched positions. The results are discussed as social contingencies in interlocking chained schedules.

 
Behavioral Economics of Food and Social Reinforcement
TIMOTHY D. HACKENBERG (Reed College), Cyrus Fletcher Kirkman (Reed College), Haoran Wan (Reed College), Carol Franceschini (Reed College)
Abstract: Prior research has shown that responding can be maintained under concurrent food and social reinforcement in rats, but little is known about interactions between these reinforcers. In the present study, we approached the problem from a behavioral economic perspective, using demand-curve methods to analyze interactions between food and social reinforcement. Four rats were given repeated choices between food and 10-s of social access to a familiar rat on concurrent schedules. Social access was arranged by lifting a door to a restraint, within which the partner rat was held. In Phase 1, the price of social access was held constant at fixed ratio (FR) 1 across all conditions, while the price of food was systematically increased from FR 1 to FR 64. In Phase 2, the price of food was held constant at FR 1 across conditions, while the price of social access was systematically increased from FR 1 to FR 64. Production of both food and social reinforcers decreased with increases in their own price (own-price elasticity), and increased with increases in the price of the other reinforcer (cross-price elasticity), suggesting a substitutable relationship. The methods show promise as a way to quantify interactions between qualitatively different reinforcers.
 
Does Mutual Reinforcement Function as Reinforcement?
HIROTO OKOUCHI (Osaka Kyoiku University), Wataru Takafuji (Osaka Kyoiku University), Yuto Sogawa (Osaka Kyoiku University)
Abstract: Despite ubiquity by casual observation, a contingency under which a response by an individual yields a reinforcer delivered to another person, and vice versa, has received relatively little empirical attention. The present experiments examined whether this contingency, mutual reinforcement, increases response frequency and whether it maintains responding. Following hopper training, two pairs of pigeons were exposed a schedule of mutual reinforcement; a peck of the key by one pigeon permitted another pigeon to access to food, and vice versa (Experiment 1). The results did not provide any evidence that mutual reinforcement increases response frequency. In Experiment 2, a standard schedule of fixed-ratio (FR) 1 was followed by the schedule of mutual reinforcement for the pairs of pigeons. Although rates of responses under the mutual reinforcement were lower than those under the FR 1 for all pigeons but the rates were higher than those under a schedule of variable-time for three of four pigeons, suggesting that the mutual reinforcement maintained responding. With some limitations, the present results demonstrate that mutual reinforcement functioned as reinforcement.
 

Pigeons' Choice Between Shared and Unshared Feeding Sites in Game Situations

DAISUKE SAEKI (Osaka City University), Shoko Kitano (Osaka City University), Tetsuo Yamaguchi (Toho University), Masato Ito (Osaka City University)
Abstract:

Many studies on cooperation in nonhuman animals have shown that they do not increase cooperative choices and fail to maximize rewards in the prisoner’s dilemma game. Some studies reported that pigeons did not show preference for cooperation even when the other player adopted the tit-for-tat (TFT) strategy, where choosing cooperation leads to maximization of the reward. The present study examined pigeons’ cooperative choices in game situations that represented a more natural setting than in the previous studies. Seventeen pigeons were used as subjects. In the experiment, each pigeon walked to choose between the “shared” and “unshared” feeding sites where food pellets determined by the game structure conditions (the prisoner’s dilemma game or chicken game) were presented. The other player was a computer using the TFT or random (RND) strategy; however, other pigeon could be seen at the “shared” feeding site in the “stooge” condition. The results show that choice proportion for the “shared” feeding site (cooperation) was significantly higher in the “stooge” than in the “no-stooge” condition, and higher in the TFT than in the RND condition (Figure 1). These results suggest that pigeons can act more cooperatively in nature than in the laboratory.

 
 
Symposium #72
CE Offered: BACB
Considerations for Maximizing Skill Acquisition With Individuals With Autism Spectrum Disorder
Monday, September 30, 2019
9:00 AM–9:50 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 6, A2
Area: AUT/DDA; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Richard B. Graff (May Institute; Western New England University)
CE Instructor: Richard B. Graff, Ph.D.
Abstract:

There are several factors that clinicians should consider when designing skill acquisition programs for individuals with autism, such as identifying and arranging reinforcers effectively, and identifying effective prompting strategies. In this symposium, we will review three studies that illustrate these concepts. In Study 1, preference for and the reinforcer efficacy of social stimuli was assessed using a video-based preference assessment and subsequent reinforcer assessments. The video-based preference assessment results were predictive of the reinforcer assessment results for two individuals with autism, thus providing a valuable technology to identify social reinforcers to be used in programming. In Study 2, six individuals with developmental disabilities were taught simple discriminations; reinforcers were delivered for correct responses under satiation and deprivation conditions. Five of 6 participants acquired skills faster when pre-session access to reinforcers was withheld. In Study 3, instructional assessments were conducted with three individuals with autism spectrum disorder to identify the most efficient prompt type and prompt-fading procedure for teaching auditory-visual conditional discriminations. The results demonstrated learner-specific outcomes for the prompt type assessment while the least-to-most prompt fading procedure was most efficient for all participants. Taken together, these studies illustrate factors that clinicians should consider when implementing skill acquisition programs.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): motivating operations, preference assessments, prompting, skill acquisition
Target Audience:

Practitioners and clinicians who are responsible for developing and implementing skill acquisition programs for individuals with autism spectrum disorders and developmental and intellectual disabilities.

Learning Objectives: 1. Participants will be able to describe how to implement video-based preference assessments to identify potential social reinforcers. 2. Participants will be able to describe how pre-session access to reinforcers can infuence acquisition rate. 3. Participants will be able to describe how to implement assessments to identify effective prompting strategies for individuals with autism spectrum disorders.
 

Assessment of Preference and Reinforcing Value of Social Interactions for Individuals With Developmental Disabilities

LAURA L. GROW (Garden Academy), Lynn Service (University of British Columbia), Taylor Custer (University of Houston Clear Lake)
Abstract:

Pictorial depictions of social stimuli are most common for preference assessments of social interactions (Kelly, Roscoe, Hanley, & Schlichenmeyer, 2014; Lang et al., 2014). However, social stimuli are dynamic and videos may better depict the salient features of social stimuli (Synder, Higbee, & Dayton, 2012). The purpose of the study was to assess the preference and reinforcing value of social stimuli using a video-based preference assessment and subsequent reinforcer assessment. Two children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder between 3- and 5-years old participated in the study. The study was conducted in three phases. First, the experimenter interviewed caregivers to identify a list of preferred social interactions. Next, the experimenter evaluated the top six ranked social stimuli using a video-based, paired-choice preference assessment. Finally, the experimenter evaluated the reinforcing quality of high- and low-preference social stimuli using a concurrent operants, progressive-ratio reinforcer assessment. The experimenter collected reliability and procedural integrity data for at least 33% of sessions and met or exceeded 95%. The video-based preference assessment results were predictive of the reinforcer assessment results. The results will be discussed in terms of future research directions and clinical practice.

 
Effects of Motivating Operation Manipulations on Skill Acquisition
RICHARD B. GRAFF (May Institute; Western New England University), Rebecca Arsenault (New England Center for Children), Kelly Trucksess (New England Center for Children), Leonie Robinson (University of Ulster)
Abstract: Previous research has demonstrated that satiation and deprivation can influence preference rankings and response rates, but little research has evaluated the effects of motivating operation manipulations on the rate of skill acquisition. Six participants with autism participated in this study. First, preference assessments were conducted to identify a high-preference edible item for each participant. Second, reinforcer assessments were conducted to confirm that the high-preference items functioned as reinforcer for simple maintenance tasks. Finally, acquisition rate was assessed using simple discrimination tasks. On each trial participants were presented with 3 arbitrary stimuli, one of which was designated as S+. No prompting was used, and participants were given the reinforcer identified in Phase 2 for correct responses; no reinforcement was provided for incorrect responses. Simple discrimination sessions were conducted under satiation and deprivation conditions. In the satiation condition, participants were given 5 min of access to the reinforcer immediately prior to teaching sessions. In the deprivation condition, participants did not have access to the reinforcer for 24 hr prior to teaching sessions. Five of 6 participants learned simple discriminations faster under deprivation conditions when compared to satiation conditions. Interobserver agreement was above 95% in all phases for all participants.
 

Assessment to Identify Learner-Specific Prompt and Prompt-Fading Procedures for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder

LAUREN K. SCHNELL (Hunter College), Jason C. Vladescu (Caldwell University), April N. Kisamore (Hunter College), Ruth M. DeBar (Caldwell University), SungWoo Kahng (Rutgers University), Kathleen Emily Marano (Caldwell University)
Abstract:

Assessment plays a vital role in the programming and education of students with autism spectrum disorder, but few published studies have evaluated the use of assessments to identify the most efficient instructional practices for individuals with autism spectrum disorder. This is problematic as these individuals often have difficulty acquiring skills and the procedures that may be efficient with one individual may not be for others. In this study, we conducted instructional assessments to identify the most efficient prompt type (model, partial physical, full physical) and prompt-fading procedure (progressive delay, most-to-least, least-to-most) for teaching auditory-visual conditional discriminations for three individuals with autism spectrum disorder. Each assessment was conducted at least twice, and a final generality test combined the most and the least efficient prompt type and prompt-fading procedure for teaching novel auditory-visual conditional discriminations. The results demonstrated learner-specific outcomes for the prompt type assessment while the least-to-most prompt fading procedure was most efficient for all participants. Interobserver agreement was above 90% on all dependent measures.

 
 
Symposium #73
CE Offered: BACB
Promoting Early Social Skills in Infants and Children At-Risk of Autism Spectrum Disorder and Fragile X Syndrome
Monday, September 30, 2019
9:00 AM–9:50 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 6, A3/A4
Area: AUT/DDA; Domain: Translational
Chair: Jacqueline Carrow (Caldwell University)
Discussant: Jacqueline Carrow (Caldwell University)
CE Instructor: Jacqueline Carrow, M.S.
Abstract:

We have initiated, replicated, and extended a programmatic line of behavior-analytic research to facilitate and establish early social skills in infants at-risk of developing autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Infant social engagement responses including vocalizations, echoics, joint attention, and social referencing are considered critical developmental milestones that serve as fundamental prerequisites for early communication and social skills (Pelaez, 2009). Treatment based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) has been consistently regarded as the most efficacious treatment for symptoms of ASD, and as such, has been similarly shown to be effective in teaching emerging social skills to infants at risk of ASD. Specifically, the first presenter will briefly identify the early behavioral indicators of at-risk infants, and overview the application of a brief ABA-based parent treatment model for promoting early infant vocalizations and emerging echoic response. The second presenter will examine the acquisition of joint attention and social referencing repertoires via an operant-learning paradigm arrangement among infants at-risk of ASD and Fragile X syndrome. The discussant will comment on these ongoing programs of research on early social skills in at-risk infant populations using ABA, and explore future directions and implications of this research.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): At-Risk, Infants, Social Skills
Target Audience:

Undergraduate; Graduate; Practitioners; Parents

Learning Objectives: 1. Attendees will describe the different early markers and deficits observed among infants at-risk of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). 2. Attendees will describe the use of operant reinforcement procedures for promoting early infant vocalizations and emergent echoic repertoires. 3. Attendees will describe and operationalize joint attention and social referencing from a behavioral perspective. 4. Attendees will describe the use of operant reinforcement procedures for promoting joint attention and social referencing repertoires.
 

Social Reinforcement Procedures to Establish Vocalizations and Echoics in Infants At-Risk of Autism Spectrum Disorder

(Applied Research)
HAYLEY NEIMY (Shabani Institute & Endicott College), Martha Pelaez (Florida International University), Jonathan J. Tarbox (University of Southern California), Mary Jane Weiss (Endicott College)
Abstract:

Infants who have not yet received any diagnoses often display markers, deficits, and behavioral indicators, that make them “at-risk” of a later ASD diagnosis. Among the hallmark diagnostic criteria of ASD are limitations and impairments in language and communication. Interventions to promote and encourage vocalizations in infants at risk of ASD as early as possible are of utmost priority. The present investigation compares the use of three different operant reinforcers to promote vocalizations, echoic approximations, and echoics with topographical correspondence in three infants at-risk of ASD. The results reliably confirmed findings from similar research (Bendixen & Pelaez, 2010; Pelaez, Virues, & Gewirtz, 2011a and 2011b) that contingent reinforcement procedures are more effective than non-contingent reinforcement procedures. Specifically, the vocal imitation condition reliably produced higher rates and accuracy of all three targeted responses: a) vocalizations, b) echoic approximations, and c) echoics with one-to-one correspondence. Implications of the present study highlight the important role of systematically and contingently arranging the social consequences delivered by the caregiver to promote the vocal behavior of an infant at-risk. Future research and application are discussed in the context of ASD prevention, optimal infant-caregiver environmental arrangements, misplaced contingencies, and the establishment of caregivers as social reinforcers.

 
Establishing Joint Attention Skills to Facilitate Social Referencing Repertoires in Toddlers via Operant Learning Procedures
(Applied Research)
KATERINA MONLUX (Stanford University; Oslo Metropolitan University ), Martha Pelaez (Florida International University), Jonathan J. Tarbox (University of Southern California)
Abstract: Deficits in social engagement are among the main developmental problems observed among children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). In particular, joint attention and social referencing skills are critical for the development of more complex social interactions. The use of behavioral techniques and brief parent-infant engagement training has shown to be successful in promoting these social skills. We explore the hypothesis that by targeting joint attention and social referencing skills in the natural environment and by using caregivers as therapists we can potentially mitigate and prevent the development of later onset behavior language problems commonly associated with ASD. The current presentation reviews and extends previously published procedures for the training of joint attention and social referencing modeled after Pelaez and colleagues’ (2012) operant learning paradigm. Further, a model for expanding previous findings to the natural environment with a population at-risk of developing ASD and Fragile X syndrome is proposed where joint attending skills can be taught first to aid in the acquisition of social referencing. While very similar social behavior chains, joint attention and social referencing have functional differences, which will be explained.
 
 
Paper Session #74
Traumatic Brain Injury and ABA
Monday, September 30, 2019
9:00 AM–9:50 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C3
Chair: Barbara O'Malley Cannon (Melmark New England)
 
The Use of Applied Behavior Analysis Beyond Autism in a Public School Setting
Area: DDA
Domain: Service Delivery
BARBARA O'MALLEY CANNON (Melmark New England), Jessica R. Everett (Melmark New England)
 
Abstract: Although the use of Applied Behavior Analysis is most prevalent in the treatment of autism in the public schools, it is beginning to gather acceptance for use across many developmental disabilities and neurological disorders. This paper will discuss the implementation of a behavioral program for a young boy with a traumatic brain injury from birth. The paper will discuss the precedent for the use of applied behavior analysis in such cases and review the literature supporting its success. Further, a case study will be presented outlining the steps taken, the data collection, and the outcomes of the case.
 
Considerations for Working With Individuals With Brain Injury and Case Examples
Area: CBM
Domain: Service Delivery
ANNEKA HOFSCHNEIDER (Centre for Neuro Skills), Chris Persel (Centre for Neuro Skills)
 
Abstract: According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC, 2017), about 2.5 million people sustained a traumatic brain injury (TBI) in the United States. TBI, called the “silent epidemic”, affects an individual’s physical, cognitive, sensational, emotional, and behavioral functioning and may have long-lasting effects (2017). This paper will briefly review the medical and behavioral sequelae that follow brain injury survivors, outline useful antecedent/ consequence interventions, and discuss behavior analytic applications. Behavioral principles (i.e., escape extinction, token economy, and self-monitoring) addressing severe problem behavior from four unique cases- ranging from severe traumatic to encephalitis-based injuries –showing significant decrements (0% levels at discharge compared to 20 – 50% at baseline) in exiting, inappropriate crying, and socially inappropriate behaviors will be reviewed. Data and limitations will be discussed.
 
 
 
Panel #75
Is There Only One Applied Behavior Analysis Around the World? Challenges for Certification: The Brazilian Experience in Debate
Monday, September 30, 2019
9:00 AM–9:50 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C1
Area: EDC/TBA; Domain: Translational
Chair: Martha Costa Hübner (University of São Paulo)
ROOSEVELT RISTON STARLING (Universidade Federal de Sao Joao del-Rei - UFSJ)
NEIL TIMOTHY MARTIN (Behavior Analyst Certification Board)
CELSO GOYOS (Universidade Federal de Sao Carlos)
Abstract:

Is there only one Applied Behavior Analysis around the world? Challenges for certification- the brazilian experience in debate. BACB has been certifying behavior analysts all over the world, bringing up quality to professionals working in Service Delivery domain, as well as criteria to define what is a behavior analyst and minimum knowledge necessary to be an applied behavior analyst. Nevertheless, there are crucial differences among academic cultures in different countries in formation of behavior analysts, depending on undergraduate and graduate laws of each one. Brazil has been considered one of the largest group of Behavior Analysis (BA) outside USA and has been receiving awards for its longstanding achievements in Experimental Analysis of Behavior. The graduate bylaws, as well as rules and evaluation systems in BA at graduate level are worldwide based and rigorous. Undergraduate laws and systems of evaluation, on the other hand, are weaker, with multiple differences inside the big country of Brazil. Because if this, it is not possible to homogenize systems of certification in BA in Brazil. Considering this context, a group of brazilian researchers and clinicians proposed a national certification system for behavior analysts and a discussion with BACB representatives is proposed here in order to keep the unit of the field, as well as to keep opened possibilities of new initiatives, due to cultural differences.

Instruction Level: Advanced
 
 
Paper Session #76
Multiple Approaches to Substance Use and Addiction
Monday, September 30, 2019
9:00 AM–9:50 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C2
Chair: Júnnia Maria Moreira (Universidade Federal do Vale do Sao Francisco )
 
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and Mindfulness on the Drug Abuse Treatment: A Review
Area: CBM
Domain: Theory
JÚNNIA MARIA MOREIRA (Universidade Federal do Vale do Sao Francisco ), Gleydiane Trindade (Universidade Federal do Vale do São Francisco)
 
Abstract: Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) besides mindfulness-based interventions have been effective on drug abuse treatment. Drug abuse can be considered as an impulsive behavior in that it produces long-term disadvantages even though immediate pleasure. The present work aimed to perform a systematic review in which Cochrane Library, Lilacs, Medline, PsyINFO, Web of Science, Scielo, Science Direct, Pepsic, Index Psi and PubMed were searched for articles published between 2000 to 2018. The following descriptors present on articles abstracts were used: Drug Abuse AND Mindfulness; Drug Abuse AND Acceptance and Commitment Therapy; Drug Abuse AND Relational Frame Theory. We only included empirical intervention articles, with the full text available, and written in English. We excluded from the analysis protocol descriptions, pilot studies, reviews, correlational and case studies. We found 631 articles, among which 18 was selected according to eligible criteria, four articles about ACT and 14 about mindfulness. All ACT and 13 mindfulness articles demonstrate favorable results on drug use and addiction, abstinence, relapse, treatment adherence, non-judging of inner experience, among other measures. We came into a conclusion that ACT-based besides mindfulness-based interventions are effective on drug abuse and drug addiction treatment.
 
Aversive Control in Substance Abuse
Area: PCH
Domain: Theory
FERNANDA CASTANHO CALIXTO (Federal University of São Carlos and Paradigma Centre for Sciences and Behavioral Technology), Maria de Jesus Dutra Dutra dos Reis (Federal University of São Carlos), Roberto Banaco (Paradigma Centre for Sciences and Behavioral Technology)
 
Abstract: Substance abuse is a behavioral pattern that negatively affects health. Specifically, regarding tobacco and alcohol, along the decades, behavioral analytic studies have investigated variables related to their consumption. The aim of the present study was to conduct a systematic review of behavioral experimental studies over the 1960s to the 2010s decades. Two groups of descriptors were combined for article search. Group 1’s descriptors were: smoking, tobacco abuse, tobacco dependence, smokers, drinking, alcohol dependence, alcoholic, and alcoholism. Group 2’s were: behavior analysis, habit change, behavior change, behavioral therapy, and contingency management. Experimental studies whose main gold was to reduce smoking and alcohol abuse were analyzed. The search was conducted in scientific databases (Apa, Pubmed, Scielo, and PsycINFO). 240 articles were found and 65 were selected for analysis, which consisted of the identification of dependent variables and independent variables. Overall results demonstrated that throughout the ´60s and ’70s, aversive smoking control was widely used. In the following decades, such control suffered a steep decline. From the ’80s onward, the monetary reinforcement contingent to abstinence (contingency management) was the main target variable. In the paper, the role of aversive control on behavior and the feasibility of using large-scale monetary reinforcements are discussed.
 
 
 
Noteworthy Activity #77
Coffee Break
Monday, September 30, 2019
10:00 AM–10:30 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 4, M1

Join us for coffee and pastries.

 
 
Panel #78
Supporting Individuals With Autism Spectrum Disorder in Successful Transitions to Adulthood: Pathways, Pitfalls, and Progress
Monday, September 30, 2019
10:30 AM–11:20 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 6, A2
Area: AUT/EDC; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Eileen Hopkins (Eden II Programs)
JOANNE GERENSER (Eden II Programs)
PAIGE RAETZ (Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center)
RANDY I. HOROWITZ (Nassau Suffolk Services for Autism)
Abstract:

Despite the ongoing advances in effective intervention for children with autism spectrum disorder, outcomes in adulthood remain highly variable. This panel will discuss the literature on adult outcomes and the factors that appear to play a role. Presenters will share perspectives and experiences on how families, supporting organizations, and individuals with autism spectrum disorder can work together to plan early and effectively for the transition to adulthood. Gaps encountered in ABA-based educational settings with regard to planning and programming for adulthood will be shared, along with successful strategies to ensure essential skills are identified and developed. The panel will integrate information from available research on adult outcomes, and direct experience as service providers in areas including: identifying appropriate curricular targets, consideration of different approaches to build essential skills, assessment, progress monitoring, risk analysis, individual choice making, and approaches to service delivery fidelity and accountability. Panel presenters will share experiences and insights from three different service organizations across the United States of America, each of which utilizes different approaches, models, and funding sources, while maintaining a strong commitment to effective services grounded in applied behavior analysis.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): adult outcomes, autism education, transition planning
 
 
Invited Paper Session #79
CE Offered: BACB

Selection and Creation Processes in Operant Acquisition of Different Response Units From Lever Pressing to Brain Activity

Monday, September 30, 2019
10:30 AM–11:20 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 4, A1
Area: EAB; Domain: Basic Research
Instruction Level: Advanced
CE Instructor: Iver Iversen, Ph.D.
Chair: Peter R. Killeen (Arizona State University)
IVER IVERSEN (University of North Florida)

Dr. Iversen received his Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology from University of Copenhagen, Denmark (1978). He is professor of experimental psychology at University of North Florida, Jacksonville, since 1986. His research has addressed basic mechanisms of operant behavior, primarily in non-human subjects. Examples are detailed analyses of effects of individual reinforcements in rats, intermittent reinforcement of stimulus control in rats, visual guidance of drawing in chimpanzees. Research has also involved operant conditioning of brainwaves in humans to enable communication in completely paralyzed ALS patients. He has served on the board of Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior for 5 3-year terms and currently serves on the boards of European Journal of Behavior Analysis and Mexican Journal of Behavior Analysis. Dr. Iversen believes that strong methodology is necessary to advance science of behavior, and he has developed several automated methods to shape and control behavior as well as methods to analyze complex data from behavioral experiments. Together with Professor K. A. Lattal from University of West Virginia, Morgantown, Dr. Iversen edited a two-volume text on methodology in operant conditioning (1991) and together with Dr. Wendon Henton wrote a book on response patterns in classical and operant conditioning (1978). In addition, he has published several papers that document development of behavior control techniques and methods of data analysis.

Abstract:

Acquisition of operant behavior customarily takes place within a few minutes for standard response units such as brief lever presses, and the process of operant acquisition is often referred to as “simple”. However, research shows that acquisition may consist of several different processes operating at different times within the overall acquisition process. Experiments will illustrate the different processes when acquisition is “slowed down” by making response units more complex by adding dimensional requirements such as duration, direction, distance, or speed to the response. Examples will range from lever presses that are studied in duration and direction, through wheel running studied as length, direction, and speed of individual run bouts, and sequences of different responses. Acquisition of complex response units is also demonstrated in chimpanzees drawing in different directions with a finger on a monitor and further illustrated for the human EEG (electroencephalogram) where different EEG patterns can be brought under stimulus control. In operant acquisition, already existing responses can be selected and modified, and non-existing responses can be created by reinforcement contingencies. The defined response unit and the arranged contingencies of reinforcement are crucial variables in acquisition of operant behavior. The distinction between response selection and response creation is not always heeded in the literature but has implications for both experimental and applied research.

Target Audience:

Graduate students, researchers, and experienced clinicians.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) articulate subtleties in contingencies of reinforcement beyond what is ordinarily taught; (2) draw different aspects of response units and contingencies of reinforcement in diagrams; (3) connect data directly with methodology; (4) state how single-case methodology is crucial for understanding contingencies of reinforcement; (5) articulate the distinction between molar and molecular views of behavior from a research perspective.
 
 
Paper Session #80
Topics in Education
Monday, September 30, 2019
10:30 AM–11:20 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C1
Area: EDC
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Chair: Kristal E. Ehrhardt (Western Michigan University)
 
Promoting Behavior Analysis in Schools: Western Michigan University's Interdisciplinary Preparation in Autism Services Project (IPA)
Domain: Service Delivery
KRISTAL E. EHRHARDT (Western Michigan University), Jessica E. Frieder (Western Michigan University), Katherine LaLonde (Western Michigan University), Sarah Summy (Western Michigan University), Denise Ross (Western Michigan University ), Stephanie M. Peterson (Western Michigan University), Alan D. Poling (Western Michigan University)
 
Abstract: This presentation will overview an ongoing interdisciplinary graduate program designed to produce master’s-level graduates with expertise in using behavior analysis effectively in schools. The Department of Special Education and Literacy Studies and the Department of Psychology at Western Michigan University (WMU) share the collaborative program to prepare special education teachers and behavior analysts to meet the high-intensity needs of students with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). The five-year project, funded by the Office of Special Education Programs, US Department of Education, entitled the Interdisciplinary Preparation in Autism Services (IPA) program will recruit, admit, prepare and graduate 24 scholars, 12 with a master’s degree in special education and a teaching endorsement in ASD and 12 with a master’s degree in behavior analysis and expertise in providing school-based services. All graduates will be prepared for certification as Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs). Graduates of IPA will be highly skilled professionals, well versed in evidence-based assessment and intervention practices in K-12 schools for students with ASD. Also, all graduates will be well prepared to serve as resources to general and special education colleagues. IPA is in completing the second year of the 5-year-project. This presentation will share our project curriculum, challenges we have faced while planning and implementing this interdisciplinary project, and our initial outcomes. It will also highlight common challenges behavior analysts face when working in schools and offer suggestions for meeting those challenges and for working productively with other professionals, such as special educators, school psychologists, speech pathologists, and social workers.
 
Functional Curriculum Design for Language-Cognitive Habilitation: Engineering and Monitoring Complex Contingency Fields
Domain: Theory
RICHARD E. LAITINEN (Personalized Accelerated Learning Systems (PALS)), Gladys Williams (CIEL, SPAIN)
 
Abstract: The design, implementation and monitoring of complex contingency fields with temporal extent constitutes the pursuit of modern curriculum design. Current research suggests that curriculum design engineers who track the acquisition, retention, generalization and adaptive application of simple and complex forms of contingency control, including the complex stimulus relations considered within a Multi-Level, Multi-Dimensional (MDML) account of relational frame theory, will more efficiently effect significant influence over the language and cognitive development of both experienced and naive learners. This paper will present an overview of how such design efforts might be empirically tracked and validated.
 
 
 
Symposium #81
The Attainments and Challenges of Developing Applied Behavior Analysis Services Within an Asian Country: China
Monday, September 30, 2019
10:30 AM–11:20 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C3
Area: OBM/TBA; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Dianna Hiu Yan Yip (P.L.A.I. Behaviour Consulting)
Abstract:

Constructing a supportable and maintainable Applied Behavior Analysis centre in the China is an exceedingly compensating, although challenging, field. Developing a whole new therapeutic centre is undoubtedly be one of the most stimulating experiences. We endeavored a progression for supporting the learning of students with highly complex profiles that is: maintainable, evidence-based assimilated, client-centered, multi-disciplinary, and comprehensive. Our core features are decidedly individualized, which addresses needs in all areas of development (academic, social, communication, motor, mental health, daily living, behavior regulation). We also adjusted our behavior technician training program specifically to the Chinese culture, where every technician receives instruction in an environment that is best suited for them according to their learning culture. We also developed a kindergarten simulating class that help upcoming kindergarten to face their upcoming challenges. We will also discuss the inclusion teaching on how to make it significant and individualized, and can be adjusted in the moment if needed.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): Asia, Centre Development, China, Training Curriculum
 

The Attainments and Challenges of Developing Applied Behavior Analysis Services Within an Asian Country: China, Part A

DIANNA HIU YAN YIP (P.L.A.I. Behaviour Consulting), Yee Tak Lee (P.L.A.I. Behaviour Consulting)
Abstract:

In the summer of 2016, our behaviour consulting practice based in Hong Kong started to support a newly established centre that provides Early Intensive Behaviour Intervention (EIBI) in Mainland China. There is huge pressure to scale up in size and to reduce cost, while building a model that allows us to provide quality ABA-based intervention for families with Autism in Mainland China. Started with one sites, 20 cases, one BCBA and 30 teachers (aka behaviour technicians) in September 2016, the centre has grown to 3 sites, over 200 cases, 6 BCBAs, 5 BCaBAs in 20 months. This journey was challenging. In this presentation, we would like to share the challenges we faced in cultural differences, language barriers, and the lack of understanding from the administration and how we overcame them through creating a system to allow us to provide quality services, and quality training and supervision with our teachers. We believe this unique journey can provide insight on how to establish quality ABA services in places that lack qualified professionals at a larger scale.

 

The Attainments and Challenges of Developing Applied Behavior Analysis Services Within an Asian Country: China,Part B

Tsz Ching Lau (P.L.A.I. Behaviour Consulting), ZIYAN ZIYAN CHEN (P.L.A.I. Behaviour Consulting)
Abstract:

New Register Behavior Technician competency requirements from the Behavior Analyst Certification Board have prompted greater emphasis on technical skills. Many technicians have their initial foray into implementing teaching skills and strategies after the 40 hours’ video training, making it an important yet under-recognize opportunity to develop fundamental practical skills. Furthermore, in some clinic centers’ climate, technicians training is condensed into an even briefer period, which has affected learning opportunities and competences to be sensible with the need for proficiency. After continuously reviewing the requirement and the quality of service needed to provide, we developed behavior technician training curriculum to equip new trainees with skills specific to their unique role as behavior technician. However, due to its cultural learning background, where they used to learn with very clear and structural step-by-step instructions, most teachers failed to generalized their newly acquired teaching skills across different settings and clients. There is a strong necessity to train the pre-service technicians to foster generalization of ABA teaching techniques. Therefore, we piloted a program focused around some specific training methods such as: role modeling, coaching, lecture, and group discussion. We also explore the impact of observing peer-in-service, and on making the coaching-observation process and feedback valuable.

 

The Attainments and Challenges of Developing Applied Behavior Analysis Services Within an Asian Country: China,Part C

SIQI XIE (Western Michigan University ), Yan Long (University of Taxes, Austin)
Abstract:

As the increasing awareness of the empirical efficacy of the Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) in the treatment of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), and the acceptance of ABA services among the parents of children with ASD, and professionals working in the field in mainland China, more and more centers or organizations providing ABA services have been set up in recent years. It is reported that there are more than 1000 private centers providing ABA services. As the rapidly increasing demand of ABA services in China, the obstacles, barriers and challenges should be notified, discussed, and addressed to help improving the quality of the service delivery. As a team of bilingual Board Certified Behavior Analysts who was trained and studied in the United States, Canada, or Hong Kong, our vision is to provide world class ABA services to children and their families in need regardless of diagnosis or social-economic status in China. Through setting up a large-scale special education center in the southern China, the barriers and challenges are summarized into several different areas, including the shortage of the professionals to provide on-going supervision and training to maintain the quality of the services; difficulty in the implementation of the training system to provide qualified technicians due to other factors; the lack of ABA relevant Chinese resources for professional development, and other cultural barriers occurring among implementing the behavioral program, and parent communication.

 
 
Paper Session #82
Topics in Philosophical, Conceptual, and Historical Issues
Monday, September 30, 2019
10:30 AM–11:20 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C4
Area: PCH
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Chair: Alan D. Poling (Western Michigan University)
 
Motivating Operations Reconceptualized
Domain: Theory
ALAN D. POLING (Western Michigan University), Amin Duff Lotfizadeh (Easterseals Southern California), Timothy Edwards (University of Waikato)
 
Abstract: The motivating operations concept has generated substantial conceptual analysis and research interest. Following an analysis of how motivating operations affect behavior, one which emphasizes the interactive role of motivating operations and discriminative stimuli, the presenter will propose: a) redefining motivating operations as operations that modulate the reinforcing or punishing effectiveness of particular kinds of events and the control of behavior by discriminative stimuli historically relevant to those events, b) dropping the distinction between behavior-altering and function-altering effects of motivating operations, and c) reducing or eliminating emphasis on conditioned motivating operations. This reconceptualization of the motivating operations concept is intended to increase its value in predicting and gainfully changing behavior.
 

CANCELED: An Examination of the Caregivers and Parents of Special Needs Children

Domain: Basic Research
YENEIRI MIRO (New Day Therapy), Maryabel Morales (New Day Therapy), J. DeGaglia (New Day Therapy)
 
Abstract:

The literature is in need and continues to grow in terms of the needs of special needs children. However, there is a complete absence of any reference to the caregivers and parents of special needs children. This investigation examined the anxiety (with the use of the Generalized Anxiety Disorder – 7 Scale), depression (with the use of the Patient Health Questionnaire – 9), and social interaction (Social Interaction Anxiety Scale) of caregivers and parents in a culturally diverse South Florida. Instrumentation was provided in both English and Spanish to account for differences amongst participants. Data collection will be ongoing until presentation.

 
 
 
Paper Session #83
ABA and the Justice System
Monday, September 30, 2019
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C2
Chair: Kristine Jolivette (PENDING)
 
Facility-Wide Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports: Incarcerated Youth Voice Related to the Constructs of Climate and Applied Behavior Analysis
Area: CSS
Domain: Applied Research
KRISTINE JOLIVETTE (University of Alabama), Sara Sanders (University of Alabama), Robin Parks Ennis (University of Alabama at Birmingham)
 
Abstract: A shift from reactive and punitive practices in secure juvenile facilities has prompted facilities in the United States to adopt multi-tiered systems of support such as facility-wide positive behavioral interventions and supports (FW-PBIS) to address climate concerns as well as youth behavior. FW-PBIS is predicated within applied behavior analysis (ABA). To date, most implementation efforts have focused on defining adult behaviors and systems. There is limited understanding of the role of youth voice related to adoption and implementation of the advocated practices. This pilot study sought to understand youth perspectives of FW-PBIS implementation as viewed through the lens of facility/organizational climate assessment and the constructs of applied behavior analysis. We piloted a facility climate survey for use in secure juvenile facilities and conducted focus group sessions to capture youth voice. We will provide an overview of FW-PBIS, its links to ABA principles, and a fidelity measure along with the identified facilitator and barrier themes related to facility climate with FW-PBIS implementation. Implications for practice, as well as limitations and future directions for research are discussed.
 
Application of Applied Behavior Analysis to the Juvenile Justice Population
Area: CSS
Domain: Service Delivery
VANESSA BETHEA-MILLER (Bethea-Miller Behavioral Consulting; The Chicago School of Professional Psychology)
 
Abstract: Juvenile Delinquency, defined as a violation of the law committed by a juvenile who is a person under the age of eighteen, continues to be a socially significant problem for society at large. Historically, juvenile offenders are punished with residential placement (i.e., locked up), heavy monitoring, etc. (Thompson et al., 2010). While minor policy reform has occurred in some states and countries in regards to treatment of juvenile offenders, there is still reliance on historic systems in place throughout the world. Reliance on these historic methods results in public monies being spent on detention centers, probation officers and services, boot camps, and rehabilitation centers; however, there is no research to support these systems. One approach to crime prevention and reduction in recidivism with substantial research of its effects in other populations is applied behavior analysis. While research with this population may be limited, Applied Behavior Analysis can contribute to the juvenile justice population in various ways which align with the dimensions of applied behavior analysis originally described by Baer, Wolf, & Risley (1968) which will be discussed in this symposium. Previous research with this population as well as recommendations for future research will be presented.
 
Criminal Behaviorology: The Application of Behavior Analysis to Assist Criminology, Corrections, and the Justice System
Area: PCH
Domain: Theory
TIMOTHY TEMPLIN (Hoosier Association for Behavior Analysis (HABA); Criminal Behaviorology)
 
Abstract: Criminal Behaviorology is the use of behavior analysis to further the study of criminology, or otherwise assist in criminal or civil legal proceedings, as well as juvenile or adult correctional programs. Areas of interest related to Criminal Behaviorology has been reviewed in the literature for this presentation. A review of the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis has provided some articles focusing on this subject area. Presented below are data regarding the publication of articles with a focus on these areas of interest in the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis from the years 1995 to 2017. These articles include the prevention of abduction for adults and children with disabilities (2010, 2013 and 2014), trial contingency management in a drug court (2008), sex offender assessment (2006, 2014 and 2017) and other pertinent topics. In addition, the different areas of research and practice where Criminal Behaviorology may be relevant. Options available for the dissemination of behavior analysis to these areas of interest are discussed.
 
 
 
Paper Session #84
Skills Training for Persons With Autism Spectrum Disorder
Monday, September 30, 2019
10:30 AM–12:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 6, A3/A4
Area: AUT
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Chair: Jennifer Hieminga (New Haven Learning Centre)
 
Taking Care of Business! Prevocational and Vocational Training for Adolescents and Adults With Autism Spectrum Disorder
Domain: Service Delivery
JENNIFER HIEMINGA (New Haven Learning Centre), Sandra Hughes (New Haven Learning Centre)
 
Abstract: As students with autism get older it is essential to shift the focus of programming from academics to more functional life and employability skills. Research has shown that people with autism can function independently at jobs that are suited to their strengths and abilities, as long as the specific tasks involved in the job are taught to mastery. This presentation will address 1) how to effectively assess prerequisite skills required for a job (e.g., job specific vs. job related skills), 2) how to prepare clients for a work placement (e.g., prevocational programming including; life, personal care, independent, and community skills), 3) how to engage the community for job opportunities (e.g., volunteer employment, job sampling, gainful employment, job carving), and 4) how to effectively integrate the client into the work setting (e.g., vocational programming, job shadowing). A review of the available literature in the area of employment, promoting independence, community integration and quality of life will be discussed. The talk will include presentation and discussion of data collected, video vignettes of program implementation, as well as other relevant visual supports.
 

CANCELED: Coding With Robots: A Conduit for Creating Soft-Skills in STEM Classrooms for Individuals With Autism

Domain: Theory
JENN GALLUP (Idaho State University), Cory Bennett (Idaho State University )
 
Abstract:

Much attention has been placed on developing procedural skills in technical content areas such as science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM); as students with Autism are often underrepresented and underperform. Remedial teaching of skills often fails to help these students learn the soft-skills necessary to be successful in STEM. As such, for students with disabilities in STEM classrooms, learning what it means to think and behave like a mathematician or scientist means little despite the importance of these actions (NCTM, 2014). Technology, such as robotics, holds the potential to advance soft-skills in STEM classrooms. Recent uses of robotics in classrooms have supported content acquisition, engagement, and social outcomes for students with Autism. Essentially, the technologies become the conduit to supporting equitable access for which soft-skills are an inevitable byproduct. This presentation shares initial results from a project on integrating robotics in middle-level classrooms to support soft-skills for students with Autism.

 
Effectiveness of Teaching Social Skills to Individuals With Autism Spectrum Disorders Using Cool Versus Not Cool
Domain: Applied Research
SEZGIN VURAN (Anadolu University Egitim Fakultesi), Seray Olcay Gul (Hacettepe University)
 
Abstract: One of the interventions, of which effectiveness in the teaching of social skills has been examined in autism literature in recent years, is teaching with cool versus not cool. In this study, it was aimed to examine the effectiveness of teaching with cool versus not cool in the teaching of social skill (“Coping with inappropriate requests from familiar peers or adults”) to participants with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). A multiple probe design across participants was used to investigate the effectiveness of teaching social skills with cool versus not cool. In the study, follow-up and generalization data were collected from participants with ASD. Furthermore, social validity data were collected from participants with ASD. The findings of the study showed that all participants acquired and preserved social skills. In the study, it was observed that the first and second participants generalized the skills they acquired to different environments. No generalization data were collected for the third participant. Subjective evaluation approach revealed that the participants’ opinions about the target skill, the teaching process and post-teaching performance were positive. It was observed that the findings of the study were in parallel with other research findings related to the subject.
 

CANCELED: Paying More Attention to What We Teach Our Children With Autism: The Case for Functional Skills and a Call for Goals and Outcomes With Social Validity

Domain: Service Delivery
PATRICK E. MCGREEVY (Patrick McGreevy and Associates)
 
Abstract:

For the past twenty years, behavior analytic intervention for children with autism has focused primarily on age-referenced skill deficits and problem behavior, with a goal of 'catching up' to typically-developing peers and being academically mainstreamed in school. Even with high-quality instruction, this goal has been attainable with only a relatively small proportion of children. The remaining children seldom experience stimulus generalization, behavioral cusps, generative learning, or derived relations, and have difficulty acquiring intraverbal responses, verbal conditional discriminations, and abstract concepts. The lack of these experiences and these skills becomes a barrier to advanced language and academic skills and relegates children to goals and outcomes largely lacking in social validity. This paper will describe skills referenced not to age, but to safe, effective, and high-quality participation in family, school, and community living. This paper will suggest that these functional skills become the centerpiece of focused intervention for children who experience the aforementioned barriers to academic skills. High-quality implementation of empirically-based instructional procedures, along with measurable outcomes, will insure effective intervention with social validity.

 
 
 
Symposium #85
CE Offered: BACB
Procedural Integrity of Clinical Programming in Applied Settings
Monday, September 30, 2019
10:30 AM–12:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, Meeting Room 24/25
Area: OBM/DDA; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Jill Harper (Melmark New England)
Discussant: Helena L. Maguire (Melmark New England)
CE Instructor: Jill Harper, Ph.D.
Abstract:

The effectiveness of clinical systems, such as the implementation of Behavior Support Plans (BSP), relies not only on the technological sophistication of the written plan, but also on the ability of direct service staff to accurately and consistently implement the system. This symposium will include three presentations incorporating the staff training, supervisory training, and performance-monitoring systems for clinical programming that have evolved over the past 20 years at Melmark New England: a private, not for profit, community-based organization serving children and adults with autism spectrum disorders, acquired brain injury, neurological diseases and disorders, and severe challenging behaviors. The first presentation will provide a brief review of the OBM literature on effective systems development. Following this review, system development will be exemplified through behavior support plan systems. The third presentation will detail how knowledge and performance based systems are incorporated into new hire and on-the-job training ensure initial competency. The final presentation will outline a system of supervisory training essential to monitoring and maintenance of staff performance. The goal of this symposium will be to provide participants with empirically-based systems to ensure competent and accurate implementation of clinical systems.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): Procedural Integrity, Staff Monitoring, Staff Training, Supervisory Training
Target Audience:

Information presented during this symposium would be appropriate for students and those training in ABA and OBM programs, professionals within the field of Special Education, ABA/OBM, middle management, as well as administration and leadership personnel human service organizations.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the symposium, participants will be able to:(1) describe examples of the application of OBM to clinical systems within applied settings; (2) identify the components of an effective staff training program; (3) describe the essential components of training systems necessary for supervisory staff; (4) identify areas where performance-monitoring tools and systems should be developed.
 
Organizational Behavior Management: What’s Behind the Development of Systems to Ensure Integrity
KIMBERLY L. DUHANYAN (Melmark New England), Helena L. Maguire (Melmark New England), Jill Harper (Melmark New England), Silva Orchanian (Melmark New England)
Abstract: Organization Behavior Management (OBM) involves the systematic application of the science of behavior at the organizational level, including individual behavior within the organizational structure (Sundberg, 2016). This presentation will provide a comprehensive review of OBM and the application of this science to clinical systems within applied settings. First, an overview of the major areas of OBM including behavior-based safety, performance management, and systems analysis will be covered. Next, the concept of procedural integrity will be introduced and then an extension of this concept to organizational systems will be provided. Within this discussion, the essential roles of overarching knowledge management systems in the establishment of procedural integrity across all organizational systems will be highlighted. A similar discussion of the necessity of ongoing systems analysis in maintaining high levels of procedural integrity across users will follow. Finally, the presentation will end with a review of examples of different types of organizational systems to which these practices should be applied.
 

A Case Example of the Development of Clinical Systems: Behavior Support Plans

Melissa Clark (Melmark New Engalnd), HELENA MAGUIRE (Melmark New England), Frank L. Bird (Melmark New England)
Abstract:

The application of the science of behavior of the organization, or organizational behavior management (OBM) can be described and implemented in a process that parallels the application of the science of the individual, or applied behavior analysis (ABA). Through an example of the development an organization-wide behavior support plan (BSP) system, this presentation will review the process of case conceptualization of OBM. Several variations of case conceptualization in OBM are presented throughout the literature. This presentation will summarize these steps as described by Wilder, Austin, and Casella (2009) in its description of the development of an organization-wide BSP system over 20 years of service delivery. Following the sequence of case conceptualization, the presentation will begin with a description of the overall goals of the BSP system and specific targets to be addressed. The discussion will then continue through the process with a description of the variability in BSP design and implementation prior to the development of the organizational system and assessment of variables responsible for such variability. The conclusion of the presentation will complete the case conceptualization through a description of the system that was developed, the results of implementation, and ongoing evaluation of the system.

 
Training the User: Overview of New Hire and On-the-Job Training Systems
JILL HARPER (Melmark New England), Helena L. Maguire (Melmark New England), Silva Orchanian (Melmark New England)
Abstract: Once a system has been developed, users of that system must be trained to implement that system with integrity. A rich literature exists on evidence-based methods of staff training. A brief review of common evidence-based training methods, such as Behavior Skills Training, will be provided. The scope of this presentation will quickly extend beyond any single method of training to focus on the development and implementation staff training systems at the organizational level. A discussion of key components and benefits of staff training systems and how such systems differ from single training events will be presented. Following this overview, two separate, yet integrated staff training systems will be reviewed: New hire and on-the-job training. Components of each training system will be outlined, examples will be provided, and outcome measures presented. The relation between components of these two training systems and integrity of clinical systems will be highlighted throughout the presentation through the inclusion of performance competencies.
 
Monitoring and Maintaining Performance: Supervisory Training Systems
SILVA ORCHANIAN (Melmark New England), Helena L. Maguire (Melmark New England), Jill Harper (Melmark New England)
Abstract: Supervision is an essential component to the maintenance of the procedural integrity with which organizational systems are implemented. Supervising the implementation of any given system by others is not synonymous with one’s own implementation of that same system. In other words, doing is not the same as overseeing. Thus, effective supervision requires specific training, training in the component skills of supervision itself. This presentation will outline a supervisory training system developed over a period of time to ensure effective, efficient, and acceptable training and ongoing supervision of staff within a human service organization. A description of the general structure and content areas of this training system will be reviewed and examples will be provided. Specific component skills such as conducing procedural integrity checks and providing feedback will then be described in detail to highlight training methods incorporated into the supervisory training system that result in the targeted outcome measures. The presentation will end with selected exemplars of performance management competencies of supervisors who completed this supervisory training series over the past several years.
 
 
Symposium #86
Economic Behavior and Interventions in Everyday Life: What Can Behavior Analysis Offer?
Monday, September 30, 2019
11:30 AM–12:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C3
Area: CSS; Domain: Translational
Chair: Timothy D. Hackenberg (Reed College)
Abstract:

This symposium brings together three studies by authors from different research groups to discuss how behavior analysis can contribute to interventions dealing with economic behavior and everyday life matters. The first presentation proposes a functional interpretation of strategies known as nudges, that is, strategies derived from the field of behavioral economics for policymaking in different sectors (such as public health, education and energy efficiency). The second presentation will describe an intervention that aims to promote ethical behavior in bank employees in the United Kingdom, based on an approach focused on antecedent and consequent factors. The third presentation will describe an intervention based on procedures of functional analysis and fading out for the reduction of smoke consumption. Thus, the symposium attempts to gather research from the theoretical domain (the first presentation) to the applied one (second and third presentations) that discuss possibilities for behavior analysts to design effective interventions in different contexts, from individual to social.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): Behavioral Economics, Ethical Behavior, Nudge, Smoke consumption
 

A Functional Interpretation of Nudging Strategies

(Theory)
CESAR ANTONIO ALVES DA ROCHA (Universidade de Sao Paulo)
Abstract:

Introduced as an innovative way to design public policy, "libertarian paternalism" is a proposition derived from behavioral economics whose main goal would be to interfere with choice behavior without coercive methods. A key concept for such perspective is "choice architecture", which aludes to different sets of contextual arrangements designed to redirect choice in a way that although a defined course of action is favored, all alternative paths are kept available and easy to reach. "Default-option", "salience" and "social norms" are commonly adopted strategies (i.e. "nudges"), but that is not clear what exactly group them all together. Relying on previously developed research, the aim of this conceptual study is to provide a functional interpretation of nudging strategies as described by their original proponents. The presentation will show how nudging strategies may me interpreted as a matter of manipulating response cost, stimulus control and establishing operations, as well as that there seems to be no clear connection between them except for their presumed noncoercive nature. Thus, the presentation will also introduce a question yet unsolved, that is, whether or not the meaning of coercion is the same for behavioral economists and behavior analysts.

 

Planning an Intervention to Raise Ethical Behaviors in UK Bank Employees

(Applied Research)
ANA CAROLINA TROUSDELL FRANCESCHINI (Banking Standards Board - UK)
Abstract:

Self-reported surveys, collected from UK bank employees for three years (2016-2018) show stability in how employees identify (un)ethical behaviors in their workplace. Identifying and manipulating ethical behaviors that already exist in the working routine of bankers is a more feasible goal than trying to shape completely new behaviors in this population. Bank employees have to constantly allocate their time and effort among different, concurrent, tasks. As in any concurrent schedule, this allocation is controlled by the contingencies in place, including monetary and social reinforcement. Interventions to increase ethical behaviors should increase the preference for “ethical” tasks. This, however, requires a functional analysis of Ethical Behaviors, their antecedents and consequences. For antecedents, ethical judgements depend on the social group(s) the subject belongs to and what they consider “good” or “bad”. Consequences depend on the visibility and significance of the impact caused on others. In preparation for future interventions, this exploratory study searches for empirical/descriptive evidence on “who” bank employees identify as the parties impacted by their actions and the kind of "good" or "bad" social feedback/judgement they receive. Increasing employee’s preference for ethical tasks (instead of other tasks) require increasing the sources and/or magnitude of the positive social reinforcement produced by these actions.

 

Functional Analysis and Fading out on Smoke Consumption

(Applied Research)
FERNANDA CASTANHO CALIXTO (Federal University of São Carlos; Paradigma Centre for Sciences and Behavioral Technology ), Roberto Alves Banaco (Paradigma Centre for Sciences and Behavioral Technology), Maria de Jesus Dutra Dutra dos Reis (Universidade Federal de São Carlos)
Abstract:

Smoking is a behavioral pattern that negatively affects the smoker’s health. Consequently, the effectiveness of programs to reduce smoking became the focus of scientific investigation. The present study investigated the effect of a behavioral analytic program, conducted individually on the frequency of smoking and CO levels. The experimental design was multicomponent. Participants were eight smokers with CO level equal or above 11 ppm. The study was comprised of five phases. On Phase 1, the frequency of smoking and CO levels were recorded. On Phase 2, functional analysis of smoking took place. On Phase 3, participants were instructed to gradually increase the interval between cigarettes. In Phase 4, participants were instructed to use behavioral-analytical strategies for the reduction of smoking. Phase 5 was the return to Phase 1`s conditions. Follow up measures were recorded three and six months after the conclusion of the study. For all participants, smoking rate and the CO level were reduced by at least 60 percent. Strategies for maintaining therapeutic gains are presented in the discussion.

 
 
Paper Session #87
The Evolutionary Theory of Behavior Dynamics
Monday, September 30, 2019
11:30 AM–12:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C4
Area: EAB
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Chair: Jack J. McDowell (Emory University)
 
Current Status of the Evolutionary Theory of Behavior Dynamics: Empirical Support and Untested Predictions
Domain: Theory
JACK J. MCDOWELL (Emory University)
 
Abstract: A comprehensive theory of adaptive behavior is a desirable goal for a science of behavior. The evolutionary theory of behavior dynamics is one candidate for such a theory. It is a complexity theory that instantiates the Darwinian principles of selection, reproduction, and mutation in a genetic algorithm. The algorithm is used to animate artificial organisms that behave continuously in time and can be placed in any experimental environment. This presentation is an update on the status of the theory. It includes a summary of the evidence supporting the theory, a list of the theory’s untested predictions, and a discussion of how the algorithmic operations of the theory may correspond to material reality. Future directions will be discussed briefly, including clinical translational research, and research on the animation of mechanical agents. Based on the empirical evidence reviewed in this presentation, the evolutionary theory appears to be a strong candidate for a comprehensive theory of adaptive behavior.
 
Using an Evolutionary Theory of Behavior Dynamics to Predict the Superior Quantitative Model of Punishment
Domain: Theory
BRYAN KLAPES (Emory University), Jack J. McDowell (Emory University)
 
Abstract: Using an information theoretic model comparison technique, Klapes, Riley, & McDowell (2018) showed that no published matching-law-based model of punishment quantitatively outperformed the generalized matching law (Baum, 1974) when fitted to data from a set of concurrent schedules of VI reinforcement with superimposed VI punishment schedules. Given this result, they called for new models to be developed and tested. However, the small number of data points per individual in currently available datasets would result in the model comparison technique unfairly discounting more complex models (i.e., models with more free parameters). An Evolutionary Theory of Behavior Dynamics (ETBD; McDowell, Caron, Kulubekova, & Berg, 2008) is a selectionist theory of dynamic operant behavior that can simulate the behavior of live organisms with great accuracy (McDowell, 2013). As a computational model, the ETBD can generate datasets with as many data points as desired. McDowell & Klapes (in preparation) have developed a method to incorporate punishment into the ETBD. Here we present a selection of new and more complex matching-law-based models of punishment, and propose a study using the ETBD to predict which of these models is likely to be superior when applied to data from experiments with live organisms.
 
 
 
Symposium #88
CE Offered: BACB/NASP
Recent Advances in Behavior Analytic Approaches to Training
Monday, September 30, 2019
11:30 AM–12:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C1
Area: EDC/AUT; Domain: Translational
Chair: Jason C. Vladescu (Caldwell University)
CE Instructor: Jason C. Vladescu, Ph.D.
Abstract:

This symposium includes three presentations on recent advances in behavior analytic approaches to training. The first presentation evaluated the effectiveness of using video-based instruction to train parents to implement guided compliance and a token economy. The results indicated that all parents learned the guided compliance protocol and correctly implemented a token economy following the introduction of training. The second presentation sought to train teachers to implement behavioral interventions for students with autism spectrum disorder within a modular intervention framework. The results indicated that the modular approach was feasible and preliminarily efficacious. The third presentation evaluated the effectiveness of a training package to teach individuals to arrange safe sleep environments for infants—an important consideration that may reduce sudden infant death syndrome. The results indicated that all participants made unsafe errors during baseline, arranged correct environments following training, and demonstrated generalized responding.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): Parent Training, Staff Training, Training
Target Audience:

The target audience is behavior analysts and school psychologists.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the symposium, participants will be able to (1) describe how to use video-based instruction to train parents; (2) describe the feasibility and effectiveness of a modular framework for training teachers to implement behavioral interventions; and (3) describe how to use behavioral skills training to teach individuals to arrange safe sleep environments.
 

Using Video-Based Instruction to Train Parents to Implement a Token Economy

(Applied Research)
Shannon Monaghan (Caldwell University), APRIL N. KISAMORE (Hunter College), Jason C. Vladescu (Caldwell University), Sharon A. Reeve (Caldwell University), Joseph Novak (Reed Academy)
Abstract:

Noncompliance can be a concern for some children with autism and can affect their interactions with their parents. A token economy may be an effective and easily transportable strategy for parents to provide reinforcement to their children for compliance with directions. The results of this study (a) systematically replicated Spiegel, Kisamore, Vladescu, and Karsten (2016) by training parents of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) to implement guided compliance and (b) evaluated the effects of video-based instruction to train parents of children with autism to implement a token economy to reinforce compliance and to decrease the need for the presence of a trainer by incorporating a self-scoring checklist. Participants learned to correctly implement a token economy and evaluated their own performance via video recordings. These results provide clinicians with a means of teaching parents of children with ASD to implement a token economy and decrease the need for the presence of a trainer by incorporating a self-scoring checklist. Interobserver agreement data were collected data for 35% of all sessions and mean agreement was above 97% for all participants.

 

CANCELED: Training Educators to Implement Behavioral Interventions for Students With Autism Within a Modular Intervention Framework

(Applied Research)
CYNTHIA M. ANDERSON (May Institute), Rose Iovannone (University of South Florida/Florida Mental Health), Tristram Smith (University of Rochester Medical Center), Suzannah J. Iadarola (University of Rochester)
Abstract:

Educators are under intense pressure to meet the needs of students with autism spectrum disorder in public schools. Meeting this need is a challenge due to many factors including the varied ways that students with ASD may present, a lack of resources such as trained staff and/or access to quality training, and poor contextual fit between evidence-informed interventions and the context of schools. For example, many interventions for children with ASD are evaluated in tightly controlled settings with highly trained implementers working 1:1 with a child. In contrast, educators rarely have intensive training in interventions, frequently are not working 1:1 with students, and have minimal control over myriad environmental variables. We developed MAAPS (Modular Approach to Autism Programming in Schools) to address these challenges. MAAPS is a framework for delivering and supporting implementation of evidence-informed interventions in schools. An iterative process is used to enhance contextual fit of interventions and on-going coaching in implementation increases buy-in and fidelity. We engaged in a 4-year process to develop MAAPS, assess its feasibility, and conduct a preliminary evaluation of efficacy. We assessed feasibility using the RE-AIM framework with teachers, administrators, and parents across several schools in three different states in the United States. We then conducted a randomized controlled trial across 28 students with a diagnosis of ASD and their teachers in schools from three states in the United States. MAAPS was found to be both feasibly and preliminarily efficacious.

 
Sleeping Beauties: Teaching Adults to Arrange Safe Infant Sleep Environments
(Applied Research)
JACQUELINE CARROW (Caldwell University), Jason C. Vladescu (Caldwell University), Sharon A. Reeve (Caldwell University), April N. Kisamore (Hunter College)
Abstract: According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, there are approximately 3,500 sleep related infant deaths each year in the United States. National campaigns and legislation have advocated adherence to safe sleep practices since the 1990’s, however, rates of infant mortality have remained fairly unchanged since the recommendation of the supine position in 1998. Further, outcomes in the safe infant sleep literature evaluating strategies to teach safe infant sleep practices demonstrate mixed results. Behavioral skills training (BST) is an evidenced-based teaching strategy shown to successfully teach various safety skills to adults. The current study evaluated the efficacy of BST to teach adults how to arrange a safe sleep environment for infants. Additionally, we examined the extent to which BST conducted in one context established correct responding across a range of contexts created to represent a range of safe and unsafe infant sleep environments. Eight undergraduate and graduate students participated. Results showed BST improved arrangement of a safe sleep environment in the trained and untrained contexts for all participants.
 
 
Invited Paper Session #89
CE Offered: BACB

PAX Good Behavior Game: Cultural Adaption and Pilot Trial in Sweden

Monday, September 30, 2019
11:30 AM–12:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 4, A1
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
Instruction Level: Intermediate
CE Instructor: Magnus Johansson, M.S.
Chair: Dag Strömberg (Autism Center for Young Children, Stockholm)
MAGNUS JOHANSSON (Oslo Metropolitan University)

Magnus Johansson is a licensed psychologist, former CEO of a private care organization, and with 10 years of experience working as a consultant, primarily with leadership and organizational development using Organizational Behavior Management and Contextual Behavioral Science. During 2015-2017, Magnus was project manager for cultural adaption and pilot testing of the PAX Good Behavior Game in Sweden (www.paxiskolan.se), collaborating with Ata Ghaderi at Karolinska Institutet as PI, and Dennis Embry at the PAXIS Institute.

 

In 2017 Magnus initiated a Ph.D. research project at Oslo Metropolitan University. The aim is to develop a way to measure Nurturing Work Environments, and to investigate the effects of interventions to improve nurturance, using the concept of evidence-based kernels supported by an Ecological Momentary Assessment smartphone app. Anthony Biglan and Ingunn Sandaker are supervisors in the project.

Abstract:

The Good Behavior Game (GBG) has decades of research in classrooms with positive short-term and long-term effects impacting a broad range of outcomes, such as reduced behavioral problems, preventing substance abuse and improving educational attainment (Kellam et al., 2011). GBG has its roots in the behavior analytic tradition (Barrish, Saunders & Wolf, 1969) and PAX GBG (e.g., Streimann et al., 2017) has evolved by increased inclusion of the students as well as adding several evidence-based kernels (Embry & Biglan, 2008) to create a set of tools for teachers to use in their everyday classroom activities within the regular school curriculum. Adapting PAX GBG, which was created in the USA, to accommodate the cultural differences in Swedish schools was an important undertaking before conducting a pilot trial. This presentation will detail the process of cultural adaption and its outcomes, as well as describe the application and co-dependence of several of the evidence-based kernels included in PAX GBG. Implementation strategy, adherence and future recommendations based on experiences from the pilot trial will also be discussed. The pilot trial was a within-subjects design, with 14 classrooms in grades 1-2. Outcomes were assessed before the intervention and after five months, using classroom level observations by independent observers, as well as teachers and parents filling out Strength and Difficulties Questionnaires for the participating students. Results showed large effects on both observations and teacher's SDQ-ratings. Uniquely, this trial also investigated teachers' perceived stress, indicating a very large decrease in stress levels.

Target Audience:

Those interested in universal prevention and strategies to create nurturing, happy, and productive classrooms.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) discuss universal prevention and key behaviors that affect long term outcomes; (2) discuss the Good Behavior Game and the evidence on its effectiveness; (3) discuss evidence-based kernels and how PAX GBG provides a toolkit for teachers; (4) discuss a cultural adaption process and the outcomes of the Swedish pilot trial.
 
 
Paper Session #90
Topics in Verbal Behavior
Monday, September 30, 2019
11:30 AM–12:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 6, A2
Area: VRB
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Chair: Rodrigo Dal Ben (Universidade Federal de São Carlos)
 
Looking Out the Window and Back Inside: A Behavioral Explanation of Early Speech Perception
Domain: Theory
RODRIGO DAL BEN (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Débora Souza (Universidade Federal de São Carlos)
 
Abstract: Cognitive researchers have studied early speech perception extensively. Although their data reveal several contingencies involved in early verbal development, the theoretical explanations provided usually contain non-falsifiable constructs, such as cognitive agents. Falsifiable behavioral explanations, based on reflex and operant principles, may offer a more parsimonious alternative. However, explicit consequences for speech perception are usually absent in experimental designs employed by cognitivists and those conducted in natural environments. Automatic reinforcement/consequences are commonly invoked to fill this important gap. Although it may be a more parsimonious heuristic, the falsifiable line that distinguishes its use as a hypothetical construct from an oxymoron can be blurred. Here we analyze previous studies to show that conceptual and practical criteria should be followed for a proper use of automatic consequences as part of a behavioral explanation of verbal development. Conceptually, explicit descriptions of antecedents and of potentially testable relations between responses and assumed consequences should be provided. Practically, its use should promote empirical research on contingencies that establishes explicit consequences as automatic ones, which may require innovative research designs to put the behavior under the microscope. Adhering to these criteria may provide a more complete understanding of speech perception and verbal development.
 
Teaching Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder Intraverbal Responses About the Past
Domain: Applied Research
JEANNE STEPHANIE GONZALEZ (Johanna McDonald, LLC), Sarah Slocum (Marcus Autism Center and Emory School of Medicine)
 
Abstract: Research has demonstrated that responding to questions regarding past events is a developmental milestone typically reached by age three or four. Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) might struggle with this skill in comparison to their neurotypical peers. This study describes a methodology for teaching subjects with ASD intraverbal responses about past events by systematically increasing delays between the presentation of target stimuli and the delivery of a question about the target stimuli. Probes of the terminal delay were conducted after each successive increase in delay. Results showed both subjects successfully responded to questions after a 30-min delay following some level of treatment. This study demonstrated an effective method for teaching intraverbal responses describing past events. More research is needed to replicate these results, study different methods for teaching this skill, and test theoretical mechanisms for remembering.
 
 
 
Symposium #91
CE Offered: BACB
New Approaches to Communication and Social Speech for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder
Monday, September 30, 2019
2:00 PM–2:50 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 6, A2
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Marjorie H. Charlop (Claremont McKenna College)
Discussant: Ruth M. DeBar (Caldwell University)
CE Instructor: Marjorie H. Charlop, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) display characteristic communication deficits that interfere not only with verbal behavior but with social interactions as well. Researchers continue with their endeavors to find creative solutions and novel approaches. The present symposium includes four studies in which innovative interventions have been designed to help children on the spectrum advance in their social communication. In the first presentation, a new form of script prompting, a picture-script intervention, was created to teach minimal verbalizers to speak in full sentences. In the second presentation, children with limited verbal skills were taught to approach and initiate a verbal request for play to a peer using the Multiple Incidental Teaching Sessions (MITS) procedure. Presentation 3 discusses the use of heritage language for bilingual children with ASD during parent presented Natural Language Paradigm (NLP) sessions. Finally, the last study presents results from an assessment of social language during indoor versus outdoor social skills groups. Taken together, this symposium provides new interventions and adaptions to facilitate the children’s social communication. Exciting prospects can be drawn as we look forward to continued success in teaching communication to children with autism spectrum disorder.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): Communication, Social Speech, Verbal Behavior
Target Audience:

Target audience includes graduate students, BCBAs, BCaBAs, RBTs and other practitioners working with children, adolescents, and adults with autism spectrum disorder.

 

Increasing Speech via Picture Script With Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder

Caitlyn Gumaer (Claremont Graduate University), Marjorie H. Charlop (Claremont McKenna College), Jenna Gilder (Claremont Graduate University), ALANNA DANTONA (Claremont Graduate University ), Benjamin R. Thomas (Claremont Graduate University), Brittany Nichole Bell (Claremont Graduate University)
Abstract:

Typically, communication interventions target nonverbal children and highly verbal children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), but fewer focus on those in the middle who are considered “phrase speakers.” It may be possible to adjust the highly successful script programs that have been designed for verbal children for these phrase speakers (Charlop-Christy & Kelso, 2003). The present study used a multiple baseline design across participants to examine the effects of a picture-based script program with four school-aged, phrase speakers with ASD. Picture cards, similar to those used in PECS, were set up on a sentence strip, for the children to say. Each sentence contained verb pictures (to eat, to play), quantity pictures (numbers), size pictures (big, little), colors (red, orange, green), and nouns (candy, cars). Essentially, the child learned to say, “I want to play big blue cars” as opposed to “I want car.” The pictures were faded out until the child used only speech. Initial results indicate significant increases in mean length of utterances across all four participants. Results also indicate generalization to unfamiliar therapists in unfamiliar settings across three of the four participants. Findings from the current study may yield implications for communication interventions for phrase speakers with ASD.

 

Using Multiple Incidental Teaching Sessions to Increase Play Initiations for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder

JENNA GILDER (Claremont Graduate University), Marjorie H. Charlop (Claremont McKenna College)
Abstract:

Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) may experience severe speech delays and language deficits (Schreibman, 1988) that as a result can restrict their already limited social skills (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-5th edition). To address these concerns, the present study examined the use of Multiple Incidental Teaching Sessions (MITS) paired with an incremental time delay to teach appropriate verbal initiations for play to children with ASD. This study used a multiple baseline design across six participants with ASD. Each child was taught to ask their peer to play with them via MITS. In baseline, all six children did not consistently ask their peer to play. During intervention, all of the children learned quickly to independently ask their peers to play. Five of the six children generalized the skill to a new setting and to their sibling. Maintenance was also seen at 6-months. These finding provide support for the use of MITS in teaching social verbal initiations to children with ASD.

 

Assessing Bilingual Language Acquisition in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder Using the Natural Language Paradigm

CAITLYN GUMAER (Claremont Graduate University), Nataly Lim (University of Texas at Austin), Alanna Dantona (Claremont Graduate University), Marjorie H. Charlop (Claremont McKenna College)
Abstract:

Little research has been done with bilingual children in their heritage language with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) as practitioners and parents fear that exposing a child with ASD to more than one language will cause further delays in language development and other core deficit areas (Kremer-Sadlik, 2005). Yet recent research has found that exposure to and the use of heritage languages can be advantageous (Lim & Charlop, 2018). However, research has yet to explore how exposure to both one’s heritage language and English can impact a child with ASD’s language abilities and verbal behavior. The present study used a multiple baseline design across four parent-child dyads to assess bilingual language acquisition using the Natural Language Paradigm (NLP; Laski, Charlop & Schreibman, 1987; Spector & Charlop, 2018). Following free-play baseline sessions, four mothers were taught to implement NLP in both their heritage language (i.e., Spanish, Korean) and English. To control for treatment effects, NLP was counter-balanced across the four parent-child dyads. Upon the implementation of NLP, regardless of language condition, each child’s appropriate verbalizations increased during NLP treatment sessions and in free-play probe sessions. Findings from the current study may yield implications for language interventions for bilingual children with ASD.

 

CANCELED: Spontaneous Social and Language Behaviors of Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder During Physical Play

Benjamin Thomas (Claremont Graduate University), MARJORIE CHARLOP (Claremont McKenna College)
Abstract:

Physical play is a natural context for children’s social and language development. Unfortunately, children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are less likely to engage in physical play and are more socially isolated on playgrounds and at recess than peers without ASD. Although much of typically developing children's socializing occurs on playgrounds, the majority of behavioral social skills groups for children with ASD take place in classrooms or therapy settings, with limited generalization to natural play settings (Bellini, Peters, Brenner, & Hopf, 2007; Kasari & Locke, 2011). Therefore, this study used a multiple-baseline across-participants design to compare the effects of two intervention settings, physical play-based (e.g., playground games) and classroom-based (e.g., board games and collaborative arts & crafts activities), on several spontaneous social behaviors of six children with ASD. Results indicate that all children engaged in more spontaneous talking, eye contact, play, clowning, and happiness behavior, and displayed fewer inappropriate behaviors during physical play-based intervention sessions compared to baseline or the classroom-based sessions. The present findings suggest several implications for incorporating physical play into developmental language research and practice for children with ASD.

 
 
Paper Session #92
Public Policy, Accommodation Rights, and Advocacy
Monday, September 30, 2019
2:00 PM–2:50 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, Meeting Room 24/25
Chair: Carmel Leonard (Simmons College)
 
Teaching Reasonable Accommodation Rights in an Employment Setting to Young Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Area: DDA
Domain: Applied Research
RICHARD PRICE (Michigan State University; Hope Network Center for Autism), Marisa H Fisher (Michigan State University), Matthew T. Brodhead (Michigan State University), John Wenzel (Michigan State University)
 
Abstract: Individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) experience difficulty maintaining employment, as they experience discrimination and violations against their legal rights that often lead to loss of employment. Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) protects individuals with disabilities from discrimination in employment settings; yet, few individuals with IDD are aware of the ADA and their rights under the law. The current study examined the effectiveness of a Disability Rights Training and visual aids to increase participants’ knowledge of reasonable accommodation rights in an employment setting. Using a multiple probe design, 9 individuals with IDD (ages 19-24) participated. Pre-intervention, participants displayed variable knowledge of disability rights, evidenced by low scores on a video assessment of 10 scenarios in which participants were asked to determine if a scenario of an accommodation request denial depicted a rights violation or non-violation. Post-intervention, 8 participants increased correct responding on the video assessment; 6 required additional supports (e.g., feedback and/or booster sessions) to enhance accuracy, and 1 participant was removed for disruptive behavior. Overall the current training increased knowledge of disability rights for 8 of 9 participants with IDD, allowing them to advocate for their rights and to improve employment outcomes.
 
Public Policy Implications of the Autism Community With Language Skills Speaking on Behalf of the Non-Verbal
Area: AUT
Domain: Service Delivery
CARMEL LEONARD (Nashoba Learning Group)
 
Abstract: With the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual 5's integration of Asperger's Syndrome into Autism Spectrum Disorder, a much wider range of individuals with divergent interests and needs are identified by a single diagnosis. Advocates who feel their autism is a benefit speak on behalf of those for whom autism has brought severe challenges. This paper discusses the areas of public policy where the needs of people on opposite ends of the spectrum diverge, to the disadvantage of those with more severe presentations.
 
 
 
Symposium #93
CE Offered: BACB/QABA/NASP
Experimental Analysis of Social Interactions Between Nonhuman Animals
Monday, September 30, 2019
2:00 PM–2:50 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C3
Area: EAB/TBA; Domain: Basic Research
Chair: Hiroto Okouchi (Osaka Kyoiku University)
CE Instructor: Hiroto Okouchi, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Nonhuman (and human) animals interact in a variety of ways in natural settings, patterns of behavior often described by such labels as cooperation, coordination, and aggression. The studies reported in this symposium were designed to study these basic social interactions in laboratory animals using both conventional operant conditioning research methods and combinations of the latter with field research methods. Blosser examined the development of coordination between responding of two pigeons when one nominally controls the reinforcement of the other, but her results reveal in a stark way the reciprocity between teacher and pupil in learning. Carvalho uses conventional reinforcement schedules with the interesting twist that responses of two organisms coordinated with one another are required for reinforcement. Pitts and colleagues further explore the controlling variables of aggressive behavior of an actor toward a co-actor as stimuli associated with the upcoming reinforcement schedule impact aggressive behavior of the actor. The results of each study extend the understanding of basic behavioral processes that operate on individual behavior to that of organisms bound together by social contingencies.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Target Audience:

This symposium is suitable for a wide range of audiences, from beginning practitioners to seasoned ones.

Learning Objectives: 1. Develop insights as to how behavior analysts might account for interactions between two people. 2. Develop a better understanding of how social relations might be studied using behavior-analytic methods and concepts. 3. Learn about the current status of research on social behavior in behavior analysis.
 
Reciprocal Social Contingencies When Pigeons Serve as Teacher and Pupil
TONYA PAIGE BLOSSER (West Virginia University), Kennon Andy Lattal (West Virginia University)
Abstract: An organism’s behavior is shaped through direct interactions with the environment and agents acting as a “shaper.” Herrnstein (1964) suggested that a teacher-pigeon could shape a student-pigeon’s behavior so that both could obtain food. Because Herrnstein provided no details of his procedures and presented only a verbal description of the final performance, we replicated Herrnstein’s procedures to better understand the contingencies involved in the social exchange he described. One pigeon was designated the teacher and a second, the pupil. The pigeons were separated by a transparent wall. Each pigeon had its own food hopper; for the teacher, a response key; and for the student, a platform that, when stood on, electrically allowed pecks of the teacher to operate both food hoppers. Food was delivered to both pigeons when (1) the student was standing on the platform and (2) the teacher pecked the key when (1) occurred. This presentation traces the development of this reciprocal social relation and its generalization to the teaching of a new response to a naïve pigeon. The results are discussed in relation to basic behavioral processes operating on both pigeons as each learned the stimulus and response sequences necessary to complete the social interaction between them.
 

CANCELED: Evaluating Effects of Simple Reinforcement Schedules on Patterns of Coordinated Social Behaviors

LUCAS COUTO DE DE CARVALHO (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Deisy De Souza (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Leticia Santos (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Alceu Regaço (Universidade Federal de São Carlos)
Abstract:

Cooperative behavior involves contingencies in which reinforcers for any given cooperating member depend in part on the behavior of other members. Coordinated relations within cooperating groups have been considered a unit of behavior at a social level of selection. This presentation will describe three experiments designed to evaluate if coordinated behaviors are selected by contingencies of reinforcement. A total of nineteen dyads of rats served in thee experiments. In Experiment 1, we investigated effects of Fixed Ratio (FR) schedules on patterns of coordinated responding in two groups with increasing FR requirements. In one group, rats worked on adjoining chambers and only coordinated responses were reinforced. In the second group, rats worked on separated chambers and only individual responding were reinforced. In Experiment 2, we contrasted coordinated performances between two Variable Interval (VI) schedules, one of which reinforcement depended on the behavior of both subjects, but without coordination, and the second in which reinforcers depended on coordinated behaviors. In Experiment 3, dyads are being exposed to Fixed and Variable Interval schedules with individual (independent reinforcement) and coordinated (mutual reinforcement) contingencies. All experiments indicate that coordinated responding changes as function of both consequences programmed for these behaviors and types of reinforcement schedules.

 
Effects of Rich-to-Lean Transitions in a Model of Social Aggression in Pigeons
RAYMOND C. PITTS (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Christine E. Hughes (University of North Carolina Wilmington), Dean C. Williams (University of Kansas)
Abstract: Pigeons keypecked under two-component multiple fixed-interval (FI) schedules. Each component provided a different reinforcer magnitude (small or large), signaled by the color of the key light. Attacks toward a live, protected target pigeon were measured. Large and small reinforcer components alternated irregularly such that four different transitions between the size of the past reinforcer and the size of the upcoming reinforcer (small past reinforcer-small upcoming reinforcer - lean-lean; small past reinforcer-large upcoming reinforcer - lean-rich; rich-lean; and rich-rich) occurred within each session. The FI for each component was the same within each phase, but was manipulated across phases. For all pigeons, more attack occurred following larger reinforcers. For 2 of the 3 pigeons, this effect was modulated by the size of the upcoming reinforcer; attack following larger reinforcers was elevated when the upcoming reinforcer was small (i.e., during rich-lean transitions). Interestingly, this rich-lean effect disappeared as the length of the FI schedule was increased (i.e., control by upcoming reinforcer size diminished with increases in the inter-reinforcement interval). These data are consistent with the notion that rich-lean transitions function aversively and, thus, can precipitate aggressive behavior. They also illustrate, however, that this function is modified by the temporal context of reinforcement.
 
 
Paper Session #94
Relapse
Monday, September 30, 2019
2:00 PM–2:50 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C4
Area: EAB
Instruction Level: Advanced
Chair: Josele Abreu Rodrigues (Universidade de Brasilia)
 
Relapse of Behavioral Variation
Domain: Basic Research
JOSELE ABREU RODRIGUES (Universidade de Brasília), Gabriela Chiaparini (Universidade de Brasília)
 
Abstract: The present study investigated relapse of behavioral variation. In the Training Phase (context A), rats were exposed to the multiple Lag 10 Yoke (Experiment 1) and to the multiple Lag 10 Lag 1-3 (Experiment 2) schedules. With Lag 10, to be reinforced, a four-response sequence had to differ from the previous 10 sequences; with Yoke, any sequence could generate reinforcers; and with Lag 1-3, reinforcers were contingent to sequences that were equal to one of the three previous sequences, and that differ from the last one. Reinforcers probability was equated between components. In the Elimination Phase (context B), the multiple Rep 3 Rep 3 schedule was in effect such that a sequence was reinforced if it was equal to one of the three previous sequences. In the Test Phase (context A), the repetition contingency was eliminated, and two response-independent reinforcers were delivered in each component. In both experiments, relapse of recurrence time, a measure of sequence variation, was observed mainly with the “Lag 10” component, despite of the requirement or not of variation in the other component. These results show that variation, as other operant dimensions of behavior, may undergone relapse.
 
The Effects of the Cost of Responding on Relapse of Response Sequences
Domain: Basic Research
JOSELE ABREU-RODRIGUES (Universidade de Brasília), João Gabriel de Oliveira (Universidade de Brasília)
 
Abstract: Relapse is the reappearing of responding after extinction. The present study used a combination of two experimental models of relapse (renewal and reinstatement) to evaluate the effects of response cost (switching between operanda) on the reappearance of response sequences. Renewal was evaluated by changing the experimental context, and reinstatement by delivering response-independent reinforcers. Four rats were exposed, in the Training Phase (context A), to a multiple schedule with two components. In the 1-S component, reinforcers were contingent to five-response sequences with one switch between levers; in the 3-S component, only sequences with three switches were reinforced. In the Elimination Phase (context B), a multiple Ext Ext schedule operated such that no reinforcers were delivered in both components. In the Test Phase (context A), the multiple Ext Ext schedule remained in effect, but two response-independent reinforcers were delivered in each component. Relapse was observed for all animals in both components. However, the magnitude of relapse was higher for three-switch sequences (3-S component) than for one-switch sequences (1-S component) for three rats; for the remaining rat, there was no differential relapse between components. Unexpectedly, sequences with higher cost showed greater relapse. The causes of this effect have not yet been identified.
 
 
 
Paper Session #95
Behavioral Economics
Monday, September 30, 2019
2:00 PM–2:50 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C2
Chair: Mari Watanabe-Rose (City University of New York)
 
A Comparison of Real Versus Hypothetical Delay Discounting for Food and Money in a Czech Sample
Area: EAB
Domain: Basic Research
ERIN B. RASMUSSEN (Idaho State University), Tereza Prihodova (National Institute of Mental Health, Klecany; Charles University), Katerina Prihodova (National Institute of Mental Health, Klecany, Charles University)
 
Abstract: Previous research shows that delay discounting processes between hypothetical and real outcomes are similar, though the vast majority of research has been conducted with monetary outcomes and with American participants. Food and monetary discounting processes for real and hypothetical outcomes were compared in a community sample from Prague, Czech Republic. Twenty participants completed the Monetary Choice Questionnaire and the Food Choice Questionnaire, measures of monetary and food discounting, respectively, across three different magnitudes of outcomes. All participants completed the MCQ and FCQ twice in randomized order—once with hypothetical outcomes and once with potentially real outcomes. Results showed a significant main effect of magnitude with smaller food and monetary outcomes being discounted more steeply than larger outcomes. There were no differences between real and hypothetical food outcomes or monetary outcomes. Moreover, hypothetical food and monetary outcomes were strongly and significantly correlated to potentially real outcomes. This extends the research that compares real and hypothetical outcomes to food and with European participants.
 
The Use of Behavior Analysis by Non-Behavior Analysts in Higher Education: Collaborations Toward Cultural Changes
Area: EDC
Domain: Service Delivery
MARI WATANABE-ROSE (City University of New York)
 
Abstract: In higher education, one issue regarding student learning is that university faculty do not typically receive training to become effective educators. In this presentation, I will describe my collaborations with university faculty members who are not behavior analysts. The ultimate goal of the collaborations is the changes in the educators’ behavior, particularly their classroom practices, to improve student learning. In one of such collaborations, I worked with a mathematics professor to a) identify some of his teaching and assessment techniques; b) explain, using behavior analytic terms, why they contribute to student success, and c) make further recommendations. I have also collaborated with groups of faculty and tutors. For example, I conducted professional development workshops in various venues and groups including departmental meetings, centers for teaching and learning, tutoring centers, and (non-behavior analytic) conferences, to introduce basic behavioral principles and demonstrate how they can be used in their practices. In the U.S., where behavior economics is increasingly popular to “fix” societal issues, it is extremely important to disseminate the principles and mechanisms behind those remedies and to increase people’s, especially educators’, understandings of them. Changes in their behavior (i.e., teaching practices) potentially lead to cultural changes beyond these individuals.
 
 
 
Paper Session #96
Topics in Education
Monday, September 30, 2019
2:00 PM–3:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C1
Area: EDC
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Chair: Joanne K. Robbins (Morningside Academy)
 

Project HEAR+T: Implementation of A Social-Emotional Intervention Package to Teach Behavioral Expectations in Early Childhood

Domain: Applied Research
CHARIS WAHMAN (The Ohio State University)
 
Abstract:

With the rising incidence in young children being suspended and expelled from pre-school settings in the United States, on-going examination of evidence-based social/emotional/behavioral interventions is essential. The present study explored the feasibility of a social/emotional/behavioral intervention on teacher and student behavior. Children and teachers were recruited from an inclusive early childhood center in a Midwestern city to participate in this study focused on explicitly teaching behavioral expectations. Using a multiple baseline design across three children, the impact of scripted stories, role plays, and positive reinforcement was examined. Teachers were trained on how to implement the intervention through simple technical assistance meetings, including on-going feedback. A change in behavior was observed for all three target children which resulted in an established functional relation between the intervention package and child adherence to behavioral expectations.

 

Online Learning: The Effect of Synchronous Discussion Sessions in Asynchronous Courses

Domain: Applied Research
Jesslyn Farros (Center for Applied Behavior Analysis (CABA) and Endicott College), Lesley A. Shawler (Endicott College), Ksenia Kravtchenko (Endicott College), BRYAN J. BLAIR (Long Island University)
 
Abstract:

Online learning is extremely prevalent in education. In 2015, close to six million students were taking at least one online learning course, which was 29.7% of all postsecondary students (U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, 2018). In 2017, the Online Learning Consortium reported an almost 4% increase in online learning students in 2015 as compared to the previous two years. Although online learning is becoming more prevalent, there has been little to no research to determine what makes online learning most effective and those that have, either have not compared modalities (i.e., only testing one format) (Sella et al., 2014; Walker and Rehfeldt, 2012) or have focused on another aspect of the learning (i.e., does grading anonymously affect performance) (Lui et al., 2018). Determining the components of online learning that lead to better student outcomes will add to the current literature and improve online learning as a whole. The current study comprises four different experiments that evaluated the effect of synchronous discussion sessions in asynchronous master-level applied behavior analysis courses. Three different applied behavior analysis courses were used and each experiment utilized a slightly different experimental design. The first two focused on the addition of synchronous discussion within an asynchronous course and the last two focused on comparing the effects of synchronous and asynchronous discussion. The primary purpose of these experiments was to determine what forms of discussion (synchronous vs asynchronous) are most effective in asynchronous online courses. (Note: Data is submitted for the first experiment only as the last three are currently in progress.)

 
Analyzing Instructional Content
Domain: Service Delivery
JOANNE K. ROBBINS (Morningside Academy; PEER Intl.)
 
Abstract: Designing instruction begins with the analysis of content and defining objectives. Content analysis is not a statement of subject matter to be learned, but of specific types of instructional relations to be taught and tested. One taxonomy or classification system of educational objectives was created by Tiemann and Markle (1991). The system divides objectives into three primary domains domains: psychomotor, simple cognitive, and complex cognitive. Underlying all learning is an emotional component. This paper will introduce how content can be analyzed to discover the relations to be taught, how testing differs for each type of relation, and how each type of relation requires different types of practice. For example, those relations that fall within the psychomotor domain, which includes basic responses, chains, and kinesthetic repertoires, will require much different teaching and practice approaches than those that fall into the simple cognitive domain or the complex cognitive domain, which includes concepts, principles, and strategies.
 
 
 
Symposium #97
Translating Basic Behavioral Processes into Effective Clinical Interventions for Persons With Autism and Developmental Disabilities
Monday, September 30, 2019
2:00 PM–3:50 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 6, A3/A4
Area: AUT/EAB; Domain: Translational
Chair: Wayne W. Fisher (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center)
Discussant: David P. Wacker (The University of Iowa)
Abstract:

Conceptualizing translational research from a transactional perspective, in which scientific and clinical information flows in multiple directions, leads to more relevant basic and applied research and interventions that are more effective. In this symposium, we will present a series of translational investigations that have involved collaborations between basic and applied researchers to improve our understanding of, and ability to treat severe problem behavior. These investigations include studies involving human and nonhuman species and applications of behavioral momentum theory and the generalized matching law to increase the effectiveness, efficiency, and durability of function-based treatment of destructive behavior in individuals with autism and related disorders. Our discussant will integrate and discuss the applied and theoretical implications of these studies and provide directions for future research.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): autism, translational research, treatment relapse
 
Mitigating Resurgence of Destructive Behavior Following Functional Communication Training Using Multiple and Chain Schedules
(Applied Research)
WAYNE W. FISHER (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Cathleen C. Piazza (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Ashley Marie Fuhrman (University of Nebraska Medical Center), Brian D. Greer (University of Nebraska Medical Center's Munroe-Meyer Institute), Daniel R. Mitteer (University of Nebraska Medical Center's Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Abstract: Resurgence is a form of treatment relapse that involves the reoccurrence of a previously reinforcement response (e.g., destructive behavior) following extinction of a subsequently reinforced alternative response (e.g., a functional communication response [FCR] during functional communication training [FCT]). Results of several recent translational studies have suggested that correlating contextual or discriminative stimuli with the delivery or withholding of reinforcement for the FCR may mitigate resurgence of destructive behavior, but none have isolated the effects of those stimuli. In this study, we (a) trained the FCR, brought it under stimulus control of a multiple schedule, and thinned its reinforcement schedule in one stimulus context and then (b) tested the effects of the SD and S from the multiple schedule during a resurgence sequence (baseline, FCT, extinction) in a novel context relative to an equivalent resurgence sequence in another novel context without the SD and S. Results showed less persistence of the FCR and less resurgence of destructive behavior in context with the SD and S present relative to the context without those stimuli. We discuss the applied and theoretical implications of these results relative to theories of resurgence that do and do not accommodate the effects of discriminative and contextual stimuli.
 

An Evaluation of Behavioral Persistence With Academic Performance

(Applied Research)
KELLY M. SCHIELTZ (University of Iowa), Amy Conrad (University of Iowa), Jennifer J. McComas (University of Minnesota), Christopher A. Podlesnik (Florida Institute of Technology), David P. Wacker (The University of Iowa)
Abstract:

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of positive reinforcement on academic behavior that was historically related to problem behavior maintained by negative reinforcement. Sam was a 12-year-old boy with autism. Problem behavior and academic performance in math were evaluated across three conditions (baseline, contingent positive reinforcement, and bonus positive reinforcement) within a reversal design. IOA was assessed across 31% of sessions and averaged 98%. Results showed behavioral persistence with academic performance (number of problems attempted; Figure 1, top panel). As Sam received greater amounts of positive reinforcement (for answering bonus questions) he completed more math problems across sessions during subsequent baseline extinction sessions but also continued to show problem behavior (Figure 1, bottom panel). Thus, even though persistence of appropriate academic behavior in the absence of treatment following contingent positive reinforcement was achieved, problem behavior also showed persistence. We will discuss these results within a conceptual model linking neuroscience, behavior analysis, and behavioral momentum theory to promote the long-term maintenance of appropriate academic behavior.

 

An Intervention for Change-Resistant Feeding Behavior in Children With Autism

(Applied Research)
CATHLEEN C. PIAZZA (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Wayne W. Fisher (Munroe-Meyer Institute, University of Nebraska Medical Center), Jaime Crowley (University of Nebraska Medical Center), Kathryn M. Peterson (University of Nebraska Medical Center's Munroe-Meyer Institute)
Abstract:

Resistance to change or insistence on sameness is a problematic behavior exhibited by children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) in which the child has extreme emotional outbursts in response to change. Restricted diet variety is one common form of resistance to change that children with ASD exhibit. For example, Schreck, Williams, and Smith found that children with ASD ate about half the dairy items, fruits, proteins, and vegetables children without ASD ate, and the remainder of their diet often included processed junk foods that were low in nutritional content and high in fat and sugar. In the current study, we implemented an intervention for change-resistant feeding behavior based conceptually, but not mathematically, on the generalized matching law with 5 young children with ASD and a restricted diet variety. During the intervention, the researcher gave the participant a choice between (a) a change-resistant food and an alternative food when consuming either produced no programmed consequence during the free-choice condition, (b) a change-resistant food and an alternative food when consuming the change-resistant food produced no programmed consequence and consuming the alternative food produced a preferred item during the asymmetrical-choice condition, and (c) choosing and consuming the alternative food independently and receiving the preferred item or being guided to choose and consume the alternative food during the single-choice condition. Most participants began consuming the first alternative food exposed to the intervention at high, stable levels during the single-choice condition and continued to consume the alternative food during a reversal to the asymmetrical-choice condition. Consumption of other alternative foods increased when the researcher implemented the asymmetrical-choice condition before exposure to the single-choice condition. The generalized matching law provided a conceptual model for arranging contingencies during our intervention to (a) decrease the relative value and frequency of consumption of the change-resistant food, (b) increase the relative value and frequency of the alternative food, and (c) increase the preference for the alternative food for some children (e.g., the child preferred to eat green beans over hot dog).

 

A Translational Analysis of Non-Sequential Renewal

(Basic Research)
HENRY S. ROANE (Upstate Medical University), William Sullivan (Upstate Medical University), Andrew R. Craig (SUNY Upstate Medical University)
Abstract:

ABA renewal occurs when behavior learned in one context (e.g., home; A) and treated in a separate context (e.g., clinic; B) reemerges when the original context is reintroduced (A). Basic-laboratory assessments of renewal may inform clinical efforts to maintain reduction of severe problem behavior when clients transition between contexts. The contextual changes arranged during standard renewal procedures, however, may not align with those that clients experience during outpatient therapy. In this presentation, we first describe a human-laboratory translation in which we compared levels of recurrence using the standard ABA renewal procedure and a modified nonsequential ACA procedure, which was modeled from the typical course of outpatient treatment for problem behavior. Second, we compared renewal of rats’ lever pressing following a standard ABA renewal procedure (i.e., baseline in Context A, extinction in Context B, renewal test in Context A) and a non-sequential renewal assessment wherein treatment consisted of frequent alternation between Context A (associated with reinforcement for lever pressing) and Context B (associated with extinction). Across both studies, responding renewed to a greater extent in the non-sequential condition. These findings will be discussed within the framework of treatment for severe problem behavior, particularly related to implications for clinical research and practic

 
 
Invited Symposium #98
CE Offered: BACB
Autism and Behavior Analysis: International Perspectives
Monday, September 30, 2019
2:00 PM–3:50 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 4, A1
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Martha Costa Hübner (University of São Paulo)
Discussant: Martha Costa Hübner (University of São Paulo)
CE Instructor: Martha Hübner, Ph.D.
Abstract:

At this invited symposium, four different scenarios of Behavior Analysis field devoted to ASD (Autism Spectrum disorder) will be presented. Hübner, from Brazil, after giving a brief Brazilian scenario of Behavior Analysis, related to ASD, will describe how a Public University (University of São Paulo, USP) can play an important role in helping academic preparation of students to attend children with ASD and their parents, as well as offering services to prepare therapists to work in the field. Through step-by-step application of Behavioral Systems Analysis tools, USP Center for ASD (CAIS) was transformed: a specific undergraduate discipline, entitled Applied of Behavior Analysis to Autism, was created, guaranteeing greater visibility and stability of the work carried out by CAIS and, consequently, a higher number of undergraduate students enrolled in each semester, among other improvements that will be discussed. Williams, from USA and Spain, will bring her life’s experience as a scientist/practitioner in Applied Behavior Analysis, discussing challenges of maintaining such an approach in applied settings, while maintaining contact with the breakthroughs and extensions arising from ongoing applied research. Stromberg, from Sweden, will provide an overview of the development of behavior analytic services at the Autism Center for Young Children in Stockholm, as well as a national perspective on the use of Early Intensive Behavioral Intervention (EIBI) at other publicly funded habilitation centers. Finally, Eldevik, from Norway, will also focus on EIBI challenges in the country, such as having experts in ABA oversee, properly trained staff implement the intervention, getting parents involved and providing a minimum of 20 hours per week intensive intervention. Recent outcome data about dose-response relationship between weekly hours and outcome will be discussed.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Target Audience:

Board certified behavior analysts; licensed psychologists; graduate students.

 

The Role of Public University in Brazil in Preparing Human Resources to the Field of Behavior Analysis For Autism

MARTHA HÜBNER (University of São Paulo)
Abstract:

The main objective of the presentation is to demonstrate the effects of behavioral systems analysis, more specifically, the Behavioral Systems Engineering Model, in the improvement of services provided by the Center for Autism and Social Inclusion, (CAIS-USP). In a country where health services are deficient and where there is a good number of students interested in Behavior Analysis, the Public University can play an important role in helping the academic preparation of students to attend children with autism and, at the same time, giving services to prepare therapist to work in the field. With step-by-step application of Behavioral Systems Analysis tools, CAIS- USP was transformed. The main results were the establishment of feedback data, such as pre and post test data performed by the therapists before and after classes, the results of the discrete trial assessment to which the therapists were submitted to, data on the frequency in class and its correlation with the results of evaluations. The results involved information about the alumni, regarding the performance in the autism area and the results of the children ´s assessments in the VB-Mapp, before and after the beginning of the interventions. Another result of the present study was the creation of a specific undergraduate discipline, entitled Applied of Behavior Analysis to Autism, guaranteeing greater visibility and stability of the work carried out by CAIS and, consequently, a higher number of undergraduate students enrolled in each semester. Considering all the stages of the applied intervention model, the conclusion is that the most fundamental one was the definition of the macrosystem and the mission of the CAIS. From these definitions, several processes had been redesigned and tasks were distributed, allowing the collection of feedback data, fundamental for the planning and decisions taken in each semester.

Dr. Hübner is a professor of experimental psychology at the Institute of Psychology, University of São Paulo, and was coordinator of the graduate program in the experimental department from 2004 to 2010. She is also past president of the Brazilian Association of Psychology and of the Brazilian Association of Behavioral Medicine and Psychology. She conducts research at the Laboratory for the Study of Verbal Operants involving managing processes in the acquisition of symbolic behaviors such as reading, writing, and verbal episodes. She is currently immersed in three areas of research: investigating the empirical relations between verbal and nonverbal behavior, analyzing the processes of control by minimal units in reading, and studying verbal behavior programs for children with autism spectrum disorders.
 

The Challenges of Maintaining the Science Practitioner Approach in the Applied Field of Behavior Analysis

GLADYS WILLIAMS (CIEL, SPAIN)
Abstract:

Today I will talk about my life’s experience as a scientist/practitioner of applied behavior analysis. In this presentation I would like to speak about the importance and challenges of maintaining such an approach in applied settings while maintaining contact with the breakthroughs and extensions arising from ongoing applied research.

Dr. Gladys Williams leads the program on autism and verbal behavior at the David Gregory School in NJ. She is the founder and director of Centro CIEL in Barcelona and Oviedo, Spain, and of LearnMore, inc. and institution to promote effective teaching strategies. Dr. Williams earned her doctoral degree in Special Education and Behavior Analysis from Columbia University - Teachers College, where she was a recipient of the Fred S. Keller Research Grant to study language development and autism. She has been granted several awards for her contributions in the field of applied behavior analysis. Dr. Williams has published 18 articles in peer reviewed journals such as the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, American Journal on Mental Retardation, Teaching Exceptional Children, etc. She has participated as guest reviewer for JABA, Behavior and Social Issues, and The Behavior Analyst. She is a frequent guest speaker in Europe and South America. At this time, Dr. Williams’ main objective is to implement effective strategies to teach functional verbal language to nonverbal children and to investigate strategies and techniques to facilitate social skills and functional language acquisition. Her quest is to utilize the behavioral technology to benefit children around the world.

 

Behavior Analysis and Autism in Sweden: A Brief History and a Look Towards the Future

DAG STRÖMBERG (Autism Center for Young Children, Stockholm)
Abstract: In Sweden, the use of behavior analytic interventions for children with autism has increased the last decades, even though much still remains to be done in order to ensure quality and further dissemination of evidence-based practice. Currently, the graduate course at Stockholm University on applied behavior analysis and autism is the only Verified Course Sequence in the country. This presentation will provide an overview of the development of behavior analytic services at the Autism Center for Young Children in Stockholm, as well as a national perspective on the use of Early Intensive Behavioral Intervention at other publicly funded habilitation centers. Some challenges concerning higher education and certification of behavior analysts in Sweden will be highlighted.
Dag Strömberg is a licensed speech-language pathologist, board certified behavior analyst and clinical supervisor at the Autismcenter små barn (Autism Center for Young Children)in Stockholm. He is the current president of the Swedish Association for Behavior Analysis. Dag has been working with habilitation services for individuals with autism for the past 20 years, intervening directly with children and caregivers as well as training staff members at the Autism Center for Young Children. He is a guest lecturer and supervisor internationally, mainly in France, Russia and India, and teaches at the ABAI Verified Course Sequence at Stockholm University. In addition, Dag is an accomplished musician. In 2015, he was awarded the title riksspelman, usually translated as "national folk musician", for playing the traditional Swedish flute härjedalspipa.
 

Early Intensive Behavioral Intervention for Children With Autism: Effects of Sub-Standard Implementation

SIGMUND ELDEVIK (Oslo Metropolitan University)
Abstract:

For the past thirty years Early Intensive Behavioral Intervention (EIBI) has been implemented in Norway and other European countries. In most countries it has been a challenge to deliver EIBI according to some suggested minimum standards. The most common challenges have been: to have experts in ABA oversee, and properly trained staff implement the intervention, to get parents involved and to provide intervention in the home, and to provide intensive intervention (a minimum of 20 hours per week). As a result of this, the outcome of EIBI has generally been moderate. However, outcome of EIBI has been much better than “treatment as usual”. Outcome reported from various studies in Europe confirm a dose-response relationship between weekly hours and outcome. I will present recent outcome data from a study where we compared effects of EIBI provided 10 hours a week and 20 hours a week. The outcome will be related to EIBI benchmarks.

Sigmund Eldevik is an associate Professor at Oslo Metropolitan University, Department of Behavioral Science. He is a clinical psychologist from the University of Oslo, and a BCBA-D with his doctoral degree from the University of Bangor, Wales. His research interests are on early intensive behavioral interventions for children with autism and other developmental disabilities.
 
 
Paper Session #99
Cultural Variability and Responsiveness
Monday, September 30, 2019
3:00 PM–3:50 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C2
Chair: Dorothy Xuan Zhang (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology; George Mason University; ABA Professional Committee of China Association of Rehabilitation of Disabled Persons (ABA-CARDP)
 
Code or Cope? Diving into Ethical Situations by Behavior Analysts in Mainland China
Area: CSS
Domain: Service Delivery
DOROTHY XUAN ZHANG (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology; George Mason University; ABA Professional Committee of China Association of Rehabilitation of Disabled Persons (ABA-CARDP), Fan-Yu Lin (Robert Morris University)
 
Abstract: Over the past decades, more and more educators, paraprofessionals, and parents have been drawn to the science of behavior analysis due to its impact on autism related treatment mainland, China. Many individuals underwent a verified course sequence and have become certified behavior analysts. While the growth in the field of behavior analysis is encouraging, decoding the Professional and Ethical Compliance Code for Behavior Analysts during may be difficult due to the contexts and cultural variables that one is in. The purpose of this presentation is to share results of a scenario-based survey study that is conducted in mainland China among individuals who studied behavior analysis. In addition to obtaining demographic information about those who practice behavior analysis in mainland China, another important goal of this study is to gain insights on the decision-making process in service-delivery situations where making ethical decisions may not be so “cut and dry”. The results of the study will provide information about professionals practicing behavior analysis in mainland, China. Results will also lead to an examination of the ethical guidelines that is specific to a particular region and further discussion and reflection about supervision training curriculum in a global sense.
 

CANCELED: Culturally Responsive Evidence-Based Interventions

Area: AUT
Domain: Service Delivery
DAISY WANG (Social Collaborative)
 
Abstract:

Cultural responsivity refers to the extent to which an approach or intervention considers the indigenous beliefs, history, norms, language, and behavior of a particular group of people and makes necessary adaptations to ensure social validity and goodness of fit. Presently, most evidence-based interventions in Applied Behavior Analysis originate from Western and Caucasian cultures of a specific socio-economic status. When such interventions are applied to other cultures, the efficacy and social validity can be compromised due to the discrepancy in cultures. Culturally responsive adaptations are therefore a necessary element of successful implementation of programs that were originally developed in a different culture. Successful implementation is paramount in favourable intervention outcomes, increased Quality of Life in the personal and family units, and building capacity in the community. The present paper reviews literature on culturally responsive adaptations of evidence-based interventions, identifies best practices in culturally responsive adaptations, and discusses future directions for further research and development in this issue.

 
 
 
Symposium #100
Kennedy Krieger Institute Neurobehavioral Programs: Clinical Services and Research
Monday, September 30, 2019
3:00 PM–3:50 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 6, A2
Area: DDA; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Lynn G. Bowman (Kennedy Krieger Institute and Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine)
Discussant: Iser Guillermo DeLeon (University of Florida)
Abstract:

The Neurobehavioral Programs at Kennedy Krieger Institute provide assessment and treatment of severe problem behavior displayed by individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The program has been in existence for over 30 years, and has served individuals from throughout the US and internationally. These presentations will describe the Neurobehavioral Program’s continuum of care, and how clinical services, research, and training are fully integrated and inform one another. In the first presentation, the continuum of services and neurobehavioral model of interdisciplinary assessment and treatment will be reviewed, highlighting behavioral and psychiatric approaches. Our outcome data indicate that 88% of patients achieved at least an 80% reduction in aggression, self-injury, property destruction, or other targeted behaviors; also, 86% of patients maintained behavior reductions at 3- and 6-month follow-up observations. The second presentation will describe the systematic process of integration of clinical care and research used in the Neurobehavioral Programs. Examples of this data-based approach will illustrate how this process can improve clinical outcomes and generate research that contributes to scientific knowledge.

Instruction Level: Basic
Keyword(s): continuum, interdisciplinary, service model
 
The Neurobehavioral Continuum of Care for Treatment of Severe Problem Behavior
PATRICIA F. KURTZ (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
Abstract: The Neurobehavioral Programs at Kennedy Krieger Institute provides hospital-based treatment of severe problem behavior displayed by individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The Programs also offer advanced training in applied behavior analysis to doctoral interns and postdoctoral fellows, conduct research, and provide advocacy. This presentation will describe the clinical services offered across the Neurobehavioral Continuum of Care, which includes inpatient, intensive outpatient, and outpatient treatment programs. The neurobehavioral model of interdisciplinary assessment and treatment will be reviewed, highlighting behavioral and psychiatric approaches. Our outcome data indicate that 88% of patients achieved at least an 80% reduction in aggression, self-injury, property destruction, or other targeted behaviors; also, 86% of patients maintained behavior reductions at 3- and 6-month follow-up observations. Case examples will be presented, and parent training and generalization of treatment gains will be discussed.
 

Integrating Clinical Service and Research in the Neurobehavioral Programs

Louis Hagopian (Kennedy Krieger Institute), PATRICIA F. KURTZ (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
Abstract:

The integration of clinical practice and research was foundational to the establishment of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Kennedy Krieger Institute - parent institutions of the Neurobehavioral Programs. These programs provide a continuum of care serving individuals with developmental disabilities who present with severe behavioral dysfunction. Over the past three decades, faculty and staff have published over 300 articles in peer reviewed journals, and received research funding in excess of $11M. This has been achieved in part through systematic data collection, data curation, and ongoing analysis of clinical outcomes. Datasets are accumulated and findings analyzed to evaluate clinical procedures, and inform changes to improve clinical care and guide research. Examples will be provided to illustrate how this approach has led to the development and refinement of clinical procedures, permitted larger scale evaluations of clinical procedures to examine their effectiveness and their limitations, and has resulted in new knowledge about problem behavior. Integration of clinical and research activities within a clinical program is critical to ensuring excellence in care, and can inspire clinically relevant research that contributes to knowledge and practice.

 
 
Symposium #101
CE Offered: BACB
Rethinking Reinforcement
Monday, September 30, 2019
3:00 PM–3:50 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C3
Area: EAB/PCH; Domain: Translational
Chair: Mitch Fryling (California State University, Los Angeles)
Discussant: Per Holth (OsloMet -- Oslo Metropolitan University)
CE Instructor: Mitch Fryling, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Reinforcement is fundamental to the analysis of behavior. Indeed, reinforcement plays a key role in most theoretical and philosophical work in behavior analysis, basic research in the experimental analysis of behavior, and in the application of behavioral principles towards socially significant behavior change. While the basics of reinforcement processes are well known to behavior analysts, researchers have continued to study reinforcement over the years, including the exploration of various details pertinent to different theories of reinforcement. The present symposium involves two presentations on the topic of reinforcement. The first presentation focuses on recent research related to various theories of reinforcement in the experimental analysis of behavior, including that pertaining to momentum, conditioned reinforcement, and response strength. After providing an overview of recent work in the area, questions about reinforcement as we know it are raised, setting the stage for the second presentation. The second presentation provides an alternative conceptualization of reinforcement. Problems with common ways of speaking about reinforcement in behavior analysis are highlighted, and an analysis of reinforcement as a setting factor is provided. The symposium concludes with a discussant commenting on various themes reviewed during the presentations.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Target Audience:

Master's and doctoral level behavior analysts interested in learning more about reinforcement theory and alternative conceptualizations of reinforcement processes.

Learning Objectives: -Describe two areas of research in the experimental analysis of reinforcement. -Explain one concern with common ways of talking about reinforcement. -Summarize how reinforcement may be conceptualized as a setting factor.
 
Reinforcement: Recent Research and Conceptual Analysis
(Theory)
MITCH FRYLING (California State University, Los Angeles)
Abstract: While most behavior analysts probably have a good understanding of the basics of reinforcement processes, less is known about the various theories of reinforcement, including the ongoing basic research exploring different hypotheses related to those theories. The current presentation focuses on recent research in the experimental analysis of behavior that focuses on reinforcement theory, and especially examines work in the areas of behavioral momentum, conditioned reinforcement, and response strength. The core ideas and assumptions associated with various theories of reinforcement are highlighted, including the points of contact and departure among them. Areas of ongoing discussion and debate are highlighted as well. The primary aim of the presentation is to provide a brief overview of several ongoing areas of inquiry in the basic analysis of reinforcement, and to call attention to theoretical and conceptual implications. This update on reinforcement will also serve to set the stage for the second presentation, which offers a critique and alternative analysis.
 
Reinforcement as a Setting Factor
(Theory)
LINDA J. PARROTT HAYES (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract: Events and their descriptions tend to be confused when the events present problems of observation, when they appear to resemble our descriptions of them, and when the events are taken to be synonymous with our reactions to them. Problems of these sorts are exacerbated when a focus on prediction and control, to the neglect of description and explanation, engenders the attribution of causal powers to particular events. Events identified by their temporal relations with respect to responses, in particular those occupying consequential relations, are held to have causal powers with respect to those responses. In short, reinforcement is held to be a causal process, one that is new in the sense that it follows rather than precedes the behavior it causes and is thereby applicable only to classes of behavior. It is held to be a process of selection. Support for this interpretation is drawn from a similar construction in biology, namely natural selection. The problem here is three fold: first, the description of events is confused with the events described; second, the description of events contains elements that are not found among the events themselves; and third, the same is true of the concept of natural selection. It is argued that selection, whether it be natural selection or selection by consequences, is not a causal process but rather a reference to an outcome of a complex set of changing circumstances. Reinforcement, as such, is interpreted as a setting factor, participating along with a multitude of other factors in an integrated field.
 
 
Paper Session #102
Operant Acquisition and Operant Conditioning
Monday, September 30, 2019
3:00 PM–3:50 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C4
Area: EAB
Instruction Level: Basic
Chair: todd m myers (PENDING)
 
Variations in Chamber Acclimation and Magazine Training Impact Autoshaping and Operant Performance
Domain: Basic Research
TODD M MYERS (U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Chemical Defense), Nathan Rice (USAMRICD)
 
Abstract: Magazine training is promulgated to be essential for hastening operant acquisition by establishing the food-correlated stimulus as a conditioned reinforcer for criterion lever-press responses and to also serve as a discriminative stimulus for prompt food retrieval, further enhancing temporal contiguity between the operant response and primary reinforcer. However, this assumption has not been verified via extensive empirical investigation. Therefore, we examined acquisition of operant lever pressing and performance under ratio and interval schedules in male Sprague-Dawley rats (n=284) as a function of varying pre-exposure conditions: no pre-exposure to the chamber or food pellets, pre-exposure to the chamber without food pellets, pre-exposure to the chamber with food pellets already in the pellet trough, or classic magazine training (intermittent food pellet delivery accompanied by the food-correlated stimulus). Several measures of learning corroborated the presumed benefits of magazine training, however, simple pre-exposure to the chamber with pellets in the magazine also promoted acquisition above the more limited pre-exposure conditions. Importantly, all subjects attained comparable levels of performance as training progressed, with terminal performance levels (on the variable-interval 90-s schedule) indistinguishable across all groups. The theoretical and practical relevance of these findings will be discussed.
 

CANCELED: Exploring Gaze Patterns as Operants

Domain: Basic Research
ISOBEL PORTER (Ulster University), Julian C. Leslie (Ulster University), Stephen Gallagher (Ulster University)
 
Abstract:

Reward based models of eye movements provide a promising new direction for research that are likely to underlie decisions about when and where to move the eyes. Whilst the generality of the experimental paradigm of behaviour analysis would suggest that eye movements are sensitive to reward, few studies have investigated if this is the case with eye movements, and more specifically, gaze patterns. The two experiments presented were designed to investigate both the training of gaze allocation and the potential of eye movements as an operant. Using a Remote Eye Detection (RED) video-based eye tracking system a three stage resurgence procedure was implemented. Results showed that training of Response A and Response B followed a typical training pattern, in the first training trial locating the target stimulus took significant time across participants, latency to respond decreased rapidly and became relatively stable during the following trials. During the Resurgence phase, some interesting preliminary findings are worth discussion. Implications and further research will be discussed, however, it seems highly plausible that eye movements can be trained and are sensitive to reward.

 
 
 
Paper Session #103
Cultural Competency and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy
Monday, September 30, 2019
3:00 PM–3:50 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, Meeting Room 24/25
Chair: Parsla Vintere (CHE Senior Psycholgical Services; Elaine Kaufman Cultural Center)
 
Behavioral Contingency Analysis: From Freud and Morita to ACT
Area: PCH
Domain: Theory
PARSLA VINTERE (CHE Senior Psycholgical Services; Elaine Kaufman Cultural Center)
 
Abstract: There is a great emphasis placed on the importance of cultural sensitivity in psychotherapy. In contrast, the effect of the cultural milieu on development of psychotherapy techniques and their behavioral contingencies has received relatively little attention. Contemporary Western psychotherapy approaches, such as Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy, utilize techniques that are influenced by Eastern philosophy to treat anxiety. The present paper looks at two influential figures in the history of psychology – Sigmund Freud, representing Western approach and Shoma Morita, representing Eastern approach. While Freud’s psychoanalysis is well known all over the world, Morita’s therapy may not be. Both Freud and Morita had similar educational and occupational backgrounds and they were contemporaries. There are similarities in their theories, but what set them apart was deeply imbedded in their cultural experience. Thus, culture is looked at as a determining factor in the development of treatment techniques. The similarities and differences in structuring treatments dealing with anxiety for the two theories will be examined and their relation to contemporary Western psychotherapy discussed. Behavioral contingency analysis is used to examine the treatment structure of Freud’s psychoanalysis, Morita therapy and ACT.
 

CANCELED: Cultural Competency: A Contextual Behaviour Science Approach

Area: CSS
Domain: Theory
TIFFANY DUBUC (Florida Institute of Technology; The Chicago School of Professional Psychology )
 
Abstract:

Cultural discrimination may be conceptualized as the systemic disempowerment of groups of individuals. These groups may be defined based on nationality, race, religion, language or any other socially defined constructs. Discrimination may be more or less apparent across countries, cultures and sub-cultures. A radical behaviourist perspective of discrimination includes the underlying assumption of deterministic selection; that is, behaviours involved in practices of discrimination are understood as being selected by the environments in which they occur. In addition, cultural competency has been identified as a critical repertoire for behaviour analysts (Fong, Ficklin & Lee, 2017). In this talk, participants will be exposed to a Psychological Flexibility model of cultural competency, with an emphasis on values as verbal stimuli which may alter the reinforcement function of those responses previously involved in direct and aversive conditions. The ACT Matrix will be explored as a tool for facilitating culturally-competent clinical practices amongst teams. It is hypothesized that an approach to cultural competency which is based in contextual behaviour science will be more meaningful and effective than traditional “rule-based” approaches (which may prove to be ineffective or even counter-productive). This presentation is applicable to all clinicians looking to strengthen the their cultural competency repertoires, and those of their team members.

 
 
 
Noteworthy Activity #103A
Coffee Break
Monday, September 30, 2019
4:00 PM–4:30 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 4, M1

Join us for coffee and pastries.

 
 
Symposium #104
Treating Sleep Problems in Children With Autism: Complexity, Outcomes, and Collateral Effects
Monday, September 30, 2019
4:30 PM–5:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 6, A3/A4
Area: AUT/CBM; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Laurie McLay (University of Canterbury)
Discussant: Stephanie Gerow (Baylor University)
Abstract:

Sleep problems are ubiquitous among children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Without effective treatment these sleep problems are unlikely to resolve, resulting in adverse secondary effects on the daytime functioning and wellbeing of people with ASD and their families. Sleep problems in children with ASD are underpinned by a combination of biopsychosocial factors and treatments include both pharmacological and behavioral approaches. However, to date we know little about how parental attributions about sleep problems and child and family complexity variables affect treatment selection, perceptions of efficacy, and outcome. This symposium contains a series of data-based presentations evaluating these important issues, including: (a) the efficacy of individualized, assessment-informed behavioral interventions for sleep problems in children with ASD, (b) child and family complexity variables and their impact on treatment outcomes, (c) parental attributions about sleep problems in their child with ASD, and (d) the collateral child and family benefits of effective sleep treatment.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): Collateral effects, Parental attributions, Sleep treatment, Treatment complexity
 

Assessment and Treatment of Sleep Problems in Young Children: Behavioral Intervention With and Without Pharmacological Intervention

SANDY JIN (California State University, Northridge), Frank Gutierres (California State University, Northridge), Sevan Ourfalian (California State University, Northridge)
Abstract:

Sleep problems are prevalent and persistent in young children, especially children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). These problems negatively impact the health and development of young children and are often challenging to address for caregivers and clinicians. Pharmacological interventions, such as melatonin, are commonly recommended for pediatric sleep problems despite limited research on their efficacy and social acceptability. Function-based behavioral interventions show merit as a promising alternative but has yet to draw to focus of mainstream treatment providers. This present study evaluated the efficacy of personalized and assessment-based behavioral intervention on the sleep problems of children diagnosed with ASD. Nighttime infrared video and sleep diary were used to measure sleep interfering behaviors, sleep onset delay, night and early waking, the total amount of sleep, as well as other relevant variables in the participating children. Parents and caregivers were encouraged to assist with treatment development during the assessment process and served as interventionists at home following behavioral skills training. A multiple-baseline-across-subjects designed was used to evaluate the treatments. Parents also provided feedback on the acceptability of each treatment and on their satisfaction with the outcomes.

 

The Collateral Benefits of Treating Sleep Problems in Children With Autism

LAURIE MCLAY (University of Canterbury), Karyn G. France (University of Canterbury), Neville Morris Blampied (University of Canterbury), Jemma Vivian (University of Canterbury)
Abstract:

Sufficient quality of sleep is essential to an individual’s health, wellbeing, and development. Sleep problems affect a large number of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and are likely to persist if not effectively treated resulting in profound negative effects on the daytime functioning and well-being of children with ASD and their families. Behaviourally-based treatments, including extinction, adaptations to the sleep-wake schedule, reinforcement, and modifications to sleep hygiene practices have strong empirical support. Increasingly, these interventions are individualized based on the outcomes of Functional Behavioural Assessment (FBA). The present study evaluated the collateral effects of resolving sleep problems on children’s daytime behaviour and ASD symptomatology, and parental mental health, sleep, and relationship quality. Data is presented for 40 participants with ASD between 2-18 years of age who received a FBA-based, parent-implemented intervention. The Child Behavior Checklist, Gilliam Autism Rating Scale-3, Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index, Depression, Anxiety, and Stress Scale, and Relationship Quality Index were administered during baseline and short-term follow-up to assess the collateral benefit of any improvement in sleep. Preliminary data indicates significant improvement in all measures of collateral behaviour change and well-being. This data and the implications thereof will be discussed.

 

Sleep Problems in Children and Adolescents With Autism: Type, Impact, Parental Attributions and Help-Seeking Behavior

AMARIE CARNETT (University of Texas at San Antonio), Laurie McLay (University of Canterbury), Sarah Grace Hansen (Georgia State University), Karyn France (University of Canterbury), Neville Morris Blampied (University of Canterbury)
Abstract:

Sleep problems of varying types and topographies are commonly reported among parents of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Without effective treatment, sleep problems in children with ASD are likely to persist and can result in adverse long-term effects. Although the literature indicates higher rates of sleep problems in individuals with ASD, compared to typically developing children, little is known about the interaction between parental attributions about their child’s sleep problem and treatment selection; how parental beliefs align with research evidence; and the interaction between sleep problem type and child and family impacts. The purpose of this study was to examine the types of sleep problems reported by parents of children with ASD; parental attributions about the locus, stability and controllability of sleep problems; and the secondary impact of sleep problems on children and families. Data from 221 respondents collected via an online survey will be presented. Overall findings and implications will be discussed.

 

Case Complexity, Family Engagement, and Sleep Outcomes in Families Presenting for Behavioral Treatment of Sleep Problems in Their Child With Autism

Karyn France (University of Canterbury), LAURIE MCLAY (University of Canterbury), Neville Morris Blampied (University of Canterbury), Yvonne Chow (University of Canterbury), Philip Ng (University of Canterbury)
Abstract:

Case complexity in families of children with sleep problems and autism may be expected to present barriers to the effectiveness of treatment based on Functional Behaviour Assessment (FBA). This study investigated the extent to which this was the case in up to 40 families who completed, and 15 who did not complete, an intervention for their sleep problems. Families were rated on complexity using a scale developed from that presented by Kazdin (2006). The scale rated child comorbidity, parental mental diagnoses, child health, scope and severity of child dysfunction, socioeconomic disadvantage, parent and family functioning, risk, and barriers that emerged during treatment. The complexity scale was correlated with retention in the intervention programme and measures of sleep outcome including the Children’s Sleep Habits Questionnaire and the Sleep Problem Severity Score. The results indicated that, for families who completed the intervention programme, complexity in and of itself did not predict sleep-related outcomes. Complexity did however predict retention in the programme. Results are discussed in the light of best practice for assessment in FBA, the need for intervention to specifically target parental behaviours and support for families embarking on such an intervention

 
 
Symposium #105
CE Offered: BACB
Diverse Applications of Synthesized Contingencies in Assessment and Treatment of Problem Behavior
Monday, September 30, 2019
4:30 PM–5:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 6, A2
Area: DDA/AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Johanna Staubitz (Vanderbilt University)
Discussant: Joshua Jessel (Queens College)
CE Instructor: Joshua Jessel, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Problem behavior that threatens the safety, dignity, or autonomy of children or adults is a matter of objective social importance. When caregivers seek a safe, dignified, and autonomous lifestyle for those in their care, the specific assessment and treatment practices employed will impact both the behavioral outcomes and acceptability of the treatment process. When Hanley and colleagues (2014) shared their first evaluation of the Interview-Informed Synthesized Contingency Analysis (IISCA) and its accompanying skill-based treatment (SBT), they introduced a practical functional assessment and treatment methodology that replaced problem behavior with functional communication and contextually-appropriate behavior, through a process that caregivers rated as highly acceptable. While the results of that initial demonstration were compelling, it has been through several subsequent replications and demonstrations that we have been better able to understand the extent to which results similar to those reported by Hanley et al. can be expected when the IISCA and SBT are applied in different settings and with different implementers. Within this symposium, the effects of the IISCA and SBT are evaluated in diverse applications that add to our understanding of the generalizability and replicability of the procedures published by Hanley and colleagues. Two presentations will be included in this symposium that feature data from home and school settings with a variety of treatment implementers.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): challenging behavior, functional assessment, IISCA, synthesized contingencies
Target Audience:

Researchers, practicing behavior analysts, graduate students in applied behavior analysis

 

Evaluating Severity of Problem Behavior During Functional Analysis

MONICA HOWARD (The ELIJA School), Joshua Jessel (Queens College)
Abstract:

Many children with autism exhibit severe problem behavior such as aggression, self-injury, or property destruction. In order to develop an effective treatment of problem behavior, applied researchers suggest first conducting a functional analysis, which involves the manipulation of environmental events believed to be contributing to the problem behavior. However, clinicians often avoid conducting a functional analysis due to safety concerns related to the programmed evocation of problem behavior. The interview-informed synthesized contingency analysis (IISCA) is a specific functional analysis format that is intended to be safe and efficient. We conducted this study to determine the level of severity observed when conducting the IISCA for three children diagnosed with autism. We identified and categorized multiple forms of problem behavior including less-dangerous precursors to be evaluated for each participant. We found that, although some of the severe topographies (e.g., aggression, SIB) were likely to be observed during the functional analysis, the majority of instances of problem behavior were likely to be precursors (e.g., loud vocalizations, stomping). This suggests that the IISCA may be a safer alternative to other functional analysis formats.

 

Interview-Informed Functional Analysis and Treatments to Improve Problem Behavior in a Child With Autism Spectrum Disorder

ODA VISTER (Oslo Metropolitan University), Sigmund Eldevik (Oslo Metropolitan University)
Abstract:

Behavioral interventions based on functional assessment have proven to be effective for reducing problem behavior like self-injury, aggression and/or disruption. Few studies include both the functional assessment and treatment process. Hanley, Jin, Vanselow and Hanratty (2014) described an interview-informed functional analysis and a function-based treatment package to reduce problem behavior in children with Autism Spectrum Diagnosis (ASD). Research on the approach described by Hanley et al. (2014) has mostly been conducted in a clinical setting. The present study is a systematic replication of Hanley et al. (2014) in a home setting. The interviewed-informed functional analysis and the function-based treatment were all conducted by the parents. The participant was their one nine-year-old boy with ASD and severe problem behavior. The result showed improvements in the severe problem behavior (kicking, self-injury, loud voice, destruction of objects) and an increase in appropriate responses. The parents reported that the responses were also used in other relevant situations. This suggest that parents can implement the intervention at home with regular consultation. These findings add support to the growing evidence-base of this approach.

 
 
Symposium #106
God, Love, and the Central Nervous System: Tricky Issues in Behavior Analysis
Monday, September 30, 2019
4:30 PM–5:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C3
Area: PCH; Domain: Theory
Chair: Karen A. Toussaint (University of North Texas)
Abstract:

The purpose of this symposium is to explore the malleability of the current boundaries of the science of behavior. The first presentation will focus on a radical-behaviorist account of religion and religious behaviors, targeting not only the external variables that maintain “acting religious”, but also the internal factors that exert control over “being religious”. The second presentation will discuss the theoretical, experimental, and applied implications of a more comprehensive analysis of private events, nearly 75-years after B.F. Skinner’s publication of, The Operational Analysis of Psychological Terms. The symposium will end with a discussion on the mechanisms that allow plant species to respond to the external environment, as well as evidence that might render it appropriate to include plants into the class of organisms that are capable of learning. Each presentation will additionally discuss the implications of the theme (i.e., religion, private events, and plant learning), as it relates to both the present and the future of a behavior-analytic science.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): Plant Learning, Private Events, Religion
 
On the Distinction Between Acting and Being Religious: The Radical Behaviorist Perspective
SETAREH MOSLEMI (University of North Texas)
Abstract: Analyzing the function of religion and religious behaviors can be exceedingly complicated when it comes to understanding their controlling variables. Most behavioral accounts of religion and religious behaviors have focused on external factors. One study argued that religious behaviors are social behaviors which are learned and maintained through interactions with groups and communities. Another study identified these behaviors as schedule induced as a result of monumental life events. One other analysis indicated that religion functions as an escape from the anxiety of the unknown in the world by providing answers. However, all of these examinations in behavior analysis mainly focus on “acting religious” and not “being religious”. Acting religious is based on all the external factors that could be observed by the community and being religious is based on personal religious experiences. The variables that are involved in the inner feelings that one gets when practicing religious behaviors may be independent of external variables and may require a different sort of analysis. This paper asks if the radical behaviorist perspective is capable of analyzing the variables involved in being religious as much as it analyzes the variables involved in acting religious.
 
Are We Doing Enough with Private Events?
BRENNAN PATRICK ARMSHAW (University of North Texas), Manish Vaidya (University of North Texas)
Abstract: In 1945 B.F Skinner published The Operational Analysis of Psychological Terms, and since then the concept of private events has been amongst the most popular of conceptual conversations in the field of Behavior Analysis. However, despite the vast discussion about the topic, little in our understanding and approach regarding private events has changed. This is despite the progress that has been made in understanding verbal relations and behavior-environment interactions in general as well as our ability to ask pointed questions about the underlying physiology. This paper explores some of the reasons for these limitations and asks what an effective analysis of private events would look like. How would our ability to predict and control human behavior be impacted? What might some of the technologies based on this understanding look like? In this paper, we explore the possibility that Behavior Analysis can provide a naturalistic description of the first-person psychological report. We conclude with the suggestion that there is much room for improvement in the behavioral analysis of private events.
 
Growing a Science: The Incorporation of Plants into an Analysis of Learning
ELIZABETH MCKAY SANSING (University of North Texas)
Abstract: The framework supplied by the Experimental Analysis of Behavior allows one to talk about behavior-environment interactions generically – without regard to particular details about the kinds of responses involved or the specific nature of the environmental feedback. This framework allows a great deal of prowess in applied and experimental domains. However, do the boundaries of what constitutes an “organism”, a “behaver”, and a “learner” stop here? It might initially seem unconventional to suggest that other living organisms, such as plants, could be capable of learning. It is commonly presumed that animals detect and respond to their environment in unique ways. However, some plant species possess sensory-input mechanisms that parallel those found in the animal kingdom. This paper explores the topic of learning in plants and presents evidence of ontogenetic changes in plant behavior based on environmental input. The paper then explores the implications, for the discipline, of expanding our domain to include organisms without central nervous systems. Perhaps the addition of plant learning into the evolutionary path of behavior science might demonstrate just how universal the principles that govern behavior truly are.
 
 
Paper Session #107
Models of ABA in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Czech Republic
Monday, September 30, 2019
4:30 PM–5:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, Meeting Room 24/25
Chair: Katerina Cizkova (PENDING)
 

CANCELED: Comparison of Different Models and Intensities of Early Intervention Services for Mid-Income Countries

Area: EDC
Domain: Service Delivery
NIRVANA PISTOLJEVIC (EDUS; CABAS and Teachers College, Columbia University), Eldin Dzanko (EDUS- Education for All)
 
Abstract:

Bosnia and Herzegovina (B&H), a country in Europe is still struggling with health and education systems reform problems because of its complicated administrative and political organization. Unfortunately, due to such state, children with developmental delays and disorders and their families wonder sometimes for years through the system that lacks united and scientifically proven early intervention services. EDUS-Education for All in cooperation first with UNICEF, then with USAID and relevant ministries was able to create an systematic approach to advancing Early Childhood Development for B&H. We have developed a set of behavioral detection, assessment and intervention tools and tested their effectiveness across the country and different levels of services. These tools were used in an intervention study on a sample of 100 children with developmental delays and disorders and their parents across different locations in B&H. We compared three different intensity models of early intervention, two behavior-based and one eclectic that varied also in the intensity. Dependent variables (DV) were completion sets of behavioral and psychological tests before and after the 6 months of treatment. We measured the numbers of skills children acquired across five main developmental areas with the Developmental Behavioral Scales (Pistoljevic, Zubcevic, Dzanko, 2016), Guides for Assessment and Creation of Individual Development Programs for Children from Birth to Six Years Old (Pistoljevic & Majusevic, 2015), and the Parent Questionnaire. Results show statistically significant improvement in skill acquisition across all three DVs and bring hope in creating an united and effective ECD system in B&H. Differences across three programs are discussed and its implications for policy makers and system reform in the country.

 
Specifics of a Behavior-Analytical Work in Czech Republic: Advantages and Disadvantages of Consultation Model
Area: TBA
Domain: Service Delivery
KATERINA CIZKOVA (ABA centrum), Katrin Telin (ABA centrum)
 
Abstract: Applied behavior analysis (ABA) in the Czech republic (CZ) is an emerging field and as such has to operate in very specific conditions compared to the western model. With only two board certified analytics, two official ABA centers and handful of clinicians heading towards the certification in the whole country, our work has evolved into a consultation model with emphasis put on the parents in the role of therapists. The limitations are not only with respect to the number of clinicians and related time constraints but also to the financial restrictions since the work is funded by the parents themselves. Our center specializes in work with children with Autism Spectrum Disorders and we focus on assessment, creation and implemention of the program and in the same time we are training parents and other caretakers while monitoring procedural integrity. We also strive to train new practitioners as well as experts from other fields in pursuit of ABA dissemination and improvement of services for the families. We are aware not only of possible limitations of this model but also of huge benefits that have emerged with its development and are worth supporting and spreading.
 
 
 
Paper Session #108
Topics in Teaching Behavior Analysis
Monday, September 30, 2019
4:30 PM–5:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C1
Area: TBA
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Chair: Donald M. Stenhoff (Arizona State University)
 
Comparing Paper and Digital SAFMEDS to Increase Masters Students’ Behavioral Terminology Fluency: Does Performance Differ by Format, and Which Format is Preferred?
Domain: Applied Research
DONALD M. STENHOFF (Arizona State University), Richard M. Kubina (Penn State)
 
Abstract: Students of behavior analysis are required to verbally demonstrate knowledge of dozens of behavioral terms and definitions during their programs. Their demonstration becomes more important for academic and career success when asked to overtly respond either vocally in class or answering items on national exams. A Precision Teaching methodology, SAFMEDS (Say All Fast a Minute Every Day Shuffled), was developed in the 1970s by Ogden Lindsey to increase behavioral fluency. SAFMEDS has been used to increase fluency of behavioral terminology with college students. Students typically use SAFMEDS that are printed on cards; however, researchers have also used SAFMEDS in digital format, presented on a computer or a handheld device. In this presentation, we will describe a study in which students in two courses in an on-campus Master of Science in Applied Behavior Analysis program used both paper and digital formats to study behavioral terminology. The participants used both versions of SAFMEDS across three phases, which concluded with students selecting which format they preferred. Correct and incorrect responses were recorded in an online standard celeration chart. Results will be discussed in terms of participant performance related to SAFMEDS format, and format preference.
 
Training Individuals to Implement Discrete Trials With Fidelity: A Meta-Analysis
Domain: Basic Research
JOELLE FINGERHUT (University at Albany, SUNY), Mariola Moeyaert (University at Albany, SUNY)
 
Abstract: Discrete trial training is a popular teaching method for individuals with autism. It includes many components, which can make it a difficult teaching method for individuals to learn. This meta-analysis examined the impact of different training techniques on individuals’ ability to implement discrete trials with fidelity. Twenty-five studies and 110 cases were included in the analysis. Only single case designs were included, and discrete trial implementation fidelity needed to be the dependent variable for inclusion eligibility. Training length, participant type, maintenance phases, and training type are among some of the variables that were coded and included for analysis. Hierarchical linear modeling, which has the ability to analyze clustered data, was used to estimate the treatment effect. Results showed that trainings are successful in improving both parents’ and teachers’ implementation fidelity of discrete trials. Furthermore, results demonstrated that behavioral skills training has a statistically significantly effect on discrete trial implementation fidelity. The results showed that the number of sessions in the intervention phase is a positive predictor of discrete trial implementation fidelity. Moreover, the results provide evidence that the effects of the trainings last across time. These results have implications for how individuals should be trained to implement discrete trials and other evidence based practices.
 
 
 
Paper Session #109
Telehealth, Technology, and Parent Training
Monday, September 30, 2019
4:30 PM–5:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 2, C4
Chair: Gita Srikanth (ABA India)
 
Tele-Health as a Parent Training Platform to Teach Verbal Operants to a Child With Autism
Area: VRB
Domain: Service Delivery
GITA SRIKANTH (ABA India), Swati Narayan (WeCAN, India ABA India )
 
Abstract: Technology has resulted in the emergence of WhatsApp and FaceTime as competitive alternate training platforms to in-person training sessions. The wide reach of internet based technology has made Tele-health an effective and low-cost method of training parents as interventionists using the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The parent of the 6 year old child with autism was trained to work with given set of goals based on the VBMAPP (Verbal Behavior Milestones Assessment and Placement Program) assessment.
 
Staff Coaching to Disseminate a Parent Training Program With Apps in Japan
Area: AUT
Domain: Applied Research
JUN'ICHI YAMAMOTO (Keio University), Atsuko Matsuzaki (Keio University)
 
Abstract: We have been developing, applying, evaluating, and disseminating a parent training for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in Japan. As the first step, we have developed a parent training. All materials were transferred via apps, and parents were provided an iPod with the apps installed. The author, as a developer, implemented the training using the materials and evaluated the efficacy of the training. As a result, parents improved their intervention skills. Also, the children’s developmental age, developmental quotient, and the number of expressive and receptive vocabularies increased. As the next step, we have developed a Staff Coaching Program to disseminate the parent training to local areas. At Face-to Face Staff Coaching Program, we coached a clinical psychologist face-to-face. The psychologist implemented the parent training for 14 parents of children with ASD below the age of three. As a result, parent’s intervention skills (Fig. 1) and children’s early development score (Fig. 2, Fig.3) improved. At Telehealth Staff Training Program, we are using online WEB coaching for medical staff. The staff received periodical coaching sessions from the author through WEB video meeting system. Implications in relation to the effect and feasibility of the Coaching Program will be provided.
 
 
 
Invited Panel #110
CE Offered: BACB
The Future of Behavior Analysis: A Look at Strengths and Opportunities
Monday, September 30, 2019
5:30 PM–6:20 PM
Stockholm Waterfront Congress Centre, Level 4, A1
Domain: Theory
Chair: Per Holth (OsloMet -- Oslo Metropolitan University)
CE Instructor: Per Holth, Ph.D.
Panelists: LINDA J. PARROTT HAYES (University of Nevada, Reno), R. DOUGLAS GREER (Columbia University Teachers College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences), INGUNN SANDAKER (Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences), MARTHA COSTA HUBNER (University of São Paulo)
Abstract:

Please join us for a panel discussion with invited presenters from multiple disciplines who will provide their perspectives about the future of behavior analysis. Following, we will share concluding remarks.

Instruction Level: Basic
LINDA J. PARROTT HAYES (University of Nevada, Reno)
R. DOUGLAS GREER (Columbia University Teachers College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences)
INGUNN SANDAKER (Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences)
MARTHA COSTA HUBNER (University of São Paulo)
 

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