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.

46th Annual Convention; Online; 2020

Program by : Sunday, May 24, 2020


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Symposium #146
CE Offered: BACB
ACTing the Part: Expanding the Reach of ACT-Based Efforts Within Behavior Analysis
Sunday, May 24, 2020
8:00 AM–8:50 AM EDT
Virtual
Area: AUT/EDC; Domain: Translational
Chair: Dana Paliliunas (Missouri State University)
CE Instructor: Dana Paliliunas, Ph.D.
Abstract:

In the last decade, the applications of acceptance and commitment training (ACT) has exploded within behavior analysis practice. The scope of ACT investigations, however, has been somewhat limited to efforts within the autism spectrum disorder (ASD) population. To that end, the present symposium seeks to expand the empirical reach of ACT to populations outside that of ASD, and discuss the overarching implications of using ACT as a viable, behavior-analytically-rooted approach in a thoroughgoing fashion.

Target Audience:

intermediate

Learning Objectives: Attendees will be able to describe how to measure the effects of values procedures on behavioral persistence in the lab Attendees will learn how to best support staff in the implementation of behavior analytic implementation Attendees will be able to describe stimulus equivalence procedures as they relate to staff training efforts
 
Values and Persistence: Evaluating the Effectiveness of Brief Values Exercises on a Persistence Task in the Laboratory
JAY LEUNG (University of Southern California), Jonathan J. Tarbox (University of Southern California; FirstSteps for Kids)
Abstract: Persisting with an aversive task is needed in virtually all important areas of human functioning, including academic, vocational, social, fitness, and even familial functioning. Values-based interventions have been shown to be effective in a variety of psychology studies, but little research has evaluated the effects of values-based interventions on task persistence. The objective of this study is to evaluate the effects of values-based interventions on measures of persistence in the laboratory setting, and to identify interventions that are likely to be effective and potential good candidates outside of the lab. The intervention consists of brief ACT values exercises in the lab setting. The study includes typically developing adult participants that are university students and employees. The study uses single case experimental designs to evaluate the effects of the interventions at the level of the individual participant, wheras the majority of previous research on values-based interventions has used group designs and/or indirect measures of behavior. Data collection on this study is ongoing with six participants.
 

Watch Me Try: Acceptance and Commitment Training for Improving Athletic Performance of Young Adults With Autism Spectrum Disorder

THOMAS G. SZABO (Florida Institute of Technology), Chris Palinski (Las Vegas, NV), Paula Willis (Las Vegas, NV)
Abstract:

Few studies have examined the effects of contextual behavior science interventions for adult athletes with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Those few, reviewed herein, show preliminary empirical support for treating behavioral deficits exhibited by young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder engaged in competitive sports. In the current study, we evaluated a novel iteration of Acceptance and Commitment Training called Watch Me Try and compared it to direct contingency management to facilitate athletic performance of young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder using a concurrent multiple baseline across participants design. The title and language used in establishing the intervention were geared specifically to the social development of the participants. All three athletes increased their attendance, heart rate, and length of falls during training to simulate desired performance during competitions and subsequently, their competition performances improved. One improved with direct contingency management alone; the other two required the Watch Me Try approach to bolster their performance.

 
Investigations of Psychological Flexibility as a Mediator for Academic, Prosocial, and Maladaptive Behavior Change in a Twice Exceptional Student Sample
DANIEL B HOWELL (Arizona State University), Adam DeLine Hahs (Arizona State University), Michael DeLaet (Arizona State University)
Abstract: Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) is an empirically-based intervention that has been effectively used in clinical settings to increase clients’ psychological flexibility. To date, however, there is limited evidence within school settings. The Accept, Identify, Move (AIM), was used during the current study. A multiple baseline across subjects design was used to evaluate the effects of the AIM curriculum on participants’ psychological flexibility using the Children’s Psychological Flexibility Questionnaire (CPFQ). Participants in this study all attended the same school and ranged in age from 7 years of age to 18 years of age. The CPFQ was administered during each phase of the study, and teachers completed the caregiver version of the questionnaire based on what they believe their student’s score were. Differences between groups were measured, and students will be directly observed to see if AIM effects on-task behavior. The extend to which psychological flexibility serves as a mediating variable to improvements in academic, prosocial, and maladaptive behavior will be discussed both specifically and broadly.
 
 
Symposium #153
CE Offered: BACB
Research on Imagining and Problem Solving: Investigations into Private Events and Complex Behavior
Sunday, May 24, 2020
8:00 AM–8:50 AM EDT
Virtual
Area: VRB/AUT; Domain: Translational
Chair: April N. Kisamore (Hunter College)
CE Instructor: April N. Kisamore, Ph.D.
Abstract:

There has recently been an increased interest in research on complex behavior such as imagining and problem solving. Problem solving is relevant to a variety of social, academic, and employment tasks, but we have little research to guide practices in these areas. In addition, behavior analytic researchers have only recently begun to evaluate the effects of prompting private events, such as imagining, on subsequent overt responding. The three papers in this symposium provide examples of how behavior analysts are pushing the boundaries in research on complex behavior. The authors of the first paper evaluated the effects of teaching skills to solve common social problems, the second sought to teach children with ASD how to imagine to answer complex questions, and the purpose of the third was to determine if there were any effects of instructing imagining on emergent relations.

Target Audience:

Behavior analytic researchers or clinicians interested in learning more about recent advances in our understanding of private events and problem solving.

 
Teaching Individuals with Autism to Solve Social Problems
VICTORIA DANIELA CASTILLO (Endicott College), Adel C. Najdowski (Pepperdine University), Megan Michelle St. Clair (Halo Behavioral Health), Peter Farag (Halo), Emma Isabel Moon (Halo Behavioral Health)
Abstract: A defining feature of autism spectrum disorder is demonstration of deficits in social skills (DSM-5, American Psychological Association, 2013). Being able to solve social problems is a social skill that is important for successful social interaction, maintenance of relationships, and functional integration into society (Bonet et al., 2015), yet there is limited research that has been conducted on this topic with individuals with autism. This study uses a nonconcurrent multiple baseline across participants design to assess the efficacy of a social problem-solving intervention consisting of multiple exemplar training, error correction, and reinforcement on the acquisition, maintenance, and generalization of social problem solving to naturally occurring untrained social problems. Current data represent baseline and pretraining performance for two participants and the introduction of intervention for participant one. Data thus far demonstrates an initial increase in social problem solving upon implementation of the intervention. Future data will be reported on the effects of the intervention on social problem solving for the two current participants as well as an additional third participant.
 

Effects of Visual Imagining on the Acquisition of Multiply Controlled Intraverbals in Children With Autism

SHANNON RAIMONDO (Caldwell University), April N. Kisamore (Hunter College), Sharon A. Reeve (Caldwell University), Tina Sidener (Caldwell University)
Abstract:

Intraverbals that children learn early in development (e.g., song fill-ins, chains) are often the result of simple stimulus control. As the intraverbal repertoire becomes more complex, it is rare that these responses are controlled by a single discriminative stimulus; rather they are under the control of multiple stimuli. The purpose of this study was to systematically replicate and extend the work of Kisamore, Carr, and LeBlanc (2011) by evaluating the effects of visual imagining training on multiply controlled intraverbals in children with ASD. We programmed for generalization by using multiple exemplars of stimuli and assessed across novel responses and a novel category. We included measures of external validity by including participant scores on several language assessments and we included measures of social validity of our stimuli, procedures, and outcomes. We predicted that there would be an increase in responding to the complex intraverbals following visual imagining training and that responding would generalize both within and across categories. Preliminary data suggest an increase in responding following training and some generalization across categories. However, generalization within categories is not as robust. Additional data collection is ongoing.

 
Effects of Visual Imagining on Speed of Emergent Conditional Discriminations
REAGAN ELAINE COX (Texas Christian University), Camille Roberts (Texas Christian University), Anna I. Petursdottir (Texas Christian University)
Abstract: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of instructed visualization on emergent relations between visual stimuli. Participants were college students at Texas Christian University. 25 participants were assigned to each of three groups. The standard group received match-to-sample (MTS) training to relate abstract visual stimuli to nonsense text labels prior to training to relate pairs of labels. The reverse group received the same training in the opposite sequence, and the directed visualization group received the standard training sequence with the addition of instructions to visualize the abstract stimuli when learning to relate the pairs of textual stimuli. A post-test assessed emergent relations between the abstract stimuli. We predicted that the directed visualization group would perform with greater speed and accuracy than the standard group, and that the standard group would in turn outperform the reverse group due to uninstructed visualization. Preliminary data suggest participants in all groups are responding with similar speed on the post-test. However, participants in the directed visualization group are performing with higher accuracy on the post-test test than the other groups. Additional data collection is ongoing.
 
 
Symposium #154
CE Offered: BACB
Teaching the Use of Different Speech-Generating Device Displays to Individuals With Autism During Natural Routines
Sunday, May 24, 2020
8:00 AM–9:50 AM EDT
Virtual
Area: AUT/VRB; Domain: Translational
Chair: Cindy Gevarter (University of New Mexico)
CE Instructor: Elizabeth R. Lorah, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Typically, speech-generating device interventions for children with autism spectrum disorder have often involved discrete-trial approaches. Recently, there has been a trend towards using naturalistic developmental behavioral approaches for children with autism spectrum disorder. These approaches embed behavioral principles within natural contexts, routines, and social interactions. Natural communication partners (e.g., parents, peers) are also often involved in such approaches. There is a need for speech-generating device research that explores the utility of these more naturalistic approaches across a variety of device display formats. This symposium will explore how different speech-generating device display formats (including simple grid-based formats, dynamic navigational grids, and visual scene displays) can be incorporated into different natural routines (e.g., play, art activity, meal time, conversation) with natural communication partners (parents and peers). All three studies embedded a variety of behavioral techniques (e.g., prompting, time delay) into natural routines in order to encourage the use of speech-generating devices for communicative purposes. Results indicate that naturalistic interventions with behavioral components can be effective for teaching communication responses to individuals with ASD across a range of display formats.

Target Audience:

The target audience for this event would be BCBAs and related practitioners with interests in behavioral approaches to speech-generating device interventions (e.g., special education teachers, speech-language pathologists).

Learning Objectives: 1. Participants will be able to identify different behavioral strategies that can be incorporated into naturalistic speech-generating device interventions 2. Participants will be to describe different speech-generating device formats 3. Participants will identify naturalistic routines that are appropriate for speech-generating device intervention
 

An Embedded Naturalistic Teaching Approach to the Increase Multi-step Speech-Generating Device Responses of Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder

CINDY GEVARTER (university of new mexico), Mariah Groll (University of New Mexico), Erin Stone (University of New Mexico), Adriana Medina (University of New Mexico)
Abstract:

This study evaluated the effectiveness of embedded naturalistic instruction for teaching multi-step speech-generating device (SGD) responses to three preschool-aged males with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Parents were taught to embed opportunities to request objects, request help, reject items, and make comments during every-day routines (e.g., play, meal time). During intervention, parents used time delay, prompting, reinforcement, and device proximity to encourage the use of two-step SGD responses on a grid-based display with category folders (e.g., vehicles, animals). The display format was selected based upon prior dynamic assessment to determine appropriate formats. Effects of intervention were evaluated using a multiple-probes across participants design. For object requesting, all three participants showed an immediate increase in responding that maintained at high levels. Other pragmatic functions also increased, but at a more gradual pace. All three participants showed generalized responding when new items were introduced, and when display pages with a larger array of folders and vocabulary items were assessed.

 

The Effects of Speech-Generating Devices on the Communication of Adolescents With Autism Spectrum Disorder During Social Interactions

SALENA BABB (Penn State University), Ciara Ousley (Penn State)
Abstract:

Social interactions are a critical component of quality of life. These interactions are often complicated for adolescents with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), as they experience difficulty in participating in social interactions with their peers. The challenges of social interactions are further intensified for those adolescents with ASD who have difficulty with speech. Speech-generating device (SGD) interventions designed to support communication during social interactions with peers in natural environments are needed for these individuals. Video visual scene displays (video VSDs) capture dynamic routines that support communication. This study used a multiple-probe across participants design to assess the impact of an intervention using videos with integrated visual scene displays (video VSDs), presented on a tablet-based app, on the communication of four adolescents with ASD and complex communication needs and their peer partners. The automatic pausing of a video at key points served as a prompt for communication opportunities and provided the necessary vocabulary within the VSD. Following intervention, all four participants demonstrated an increase in communicative turns and in modes of communication used (including speech), suggesting that video VSDs may be an effective tool for supporting social communication.

 
The Establishment of Peer Manding during Naturally Occurring Routines
ELIZABETH R. LORAH (University of Arkansas), Jessica Miller (University of Arkansas), Brenna Griffin (University of Arkansas)
Abstract: The use of handheld computing devices outfitted to function as speech-generating devices (SGD) for young children with autism, continues to gain popularity in educational and clinical settings. Within such settings, it is typically the case that early mand training is taught in a teacher-student dyadic manner. While this has proven to be effective for early mand training, given the social communication needs of young children with autism, greater effort should be placed on establishing peer-peer dyadic manding. Thus, the purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a five-second time delay, with full-physical, in the acquisition of manding from a peer-listener, for three preschool aged children with a diagnosis of autism, using a SGD. The instructional arrangement incorporated manding for a missing item, during an arts and crafts activity, incorporating naturally occurring routines within the procedures. The results indicated that all three participants acquired the ability to mand for the missing item from the peer-listener and two of the three participants indicated maintenance of this skill. Limitations of this study and considerations for future evaluations will also be discussed within this presentation.
 
 
Symposium #159
CE Offered: BACB
Empowering the Learner: Using Interteaching to Improve Higher Education
Sunday, May 24, 2020
8:00 AM–9:50 AM EDT
Virtual
Area: TBA/EDC; Domain: Translational
Chair: Catherine M. Gayman (Troy University)
Discussant: Philip N. Hineline (Temple University - Emeritus)
CE Instructor: Catherine M. Gayman, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Interteaching is a behavioral teaching method with growing empirical evidence supporting its efficacy. Over 30 published empirical studies have examined the effectiveness of interteaching in higher education. However, more research is still needed to examine the influence of different interteaching components and the methods used for instructional delivery. The first presenter will acquaint the audience with interteaching and describe results of a study which compared interteaching to standard lecture centered teaching with and without prep guides in an online asynchronous format. The second presenter will share results of a classroom study which compared two different methods of running the discussion component of interteaching. The third presenter will highlight the findings of a series of studies in which interteaching was first compared to another active learning strategy known as the Learning Pathway (LP), and then the addition of Say All Fast Everyday Shuffle (SAFMEDS) to interteaching was evaluated. The final presenter will discuss results of a meta-analytic review on the effectiveness of interteaching. Together, these four presentations illustrate current interteaching research in higher education.

Target Audience:

Academics, supervisors, and teachers.

Learning Objectives: After attending this symposium, participants should be able to: 1) Identify and describe the basic components of interteaching 2) Summarize the main findings of a study applying interteaching in an online asynchronous format 3) Summarize the main findings of a study investigating the discussion component of interteaching 4) Summarize the main findings of a study comparing interteaching to other active learning methods 4) Summarize the main findings of a recent meta-analytic review on the effectiveness of interteaching
 
Can Access to Preparation Guides Alone Enhance Lecture-Based Teaching?
CATHERINE M. GAYMAN (Troy University), Stephanie Jimenez (University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown), Tara Elizabeth Casady (Bassett Army Community Hospital)
Abstract: The present study investigated the effect of adding interteaching preparation guides to traditional lecture-based teaching in an online, asynchronous undergraduate psychology class. Specifically, the study compared (1) interteaching which used a preparation guide, a written group discussion in Canvas, and a brief clarifying lecture, (2) standard teaching that consisted of a video lecture, and (3) standard teaching plus preparation guides. Total average exam scores following interteaching were significantly higher than scores following standard teaching with or without preparation guides. Most participants reported learning more during interteaching weeks and preferred interteaching more than standard lecture. These results indicate that access to preparation guides in the absence of other components of interteaching was not enough to significantly improve exam grades.
 

An Investigation of the Group Discussion Component of Interteaching With and Without Completed Prep Guides

STEPHANIE JIMENEZ (University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown), Catherine M. Gayman (Troy University)
Abstract:

Interteaching is an evidence-based learning strategy that shifts the focus away from a passive learning model found in lecturing to a more active, student-centered learning methodology. It utilizes prep guides, small group discussions, clarifying lectures, and frequent testing. Several classroom studies have demonstrated that interteaching leads to better student comprehension and higher test scores. However, the specific strategy used in these studies vary slightly. The current study used a group design in one undergraduate course over two semesters to investigate how the removal of completed prep guides during the group discussion affected academic success. One group experienced the standard interteaching method, where students completed the prep guide prior to class and referred to their prep guide answers during the group discussion. The second group completed the prep guide prior to class, but then were asked to not refer to their answers during the in-class group discussion. Those in the second group had exam scores that were consistently lower and rated interteaching as less preferable than those who experienced standard interteaching. Results from this study should allow for more effective implementation of interteaching.

 
Interteaching in Community Health: A Comparison of Active Learning Strategies and Follow-Up
JONATHAN A. SCHULZ (University of Kansas), Vincent Thomas Francisco (University of Kansas, Department of Applied Behavioral Science)
Abstract: A number of studies suggest that interteaching (IT) is more effective than traditional teaching methods (i.e., lecture); however, research is needed to compare IT to other active learning strategies (i.e., strategies that foster critical thinking by engaging students in analysis, synthesis, and evaluation through discussion and active student responding). Therefore, an IT informed teaching method was compared to an active learning strategy known as the Learning Pathway (LP) in an undergraduate community health and development course. Results indicate that students performed slightly higher on multiple-choice quizzes during the IT condition and correctly answered more fill-in-the-blank midterm and final exam questions related to content covered in the IT condition. However, students indicated that they preferred the LP teaching method. A follow-up study addressed a limitation of Study 1 by examining the effects of Say All Fast Minute Everyday Shuffle (SAFMEDS) as part of IT on student performance. Results indicate students performed similarly on multiple-choice quizzes whether or not they completed SAFMEDS but answered more fill-in-the-blank final exam questions related to content covered during interteach sessions with SAFMEDS. This study highlights the need to evaluate interteaching as compared to other active learning strategies and integrate other behavioral teaching strategies with interteaching.
 
A Systematic Review and Quantitative Analysis on the Effectiveness of Interteaching
CAMILO HURTADO PARRADO (Troy University & Konrad Lorenz Fundación Universitaria), Nicole Pfaller-Sadovsky (Queen's University Belfast), Lucia Medina (Fundacion Universitaria Konrad Lorenz), Catherine M. Gayman (Troy University), Kristen A. Rost (Troy University), DANIELA CARDILLO (Fundacion Universitaria Konrad Lorenz), Derek Schofill (Troy University)
Abstract: Interteaching is a behavioral teaching method that departs from the traditional lecture format (Boyce & Hineline, 2002). In the present study, we updated and expanded previous interteaching reviews, and conducted a meta-analysis on its effectiveness. Systematic searches in EBSCO, ERIC, MEDLINE, PsycARTICLES, PsycINFO, SCOPUS, Web of Science, and theses/dissertations repositories identified 38 relevant studies (2005-2018). Preliminary analyses identified the following main findings: (a) nearly 70% of studies were conducted in undergraduate face-to-face courses, with class subjects primarily related to social sciences; (b) 50% of studies used single-case designs (42% of studies used group designs); (c) seven interteaching components (i.e., prep guides, discussions, record sheets, clarifying lectures, contingency on discussions or prep-guide completion, frequent evaluations, and quality points) were implemented with different degrees of consistency; (d) nearly 65% of studies reported using five of the seven components identified; (e) the most commonly reported components were discussions, record sheets, prep guides, and frequent evaluations; (f) overall effect size of interteaching versus traditional lecture across different measures of student performance (e.g., scores on exams and quizzes) was medium to high; (g) overall effect size of different variations on the implementation of interteaching (e.g., discussion-group size, clarifying-lecture scheduling, class size) was small.
 
 
Symposium #165
CE Offered: BACB
Escaping the Uncomfortable: Why the Measurement of Experiential Avoidance Matters
Sunday, May 24, 2020
9:00 AM–9:50 AM EDT
Virtual
Area: CBM/PCH; Domain: Translational
Chair: Madison Taylor Logan (University of North Texas)
Discussant: Emily Kennison Sandoz (University of Louisiana at Lafayette)
CE Instructor: Madison Taylor Logan, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Experiential avoidance (EA), or attempts to escape unwanted internal experiences (e.g., thoughts, feelings) at the expense of long-term commitment to personal values, has wide-reaching effects for a variety of socially important problems. This symposium will explore EA in both its existing and potential forms of measurement. The first presentation will cover an analogue study which measures levels of EA by exposing adult participants to aversive sounds in the context of delayed reinforcement. The second presenter will discuss how an existing measure, the Avoidance and Fusion Questionnaire, was used to investigate avoidance as a moderation of sexual prejudice and political affiliation among a college student sample. Both studies found that EA could be measured reliably. The results of the first study prove useful to an Acceptance and Commitment Therapy model, as choices changed from smaller, sooner reinforcement to larger, later reinforcement - mapping on to valuing. The hypothesized moderating role of EA in the relationship between political affiliation and sexual prejudice investigated in the second study was found to be insignificant, and the authors will discuss potential reasons for this finding. Measurement limitations and future directions will be covered.

Target Audience:

BCBA, Scientist-Practitioners, participants interested in Clinical Behavior Analysis

Learning Objectives: 1. Participants will learn how to measure experiential avoidance in at least two ways. 2. Participants will be able to identify the relationship between political affiliation and sexual prejudice. 3. Participants will be able to discuss the relationship between experiential avoidance and delayed reinforcement.
 

Toward the Development of a Delay Discounting Model of Experiential Avoidance

ELIZABETH MESHES (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology; Exceptional Minds ), Jonathan J. Tarbox (University of Southern California; FirstSteps for Kids), Amy Odum (Utah State University)
Abstract:

Experiential avoidance, which can be functionally defined as choosing short-term negative reinforcement over long-term values-oriented positive reinforcement, has been argued to be at the core of a large variety of socially important problems. Relatively little previous laboratory research has studied these functional relations and this study attempted to develop a laboratory preparation that pits shorter-term avoidance over longer-term positive reinforcement. Participants were exposed to choices between avoidance of an aversive sound (i.e., immediate, smaller negative reinforcement) or listening to an aversive sound for a period of time and accumulating money (i.e., delayed, larger positive reinforcement). Three experiments were conducted that evaluated varying magnitudes of delays to and the value of the positive reinforcer, in order to identify the point at which individual participants’ choices changed from the smaller, sooner reinforcer to the larger later reinforcer and vice versa. The potential applicability of this model is discussed as it relates to behavior problems that appear to involve experiential avoidance at their core. In addition, the implications for evaluating components of acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) are discussed.

 
Politics Predict Prejudice: Exploring Experiential Avoidance as a Moderator of Political Beliefs and Sexual Intolerance
MADISON TAYLOR LOGAN (University of North Texas), Taylor Johnson (University of North Texas), Amy Murrell (University of North Texas)
Abstract: Sexual minorities are at an increased risk of violence and face discrimination as a result of intolerance. Existing literature supports the idea that traditional conservative values regarding gender and family structure are related to increased sexual prejudice. However, there is limited research surrounding the role that experiential avoidance (EA) plays in this relationship. The present study hypothesized that (1) higher political conservatism is positively correlated with greater intolerance toward sexual minorities and (2) EA moderates this relationship. Participants were 293 (180 democrat, 113 republican) students recruited from a large, public university in the south central United States as part of a larger study. Survey measures were administered online and included a sexual prejudice subscale of the Intolerant Schema Measure (ISM), the Avoidance and Fusion Questionnaire (AFQ), and a demographic survey. Results of the Spearman correlation supported the first hypothesis that there is a significant relationship between political affiliation and intolerance, (rs = .268, p < .001). Experiential avoidance did not moderate this relationship (ß= .047, p = .406). The implications of these results along with limitations of the study and future directions will be discussed.
 
 
Symposium #176
Training Teachers in Evidence-Based Practices to Improve the Behavior and Academic Functioning of Students in Iceland
Sunday, May 24, 2020
10:00 AM–10:50 AM EDT
Virtual
Area: EDC/TBA; Domain: Translational
Chair: Anna-Lind Petursdottir (School of Education, University of Iceland)
Abstract:

In Iceland, teachers have had a strong preference for teaching methods based on construcitivist beliefs, over methods based on direct transmission beliefs (e.g. OECD, 2009). Also, Icelandic teachers consider discipline and students with behavior problems to be one of the most challenging aspect of their jobs. In this symposium we will present recent research regarding the implementation of evidence-based practices to improve the behavior and academic functioning of students in Iceland. Harpa Oskarsdottir and Zuilma Gabriela Sigurdardottir will present a group comparison study assessing the effects of Direct Instruction and fluency building on the reading performance of students in special education. Gudrun Björg Ragnarsdottir will discuss 25 case studies conducted by graduate students receiving training in implementing explicit instruction and fluency building to improve the reading performance of their elementary students. Anna-Lind Petursdottir and Margret Sigmarsdottir will end the symposium by presenting data on changes in students persistent behavior problems and academic engagement following function-based interventions implemented by graduate students as part of training in an university course. Each presentation will include a discussion of the implications of the data and considerations for implementation of evidence-based strategies in collaboration with teachers who have limited knowledge in the area.

 
Reading instruction using direct instruction and fluency training in special education in 4th to 7th grade in Iceland
HARPA ÓSKARSDÓTTIR (University of Iceland), Zuilma Gabriela Sigurdardottir (University of Iceland)
Abstract: Direct Instruction (DI) is an evidence-based and empirically tested teaching method that has been found to be very effective in English-speaking countries. DI has been especially effective when combined with fluency training methods. These methods are not generally in use in Iceland although dozens of single-case experiments have indicated that they are very effective when psychology students have used them with special education students. In this project, a group comparison was undertaken to study the effects of trained teachers using DI and fluency building in reading instruction on the reading performance of students in special education over 2,5 school years. Participants were in total 16 students in 4th-7th grade in three comparable elementary schools in Iceland, one had the experimental group, the other two schools had the comparison group. Performance in reading was evaluated and comparisons were made within the experimental and comparison groups at the beginning and end of each school year and between the experimental and comparison groups. Results show that students in the experimental group had better outcome on every variable tested at the end of the study, they read faster, made fewer errors, were more accurate, and scored higher in reading comprehension than the comparison group.
 
Training teachers in explicit instruction and fluency building: 25 case studies from a university course
GUDRUN BJORG RAGNARSDOTTIR (University of Iceland)
Abstract: Improved student reading ability has been a priority for the past years in Icelandic schools. In this study, 25 master-level students received training through a distance education course to use evidence-based methods; explicit instruction and fluency building. They implemented intervention with 18 boys and seven girls (aged 6 to 13 years). Eighteen pupils had reading difficulties and 13 pupils also were Icelandic language learners or had been diagnosed with ADHD, autism or language impairment. In the course, master-level students taught 15 lessons over a period of five weeks focusing on increasing pupils reading ability through explicit instruction and fluency building. Pupils increased their reading ability on average by 14 words per minute over the five week intervention phase. A majority, or 23 of 25 pupils, achieved public reading goals set by the Directorate of Education in Iceland. Results indicate that training through a distance education course can enable teachers to implement evidence-based interventions and thereby improve the reading ability of children with and without reading difficulties.
 
Guiding teachers to conduct behavior assessment and function-based interventions through a distance education course
ANNA-LIND PETURSDOTTIR (University of Iceland), Margret Sigmarsdottir (School of Education, University of Iceland)
Abstract: This presentation describes how graduate students have been trained to conduct functional behavioral assessments and individualized behavior support plans to decrease persistent student behavior problems. This team-based training has been offered as part of an elective course on behavioral and emotional difficulties at the School of Education, University of Iceland. The aim was to train graduate students (prospective and current teachers) to mentor other teachers in evidence-based practices to improve student behavior and well-being. The training has involved independent readings, lectures, various assessment and intervention materials, on-site assignments, step-by-step instructions, and written feedback. Teams have conducted AB single subject designs to assess changes in students´ target behaviors. A case study will be provided to illustrate the process, describing how the persistent disruptive behavior of a 13-year-old 8th grader decreased on average from 53 to 3 instances per 20-minute observations and academic engagement increased from 37% to 91% after function-based interventions. Also, data will be presented from 74 cases in preschools up to secondary schools, showing an average of 78% reduction in disruptive behavior, 89% reduction in aggressive behavior, and 92% increase in academic engagement of students.
 
 
Panel #182
CE Offered: BACB
PDS: The Joys (and Perils) of Writing: How to Prepare a Manuscript for Publication
Sunday, May 24, 2020
10:00 AM–10:50 AM EDT
Virtual
Area: TBA/EDC; Domain: Translational
CE Instructor: Jovonnie L. Esquierdo-Leal, Ph.D.
Chair: Jovonnie L. Esquierdo-Leal (University of Nevada, Reno)
RUTH REHFELDT (Southern Illinois University)
MITCH FRYLING (California State University, Los Angeles)
RICHARD F. RAKOS (Cleveland State University)
Abstract:

Preparing a manuscript for publication starts before you have actually engaged in the behavior of writing. You must determine whether your research has contributed something new and interesting as well as what audience might be interested in learning about it. Putting our hypotheses, methodology, and results on paper in a carefully constructed way is not an easy task and requires adequate training. Those who are new to this process—and anyone else for that matter—often find publishing to be an intimidating and daunting task. Thus, the publication process is approached with apprehension and wariness. Our goal is to reduce apprehension and build confidence by providing tips and advice on how to write and submit a manuscript for publication. A panel of experts will cover topics that range from the type of manuscript to submit and how to structure that manuscript to preparing a cover sheet for submission. Topics and questions will be solicited from ABAI members in advance, and time will be allocated for in-person questions.

 
 
Symposium #183
CE Offered: BACB
Evaluating Procedural Variations and Staff Training of Functional Analysis Procedures
Sunday, May 24, 2020
10:00 AM–11:50 AM EDT
Virtual
Area: AUT/DEV; Domain: Translational
Chair: Jessica Lynn Amador (Caldwell University)
Discussant: Richard Wayne Fuqua (Western Michigan University)
CE Instructor: Richard Wayne Fuqua, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Practitioners serving individuals who have interfering behaviors that impact learning and quality of life have an ethical and a legal obligation to assess maintaining variables and to develop a function-based intervention. Conducting a functional analysis has long been considered the gold standard in assessment and treatment of problem behavior. This symposium will present four papers addressing procedural variations of the traditional functional analysis or evaluations of staff training procedures. The first paper will examine the correlation between trial-based and traditional models of functional analysis for adults with autism in community settings. The second paper will present upon the comparative outcomes and social validity measures of trial-based functional analyses (TBFA) to a descriptive data collection method. The third paper will discuss training functional analysis skills with video modeling and video self-monitoring. The final paper evaluated the efficacy of computer-based instruction (CBI) on teaching how to conduct a TBFA with practitioners and evaluated the effects on implementing a TBFA with a confederate. Results are promising that CBI can lead to effective staff training. Collectively, these studies highlight advances in both procedural variations or staff training procedures of functional analyses.

Target Audience:

BCBA

Learning Objectives: 1) To identify procedural variations of a functional analysis 2) To identify effective staff training procedures of functional analyses 3) To identify conditions under which procedural variations of functional analyses can be employed
 

CANCELED: Examining the Correlation Between Trial-Based and Traditional Models of Functional Analysis for Adults With Autism in Community Settings

JAMES MARAVENTANO (Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center), Jenna Budge (Rutgers University), Robert LaRue (Rutgers University)
Abstract:

Challenging behavior is an often-cited barrier to long-term employment and community-based opportunities for individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). While functional analysis (FA) procedures are essential for developing treatment plans to address challenging behaviors, FAs are typically conducted under controlled environmental conditions which do not closely resemble the natural environment. Further, it is possible the function of challenging behavior in controlled environments are different from more naturalistic settings, thus emphasizing the importance of assessing challenging behaviors in the natural environment. Trial-based functional analysis (TBFA) procedures (Sigafoos & Saggers, 1995) may be a more viable method for assessing challenging behaviors in more naturalistic settings where more traditional FA methods may not be feasible. For the present study, TBFAs were conducted for three adults diagnosed with ASD who engage in challenging behaviors (e.g. self-injury, aggression) at their community work and exercise sites. The results from the TBFAs were compared to results of brief (5-minute) FA sessions to determine if the TBFA results align with the more traditional FA methodologies. Further, latency to respond data were collected during TBFAs to further discern behavioral function for unclear results. Results of the TBFAs were then utilized to develop function-based treatments for addressing the challenging behaviors presented by the participants.

 

ABC Data Collection vs. Trial-Based Functional Analyses: An Assessment Comparison of Severe Problem Behavior of Adults With Autism Spectrum Disorder

JULIA IANNACCONE (City University of New York Graduate Center; Queens College), Emily A. Jones (Queens College, The Graduate Center, City University of New York), Misbah Bibi (Queens College)
Abstract:

Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) displaying problem behavior face the additional challenges of limited funding and access to effective treatment, along with increased severity of problem behavior, when compared to children. Consequently, questionably effective descriptive assessment methods, such as ABC data, are frequently used. In a broader study evaluating effective treatment of severe problem behavior displayed by adults with ASD, trial-based functional analyses (TBFAs) were conducted to identify the reinforcing variables of problem behavior and guided effective functional communication treatments. Results and social validity of the TBFA were compared to the more common assessment approach used in settings providing treatment to adults engaging in problem behavior, ABC data collection, which many presume to be as effective and efficient, or more, than functional analyses. The two assessment approaches yielded inconsistent functions. Social validity questionnaires resulted in mixed overall preference; however, ABC data scored higher in ease/practicality and TBFA scored higher in objectivity/ effectiveness. These results support the use of TBFA, compared to ABC data, to effectively and efficiently assess problem behavior in adult settings.

 

CANCELED: Training Functional Analysis Skills With Video Modeling and Video Self-Monitoring

HALEY CIARA HUGHES (Western Michigan University), Richard Wayne Fuqua (Western Michigan University), Shanice Carlson (Western Michigan)
Abstract:

Board Certified Behavior Analysts have an ethical obligation to first conduct a functional assessment (PECC, 2014, 3.01a) to identify the controlling variables for reducing challenging behaviors. The Functional Analysis (FA) yields more accurate results than other types of functional assessment (Iwata & Dozier, 2008), making this type of assessment an important practitioner skill to acquire. Despite being considered a gold standard for training a variety of skills, behavioral skills training (BST) is often very time intensive on the part of the trainer (Iwata et al., 2000). Video self-monitoring (VSMN) may be an alternative, effective way to train students to implement FAs (Field et al., 2015). This study evaluated the efficacy of several training strategies on student implementation of FA skills, including interventions featuring instruction plus video modeling (IVM), and VSMN, with and without feedback. Results revealed that IVM produced a notable, but insufficient, improvement in performance. All participants showed further performance improvement with the addition of VSMN and VSMN plus feedback.

 
Evaluating The Effects of Computer-Based Instruction to Teach Trial-Based Functional Analysis to Practitioners
JESSICA LYNN AMADOR (Caldwell University), Ruth M. DeBar (Caldwell University), Tina Sidener (Caldwell University), Andrew W. Gardner (University of Arizona - College of Medicine - Department of Psychiatry)
Abstract: Children who engage in problem behavior are often mainstreamed and educated in the public schools. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act requires that special education teachers address students’ interfering behavior in the least restrictive environment. A trial-based functional analysis (TBFA) is a form of a functional behavior analysis whereby conditions are embedded naturally into scheduled activities of the school day to determine environmental variables responsible for problem behavior. For educators to be included in this process, it is important that staff are trained effectively and efficiently. Computer-based instruction (CBI) offers advantages as staff training and may require less time, less supervision, and permit training across multiple people. The efficacy of CBI on teaching how to conduct a trial-based functional analysis to practitioners remains unknown. The purpose of the current study was to evaluate the efficacy of CBI on teaching how to conduct a TBFA with practitioners and evaluated the effects on implementing a TBFA with a confederate. Results are promising that CBI can lead to effective staff training.
 
 
Panel #193
CE Offered: BACB
Tracking Behavioral Processes: A Clinical Behavior Analysis Approach
Sunday, May 24, 2020
11:00 AM–11:50 AM EDT
Virtual
Area: CBM/VRB; Domain: Translational
CE Instructor: Evelyn Rachael Gould, Ph.D.
Chair: Abbey Warren (Louisiana Contextual Science Research Group)
GLENN M. CALLAGHAN (San Jose State University)
EVELYN RACHAEL GOULD (McLean Hospital, Harvard Medical School; FirstSteps for Kids, Inc.)
T. V. JOE LAYNG (Generategy, LLC)
Abstract:

Clinical behavior analysis is amongst the only approaches to understanding talk therapy that has direct implications for understanding and intervening on in-session behavior in such a way as to change behavior out of session. How it is that this occurs has been discussed in terms of nonlinear contingencies, verbal behavior, rule governed behavior, derived relational responding, and other conceptualizations of complex human behavior. The development of clinical behavior analysis as a subdiscipline, however, has been limited by the branding of specific treatment packages that move away from common behavioral terms. This panel will include clinical behavior analysts with expertise in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Functional Analytic Psychotherapy (FAP, Interpersonal Behavior Therapy (IBT), and Nonlinear Contingency Analysis (NCA). Panelists will analyze sample video recordings of a talk therapy session in terms of behavioral principles that comprise a common ground for clinical behavior analytic approaches. Implications for comparing and contrasting clinical behavior analytic interventions will be discussed, along with questions from the audience.

Target Audience:

Behavior analysts, clinicians, higher education instructors, service providers

Learning Objectives: Clinical Behavior Analysis (CBA) is important because of its approach to understanding talk therapy through intervening on in-session behavior in order to promote behavior change in the real world. CBA can be explored and practiced through many different routes (i.e., Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Functional Analytic Psychotherapy (FAP), Interpersonal Behavior Therapy (IBT), and Nonlinear Contingency Analysis (NCA)). There is common ground in the various CBA practices that are rooted in behavioral principles.
 
 
Symposium #200
CE Offered: BACB/QABA/NASP — 
Supervision
Training Caregivers, Part I: Working With Young Children
Sunday, May 24, 2020
11:00 AM–12:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: AUT/DDA; Domain: Translational
Chair: Peter Sturmey (The Graduate Center and Queens College, City University of New York)
Discussant: Gina Feliciano (Quality Services for the Autism Community (QSAC))
CE Instructor: Peter Sturmey, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Training caregivers to apply evidence-based Applied Behavior Analysis is an essential component of professional work and a key component of effective services. Research over the last 30 years has demonstrated the effectiveness, efficiency and acceptability of Behavioral Skills Training (BST) to teach skills, promote generalization of teaching skills and sometimes produce important changes in child behavior. As research in this area becomes more differentiated, one important aspect has been the application of BST to young children, including training family members and staff in integrated settings. This workshop will present three papers on applying BST to train parents of a child at risk for Autism Spectrum Disorders via telehealth, training parents to teach joint attention skills to their children, and training special education teachers to improve the integrity of function-based interventions to increase child classroom engagement. These studies demonstrate that BST can readily be extended to working with caregivers of young children with disabilities, improve caregiver behavior and produce socially important changes in child behavior.

Target Audience:

Masters and doctoral level practitioners; advanced graduate students; psychologists; service supervisors;

Learning Objectives: Participants will (1) describe the application of behavioral skills training to family members; (2) describe the application of behavioral skills training to varied young children; (3) describe child outcomes of training caregivers.
 
Parent-Mediated Targeted Intervention via Telehealth for a Young Child At-Risk for Autism Spectrum Disorder
ALICIA AZZANO (Brock University), Rebecca A. Ward (Phoenix Centre for Learning), Tricia Corinne Vause (Brock University), Maurice Feldman (Dept. of Applied Disability Studies, Brock University)
Abstract: Some early screeners can detect ASD signs in the first year of life (Feldman et al., 2012), opening the potential for pre-diagnostic early intervention. With the growing body of research demonstrating the feasibility of using a telehealth model to provide parent training of behavior analytic teaching strategies to parents of children with ASD (Lindgren et al., 2016), more research is needed to explore the efficacy of this model and early intervention in general for parents who have pre-diagnostic young children at-risk for ASD. In this current study, parents of one child aged 30 months first identified potential target problem behaviors on the Parent Observation of Early Markers Scale (POEMS; Feldman et al., 2012) that were confirmed during baseline observations. All observations occurred through videoconferencing once a week for one hour. A multiple baseline design across parent and child behaviors was used to evaluate a parent-mediated behavioral intervention to increase target developmental skills (pointing to request, verbal manding, motor imitation) using the telehealth model. Both parents participated in training. Data was collected for the percentage of correct responses from contrived trials for each child behavior, and for the percentage of correct parent teaching implementation according to the Parent Teaching Skills Checklist. Child skill teaching strategies taught to the parents included components of applied behavior analysis and natural environment teaching (Weiss, 2001). Parent training consisted of a modified behavioral skills training to accommodate the telehealth model (read and discuss written instructions, watch pre-made model videos, coach the parents to rehearse the teaching strategies with each other, and give feedback). As seen in Table 1, parent training increased parent teaching skills that maintained at over 80% teaching fidelity for both parents, with concomitant increases in child target skills (motor imitation is currently is training, accounting for the empty bottom row in Table 1). These results highlight the promise of a cost-effective telehealth parent training early intervention model to reduce early ASD signs in at-risk young children.
 

Parent and Sibling Training to Increase Joint Attention Behavior in Young Children With Developmental Disabilities

SARAH GRACE HANSEN (Georgia State University), Tracy Jane Raulston (Penn State), Jessica Demarco (Georgia State University), Hannah Etchison (Georgia State University)
Abstract:

Children with developmental disabilities are at increased risk for social communication deficits, including early and pivotal social communication skills. One such skill, response to joint attention, is a behavioral cusp for later developing social communication and play. Joint attention is coordinated shared attention between two individuals and an object or event. The current study investigated the effects of a train-the-trainer approach where parents were trained to teach siblings to be proficient interventionists on the response to joint attention behavior of their siblings with developmental disabilities. Results indicate an increase in parent task fidelity following a modified behavior skills training procedure during home visits, as well as an increase in sibling task fidelity following parent training using a social narrative and prompting procedure. Target child data indicate an increase in level of response to joint attention behavior following parent training and parent training of sibling. Limitations and future directions are discussed.

 

The Effects of a Teacher’s Behavior Skills Training in Strategies for Students With Exceptionalities in a General Education Classroom

Dustin Platter (Hawaii Department of Education), JENNIFER NINCI (University of Hawaii at Manoa), Shari Daisy (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract:

Special education teachers are often implementers of behavior intervention plans; however, a shortage of teachers in any field is only magnified in special education. Studies have looked at the use of behavior skills training (BST) in training teachers and caregivers in the intervention techniques prescribed for individuals and groups. This study extends research on teacher training using the BST model. This study was also designed to evaluate the relation between teacher integrity to a functional assessment-based interventions (FABI) suite of strategies and the effect on student on-task performance. The participants were a special education teacher and two elementary-aged students, each classified with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The students engaged in off-task, often disruptive behavior while receiving special education services in a general education classroom. This study was conducted in three phases. Each phase consisted of BST to teach a subset of interventions. A single-subject changing criterion design was used to evaluate the effect of BST on teacher integrity and student performance. Results showed that BST improved teacher integrity through each phase and teacher integrity improved student on-task behavior. Limitations to this study will be discussed as well as directions for future research.

 

Evaluation of a Caregiver Training Intervention to Teach Safety Skills to Children With Autism

SARAH DAVIS (Brock University), Sarah Kupferschmidt (ONTABA), Kendra Thomson (Brock University ), Carly Magnacca (Brock University)
Abstract:

Alarmingly, nearly half of children with autism elope or bolt, and more than half of these children go missing for a concerning duration of time and/or enter into dangerous situations. Caregivers often do not feel prepared to address these serious concerns. This study evaluated the effectiveness of behavioural skills training (BST) for teaching caregivers how to also use BST in conjunction with a tactile prompt to teach their children with autism help-seeking behaviour. Participants included a total of six dyads, caregivers and their children with autism ages 5-10. We used a concurrent multiple baseline design across two dyads with three replications. The children’s safety responses were measured using a point system: (1) calling out for their caregiver in a louder than conversational voice, (2) locating a store employee, and (3) informing the employee that he/she was lost. Results indicate that four children met mastery criteria (a safety score of 3 across two consecutive trials), and the caregivers were able to successfully fade the tactile prompting device. Data collection with the final two dyads is currently in progress. This study contributes to the limited empirical research on caregiver training using BST to teach help-seeking behaviour to children with autism.

 
 
Symposium #201
CE Offered: BACB/QABA/NASP
Social Reinforcement: Basic Findings and Applications
Sunday, May 24, 2020
11:00 AM–12:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: CBM/VRB; Domain: Translational
Chair: Cory Stanton (University of Nevada, Reno)
Discussant: William C. Follette (University of Nevada, Reno)
CE Instructor: Thomas J. Waltz, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Humans are a eusocial species, especially sensitive to social contingencies. This sensitivity is observed at the earliest stages of development and persists throughout the lifespan, even in the presence of late-life neurodegenerative impairments. While social reinforcers are the most common reinforcers utilized in clinical applications, the behavior analytic literature is relatively sparse in its analysis of the quality of these reinforcers as they naturally occur and vary in a wide variety of interactions. This symposium will address social reinforcers from multiple vantage points: a review of the experimental analysis of social behavior, thought-provoking observations of parent-child interactions during acquisition of verbal skills, social histories as confounds within applied work in behavioral gerontology, and the challenge to measure interpersonal repertoires and the effects of social contingencies in clinical behavior analysis. The goal of the symposium is to draw attention to the ubiquitous nature of social reinforcers and social histories, identify gaps in knowledge, and discuss areas of future exploration for experimental, applied, and clinical research.

Target Audience:

Scientist practitioners, BCBA-Ds, BCBAs, BCaBAs

Learning Objectives: 1. Participants will be able to describe conjugate reinforcement in relation to early verbal behavior skills acquisition. 2. Participants will be able to describe 3 social repertoires in older adults that can compromise the validity of preference and functional assessments. 3. Participants will be able to describe how data from a self-report instrument can be used to guide subsequent in-session functional analyses of social behavior.
 
A Review of the Experimental Analysis of Social Reinforcement
CLAUDIA DROSSEL (Eastern Michigan University), Thomas J. Waltz (Eastern Michigan University)
Abstract: Aristotle termed humankind “zoon politicon,” pointing to socially interdependent and transactional lives and ongoing attempts to influence each others’ behavior. Despite the ubiquitous nature of social reinforcement, experimental studies of social reinforcement are relatively rare, or they rely on histories and require sophisticated verbal repertoires with limited actual social contact (e.g., studies of social discounting). Furthermore, analyses that consider social reinforcers often fail to capture the nuanced features of human interactions that determine differential preference. The current paper will review existing behavior analytic work in the area. Acknowledging that much applied work in behavior analysis focuses on interventions in autism spectrum disorders, defined by social deficits and potential lack of sensitivity to social contingencies, we will orient behavior analysts to methods and processes in the experimental analysis of behavior that could inform future laboratory as well as applied research.
 
Social Contingencies: From Language Acquisition to Skilled Social Interactions
THOMAS J. WALTZ (Eastern Michigan University), Claudia Drossel (Eastern Michigan University), Lauren Bauer (Gateway Pediatric Therapy), Tori Humiston (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract: Infants are immersed in rich social-verbal communities at the earliest moments of their development and the contingencies embedded in the interaction with these communities illustrate the key role social reinforcers play in language development. Variations in reinforcer intensity and quality are important components of the contingencies shaping ever sophisticated communicative repertoires in infants and young children. This presentation will provide a review of the research looking at the social contingencies embedded in early language development with typically developing children. The types of reinforcers and qualities of these caregiver social and instrumental responses will be summarized. For example, timing, tone, repetition, repetition with correction or expansion, and coordinated actions that are part of the coordinated caregiver social response can impact the quality of the learning trial. This literature will be contrasted with the assessment practices used to inform Early Intensive Behavioral Interventions for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and formal assessments of social pragmatic skills. Opportunities for improving the assessment of key dimensions of social contingencies will be discussed.
 
Social Contingencies Affect Standard Behavior-Analytic Methods
ZOE LUCOCK (Bangor University), Rebecca A Sharp (Bangor University)
Abstract: Many of the commonly-used behavioral methods in our field have been developed with people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. As such, they may require adapting for older adults with dementia, who are likely to have different social learning histories. For example, whilst conducting standard behavior-analytic methods such as preference assessments and experimental functional analyses with adults with dementia, we encountered social contingencies that affected and interfered with the measurement of target behaviors. During preference assessments, our participants engaged in what we termed ‘polite verbal behaviors’ that impeded the selection of stimuli. For example, all seven participants asked what the researcher would like them to do with the stimulus they had selected, and 86% reported that they felt ‘greedy’ making selections between stimuli. Similarly, during an experimental functional analysis, we found that our participant made repeated comments relating to the stimulus conditions in place during ignore and attention conditions (e.g., “Why aren’t you talking to me- have I done something wrong?”). We discuss the importance for behavior analysts to be not only aware of social contingencies affecting their clinical work but also to engineer social contingencies in order that their results reflect responding under appropriate and meaningful stimulus conditions.
 
Preliminary Psychometric Properties of the FIAT-2: Updating a Behavioral Measure of Interpersonal Skills
CORY STANTON (University of Nevada, Reno), Brandon Sanford (University of Nevada, Reno), Jonathan Singer (University of Nevada, Reno), William C. Follette (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract: The Functional Idiographic Assessment Template system (FIAT; Callaghan, 2006) is a behavior analytic approach to understanding key elements of an interpersonal repertoire for typically developing adults. The FIAT has been employed in research on Functional Analytic Psychotherapy (FAP: Kohlenberg & Tsai, 1991) to some success. FAP therapists emphasize observation of in-session behaviors in order to identify relevant interpersonal contingencies for client distress and well-being. In addition, self-report questionnaires can be useful in identifying relevant concerns with the client's social repertoire. A short-form self-report instrument, the FIAT-Q-SF (Darrow, Callaghan, Bonow, & Follette, 2014) has been developed and used in research, but questions remain about its psychometric properties. In study 1, two waves of undergraduate students (n1 = 640; n2 = 526) completed multiple measures including the FIAT-Q-SF. During study 2, we developed and tested a new pool of items with another wave of undergraduates (n = 320). Finally in study 3, we further examined its properties in an mTurk subject pool (n = 400). The tentatively dubbed FIAT-2’s properties will be compared to the original short form and implications for research and treatment will be discussed.
 
 
Symposium #210
CE Offered: BACB
Advancements in the Assessment of Challenging and Repetitive Behaviors Maintained by Automatic Reinforcement
Sunday, May 24, 2020
12:00 PM–12:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: DDA/AUT; Domain: Translational
Chair: Mindy Christine Scheithauer (Marcus Autism Center; Emory University)
CE Instructor: Mindy Christine Scheithauer, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Children with intellectual and developmental disabilities often engage in challenging (e.g., self-injury, aggression, disruption) and repetitive behaviors. For a subset of these individuals, the behavior is maintained by automatic reinforcement. Behavior maintained by automatic reinforcement presents several challenges in assessment and treatment. The current symposium includes three studies that address some of these challenges. The first study presents data from assessments and treatments of repetitive behaviors maintained by automatic reinforcement, with an emphasis on predictions made by classification following assessment based on the three subtypes of automatically maintained behavior that have been previously studied with self-injury. Second, we will present outcomes from extended alone and ignore assessments, a common evaluation conducted to determine whether behavior is automatically-maintained. Specifically, this study will present on differences in the rate and variability of behavior when conducting alone compared to ignore assessments and differences across topography of behavior. The last study highlights potential safety concerns associated with the assessment of automatically maintained self-injury. An evaluation of solutions to decrease safety risks associated with assessing these behaviors is discussed.

Target Audience:

Target audience includes practitioners and applied researchers with a BCBA or BCBA-D. It is also appropriate for psychologists who conduct behavioral assessments and treatments. This should also qualify as psychology CEUs, but I did not see this option listed above.

Learning Objectives: Attendees will be able to explain how subtypes of automatically-maintained SIB apply to repetitive behaviors. Attendees will identify differences in rate and variability of behavior that might be expected when conducted extended alone and ignore assessments. Attendees will describe one method that might increase safety when assessing automatically-maintained SIB.
 

Subtyping Repetitive Behavior From Standard Functional Analysis Data

TIAGO SALES LARROUDÉ DE MAN (Western New England), Haley Steinhauser (The New England Center for Children; Western New England University), Julia Touhey (The New England Center for Children; Western New England University), Catlyn LiVolsi (The New England Center for Children; Western New England University), William H. Ahearn (New England Center for Children; Western New England University)
Abstract:

Hagopian and colleagues (2015/2017) have suggested that self-injurious behavior (SIB) that is automatically reinforced presents as three subtypes. Subtype 1 consists of differentiation between the alone/no interaction and the play control conditions. This form of SIB is generally responsive to alternative reinforcement alone. Subtype 2 SIB consists of a lack of differentiation between those FA conditions and is not generally responsive to alternative reinforcement. Subtype 3 is Subtype 2 SIB that presents with self-restraint. This study aimed to prospectively identify, from standard functional analyses (FA), whether similar subtypes present with stereotypic behavior. Two types of treatment evaluations followed the FAs of stereotypy. In one, an Augmented Competing Stimulus Assessment (A-CSA), which assessed competing stimuli to stereotypy. In the other, the effects of prompting and reinforcement for appropriate behavior was examined in four classroom contexts where stereotypy was observed to occur. There are currently 12 participants across the two experiments. Subtypes have emerged and treatment effects have and have not been obtained with alternative reinforcement. Treatment results will be discussed with the Subtyping obtained in the FA as context. Interobserver agreement data were collected in all experimental conditions and mean IOA was consistently above 85% for all dependent measures.

 

CANCELED: Evaluating Protective Procedures for Assessment, Treatment, and Research on Automatically Maintained Self-Injurious Behavior

MICHELLE A. FRANK-CRAWFORD (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Louis P. Hagopian (Kennedy Krieger Institute)
Abstract:

Automatically maintained self-injurious behavior (ASIB) has been shown to be generally more resistant to treatment and to produce more injuries relative to socially maintained self-injury. Assessing, treating, and conducting research on severe ASIB poses many practical and ethical challenges. Among them is the necessity to observe the behavior in order to assess it and to evaluate treatment outcomes, while also maintaining the safety of the client or research participant. The current study describes a systematic approach for identifying the optimal level, type, and combination of protective procedures that allows some self-injury to occur, but minimizes the potential for injury. Protective procedures can include mechanical devices that limit the occurrence of the behavior, protective equipment that protect areas of the body from injury, response blocking to prevent the completion of the response, and abbreviated session durations that limit exposure to situations in which the behavior is occurring. The potential utility of this approach and the need for additional research to further develop these methods are discussed.

 

Evaluating the Rate and Variability of Challenging Behavior During Extended Alone and Ignore Assessments

JAYNE MEREDITH MURPHY (Marcus Autism Center; Emory University), Summer Bottini (Marcus Autism Center; Emory University), Mindy Christine Scheithauer (Marcus Autism Center; Emory University)
Abstract:

Extended alone or ignore assessments are often conducted to determine whether challenging behavior is maintained by automatic reinforcement. The current study conducted a consecutive case series analysis of over 60 children and young adults who completed extended alone or ignore assessments as part of their admission to an intensive treatment center for challenging behavior. We evaluated the variability and average level of targeted behavior across topographies of challenging behavior and assessment types (alone or ignore). Minimal differences were identified when comparing variability in alone vs. ignore assessments. Across topographies, some behaviors were associated with less variability across sessions compared to others (e.g., pica was generally exhibited with very little variability across sessions). Results are presented in the context of guidelines for what clinicians should expect when conducting extended alone or ignore assessments as well as future research directions for identifying aspects of reinforcement history that might contribute to differing patterns of responding in these types of assessments.

 
 
Panel #212
CE Offered: BACB
Functional Curriculum Design and Path of Treatment Analysis for Language/Cognitive Normalization and Enhancement
Sunday, May 24, 2020
12:00 PM–12:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: DEV/AUT; Domain: Translational
CE Instructor: Richard E. Laitinen, Ph.D.
Chair: Kalle M Laitinen (Fit Learning Aptos, Educational and Developmental Therapies Inc.)
RICHARD E. LAITINEN (Personalized Accelerated Learning Systems (PALS))
DERMOT BARNES-HOLMES (Ghent University)
Abstract:

This panel will present a model for conducting functional analysis of proximal direct-acting and generative effects of taught and emergent operant and higher-order operant competencies and capabilities extending over developmental and habilitative timeframes.

Target Audience:

Practitioners and researchers interested in the design and management of complex curriculum based paths of treatment for the verbal behavior/cognitive habilitation or advancement of individuals presenting with learning challenges and deficits

Learning Objectives: Participants will describe the structure of 1. Scope and sequence curriculum design 2. Uses of a relational data-base to make treatment intervention decisions 3. Simple to complex, component/composite relations that produce generative performance
 
 
Symposium #214
CE Offered: BACB
Interbehaviorism and Psychological Events as a Field of Interactants: A Possible Future Path for Behavior Science
Sunday, May 24, 2020
12:00 PM–12:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: PCH/VRB; Domain: Translational
Chair: Genevieve M. DeBernardis (University of Nevada, Reno)
CE Instructor: Genevieve M. DeBernardis, Ph.D.
Abstract:

This symposium involves three presentations, each of which pertain to Kantor’s interbehavioral field construct and its relevance to behavior analysis. The first of these presentations pertains to the field construct itself. The presentation will describe the fundamental features of the field construct and address potential misunderstandings related to various aspects of it. The second presentation builds upon the first, and focuses on the implications of the field construct for both research and application. Indeed, the implications of the field construct for the research and practice areas of behavior analysis are often less clear, and therefore specific attention is given to these areas. Examples of contemporary research and popular areas of practice are provided and considered in field perspective, and implications for future field-based research and practice are provided. Finally, the third presentation focuses on Relational Frame Theory, and especially on recent conceptual developments within this area of research. Current models of conceptualizing derived relational responding are described, and the relationship between these models and the interbehavioral field construct are highlighted. Taken together, these presentations build upon each other and highlight how the field construct may be relevant to the ongoing development of behavior analysis.

Target Audience:

This presentation is an intermediate/advanced level and appropriate for BCBA's interested in learning about conceptual advances/development in the field - including both researchers and clinicians. Graduate students may also be interested in the presentation as it pertains to their educational development, research interests, etc.

Learning Objectives: -Compare and contrast the field construction with causal constructions in behavior analysis. -Describe the implications of the field construct for both research and practice. -Describe how the field construct relate to recent research in Relational Frame Theory.
 
The Field Construction of Interbehaviorism
LINDA J. PARROTT HAYES (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract: Interbehaviorism is not unlike Behaviorism in aim. Both aim to rid psychology of the dualistic premises and hypothetical constructs that have thwarted the progress of the science for centuries. They have pursued this aim in different ways – one by system building, the other by investigation, and each takes issue with the other’s approach. Interbehaviorists argue that investigation is an important subdivision of a comprehensive science -- but a sub-division nonetheless. A science, as such, involves more than investigation. Behaviorists contend that system building is not important to the coherence or productivity of a scientific endeavor – at least this much can be assumed by the lack of systemic development among members of this collectivity. Instead, it seems that investigation is science; science is investigation. The aim of this paper is clarify the principle difference between these two approaches, namely the field construction of Interbehaviorism as compared with the causal construction of Behaviorism.
 
Research, Application, and the Interbehavioral Field
MITCH FRYLING (California State University, Los Angeles)
Abstract: While interbehaviorism and interbehavioral psychology are relatively less well known among those in mainstream behavior analysis, there seems to be an increase in interest in various areas associated with J. R. Kantor’s work. Indeed, much of this interest may be associated with the growing recognition of the complex nature of the subject-matter of behavior science. Kantor’s interbehavioral field construct seems to be especially relevant and of interest to both researchers and clinicians who are interested in complex behavior. Still, misunderstandings of interbehavioral thinking can at times make the field construct seem misaligned with or unable to be the foundation of research and application in behavior analysis. This presentation will focus on some of these misunderstandings and describe some of the philosophical and systemic foundations of interbehaviorism and interbehavioral psychology specifically. After doing so specific examples of interbehavioral research and application will be described, and efforts will be made to connect the field construct to contemporary areas of research and practice in behavior analysis.
 
Up-dating Relational Frame Theory: More Field than Frame
MARTIN FINN (Ghent University), Dermot Barnes-Holmes (Ghent University), Yvonne Barnes-Holmes (Ghent University)
Abstract: This paper presents an overview of a line of research that has focused on the behavioral dynamics of arbitrarily applicable relational responding (AARRing), which has involved integrating two recent conceptual developments within relational frame theory (RFT). The first of these is the multi-dimensional, multi-level (MDML) framework and the second is the differential arbitrarily applicable relational responding effects (DAARRE) model. Integrating the MDML framework and the DAARRE model emphasizes the transformation of functions within the MDML, thus yielding a hyper-dimensional, multilevel (HDML) framework for analyzing the behavioral dynamics of AARRing. The HDML generates a new conceptual unit of analysis for RFT in which relating, orienting, and evoking (ROEing) are seen as involved in virtually all psychological events for verbally-able humans. These empirical and conceptual developments in RFT emphasize that the theory is inherently field-theoretic. The implications of this conclusion for both experimentation and further conceptual development will be explored towards the end of the paper.
 
 
Symposium #216
CE Offered: BACB — 
Supervision
Behavior Analysis in Higher Education: Basic Principles Teaching and Supervision
Sunday, May 24, 2020
12:00 PM–12:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: TBA/PCH; Domain: Translational
Chair: Andresa De Souza (University of Missouri St. Louis)
Discussant: Darlene E. Crone-Todd (Salem State University)
CE Instructor: Darlene E. Crone-Todd, Ph.D.
Abstract:

With the current high demand for BCBAs, we have also seen an increase in university programs offering applied behavior analysis (ABA) programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. To ensure quality education and preparation for clinical services, program curriculums should be aligned with the theoretical background of ABA as well as best practices for training essential skills. This symposium will explore important aspects that should be considered when teaching and supervising undergraduate- and graduate-level students in ABA programs. First, Isvânia Alves will present the conclusions of a project that identified controversies and disagreements related to basic principles and concepts among behavior analytical textbooks and field experts. In addition, Isvânia a will present a decision-making model to assist in selecting objectives when teaching and providing supervision to undergraduate students. Next, Maegan Pisman will discuss potential strategies and guidelines for effective and ethical remote supervision for students in university practicum courses. Maegan will conclude with possible areas for research related to online teaching and supervision. Darlene Crone-Todd will serve as the discussant.

Target Audience:

Instructors, BCBAs providing remote supervision, VCS of ABA programs

 

Concept and Principle Analysis, Controversies in Critical and Variable Features, and Decision-Making Model for Basic Behavioral Principles

Isvânia Alves Santos (Universidade Federal de Alagoas; Programa de Pós-graduação em Educação), ANA CAROLINA SELLA (Universidade Federal de Alagoas; Programa de Pós-graduação em Educação), Jackeline Santana Santos (Universidade Federal de Alagoas; Programa de Pós-graduação em Educação)
Abstract:

One of the roles a supervisor might have within applied behavior analysis regards the assurance that the decision-making process for interventions is conceptually sound. In the past few years our group has developed, implemented, evaluated, analyzed and redesigned a decision-making model aimed at content and behavioral objectives selection for teaching undergraduate students. In our last analysis-redesign iteration, we found inconsistencies, controversies or disagreements in regard to what defines some basic behavioral concepts and principles, such as environment, behavior, operant behavior, respondent behavior, antecedent, among others. Additionally, when we submitted these concepts and principles analysis to be reviewed by behavior analysts (i.e., content experts), the conceptual controversies appeared in some of the suggestions they made. The purpose of this paper is to present our decision-making model in its latest form, present and discuss a few of the controversies we found during our analysis, and highlight the importance of performing a concept or principle analysis when selecting content in areas in which conceptual disagreements might hinder or decelerate student learning and affect the decision-making process for interventions, if these disagreements are not explicit or discussed.

 
Considerations for Designing and Implementing Online Instruction and Remote Supervision for Students of Behavior Analysis
Maegan Pisman (Imbueity; Pepperdine University), ANDRESA DE SOUZA (University of Missouri St. Louis)
Abstract: There appears to be a growing demand for university programs with coursework that qualify students to sit for the BACB® certification exam. Many universities offer courses in an online format to meet this demand; however, there are few to no empirical studies evaluating online instructional methods and practicum design within applied behavior analysis (ABA) programs. Hybrid and online programs present additional opportunities for accessing education and training in ABA, but they also occasion some challenges that should be deliberately addressed when designing courses and supervisory activities. We will provide suggestions for training and supervision for remote students based on the available literature in behavior analysis and other collaborative fields. Specifically, we will review considerations for curriculum development, strategies for implementing behavioral skills training, available technology for asynchronous and synchronous instruction, and ethical and professional practices for instructors and supervisees. We conclude with possible areas of research to evaluate the effectiveness of remote training and supervision.
 
 
Panel #217
PDS: Professional Perspectives: Essential Questions in Graduate School for Professional Preparation in ABA
Sunday, May 24, 2020
12:00 PM–12:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: TBA/DEV; Domain: Translational
Chair: Bradley Ray Tiefenthaler (Montana State University Billings, Family Outreach, Inc. )
CHERYL A. YOUNG-PELTON (Montana State University in Billings)
JACKIE MOHLER (Family Outreach)
Abstract:

Too many students graduate without being fully prepared to handle their professional responsibilities. Instead of focusing on meaningful and transcendent topics (i.e., archetypal themes, conflicts, and resolutions), we tend to focus on immediate requirements and measurements (i.e., rubrics, grade points, credits, etc.). We read our books, write our papers, and take our tests to satisfy rubric requirements, pass our classes, and ultimately graduate; but we don’t normally transcend the material and focus on the conflicts we will face in the future. This Professional Development Series asks those questions, engages these topics, and focuses on the most important conflicts within the field of ABA from three professional perspectives – an ABA practitioner, researcher, and professor – to better prepare students for professional responsibilities. Please, join the conversation!

 
 
Symposium #218
CE Offered: BACB
Effectiveness and Efficacy of Several Different Applications of ABA Intervention Across Two Countries
Sunday, May 24, 2020
12:00 PM–12:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: TBA/AUT; Domain: Translational
Chair: Jessica Singer-Dudek (Teachers College, Columbia University)
CE Instructor: Jessica Singer-Dudek, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Different models of intervention and their effectiveness and efficacy have been studied a lot in USA. Most of them focused on the intensity measured by the numbers of hours of service children with disabilities received. In this symposium we will look at several different packages and intensity of ABA interventions across different settings and countries. Europe has different systems of health, education and social care compared to USA so in some countries the systems and services like early intervention may be completely missing for children with ASD and other developmental disorders. In addition to those differences, even when existent, eclectic models compared to evidence-based and specifically ABA programs, are prevalent. These papers will talk about evidence-based possible models, comparing different intensity and application across various settings. In addition, we will talk about the process and the time a child with developmental disorder needs to go from detection to reach intervention, and provide some research- based insight on how to improve that and then, what type of intervention is the most effective.

Target Audience:

Service providers, supervisors, academics

Learning Objectives: - How to measure effectiveness of ABA Intervention - How to create different intensity ABA programs - Haw to set up a effectiveness studies comparing models of intervention
 
Measuring Special Education without Special Schools: Challenges and Research Opportunities where Treatment Efficiency is Needed the Most
FABIOLA CASARINI (Scuola delle Stelle Learning and Research Centre), Elisa Galanti (Scuola delle Stelle Learning and Research Centre), Adele Vero (Scuola delle Stelle Learning and Research Centre), Chiara Leuci (AllenaMenti Educational Centre), Claudia Puchetti (VitaLab Educational Center)
Abstract: Countries such as Italy have welfare systems drastically different from those in the United States. Therefore, it is essential to measure the criteria of effective ABA interventions for children with ASD, that can’t attend special schools or have insurance-covered intensive treatments.We implemented a CABAS®-based treatment package with high educational intensity and modified frequency, in which each participant received intervention for 12 hours a week. Participants were 7 children with Autism, aged 2 to 6 years old at the beginning of the study. The dependent variables were the changes in each child’s ADOS-2 and CARS-2 scores prior to and after one and two years of intervention. The results showed a significant difference between before and after the low-frequency package was implemented, for the total scores and each sub-test of both instruments. Data were also collected about the number of Learn Units to Criterion rate. This preliminary study aims to pave the way for further research, with a larger number of participants and a longitudinal analysis of change. Results suggest that normative tests, together with individual graphs’ analysis, can help differentiate between treatment effectiveness and efficiency and that further research is needed in order to make the necessary progress in improving access to treatment and sustainability.
 

Autism Diagnostic Protocol for Low-and-Mid Income Countries: Barriers for an Early Diagnosis and Intervention for Autsim Spectrum Disorder in Bosnia and Herzegovina

NIRVANA PISTOLJEVIC (EDUS; CABAS and Teachers College, Columbia University), Eldin Dzanko (EDUS- Education for All), Mohammad Ghaziuddin (University of Michigan Hospitals)
Abstract:

Obtaining a reliable and timely diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a large problem in most Low-and-Mid Income Countries (LMIC). The problem lies mostly in the lack of trained professionals and access to reliable screening/diagnostic tools which are often to expensive and culturally inappropriate for those countries. Bosnia and Hercegovina (B&H) is such a county, where children with ASD often stay undetected and without appropriate intervention. We analyzed medical documentation and tested 126 children ages 23 to 94 months, with detected severe developmental delays. Although parents reported developmental problems in their children on average at the age of 17 months, it took 812 visits to professionals (>6 per child) over several months (mean 16.8, range 2-52) to get the diagnosis. Only 8 children (6.3%) of our sample received a diagnosis referring to autism. However, when these children were tested with the Childhood Autism Rating Scale (Second Edition), 68 of them (54%) were rated in the severe autistic range. In order to solve such high rates of undetected and undiagnosed children with ASD in B&H we developed the EDUS Protocol for Autism Screening which is a functional behavioral screening tool created by following the DSM-V diagnostic criteria and aimed to help professionals in diagnosing autism in B&H. We will discuss the barriers to an early childhood diagnosis of ASD in B&H and the development of the EDUS Protocol for Autism Screening as the first step forward to an early diagnosis of ASD enabling access to early intervention programs.

 
Establishing and Evaluating Different Evidence-based Interventions: Experiences from Bosnia and Herzegovina
NIRVANA PISTOLJEVIC (EDUS; CABAS and Teachers College, Columbia University), Eldin Dzanko (EDUS- Education for All)
Abstract: Applied behavior analysis intervention services for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other Developmental Disorders (DD) are mostly unknown and not affordable for the most Low-and-Mid Income Countries (LMIC) such is Bosnia and Herzegovina (B&H). Usually intervention services in B&H are delivered within public institutions and provided by defectologists and speech therapists based on a Soviet Russia approach in dealing with rehabilitating individuals with developmental disorders. EDUS - Education for All, and NGO in B&H is the only high intensity behavioral intervention provider in the country, providing services in cooperation with public institutions for the last 9 years. For the past several years we have developed different intensity programs across country and health and education systems and completed several studies comparing its effectiveness In order to provide insight for decision makers, and with financial support by the USAID, last year, we conducted a matched-pairs pre-post intervention study by comparing effects of three different intervention models during a five months period: Early Intensive behavioral intervention (n=24; 25 hours weekly), Eclectic models in combination with low intensity behavioral interventions used in public institutions (n=24; 4-25 hours weekly), and a control group of children without any intervention (n=27), on a waiting lists for the programs. Initial and final blind assessments were conducted with the EDUS Developmental Behavioral Scales 2 (Pistoljevic, Zubcevic, Dzanko, 2019) and the EDUS Guides for Developmental Assessment (Pistoljevic & Majusevic, 2015) in these three groups in order to assess the number of skills gained as an effect of the intervention model. We will discuss each model and variables of interest separately and the superior effects of the intensive behavioral intervention on the acquisition of developmental skills in comparison to the eclectic model and control group.
 
 
Symposium #236
CE Offered: BACB
Verbal Behavior Development in the CABAS® Accelerated Independent Learner Model
Sunday, May 24, 2020
3:00 PM–3:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: DEV/EDC; Domain: Translational
Chair: Jo Ann Pereira Delgado (Teachers College, Columbia University)
CE Instructor: Jo Ann Pereira Delgado, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Several years of research in the Accelerated Independent Learner Model (AIL) have resulted in the identification of key verbal behavior development cusps that are critical for success in the inclusive educational setting. The first paper addresses Bidirectional Naming (BiN), or the joining of the listener and speaker across students in grades K-5 with and without disabilities. In the second paper, the authors outline different assessment procedures associated with best practice to determine the presence of observational learning. In the final paper, the authors present research on both the assessment and corresponding protocol to induce joint stimulus control across saying and writing. Collectively, the authors will address the importance of the establishment of theses cusps in the general education setting and how it relates to effective teaching practices and student outcomes.

Target Audience:

Teachers and professionals

Learning Objectives: Define observational learning, transformation of stimulus function across saying and writing and observational learning. Identify assessment procedures for observational learning, transformation of stimulus function across saying and writing and observational learning. Define verbal behavior development cusps that are optimal for inclusion settings.
 
Bidirectional Naming in the Accelerated Independent Learner Model
YIFEI SUN (Teachers College, Columbia University), Jo Ann Pereira Delgado (Teachers College, Columbia University)
Abstract: Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) required school districts to place students in the least restrictive environment for both academic and social purposes. Identification of a placement that balances students’ academic success and the development of social repertoires requires extensive information and collaboration among students, parents and school staff. Unlike performance behaviors that can be observed and evaluated directly, it is more challenging to predict students’ academic success in less restrictive or inclusion settings. Data from the strategic science of teaching coupled with the verbal behavior development research base suggest that the presence of Unidirectional Naming (UniN) or Bidirectional Naming (BiN) is associated with students’ success in inclusion settings. Researchers found that with BiN, students learn from instructional demonstration learn units (IDLUs) and acquire new academic skills at an accelerated rate, which closely resemble academic experiences in general education settings that rely extensively on teacher modeling. We assessed the presence or absence of BiN for 128 students with or without disabilities, who attended one of the 7 Accelerated Independent Learner (AIL) inclusion model or 2 special education CABAS® classrooms that ranged from grades Pre-K to 5. We conducted statistical analyses to examine the potential correlation among students’ ages, classroom settings, presence of UniN or BiN, and their academic gains during a school year.
 
Comparing Operant Acquisition and Procedural Efficacy for Three Observational Acquisition Assessments Across Kindergarten Students with and without Bidirectional Naming
GABRIELA PEDRERO-DAVILA (Morris School District), Jo Ann Pereira Delgado (Teachers College, Columbia University), Leanna Mellon (SUNY New Paltz), Esther Bakaev (Teachers College)
Abstract: Greer, Singer-Dudek, and Gautreaux (2006) argued that observational learning is a vital capability for student success, especially in settings where there is large student to teacher ratio. The acquisition of observational learning is important in classrooms that use the Comprehensive Application of Behavior Analysis to Schooling (CABAS®) education model and the Accelerated Independent Learner (AIL) education model because consistent with the research base, observational learning accelerates the student’s rate of learning. Students with observational learning no longer require direct instruction to alter performance behaviors, acquire new conditioned reinforcers and learn new operants. With numerous ways to conduct probes for observational learning it can be difficult to select the most appropriate method because students vary in age, rate of learning, and degrees of bidirectional naming. The current study compared 3 different probe measures for observational learning of new operants: (a) 5-trial probe (Singer-Dudek, Choi, & Lyons), (b) 40-trial probe (Delgado & Greer, 2018), and (c) peer mastery probe (Stolfi, 2005). All 3 probe measures were conducted with kindergarten students in a general education setting with and without bidirectional naming to investigate if there is a difference in outcomes across probe measures and if there is 1 probe procedure that is more efficient for kindergarten students.
 
Transformation of Stimulus Function Across Written and Vocal Spelling Responses as a Function of Multiple Exemplar Instruction in the Accelerated Independent Learner Setting
JI YOUNG KIM (Teachers College), Jo Ann Pereira Delgado (Teachers College, Columbia University), R. Douglas Greer (Columbia University Teachers College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences)
Abstract: Students in the Accelerated Independent Learning (AIL) classroom benefit most when transformation of stimulus function (TSF) is present in their repertoire. A student has TSF once he/she acquires joint stimulus control and emits an untaught response to a stimulus that previously evoked only a single taught response. Past studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of the multiple exemplar instruction (MEI) procedure in bringing separate verbal operants under joint stimulus control. Thus, we tested the effectiveness of the MEI procedure on the induction of TSF across written and vocal spelling responses. We studied the effects of MEI across written and vocal spelling responses on the acquisition of untaught spelling responses using a delayed multiple probe design across 3 first-grade participants with and without disabilities. The experimenters selected students who demonstrated absence of joint stimulus control across written and vocal spelling responses based on the pre-intervention probes. The experimenters implemented MEI across written and vocal spelling topographies for grade level spelling words. Results demonstrated increases in untaught spelling responses following the mastery of one phase of the MEI intervention, indicating that MEI was effective in joining written and spoken spelling responses across all three participants. We will discuss these findings in relation to the verbal development theory and associated best teaching practices in the general education setting.
 
 
Symposium #241
CE Offered: BACB/QABA/NASP — 
Supervision
Training Caregivers, Part II: Enhancing Treatment Integrity
Sunday, May 24, 2020
3:00 PM–4:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: DDA/AUT; Domain: Translational
Chair: Lindsay Maffei-Almodovar (Quality Services for the Autism Community (QSAC))
Discussant: Lindsay Maffei-Almodovar (Quality Services for the Autism Community (QSAC))
CE Instructor: Lindsay Maffei-Almodovar, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Delivering effective ABA services requires caregivers to deliver interventions with sufficient integrity to result in socially meaningful changes in client behavior. Yet, many services often struggle to maintain the integrity of applied behavior analytic interventions in applied settings. Thus, practitioners must have behavioral technologies available to them to assess, and increase treatment integrity and evaluate interventions to do so. This symposium presents three papers addressing this important issue. These papers include a systematic review of training natural change agents implementing functional analytic procedures, a telehealth intervention error analysis and identify to remedy the implementation errors and an intervention study to improve treatment integrity during functional communication training

Target Audience:

Advanced graduate students, Masters and Doctoral practitioners, research students, instructors and professors teaching ABA classes, and psychologists including school psychologists.

Learning Objectives: Participants will describe (1) current developments in behavioral skills training; (2) current developments in pyramidal training; and (3) the effects of BST and pyramidal training on client behavior .
 
Natural Change Agent Implemented Functional Analysis: A Systematic Review and Quality Appraisal
EMILY GREGORI (University of Illinois at Chicago), Christine Drew (University of Oregon), Stephanie Gerow (Baylor University), Leslie Neely (The University of Texas at San Antonio)
Abstract: Functional analysis (FA) is the most accurate method for identifying the operant function of challenging behavior. Although trained therapists typically implement FAs, previous research has shown that variables, including the assessment agent, may impact the results of a FA. Given that the assessment agent can impact FA results, there is a need to determine the impact of natural change agent training on fidelity of FA implementation. The purpose of this review was to (a) summarize the available literature on natural change agent implemented FA, (b) determine methods for training natural change agents to implement FAs, and (c) determine the effects of training on change agent implementation fidelity of FA. Thirty-seven studies were identified and evaluated against the What Works Clearinghouse Quality and Evidence standards. Most of the included studies were found to have strong methodological rigor and moderate or strong evidence of effectiveness. Common training components across studies including instructions, modeling, role play, feedback, and coaching. Results suggest these components can be effectively utilized to train parents, teachers, residential staff, and students to implement FA in a variety of applied settings. Recommendations for practitioners and directions for future research will be discussed.
 
An Error Analysis of a Telehealth Intervention for Teaching Behaviour Technicians Common Behavioural Protocols
JOEY ROBERTSON (Brock University), Kendra Thomson (Brock University ), Mary Hume (ONTABA), Carly Magnacca (Brock University), Amanda Marcinkiewicz (Brock University)
Abstract: The relation between treatment integrity and client outcome has been empirically supported. Further evaluation of whether types of integrity errors (omission/commission) affect client outcomes is needed. We evaluated the efficacy of behavioural skills training delivered through telecommunication for teaching three behaviour technicians how to implement an errorless learning protocol to an actor role playing a child with autism spectrum disorder. Additionally, we assessed generalization to teaching an untrained skill, a child, and assessed corresponding effects on the child’s skill acquisition. We conducted a follow-up analysis of the behaviour technicians’ rate of errors of commission (ECoM; i.e., behaviours not prescribed by the protocol) and errors of omission (EOM; i.e., excluding components of a protocol). Participant 1 demonstrated more ECoM with the actor and the child than EoM. Both types of errors decreased post-training and in follow-up. We are currently analyzing the remaining behaviour technicians’ performance to assess whether the same pattern exists. Implications of the effect of BST training on the rate of EOM and ECoM and the relation to child responding will be discussed in relation to training.
 
Effects of Treatment Integrity Errors during Functional Communication Training
MARIE DAVID (Purdue University), Mandy J. Rispoli (Purdue University)
Abstract: Functional communication training (FCT) is an evidence-based practice for reducing challenging behavior and increasing communication skills of individuals with developmental disabilities. However, due to the procedural complexity of the intervention, practitioners may find difficulty in implementing the intervention with high integrity. Practitioners express the need for evidenced-based practices to be modified in such that it addresses the complexities of the natural environment and barriers to implementation. Fortunately, recent research on treatment integrity has indicated a potential tolerance for implementing behavioral interventions with lower integrity. Further research is needed to determine the threshold in which reinforcement can be delivered to challenging behavior but still lead to a meaningful outcome. For this study, we are evaluating the effects of systematic changes in treatment integrity by altering errors of commission during reinforcement delivery procedures as part of FCT. We utilized an alternating treatments design to compare varying levels of reinforcement delivered to challenging behavior. Preliminary results of the study, implications for practice, and recommendations for future research will be discussed.
 

CANCELED: Training Interaction Skills to Caregivers: A Systematic Literature Review

LORI L FINN (Center for Applied Behavior Analysis, The Sage Colleges)
Abstract:

Interactions between caregivers and individuals with disabilities may have far-reaching effects, including impacting caregiver-client relationships, caregiver stress levels, and client outcomes. Research has shown, however, that caregiver interactions are not consistently optimal. As such, caregiver training on interaction skills may improve quality of services and quality of life. A systematic literature review of empirical peer-reviewed published studies from 2000 to 2018 was conducted to examine the impact of training interaction skills to caregivers of individuals with disabilities. Thirty-four papers met inclusion criteria. Training methods varied, most including some combination of didactic instruction, role play, demonstration, video modeling, coaching, and performance feedback. Caregivers participating in training included parents, teachers, and direct-support staff. Client participants included children and adults with various disabilities, including intellectual/developmental disabilities, autism spectrum disorder, and emotional behavioral disorders. Behavior-specific praise was a training focus in more than half of the papers, while the focus of the remaining papers was broader, including positive parenting, responsive interaction, and positive interactions. Findings suggest that training can improve interactions between caregivers and clients with disabilities and positively affect client outcomes. Papers will be discussed in terms of demographic and methodological features, including results, generalization, maintenance, limitations, implications and future directions.

 
 
Symposium #242
CE Offered: BACB
From the Lab to the Clinic: Assessing and Treating Challenging Behavior in Applied Settings
Sunday, May 24, 2020
3:00 PM–4:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: DDA/AUT; Domain: Translational
Chair: Stephanie M. Peterson (Western Michigan University)
Discussant: Mandy J. Rispoli (Purdue University)
CE Instructor: Cody Morris, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Procedures used to assess and treat challenging behavior in research do not always translate to practice because they do not address the idiosyncratic variables typically found in applied settings. This symposium reviews variables related to assessment and treatment of challenging behavior as well as byproducts that result from these challenges. The first study describes an evaluation of data collection integrity of caregivers who were tasked with collecting data for assessment purposes and provides recommendations for behavior analysts relying on others to collect data. The second study describes an evaluation of a method for assessing elopement during transitions. The third study describes an evaluation of alternative treatments, specifically programs based on concurrent operants, for escape-maintained challenging behavior in applied settings. Finally, the last presentation focuses on issues related to the use of restrictive procedures and describes a method for evaluating and reducing their use in applied settings. Taken together, the information provided in these presentations will give practitioners of behavior analysis tools to increase the ecological validity of their practice.

Target Audience:

Practitioners of behavior analysis who work in applied settings.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to identify idiosyncratic variables that are likely to effect assessment and treatment in applied settings, describe methods for increasing the ecological validity of assessment and treatment, and describe recent research-based extensions of function-based assessment and treatment.
 
A Component Analysis of an Electronic Data Collection Package
CODY MORRIS (Salve Regina University )
Abstract: Data collection is essential to the practice of applied behavior analysis, but human error in collection can lead to inaccuracies. Because inaccuracies in measurement may adversely affect treatment decisions, procedures to increase data collection fidelity are necessary. This is especially important in settings wherein behavior analysts rely on others to report data. Procedures for training and directly supervising data collectors do exist; however, few resources exist for data collectors working with limited supervisor presence. Electronic data collection (EDC) systems are uniquely positioned to help address this need, but little research exists to identify components of EDC systems that might contribute to their utility for maintaining data collection fidelity. The purpose of this study was to systematically evaluate the individual components of an EDC system on data collection fidelity of caregivers in a home setting in the absence of a supervisor. The results of the study indicated that each individual component assessed improved data collection over baseline with at least some participants by varying degrees. The component that had the largest effect on data collection was automated specific interval feedback, especially when paired with automated prompts. Therefore, researchers and practitioners relying on human data collection should consider the utilization of systems that can provide specific interval feedback and prompts.
 
Functional Assessment and Treatment of Elopement Occasioned by Transitions
DENICE RIOS MOJICA (Western Michigan University)
Abstract: Elopement during transitions is a dangerous behavior in children with developmental disabilities because it greatly increases the risk of accidents that lead to serious injury or death. Despite its severity, assessment methodologies that specifically evaluate the contextual variables found during transitions are not available. Continued research on effective and efficient means for the assessment and treatment of elopement during transitions is needed. The current study consisted of three phases. In Phase 1, we conducted a trial-based transition functional analysis (TBTFA) to identify the function of elopement during transitions. In Phase 2, we used an ABAB reversal design to evaluate the effects of the intervention on elopement and appropriate transitions and evaluated the generality of effects in outside settings. Finally, in Phase 3, we evaluated whether a stimulus used during treatment set the occasion for appropriate transitions when treatment was terminated. The TBTFA successfully identified the function of elopement during transitions for all three participants. Additionally, elopement during transitions decreased and appropriate transitions increased for all three participants. Results of the stimulus control assessment indicated that we did not successfully establish a discriminative stimulus to occasion appropriate transitions.
 

CANCELED: Concurrent Operants Treatment of Escape-maintained Problem Behavior Using Random Reinforcement Schedules

REBECCA KOLB (University of Minnesota )
Abstract:

Negative reinforcement is a common function of challenging behavior for individuals with developmental disabilities (DD; Beavers, Iwata, & Lerman, 2013). The treatment of escape-maintained problem behavior is important, as it interferes with crucial skill development. While there are a variety of evidence-based treatments available, many utilize extinction, which may be difficult to implement in some situations (Geiger, Carr, & LeBlanc, 2010). In these situations, there are competing reinforcement schedules available for different response options—or concurrent operants. Interventions based on concurrent operants have a developing literature base that supports their use in applied settings (e.g., Peterson et al., 2009; Davis et al., 2018). The current study evaluated the utility of random schedules of reinforcement within concurrent operant treatments in clinic and classroom settings for children with DD who displayed escape-maintained challenging behavior. Treatment effects were analyzed to evaluate the effectiveness of random schedules in increasing task engagement and reducing challenging behavior using an alternating treatment with embedded reversal designs. All participants showed increases in task engagement and decreases in challenging behavior. Results suggest random schedules within concurrent operants treatment may be an effective treatment alternative, even though challenging behavior continues to receive reinforcement.

 
A Restriction/Intrusion Removal Process: A Guide for Fading Restrictive and Intrusive Procedures
KELSEY WEBSTER (Western Michigan University)
Abstract: Restrictive and intrusive procedures are used in the course of effective treatment to protect the safety of clients and others. Nonetheless, behavior analysts have an ethical obligation to implement the least restrictive procedures possible that are still deemed effective. However, when fading procedures for restrictions and intrusions are not a mandatory component of behavior support plans, these procedures may be in place longer than necessary. Extended utilization of restrictive and intrusive procedures could be viewed as limiting the client’s rights, especially if less restrictive procedures would also produce successful outcomes. One reason that these procedures are overused may be that behavior analysts have limited guidance and knowledge in developing efficient fading procedures. Therefore, the purpose of this study is to propose a restriction removal process which may guide practitioners attempting to fade out intrusive and/or restrictive procedures. This critical thinking process will guide practitioners through identifying restrictive/intrusive procedures, relevant behaviors, a terminal goal, intermediate steps, and mastery criteria for restriction/intrusion removal.
 
 
Symposium #243
CE Offered: BACB
Theoretical and Experimental Aspects of Emergent Stimulus Relations
Sunday, May 24, 2020
3:00 PM–4:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: EAB/BPN; Domain: Translational
Chair: Live Fay Braaten (Oslo Metropolitan University)
Discussant: Kenneth F. Reeve (Caldwell University)
CE Instructor: Kenneth F. Reeve, Ph.D.
Abstract:

The purpose of the present symposium is to present research which is going enlighten about emergent relations and equivalence classes in particular. In the first paper by Arntzen and Mensah present an experiment on observing matching-to-sample performance and stimulus sorting. The authors present two experiments to study how observing an MTS task performance will influence the formation of experimenter-defined classes in sorting tests, as well as the formation of equivalence classes in an MTS-based test for emergent relations. In the second paper, Aggio, Kruger, Nunes, and de Rose present an experiment on punishment of incorrect recognitions increased equivalence-based false memories. Aggio et al. have studied the effect of programmed consequences for incorrect responses in memory tests. The third paper by Vaidya presents on the relation between the definition and measurement of equivalence. The paper will discuss how the phenomenon of equivalence is defined influence a change in the way the phenomenon is measured. The last paper by Fields presents an experiment on how the neural correlates of decision making by various relations in equivalence classes. The paper shows that event related potentials recorded during the comparison stimuli measured neural correlates of decision making for each type of relation.

Target Audience:

Graduate, researchers, etc,

Learning Objectives: The people who attend will be able 1. to define emergent stimulus classes and how such classes are measured 2. to understand how observing matching-to-sample performance by another person could influence sorting and test for stimulus equivalence 3. to provide an equivalence-based account of the phenomenon of false memories
 
Observing Matching-to-Sample Performance and Stimulus Sorting
ERIK ARNTZEN (Oslo Metropolitan University), Justice Mensah (n/a)
Abstract: Several experiments have found a correlation between the outcome of the MTS test and the post-class formation sorting test. Based on these findings, it will be interesting to examine the extent to which observing an MTS task performance will influence the formation of experimenter-defined classes in sorting tests, as well as the formation of equivalence classes in an MTS-based test for emergent relations. In Experiment 1, thirty participants were randomly assigned to two groups. One group watched a video clip with 80% correct responding and 20% incorrect responding in MTS training (80% Correct Group), and the other group watched a video clip with 20% correct responding and 80% incorrect responding in MTS training (20% Correct Group). Following watching the video clip, both groups were exposed to two sorting tests and an MTS test. The results showed that the performance of the 80% Correct Group was significantly more in accordance with experimenter-defined classes than for the 20% Correct Group, and also a 100% correspondence between performance on the sorting and the MTS tests (Figure 3). Experiment 2 with 45 participants replicated and extended Experiment 1 by including a 50% Correct Group and exclusion of test trials in the video clip. The results showed superior performance for participants in 80CR relative to participants in 50CR and 20CR on the two sorting tests as well as the MTS test for emergent relations (Figure 6).
 

Punishment of Incorrect Recognitions Increased Equivalence-Based False Memories

Natalia Maria Aggio (Federal University of Sao Carlos, Brazil), Gustavo Kruger (University of Sao Carlos), Winny Nunes (University of Sao Carlos), JULIO C. DE ROSE (Universidade Federal de Sao Carlos)
Abstract:

Recent experimental studies attempted to provide an equivalence-based account of the phenomenon of false memories. In all these studies participants studied a list of stimuli. A later memory test later memory test presented stimuli from the list (targets), stimuli equivalent to targets (critical distracters) or unrelated to them (non-related distracters). Higher recall and/or recognition of critical than unrelated distracters documented equivalence-related false memories. The present study investigated the effect of feedback for incorrect responses in memory tests. In Phase 1 participants studied three patterns, each comprising two geometrical forms within a larger one. In Phase 2 one of the small geometric shapes and the larger form became equivalent to other shapes. The memory test (Phase 3) presented, for recognition, the patterns previously studied in Phase 1 (targets), patterns formed by some of the geometric shapes from targets and other shapes equivalent to them (critical distracters) and new patterns (unrelated distracters). The No Feedback Group had no differential consequences for responses in the test whereas the Feedback Group had a presumably aversive sound following errors. Both groups recognized significantly more critical than unrelated distractors, attesting equivalence-based false memories. Surprisingly, the Feedback Group showed significantly more equivalence-related false memories, insofar as this group recognized critical distractors nearly as frequently as targets.

 

On the Relation Between the Definition and Measurement of Equivalence

MANISH VAIDYA (University of North Texas)
Abstract:

Sidman and colleagues’ originally defined equivalence relations as the emergent interchangeability of conditional and discriminative stimulus functions. This definition was well aligned with the matrix of tasks and outcomes that defined stimulus equivalence classes. Tests for symmetry, transitivity, and equivalence, for example, were perfect and complete assays of this interchangeability. Sidman’s new formulation of equivalence relations, however, involves the inclusion of responses and the stimuli serving as reinforcers in the emergent relations. This new formulation also offers an expanded view of the kinds of contingencies that can produce emergent equivalence relations. This presentation will argue that the change in how the phenomenon of equivalence is defined also requires a change in the way the phenomenon is measured. The presentation will review data from non-typical preparations asking questions about equivalence relations in an effort to frame a discussion about the ways in which we measure and describe equivalence relations. The presentation will suggest an expansion of the tasks that measure equivalence and end with some directions for future research.

 

Activity of Deep Point Source Generators That are the Neural Correlates of Decision Making by Various Relations in Equivalence Classes

LANNY FIELDS (Queens College, City University of New York)
Abstract:

Equivalence classes were formed using a trace stimulus pairing paradigm that isolated the presentation of the sample and comparison stimuli, and restricted responding to a separate time window presented after the comparison. Event related potentials recorded during the comparison stimuli measured neural correlates of decision making for each type of relation. xxx analysis was used to identify deep sources of neural activation that accounted the patterns of surface activation produced by baseline, symmetrical, transitive, and equivalence relations. The deep sources of activation were correlated closely with known cognitive processes

 
 
Symposium #246
Behavior Analysis and Social Structures
Sunday, May 24, 2020
3:00 PM–4:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: OBM; Domain: Translational
Chair: Kalliu Carvalho Couto (Oslo Metropolitan University)
Discussant: Tete Kobla Agbota (Oslo Metropolitan University)
Abstract:

Developments in complexity science have highlighted the importance of social structures in explaining behavior. In network science, structures are understood as emergent webs of interactions within organizations and social groups. Different conceptual perspectives such as behavioral systems analysis and metacontingencies have attempted to bring a system perspective to behavior analysis. Although Skinner and Catania (in Catania & Harnad, 1988) recognized the value of considering structure when explaining behavior in the context of complex social interactions, such analysis is not often adopted in behavioral analysis. Understanding social structures opens for a behavior analytic investigation of variety of phenomena studied by complexity sciences (i.e., social contagion; how behavior spread in social groups as functions of webs of social reinforcement). On the other hand, complexity scientists may benefit from a better understanding of the behavioral processes taking place during social interactions (i.e., mutual reinforcement; contingencies in which two or more individuals behavior produce reinforces to each other). The present symposium invites for a reflection about conceptual models, experimental opportunities and applied interventions in network structures from a behavior analytic perspective.

 
A Network Analytic Perspective to Safety Culture and Behavior Change in Shipyards
FABIO BENTO (Oslo Metropolitan University)
Abstract: Shipyards are remarkably dangerous work environments where employees are at risk of severe injuries related to falls, contact with hazardous materials, and strenuous work conditions among other factors. There is a recognition that shipyard safety cannot be addressed only in the terms of technological developments, but also in the realm of organizational contingencies of safe behavior. In this regard, most organizational efforts have consisted of providing training programs and information about safety procedures. However, there is a recognition of the limitations of such approaches. The goal of this paper is to present results of an ongoing organizational intervention deriving from a network analytic perspective towards learning. The intervention aims at promoting “social contagion” (Centola, 2018) of safe behavior by altering the structure of interactions among shipyard workers. The intervention starts with a network analysis in order to understand the structural position of individuals in a complex system, followed by different initiatives aimed at facilitating interaction and information flow over a three-months period. This project provides the opportunity to investigate processes of social reinforcement related to the spread of behavior in complex systems. Understanding the structure of communications and interdependencies may contribute to a deeper understanding of underlying contingencies of reinforcement.
 
Rules, Consequences, and Feedback Dynamics: Putting Principles of Behavioral Systems Analysis and Complexity to Work in Designing Adaptable Organizations
JONATHAN KRISPIN (Valdosta State University)
Abstract: The world is changing more rapidly than it ever has in the past, and the rate of change is accelerating. In business, the criteria that must be met in order to succeed are changing because of changing customer preferences, changing competitor practices, and changes in technologies available to address these criteria. Abernathy (2009) asserted that optimizing organizational performance requires optimization of organizational system contingencies and external metacontingencies. Couto (2019) observed that many organizations attempt to align their execution interlocking behavioral contingencies (eIBCs) with external metacontingent requirements with controlling interlocking behavioral contingencies (cIBCs) in a manner closely resembling Abernathy’s assertion. In the present paper, the dynamics that this governance approach may create are analyzed in terms of rule-governed behavior, specifically how pliance rules and consequences may create very different feedback dynamics within organizations than tracking rules and consequences. Inappropriate applications of rules and associated consequences may artificially limit the degrees of freedom available to – that is limit the complexity of – the organization, thus limiting its capacity to adapt to changing external system metacontingencies. Proper application of rules and associated consequences can have the opposite effect, increasing the capacity of an organization to adapt and respond, potentially creating a sustainable competitive advantage.
 

Nested Interlocking Behavioral Contingencies

INGUNN SANDAKER (Oslo Metropolitan University/ OsloMet)
Abstract:

A behavioral approach to large scale behaviors must be compatible with other scientific efforts to describe and explain behavioral phenomena. Behavior analysis is about the functional relation between behaviors and the environment. When focusing on how large- scale behaviors are established, maintained or get extinct, the concept of metacontingencies (Glenn and Mallott) add value to operant behavior analysis. The behavioral processes, (interlocking behavioral contingencies IBCs), maintain the functional relation to the environment. The result of the joint effort may be called an aggregate product which may or may not be selected by the environment. Hence, we have a parallel to a generic systems approach with the exception of the evolving structure. To capture the lineage in a metacontingency we will add structure, or the way the IBCs are nested together; the nIBCs. The way IBCs are nested together may give important information about the position and hence the contingencies responsible for establishing, maintaining or extinct interaction among members of the system.

 
Bridging Organizational Silos: A Scoping Review
MARCO TAGLIABUE (Oslo Metropolitan University)
Abstract: The present study rests on a raising concern about the formation of organizational silos and structural barriers to communication across the formal and informal network structures of a system. In addition to structure, two additional properties characterize general systems theory (Von Bertalanffy, 1968): function and process. There are at least two approaches to organizational silos and network clusters. The first maintains that they represent structures that hinder collaboration among members or departments of an organization. Conversely, the second approach maintains that they are spaces of social reinforcement, from which new knowledge may emerge. They are usually regarded as a problem, inasmuch as they limit the sharing and transmission of knowledge and practices across people and business units. Thus, we performed a scoping review of interventions that bridge network clusters resorting to social network analysis. Structure is regarded as the independent variable of study. Function and process are regarded as the dependent variables. According to our hypothesis, structure, function and process may be mutually interdependent. The discussion explores these properties in a broader frame of behavioral systems analysis. Finally, tentative indications are provided to translate the present work into applied settings.
 
 
Panel #254
CE Offered: BACB/QABA
PDS: Business Leaders in ABA
Sunday, May 24, 2020
4:00 PM–4:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: OBM/TBA; Domain: Translational
CE Instructor: Megan Miller, Ph.D.
Chair: Tangchen Li (The Ohio State University; DolFun Academy)
MEGAN MILLER (#dobetter Pod)
DAVID BICARD (Great Leaps Learning Center)
STEPHEN FOREMAN (Clincial Behavior Analysis)
Abstract:

The rapidly growing field of ABA offers a wide range of occupational opportunities for behavior analysts. One potential opportunity is operating a business that provides ABA services. In this panel discussion, three successful business owners who provide behavioral services will share their experiences and advice for starting and running a business that delivers ABA-based services. The three panelists are Dr. Megan Miller, Co-Founder of Navigation Behavioral Consulting, former CEO of PEAK ABA Solutions, and Founder of the Do Better Professional Development Movement; and Dr. David Bicard, CEO of Great Leaps Learning Center; Stephen Foreman, Vice-President/Chief Operating Officer of Clinical Behavior Analysis (CBA), Chief Behavior Analyst of Lee Specialty Clinic, and Founding Member and Past President of the Kentucky Association for Behavior Analysis. The three panelists will be address topics such as starting and maintaining a business, training and coaching staff, overcoming obstacles, and dealing with potential ethical issues. This panel is a 50 minutes Q&A panel discussion, in which you'll have the opportunity to ask any questions about the three different types of business in our ABA world.

Target Audience:

The target audience will be behavior analysts, undergraduates, and parents who want to know more about how to start and operating business that provides ABA services.

Learning Objectives: N/A
 
 
Invited Symposium #255
CE Offered: BACB
Diversity submission SUSTAINABILITY: Growing the Behavioral Biome: Putting a Strategic Plan into Action
Sunday, May 24, 2020
4:00 PM–4:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Domain: Translational
Chair: Thomas G. Szabo (Florida Institute of Technology)
CE Instructor: Thomas G. Szabo, Ph.D.
Abstract:

The first presentation will give an integrated analysis of behavioral science research on climate change and greenhouse gas emissions. The second presentation will provide an overview of the research programs, organizations providing funding, and community interventions that have been compiled by the Coalition of Behavioral Science Organizations Climate Change Task Force. The third presentation will provide an overview of the resources required to accomplish the goals of the task force and how to expand the efforts.

Target Audience:

Board certified behavior analysts; licensed psychologists; graduate students.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) identify types of research that have the potential to advance policy action related to climate change; (2) navigate the resources that have been created by the task force; (3) identify effective methods for recruiting and coordinating volunteer participation.
 
Diversity submission Identifying the Need for Expansion of Behavioral Research on Climate Change
ANTHONY BIGLAN (Oregon Research Institute)
Abstract: This paper will present a thorough and integrated analysis of existing behavioral science research on climate change and greenhouse gas emissions. It will begin by contrasting the amount of money being invested in physical science research relevant to climate change with the much smaller amount being invested in behavioral science research, despite the fact that addressing the problem is almost entirely a matter of changing human behavior. This discrepancy in funding that supports behavioral science research translates to a gap in policy solutions based in behavioral science. Additionally, we will provide a review of the extent to which research is identifying effective and scalable strategies for affecting climate-relevant policy and behavior. We will then describe the kind of experimental research that is most likely to result in scalable change. Finally, we will present a strategic plan for greatly increasing funding for large-interdisciplinary programs of experimental analysis of strategies for affecting climate-relevant policy and behavior.
 
Diversity submission We’re All in This Together: The Road to Research Collaboration, Funding, and Community Interventions
HOLLY SENIUK (Behavior Analyst Certification Board)
Abstract: Since 2018, the Coalition of Behavioral Science Organizations Climate Change Task Force (BSC-CCTF) has been reviewing the behavioral research on climate change, as described in the previous paper. In addition to reviewing the literature the task force is working to create resources that will aid in pushing the needle forward on behavior science research related to greenhouse gas emissions and policy change. Through a network of volunteers, the task force’s committees have assembled an evolving collection of research institutions, funding sources, and examples of community interventions addressing the development of policies and strategies to reduce carbon emissions. The goal of these collections is to establish a database that will help propel the work of the task force forward by identifying potential funding sources, collaborators, and community intervention models that could benefit from experimental evaluation. This paper will provide audience members with a roadmap of the work thus far and an overview of the research programs, foundations/institutions providing funding, and the community level interventions that have been compiled in this process.
 
Diversity submission Building a Network: What It Takes to Make It Happen
ANDREW BONNER (University of Florida )
Abstract: One of the greatest challenges in moving forward the work on behavioral science research on climate change and related community interventions and policy involves coordinating efforts in an efficient and systematic way without losing momentum. This presentation will provide an overview of the resources and effort required to accomplish the goals of the task force by sharing the model that has been developed and implemented. This includes recruitment of volunteers to support research endeavors, as well as, committee work related to the development of searchable databases for research institutions, funding agencies, and community interventions that aim to address issues related to greenhouse gas emissions. The BSC-CCTF has made significant progress in the last two years that would not be possible without the collective effort of many. We will share the process for recruiting, training, and retaining volunteers. Finally, next steps for expanding and scaling up this work will be explored
 
 
Symposium #256
CE Offered: BACB
Advances in Increasing Verbal Behavior Across Children With and Without Developmental Disabilities
Sunday, May 24, 2020
4:00 PM–5:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: VRB/DEV; Domain: Translational
Chair: Natalia Baires (Southern Illinois University)
Discussant: Ruth Rehfeldt (Southern Illinois University)
CE Instructor: Ruth Rehfeldt, M.S.
Abstract:

Much research has been conducted on increasing verbal behavior of individuals with and without developmental disabilities; however, there remains several unaddressed empirical questions. For instance, there is a paucity of literature on pre-requisite skills needed to increase the effectiveness of procedures, the efficacy of automatic reinforcement to increase infant vocalizations, if pairing procedures can increase textual behavior, and whether particular procedures are more effective to increase intraverbals. The current symposium will attempt to narrow these gaps in research. The first presentation will discuss findings on which skills may enhance the effectiveness of a Stimulus Pairing Observation Procedure in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Following, the second presentation will present results on the effects of a Stimulus-Stimulus Pairing procedure on the rate of vocalizations of a typically developing infant. Next, the third presentation will review outcomes of a word-picture pairing procedure to produce emergent textual behavior in children with reading deficits. Finally, the fourth presentation will discuss the effects of an echoic prompt plus error correction procedure and a Differential Observing Response procedure on the acquisition of convergent intraverbals in children with ASD. A discussion highlighting and integrating the aforementioned presentations will then be conducted by Dr. Ruth Anne Rehfeldt.

Target Audience:

Behavior analysts

 

CANCELED: An Evaluation of Two Verbal Behavior Teaching Procedures on Teaching Convergent Intraverbals to Children With Autism

ANGELICA A. AGUIRRE (Minnesota State University, Mankato), Lauren Martone (Minnesota State University, Mankato), Greta Kos (Minnesota State University, Mankato), Melissa Schneider (Minnesota State University, Mankato), Breanna Perron (Minnesota State University, Mankato)
Abstract:

Answering social questions (i.e., intraverbals) is a skill that is commonly taught to children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) because it is a common deficit in this population (Aguirre et al., 2019). Some intraverbals have multiple components that an individual must attend to in order to give an appropriate response. Some children with ASD commonly do not recognize these multiple components in order to emit a correct intraverbal response and may give the same answer from previous intraverbals learned (Aguirre et al., 2019). An echoic prompt plus error correction is a typical procedure for teaching children with ASD to emit appropriate answers to these complex intraverbals. Another teaching procedure that has been used is called the differential observing response (DOR), in which the child must repeat certain parts of the intraverbal question before giving an answer (Kisamore, Karsten, & Mann, 2016). There is currently limited literature on which of these procedures are more effective. The purpose of the current study was to examine the effects of the echoic prompt plus error correction procedure and a DOR procedure on the acquisition of convergent intraverbals with three children with autism. An adaptive alternating-treatment design was used to determine the acquisition of two sets of intraverbal questions with each participant. Results and implications will be discussed.

 
Effects of the Stimulus-Stimulus Pairing Procedure on the Rate of Vocalizations of an Infant
SEBASTIAN GARCIA-ZAMBRANO (Southern Illinois University), Kwadwo O. Britwum (Southern Illinois University), Michelle Britwum (Morningstar Behavioral Associates), Ruth Rehfeldt (Southern Illinois University)
Abstract: The development of vocal verbal behavior begins with the emission of vowel sounds and babbling, which are influenced by the contingent and non-contingent speech sounds of caregivers. Automatic reinforcement seems to have an important role in increasing the babbling rate in the first months of life; however, there are a limited number of studies that evaluate this phenomenon. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the effects of the stimulus-stimulus pairing (SSP) procedure on the rate of vocalizations in a three-month-old typically developed infant. A multiple baseline across behaviors design was used. During baseline, the participant was placed in her play area with toys and occasional non-contingent auditory interactions from the mother for 5 minutes (Miliotis et al., 2012). During the SSP condition, the mother repeated the target sound (S +) for approximately 2s paired with the simultaneous presentation of varied preferred stimuli. The rate of pairings was 10 pairings per minute. The subsequent trial was delayed by 20-s when the participant emitted target sounds (S +) during the modeling and delivery of preferred stimuli during pairing. Finally, during post-pairing, the participant was returned to the play area and all vocalizations made by the participant were recorded.
 
Evaluation of a Skills Assessment for the Stimulus Pairing Observation Procedure
Rocio Rosales (University of Massachusetts Lowell), KRISTINE TRAPANI (University of Massachusetts Lowell; PrideStar Center for Applied Learning), Emily Bergman (University of Massachusetts Lowell)
Abstract: The purpose of the present study was to assess skills that may enhance the effectiveness of a stimulus pairing observation procedure (SPOP) for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). SPOP incorporates observational learning to teach stimulus relations via contiguous presentation of stimuli. Previous studies that have examined the use of SPOP with children with ASD have reported mixed results (Byrne et al., 2014; Rosales et al., 2012; Vallinger-Brown & Rosales, 2014). In this study, we first conducted a brief skills assessment of the following: identity matching, imitation, auditory discrimination, visual discrimination, echoic, and tacting. Following the skills assessment, participants were exposed to SPOP across three stimulus sets using a multiple baseline design. Subsequent probes for tact and listener responding were then conducted. The results of the assessment and corresponding performance on tact and listener probes will be reviewed. Discussion will be focused on the implications of these results for practitioners.
 

Can a Word-Picture Pairing With Orientation Response Generate Emergent Reading?

GIOVAN WILLIAN RIBEIRO (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Letícia Regina Fava Menzori (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Hindira Naomi Kawasaki (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Deisy De Souza (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Julio C. De Rose (Universidade Federal de São Carlos), Micah Amd (National University of Ireland Maynooth)
Abstract:

Textual behavior requires learning relations between dictated and printed words. Teaching printed words and pictures relations to individuals that already relates dictated words and pictures can establish equivalence classes that characterize reading with comprehension. We verified whether word-picture pairings produce emergent textual behavior (reading). Participants were three children (6-7 years) with reading deficits. Stimuli were printed words and their corresponding pictures, divided in three sets of three pairs. Pairing trials started with the presentation of a fixation cross in one corner of the screen. Clicking on the cross produced the presentation of a word followed by its corresponding picture. Three sessions were conducted for each stimulus set, and each word-picture pair was presented 12 times per session. Multiple probes evaluated the reading of all nine target words before and after teaching each set. Within sessions, pre- and post-tests assessed the reading of the three words. The probes showed emergence of reading after each set. Post-tests revealed an increase in reading within sessions. Participants did not read non-target words used only in probes. This study replicated, with a more rigorous experimental control, previous findings of our laboratory. We will discuss implications of these results for establishing reading with larger stimulus sets.

 
 
Symposium #260
CE Offered: BACB
Short Term Parent Training Programs for Families Impacted by Autism: Community Based Practice
Sunday, May 24, 2020
5:00 PM–5:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: AUT/CSS; Domain: Translational
Chair: Amy Kenzer (Southwest Autism Research & Resource Center)
CE Instructor: Amy Kenzer, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by deficits in social communication and repetitive behaviors [American Psychiatric Association (APA) 2013], and rates of ASD have risen exponentially in recent years currently impacting approximately 1 out of 59 children in the United States [Centers for Disease Control (CDC) 2018]. Several behavior analytic interventions have been established as effective with a focus on early delivery and high intensity for ameliorating symptoms of ASD and increasing meaningful skills. Even with this growth in practice, there remains inadequate access to services for families across the country. This symposium will include three presentations focused on development and implementation of parent training models to address: 1) lag between diagnosis and start of intervention, 2) service options for families living in remote and rural areas and/or with school-age children, and 3) evaluating the effect of naturalistic parent-mediated interventions. Together, results indicate that 1) parents were successful at implementing naturalistic interventions, 2) interventions met parent expectations, 3) parents reported positive response to intervention and format, and 4) children demonstrated positive gains during parent participation in the programs. Results from these models continue to inform research and community-based practice to address the needs of the community.

Target Audience:

Behavior Analysts

Learning Objectives: Describe Pivotal Response Treatment strategies taught to parents to target child motivation. Describe different training formats and components to address parent outcomes. Describe measurement used to capture parent acquisition of intervention, self-efficacy, and response to intervention format and coaching.
 
Parent Training in Pivotal Response Treatment to Support Parent and Child After Receiving an Autism Diagnosis
BRITTANI NICHOLE HARRIS (Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center ), Beatriz Orr (Four Corners Association for Behavior Analysis; Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center ), Alexis N. Boglio (Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center)
Abstract: Parents who receive a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) can experience difficulties in accessing services for their child which may lead to a delay in treatment (Coolican, Smith, & Bryson, 2010). Participation in a brief parent training program in Pivotal Response Treatment (PRT) can be an immediate, cost-effective solution for families waiting for comprehensive treatment or with limited access to resources (Coolican et al., 2010). In this current study, a six-week program was developed to provide psychoeducation and parent-mediated intervention (PMI) for the core symptoms for parents with young children who were recently diagnosed with ASD or classified as at-risk. Parents participated in psychoeducation sessions using a web-based format and completed clinic-based coaching sessions focused on PMI. Participants in this study include 66 parent-child dyads, and positive effects in parent knowledge, parent implementation, and child language were observed. Parent participants showed increases in their knowledge scores with an average increase of 37% and in their implementation of PRT techniques with an average increase of 27%. Results for this study are promising and consistent with previous research, demonstrating that participation in brief parent training programs can effectively increase parent knowledge and fidelity of implementation of PRT to support their child after receiving an autism diagnosis.
 

Increasing Access to Services for Families Living in Remote and Rural Communities Through Parent-Mediated Intervention

Alexis Boglio (Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center ), Sienna VanGelder (Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center ), HALEY ROSE (Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center)
Abstract:

Parent-mediated interventions can lead to significant gains in social, communicative, and adaptive skills for children with autism spectrum disorder (Meadan et al., 2009). Although there is consensus about the benefits of evidence-based parent-delivered intervention, many barriers exist for families seeking training on effective teaching practices. Geographical distance from treatment centers and the high cost of high-quality services are two variables that often contribute to inequity in behavior analytic treatment. The current investigation sought to examine the impact of a short-term intensive parent training program on parent fidelity of implementation of Pivotal Response Treatment (PRT) and child communication. Twenty-four families living in remote or rural communities in Arizona participated in 25 hours of in-vivo parent coaching through a grant-funded, clinic-based program. Across all participants, the average fidelity score increased from 30% at baseline to 82% post-training and child responsivity increased from 22% to 67%. Additionally, families rated the program favorably and reported comfort using the strategies in their home environment. Results indicate that the one-week intensive program may offer a solution in addressing ongoing disparities in autism treatment.

 

A Brief Parent Training Program for Parents of School-Aged Students

MEGAN MANN (Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center ), Sienna VanGelder (Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center ), Alexis N. Boglio (Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center)
Abstract:

Brief parent education programs for parents of young children has shown to be effective at increasing parent use of teaching strategies and having positive effects on child social communication skills (Vismara, Colombi, Rogers, 2009). However, few studies have examined the impact of parent-education models for parents with school-aged children. In this study we utilized the same format (Rogers et al., 2012) and evaluated the impact on parent delivery of Pivotal Response Treatment (PRT) with school-aged children. This study reviewed the outcome data of the first four parent-child dyads to participate in the pilot and suggests that parents of school-age children may benefit from a short-term low-intensity model similarly to parents of young children. Following participation all participants agreed that they felt comfortable implementing the motivational procedures of pivotal response treatment. In addition, all parent-child dyads demonstrated gains in verbal responsivity and achieved an acceptable level of fidelity. Results suggested a 12-week education model can be an effective modality to increase fidelity of implementation of pivotal response treatment for caregivers of school-aged children.

 
 
Invited Panel #267
CE Offered: BACB
Diversity submission SUSTAINABILITY: Coordinating Interdisciplinary Sustainability Research: What We’ve Learned About Community Intervention Research
Sunday, May 24, 2020
5:00 PM–5:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Domain: Translational
Chair: Thomas G. Szabo (Florida Institute of Technology)
CE Instructor: Thomas G. Szabo, Ph.D.
Panelists: ANTHONY BIGLAN (Oregon Research Institute), LISA COYNE (Harvard Medical School; Suffolk University; McLean Hospital), JESSICA GHAI (Boston University)
Abstract:

This panel will serve as a follow-up to the previous events on “A Strategic Plan for Expanding Behavioral Science Research on Climate Change”. It is the first of a two panel discussion on coordinating efforts of the behavior science community to increase research and community intervention to reduce carbon emissions. This panel includes experts from the fields of prevention science, clinical psychology, environmental education, and behavior analysis. The panelists will discuss coordinating efforts of individuals with diverse expertise in the development, execution, and data analysis of interdisciplinary sustainability research and make suggestions for immediate and pragmatic actions at the individual, community and societal levels. Audience members will have the opportunity to participate in real-time work to expand and scale up research and application needed in this area. We invite participants to dialogue and identify the opportunities and barriers to doing this work and commit to taking actions to increase the contributions of the behavior analysis community toward mitigating the effects of climate change.

Target Audience:

Board certified behavior analysts; licensed psychologists; graduate students.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) identify gaps in research related to climate change policy; (2) state strategies to increase research and community intervention related to climate change; (3) identify committed actions that they can take towards reducing carbon emissions.
ANTHONY BIGLAN (Oregon Research Institute)
Anthony Biglan, Ph.D., is a Senior Scientist at Oregon Research Institute. He is the author of The Nurture Effect: How the Science of Human Behavior Can Improve our Lives and Our World.   Dr. Biglan has been conducting research on the development and prevention of child and adolescent problem behavior for the past 30 years. His work has included studies of the risk and protective factors associated with tobacco, alcohol, and other drug use; high-risk sexual behavior; and antisocial behavior. He has conducted numerous experimental evaluations of interventions to prevent tobacco use both through school-based programs and community-wide interventions. And, he has evaluated interventions to prevent high-risk sexual behavior, antisocial behavior, and reading failure.   In recent years, his work has shifted to more comprehensive interventions that have the potential to prevent the entire range of child and adolescent problems. He and colleagues at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences published a book summarizing the epidemiology, cost, etiology, prevention, and treatment of youth with multiple problems (Biglan et al., 2004). He is a former president of the Society for Prevention Research. He was a member of the Institute of Medicine Committee on Prevention, which released its report in 2009 documenting numerous evidence-based preventive interventions that can prevent multiple problems. As a member of Oregon’s Alcohol and Drug Policy Commission, he is helping to develop a strategic plan for implementing comprehensive evidence-based interventions throughout Oregon.
LISA COYNE (Harvard Medical School; Suffolk University; McLean Hospital)
Dr. Coyne is the Founder and Senior Clinical Consultant of the McLean OCD Institute for Children and Adolescents at McLean Hospital, and is an Assistant Professor at Harvard Medical School. She is the Founder and Director of the New England Center for OCD and Anxiety (NECOA), and is on the Faculty of the Behavior Therapy Training Institute (BTTI) of the International OCD Foundation.  She is also a licensed psychologist and a peer-reviewed ACT trainer. She has authored multiple articles and chapters on ACT with children and adolescents, and is a co-author of the books Acceptance and Commitment Therapy: The Clinician’s Guide for Supporting Parents (Elsevier), and The Joy of Parenting (New Harbinger).  Her new books, The ACT Guide to Teen Anxiety and OCD, Guilford Press, and Stuff That’s Loud: A Teen’s Guide to Unspiralling When OCD Gets Noisy (New Harbinger & Little Brown), are expected in 2020.
JESSICA GHAI (Boston University)

Jessica Ghai, M.Ed. BCBA, LABA(MA) is a doctoral candidate at the Boston University: Wheelock College of Education and Human Development (anticipated completion: Spring 2020) and a Volunteer Coordinator for the Behavioral Science Coalition: Climate Change Task Force. In additional to extensive teaching experience and animal-related dissertation research, Jessica’s academic background includes a B.S. in Natural Resources from The Ohio State University: College of Food, Agriculture, and Environment Sciences. Following completion of her doctoral program, she hopes to pursue a career in research. Research interests include: human-animal interactions through a behavior analytic lens, animal well-being and management of maladaptive behaviors in zoological settings, visitation behaviors of patrons at zoological facilities, and the effectiveness of behavior change interventions related to species biodiversity and conservation of natural resources. Jessica also volunteers as a keeper’s aide at a zoological facility and is a member of ABAI’s Applied Animal Behavior SIG. 

 
 
Symposium #271
CE Offered: BACB
Design and Delivery Features of Direct Instruction That You Didn’t Know You Didn’t Know, and Didn’t Know You Needed
Sunday, May 24, 2020
5:00 PM–6:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: EDC; Domain: Translational
Chair: Adam Hockman (The Mechner Foundation/ABA Technologies)
Discussant: Adam Hockman (The Mechner Foundation/ABA Technologies)
CE Instructor: Janet S. Twyman, Ph.D.
Abstract:

If you design, select, modify, or deliver instruction, this session is for you! Direct Instruction (DI) programs are highly effective, with design and delivery based on the content’s “Big Idea” and application of three powerhouse components: content analysis, instructional sequencing, and clear communication. Content analysis is an active and creative part of instructional design that ensures concepts are learned and readied for teaching generalization. Thoughtful sequencing and example juxtaposition improve efficiency. Clear communication reduces ambiguity and errors—for both the teacher and the learner—and influences DI’s presentation features (e.g., scripting, active student responding, pacing, progress monitoring). The program elements of true DI move the instructional design process beyond simply selecting multiple exemplars, the prevailing method in much of behavior analytic teaching. This session will apply and extend these core features to real-world contexts for any and all teaching, content, and circumstances. Our goal? You’ll learn to infuse these critical components of DI into your own instructional design and delivery.

Target Audience:

Behavior analysts (certified), educators, instructional designers

Learning Objectives: 1. Participants will describe the importance of content analysis for effective and efficient teaching. 2. Participants will give examples and non-examples of a concept. 3. Participants will describe five sequencing features of DI and how they support efficient learning. 4. Participants will explain how DI principles extend to a wide range of behavior analytic teaching, such as the promotion of complex verbal behavior.
 
Features of Direct Instruction: Analysis of the Domain and Effective Interaction
TIMOTHY A. SLOCUM (Utah State University), Kristen Rolf (Utah State University)
Abstract: Direct Instruction (DI) includes numerous features that can be adopted by behavior analysts to improve teaching outcomes across many populations. This presentation will focus on two of those features: (1) analysis of the content domain, and (2) presentation and lesson delivery. Analysis of the content domain is one of the most underappreciated and powerful components of DI. It involves analyzing the content domain to be learned (e.g., beginning reading, basic language skills, narrative language, social skills, calculus) to identify broadly applicable generalizations (“Big Ideas”) that must be taught in order for students to later derive numerous untaught responses. This analysis is foundational to highly generative instruction, and is further enhanced through lesson presentation and delivery. In small group instruction, DI’s instructional formats, student grouping recommendations, scripted presentations, ongoing data-based decision-making rules, brisk pacing, component skill mastery criteria, and correction procedures make it possible to bring about interactive and effective instruction.
 
Creating the Components for Teaching Concepts
KENT JOHNSON (Morningside Academy)
Abstract: An important dimension of Direct Instruction (DI) programs involves teaching conceptual behavior related to the broadly applicable generalizations of a content domain. In this presentation I will outline the necessary components for teaching a concept in any domain. The first step (1) is to conduct a concept analysis of the critical features that define the concept, and the features that vary from instance to instance of the concept. From this prescription we must (2) develop a range of typical and far-out examples of the concept that illustrate both the critical and variable features, (3) develop a minimum rational set of close-in non-examples of the concept, each of which is missing only one critical feature, and (4) develop additional examples and non-examples that may be needed to produce the desired discriminations. Multiple exemplar teaching is not enough. Teaching a concept this way produces generative responding to examples as well as non-examples not presented during instruction. To assess learners’ generative responding, we must (5) create another set of far-out examples and close-in non-examples from the concept-analysis prescription. Finally, after initially acquiring conceptual behavior, learners must (6) practice with additional far-out examples and close-in non-examples. Once these components are created, a teacher is ready to develop an instructional sequence featuring tasks that include context-setting descriptions, rules, examples, and non-examples.
 

You Have the Big Idea, Concept, and Examples: Now What?

JANET S. TWYMAN (blast)
Abstract:

How do you take a concept/content analysis and figure out the sequence of what to teach when? Even after performing the necessary analytical components for teaching a concept we still have to figure out how to best teach it. The sequence in which skills are taught is instrumental for success. Learning new concepts can be made easier or more difficult depending on the order in which stimuli are introduced. Critical design aspects of how to teach include the sequence and arrangement of examples and non-examples (juxtaposition), the use of clear instructions (faultless communication), the judicious presentation of “interruptions,” and the selection of teaching routines based on the learner's current repertoire (response teaching strategies). This presentation will outline five Direct Instruction (DI) principles for sequencing and ordering examples to maximize learning, and it will consider their ties to behavior analysis.

 
Adopting Direct Instruction Principles to Design and Deliver Generative Language Instruction via Narratives
TRINA SPENCER (Rightpath Research & Innovation Center, University of South Florida)
Abstract: Narratives are large unit verbal operant responses that are extremely important to the academic and social development of children, with and without disabilities. Many Direct Instruction (DI) principles are applied in the design and delivery of a narrative-based academic language curriculum called Story Champs. In order to develop such a program, the content analysis requires an understanding of the autoclitic controls inherent in storytelling and the sophisticated nature of narrative language. The “Big Ideas” of narrative language (e.g., structures of stories and sentences) facilitate generative language learning and optimize concept teaching. During Story Champs instruction, learners practice storytelling and retelling in flexible groups as teachers/interventionists use consistent instructional formats and standardized correction procedures (i.e., model-lead-test and 2-step prompting). During guided practice, children practice retelling a strategically sequenced series of stories (aka, multiple exemplars). Then, to facilitate a quick transfer, children generate personal stories using the story structures, linguistic structures, and vocabulary that they learned during retells. Some aspects of Story Champs are guided by scripts while others are trained loosely (not trained to mastery). Choral responding and brisk pacing maximize active responding during the instructional delivery. Story Champs is just one example of how DI principles are adaptable for a broad range of behavior analytic teaching.
 
 
Symposium #272
CE Offered: BACB
Instruction, Classroom Management, Precision Teaching, and Coaching with the Morningside Model of Generative Instruction
Sunday, May 24, 2020
5:00 PM–6:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: EDC/OBM; Domain: Translational
Chair: Andrew Robert Kieta (Morningside Academy)
Discussant: Andrew Kieta (Morningside Academy)
CE Instructor: Andrew Kieta, Ph.D.
Abstract:

The Morningside Model of Generative Instruction is based on five pillars: Assessment, Curriculum, Instruction, Precision Teaching, and Generative Responding.

Nicole Erickson will detail how a teacher, working within a homogeneously achievement grouped classroom, uses a package of instruction strategies, Precision Teaching practices, and further assessment, to continuously evaluate and refine the homogeneity.

Kathy Fox will detail how coaches at Haugland Learner Center have developed a school-wide, systematic modification of the Good Behavior Game to improve student academic and social-emotional behavior outcomes.

Jill Hunt will describe how the Judge Rotenberg Center has worked with coaches from Morningside Teachers' Academy to develop a staff coaching model that focuses on effective classroom management and Precision Teaching procedures to improve student outcomes and shift the educational culture.

Andrew Bulla will present a study focused on effective practices in instruction and Precision Teaching, specifically a comparison of free operant acquisition and frequency building procedures versus restricted operant procedures, such as discrete trial training (DTT).

Target Audience:

Behavior Analysts, Teachers, Psychologists

 

Differentiating Instruction Within Homogeneous Achievement Groups: A Year in the Life of a Morningside Teacher

NICOLE ERICKSON (Morningside Academy)
Abstract:

One of the five pillars of the Morningside Model of Generative Instruction is homogeneous achievement grouping, wherein students with similar academic repertoires are placed together to foster the most effective instruction. While students complete a wide range of macro assessments – standardized, norm-referenced achievement tests – those assessments are designed to show growth over the course of year, not for use in homogeneous achievement grouping. Instead, results from a battery of curriculum placement tests are used to create the most homogeneous instructional groups. However, while students are placed homogeneously according to their overall average strengths and weaknesses, they do not show up in the classroom as homogeneous in each specific area of strength and weakness related to curricula. Within a given classroom, several areas of variance are evident, such as specific learning and organizational skills. As effective instructional practices turn student weaknesses into strengths, the teacher must continuously reassess and regroup students to maintain homogeneity. The never-ending job of the classroom teacher is to analyze multiple levels of assessment data to accommodate the different types of deficits that learners present with, and to effectively differentiate instruction and practice opportunities to an ever-changing diverse set of homogeneous learners. Data will be presented that demonstrate how this differentiation is done to produce successful learner outcomes.

 

A Systematic School-Wide Implementation of a Modified Good Behavior Game With Children With Autism

KATHY FOX (Haugland Learning Center), Patrick Billman (Haugland Learning Center), Jason Guild (Haugland Learning Center)
Abstract:

Good classroom management is a key factor in student success in all settings but can be especially important in classrooms that serve students with special needs. The Good Behavior Game is widely recognized as an evidence- based classroom management strategy. Haugland Learning Center(HLC), based in Columbus, Ohio, serves students with autism and other disabilities and uses variations of the Good Behavior Game to set students in a variety of classroom settings up for behavioral and academic success. This presentation will discuss how the use of the Good Behavior Game affects progress and outcomes, how HLC trains and coaches staff to implement effective classroom management strategies using the Good Behavior Game and how data are monitored to ensure continuous progress for individual students, classroom groups, and teachers. Our data indicate that students and staff perform better and reach more optimal academic and behavior outcomes when the Good Behavior Game is used consistently and reliably. Specific examples of student, classroom, staff and school academic and behavior data will be analyzed and discussed.

 

The Impact of the Morningside Model of Generative Instruction on Student Engagement, Classroom Management, and Staff Coaching at the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center

JILL HUNT (Judge Rotenberg Educational Center), Justin Halton (Judge Rotenberg Educational Center)
Abstract:

The Judge Rotenberg Education Center(JRC) is a residential school for students with severe disabilities. For the last two and a half years, JRC has had the privilege of learning from Morningside Teachers Academy(MTA) via onsite vists from MTA consultants. Work with MTA has focused on the Morningside Math Facts program, classroom management, and staff coaching. After the introduction of the Morningside Math Facts program, data demonstrated grade level equivalency gains of 1.8 years growth during the first 8 months. Additionally, staff coaching data show improved classroom management and increased student participation in the Morningside Math Facts program. Data collected during coaching sessions in the classroom have shown an increase in the amount of group responses and teacher praise statements and many staff and students report a pleasant change in the classroom environment. This presentation aims to discuss how the use of well- sequenced learning materials combined with application of good classroom management strategies inspired change in our educational department and continues to lead to better outcomes for our students and the lessons we've learned along the way.

 
Comparing the Effects of Restricted Operant and Free Operant Teaching Paradigms on Students’ Learning Pictures
ANDREW BULLA (Georgia Southern University - Armstrong ), Jennifer Wertalik (Georgia Southern University - Armstrong), Thea Schmidt (Georgia Southern University - Armstrong)
Abstract: In applied behavior analysis, two training techniques for learning new material include frequency building and discrete trial training (DTT). Frequency building is a free operant teaching paradigm where instruction moves at the pace of the learner under a timed condition in order to build the frequency of correct responses. DTT is a restricted operant paradigm where the frequency of responding is under the control of the instructor, with a distinct start and end to each trial to build the number of correct responses. Despite to effectiveness of both procedures, few studies have compared the two techniques and assessed the effects on the learning patterns produced. The current study extends the research to typically developing college students to directly compare frequency building and DTT. Numerals 0-10 in unknown foreign languages (i.e., Mandarin, Arabic, and Hindi) were taught to participants using both procedures. The number of practice trials and frequency of reinforcement were controlled for throughout. Learning pictures for both teaching techniques will be shared, as well as generativity probes for numerals 11-20.
 
 
Symposium #282
CE Offered: BACB
A Component Analysis of Higher Education
Sunday, May 24, 2020
6:00 PM–6:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: EDC/TBA; Domain: Translational
Chair: Jesslyn N. Farros (Center for Applied Behavior Analysis (CABA) and Endicott College)
CE Instructor: Jesslyn N. Farros, Ph.D.
Abstract:

Higher education in behavior analysis is in high demand, especially online learning options. Any modality of education must use current evidence-based teaching methods, however, little to no empirical research has been conducted on online learning methodologies. The following studies were all conducted in behavior analysis Master-level courses. The studies evaluated various aspects of those courses including with and without access to online forums (asynchronous discussion), with and without instructor involvement on forums, point contingencies on forums, access to synchronous and asynchronous discussion, participation in synchronous or asynchronous discussion sessions, and grading criteria (credit/no credit vs accuracy).

Target Audience:

Those interested in higher education, especially online learning.

 
Online Learning: The Effect of Synchronous Discussion Sessions in Asynchronous Courses
JESSLYN N. FARROS (Center for Applied Behavior Analysis (CABA) and Endicott College), Lesley A. Shawler (Endicott College), Ksenia Kravtchenko (Endicott College, Global Autism Project), Mary Jane Weiss (Endicott College)
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. Although online learning is becoming more prevalent, there has been little to no research to determine what makes online learning most effective. Those that have, either have not compared modalities or have focused on another aspect of the learning. 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 how asynchronous and synchronous discussion affect student outcomes in asynchronous online courses.
 
The Use of Discussion Forums in Asynchronous Behavior Analysis Masters Courses
ALLISON ROSE BICKELMAN (Autism Behavior Intervention; Endicott College), Mary Jane Weiss (Endicott College), Tara A. Fahmie (California State University, Northridge)
Abstract: Asynchronous online education is increasingly popular, including in the field of behavior analysis. It is imperative that any modality of education use current evidence-based teaching methods to ensure that student learning outcomes are strong. Many online courses use discussion forums as part of the course requirements. Previous research on discussion forums is mixed in terms of effectiveness and both student and instructor preference. Three studies were conducted in asynchronous behavior analysis Masters courses to examine student outcomes with and without access to forums, with and without instructor involvement on forums, and with various point contingencies for posting on forums. Overall results indicate that forums do not have direct, critical impact on student quiz scores and course outcomes; however, social validity measures demonstrate variability in preference for the use of the forums.
 

Comparing Grading Criteria for Readiness Assessment Tests: Accuracy versus Credit/No Credit

LEAH ROSENFELD (California State University Sacramento ), Megan R. Heinicke (California State University, Sacramento), Shelby Bryeans (California State University, Sacramento)
Abstract:

Pre-lecture reading quizzes, or Readiness Assessment Tests (RATs), improve college students’ exam performance; however, implementing RATs requires instructor resources. This study compared accuracy versus credit/no credit grading criteria on exam scores, participation, and attendance in an upper-level college course using a nonequivalent control group design. Students in the credit/no credit group spent less time on RATs and performed poorer on both RATs and unit exams across the semester compared with students who were required to respond accurately on RATs. We did not find significant differences between groups on attendance or participation measures. More students in the credit/no credit group reported liking RATs and recommended other instructors use them, whereas more students in the accuracy group had a preference for RATs over in-class quizzes. Although grading for completion rather than accuracy may be less intensive for instructors, our findings suggest this choice may decrease the benefits of RATs for students.

 
 
Invited Panel #283
CE Offered: BACB
Diversity submission SUSTAINABILITY: Behavior Analysis and Sustainability: Designing Community Interventions, Collaboration and Outreach, and Obtaining Funding
Sunday, May 24, 2020
6:00 PM–6:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Domain: Translational
Chair: Thomas G. Szabo (Florida Institute of Technology)
CE Instructor: Thomas G. Szabo, Ph.D.
Panelists: HOLLY SENIUK (Behavior Analyst Certification Board), JULIA FIEBIG (Ball State University; ABA Global Initiatives LLC), TIFFANY DUBUC (University of Nevada, Reno), ANDREW BONNER (University of Florida)
Abstract:

An extension of the panel on “Coordinating Interdisciplinary Sustainability Research”, this panel is composed of experts in behavior analysis who will share perspectives on coordination and outreach, research institutions and foundations, and collaboration with others to design community-level interventions to curb the effects of greenhouse gases. This panel aims to foster an open dialogue on how the behavioral community can move this work forward through addressing complex questions, sharing new ideas, and collaborative problem-solving. Audience members will have the opportunity to ask questions of the panelists and offer ideas for collaboration and expansion of the work of the task force. We invite participants to lean in to the complex nature of behavioral science work on climate change and explore new relationships and collaborations that build a community of researchers, practitioners, and activists that are committed to the health and long term survival of our planet and the important role that behavior science plays in making that happen.

Target Audience:

Board certified behavior analysts; licensed psychologists; graduate students.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) identify methods for finding potential collaborators; (2) identify barriers to initiating interdisciplinary collaborations; (3) state strategies for building relationships and collaborations with researchers, practitioners, and activists working in the area of climate change.
HOLLY SENIUK (Behavior Analyst Certification Board)
Holly Seniuk, PhD, BCBA-D is the Ethics Disciplinary Manager at the Behavior Analyst Certification Board. Dr. Seniuk graduated with her doctorate from the University of Nevada, Reno in 2013 under the mentorship of Dr. Larry Williams and has been a Board Certified Behavior Analyst since 2010. She has previously worked as an Assistant Professor at the University of New Brunswick, Fredericton where she developed an undergraduate level behavior analysis program and as the Project Coordinator for the Nevada PBIS Technical Assistance Center, working on the Facility-Wide PBIS Project providing behavioral systems support to residential juvenile corrections and youth mental health facilities as well as youth parole. Dr Seniuk has over 13 years of experience working in a variety of clinical settings including early intervention, schools, mental health, and intellectual disabilities. She has served on numerous boards and committees including the Nevada Association for Behavior Analysis, Atlantic Provinces Association for Behavior Analysis, Behaviorists for Social Responsibility, and the Coalition of Behavioral Science Organizations Climate Change Task Force. Her professional  and research interests include behavioral systems analysis, applications of the matching law to sports, and environmental sustainability.
JULIA FIEBIG (Ball State University; ABA Global Initiatives LLC)
Dr. Fiebig has been applying the science of behavior analysis to optimize school, community, and organizational environments and improve individual well-being for two decades. Though initially convinced she would change the world with music, incidentally, it was her music composition studies at the University of Florida that paved the road to behavior analysis. She completed her graduate training in behavior analysis at The Florida State University and her PhD in Organizational Leadership at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, with emphasis on organizational behavior management and relational frame theory applied to climate change communication. Her work has taken her across the US and Europe and is focused on impacting organizational sustainability, leadership development and team performance, and prosocial, consensus-based community practices. She is an Assistant Teaching Professor in the Department of Applied Behavior Analysis at Ball State University, co-founder of ABA Global Initiatives Consulting Group, and a director of LPC International. She is a founding member and chair of ABAI’s Behavior Analysis for Sustainable Societies (BASS) SIG and serves on the Coalition for Behavior Science Organization’s Climate Change Task Force.
TIFFANY DUBUC (University of Nevada, Reno)
Tiffany is a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst, from Ontario, Canada.  She received her Master’s Degree in Applied Behaviour Analysis in 2011 from Northeastern University and in 2015 she began completing doctoral requirements for a PhD in Applied Behaviour Analysis from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology.  Tiffany has extensive clinical experience developing, evaluating, supervising and consulting on educational and behavioural programs for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders.  Her clinical contributions have spanned an excess of five countries, including those within the Middle East, as well and India. Tiffany’s research interests include the conceptual analysis of cultural discrimination and implicit bias, using a relational frame theory account, as well as the use of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) interventions to increase psychological flexibility as it pertains to cultural competency. Tiffany is passionate about the power of behaviour science to create meaningful and sustained change, and is interested in its application to issues of broad-scale social significance (racism, sustainability). In line with her penchant for fascinating contexts, Tiffany presently resides in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia as BCBA Fieldwork Supervisor for the University of Nevada, Reno in collaboration with the King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Center.
ANDREW BONNER (University of Florida)
Andrew is a doctoral student in behavior analysis at the University of Florida. His primary research interests are in the areas of developing community interventions to reduce greenhouse gas emission. To that end, he evaluates the determinants for pro-environmental behavior, develops interventions, and then evaluates their effects always with an eye toward scalability and widespread adoption.
 
 
Panel #284
CE Offered: BACB — 
Ethics
Ethics CEUs! Oh, and Also an In-Depth Discussion on Functional Perspectives of the BACB Ethics Code
Sunday, May 24, 2020
6:00 PM–6:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: PCH/TBA; Domain: Translational
CE Instructor: Darren Sush, Psy.D.
Chair: Shane Spiker (Positive Behavior Supports, Corp.)
DARREN SUSH (Pepperdine University)
SARA GERSHFELD LITVAK (Behavioral Health Center of Excellence)
OLIVIA ONOFRIO (Trumpet Behavioral Health)
Abstract:

Behavior analysts have the potential to encounter ethical challenges on a daily basis. While the Professional and Ethical Compliance Code for Behavior Analysts (Behavior Analyst Certification Board; BACB, 2014), includes clear and concise guidance and direction, many behavior analysts find there is significant ambiguity, misunderstanding, and interpretation when applying the Code to real-life professional circumstances. Practitioners may find themselves in an uncomfortable conflict between adhering to the Code and integrating their own appraisal and perspective of challenging scenarios. Fortunately, behavior analysts are adept at assessment of the events surrounding targeted behavior and can directly apply this skillset toward understanding behaviors associated with ethically difficult situations. The panelists will discuss ethical decision-making models for incorporating and analyzing the function of ethically precarious behavior within context while remaining consistent with ethical standards of the field and ensuring quality care for clientele.

Target Audience:

The target audience for this presentation is anyone interested in the study or practice of applied behavior analysis including Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs), Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analysts (BCaBAs), Registered Behavior Technicians (RBTs), psychologists, psychiatrists, clinicians, graduate students, professors, teachers, and parents. The primary audience will be those practicing, teaching or studying in applied behavior analysis.

Learning Objectives: 1. Attendees will be able to identify ethical challenges when they occur to reduce risk, as well as identifying potential ethically precarious situations before they become problematic. 2. Attendees will be able to describe ethical decision-making models that integrate relevant ethical standards and legal principles within the context of challenging circumstances. 3. Taking a functional approach to ethical and unethical behavior, attendees will be able to describe factors maintaining and influencing the ethical principles and standards of responsible professional conduct that apply to the implementation of ABA.
 
 
Symposium #285
CE Offered: BACB
Telling Secrets: Behavior-Analytic Investigations of Private Events
Sunday, May 24, 2020
6:00 PM–6:50 PM EDT
Virtual
Area: PCH/VRB; Domain: Translational
Chair: Devon Wendtland (Arizona State University Department of Psychology)
Discussant: Carmen Luciano Soriano (University Almería, Spain)
CE Instructor: Devon Wendtland, M.S.
Abstract:

Private events and behavior-analytic perspectives concerning them has been in discord with traditional psychological accounts for decades. Interestingly, however, behavior analysis hasn't wavered much in its conceptualization of them as predominantly verbal in nature. To that end, the present symposium takes a unique look into the interestingly-sparse empirical literature relative to private events and subsequently posits progressive approaches to changing our relation to private events given a delay discounting empirical investigation. Findings are discussed and a trajectory of ABA relative to private events is provided.

Target Audience:

beginner-intermediate

Learning Objectives: Define 'private events' in objective and measurable terms. Identify measurement systems used in the literature to measure private events. Attendees will be able to describe how to use delay discounting to measure the effects of defusion in the lab
 

Can Altering Private Events Change Personality?

AMANDA CHASTAIN (University of Southern California; FirstSteps for Kids), Jonathan J. Tarbox (University of Southern California; FirstSteps for Kids)
Abstract:

Previous research has suggested that impulsivity is character trait and thus, cannot be changed. However, recent research has demonstrated that Acceptance and Commitment Training (ACT) can change how people make choices when given selections between smaller-immediate vs. larger-delayed rewards. No research to date has evaluated the effect of ACT interventions on choice making when given a choice between avoidance vs. engaging in an aversive activity to access a reward. The purpose of the current study was to evaluate the effects of defusion exercises on participants’ choice making on a computer task which presented choices between a negative reinforcer (i.e., avoidance of an aversive sound) or a positive reinforcer following the presentation of an aversive stimulus (e.g., access to money following the presentation of an aversive sound). Defusion is a behavior analytic procedure that trains participants in how to respond in more flexible ways to aversive private events, rather than engaging immediately in previously negatively reinforced behavior. In this study, a multiple baseline design across participants was used to measure change in discounting before and after a brief ACT session (data in this submission is presented as discounting curves but will be presented as both curves and as a multiple baseline in the conference presentation). In general, participants discounted less steeply (i.e., selected to listen to the sound in order to earn money more often) following defusion training when compared to baseline.

 
Examining the Exploration of Private Events in Behavior Analysis: A Systematic Review
VICTORIA DIANE HUTCHINSON (Saint Louis University), Laurel Giacone (Saint Louis University), Alexis Kennison (Saint Louis University), Jessica Laughlin (Saint Louis University), Alyssa N. Wilson (Saint Louis University)
Abstract: Behavior analysts have long debated the theoretical nuances of ‘private events’ while exploring experimental ways to predict, describe, and control emission of such events. For instance, clinical behavior analysis (including Acceptance and Commitment Therapy [ACT]) has been established as a behavior analytic approach targeting private events. Systematic reviews have been conducted on aspects of clinical behavior analysis, including Relational Frame Theory (RFT), ACT, and other behaviorally based strategies. However, to the authors knowledge, no systematic review has been conducted on private events. Therefore, the current project conducted a systematic review of the scientific literature on private events published from 1945-2019. Researchers utilized search engines, such as PsycInfo and EBSCO, and included “private events” and “behavior analysis” as search terms. Given the exploratory nature of the study, articles were included in the analysis if private events were the focus of the article. To date, of the 270 articles found, only seven met inclusion criteria. Five were conceptual, and two were experimental. Participants used included children with autism. Additionally, 17% of the articles used RFT and 83% used Skinner’s theories. Implications of these results will be discussed as they impact future research in targeting private events within behavior analysis.
 

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