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.


41st Annual Convention; San Antonio, TX; 2015

Event Details

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Poster Session #269
EDC Sunday PM
Sunday, May 24, 2015
7:00 PM–9:00 PM
Exhibit Hall C (CC)
37. An Evaluation of Bonus Points for Paced Study Habits
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
ALLISON BICKELMAN (Autism Behavior Intervention), Henry D. Schlinger (California State University, LA)
Abstract: One topic of interest in the field of applied behavior analysis is general education, particularly, how to maximize student learning. Pertinent factors in the effectiveness of education are test scores, study habits, and how a course is structured. The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the delivery of bonus points on the submission of completed learning objectives. The participants were 44 undergraduate students in a 10-week psychology course at California State University, Los Angeles. A multiple-baseline across participants design was used to examine the effects of bonus points contingent upon the timely completion and submission of learning objectives. Results showed that bonus points did not function to increase the submission of learning objectives. The results of this study will potentially add to the behavior analytic literature on study habits and general education in general.
38. Using Goal-Setting, Public Posting, and Feedback to Improve the Performance of Collegiate Volleyball Players
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
WILLIAM J. SWEENEY (The University of South Dakota), Candice Climer (Mount Marty College)
Abstract: The purpose of this study was twofold: (1) to examine the relative effects of three interventions (i.e., goal setting plus verbal feedback; public posting plus verbal feedback; and goal setting, public posting, and verbal feedback together) on the performance of collegiate volleyball players, and (2), to determine the extent to which these effects show generality to game settings. Participants of this study consisted of three female volleyball players at the collegiate level (1 outside hitters, 1 middle hitters, and 1 right side hitter) that are a part of from a 4 year private college in the Midwest. Three dependent variables were measured. The percentage of correct defensive blocks performed was evaluated to determine whether the participant blocked an attacker spiking the ball over the net effectively. Data was collected by videotape and analyzed by the primary research after respective practices and games. Each performance of blocking attempts, blocking footwork, and arm movement for the blocks, footwork, and arm movements when engaged in a swing block were coded as either correct or incorrect and subsequently converted to percentages for both practices and games. Three packaged intervention conditions were evaluated after an initial baseline was conducted: (1) goal setting plus verbal feedback; (2) public posting plus verbal feedback; and (3) goal setting, public posting, and verbal feedback together. Results from the data collection of (1) effective blocking, (2) correct footwork, and (3) correct arm movements when engaged in a swing block were compare based upon their relative effects in each of the three intervention approaches. Consumer satisfaction rating by the target players and their respective collegiate volleyball coaches are also presented. Additionally, interobserver agreement and procedural integrity data are provided to additional credibility and internal validity for both the measurement system and the implementation of the intervention. Implications and recommendations for practice in highly competitive collegiate settings as well as possibilities for future research in women’s athletics are also discussed.
39. A Lab on Line for Writing Project and Research
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
DIANA MORENO RODRIGUEZ RODRÃƑƒÂ­GUEZ (FES Iztacala Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Mé), Daniel Reyes (Facultad de Estudios Superiores Iztacala-UNAM), Jesus Camacho (Facultad de Estudios Superiores Iztacala-UNAM), Lorie E Vazquez (Facultad de Estudios Superiores Iztacala-UNAM), Eduardo Velázquez (Facultad de Estudios Superiores Iztacala-UNAM), Osmaldo Coronado (Facultad de Estudios Superiores Iztacala-UNAM)
Abstract: A review of the literature related with the development of skills associated with writing projects and research reports, indicates that the attempts are diverse. In the case of psychology teaching, teachers have focused on teaching the content of the Manual of Style (APA) (Fallahi et al., 2006; Luttrell et al., 2002). Leaving aside that research is a process that begins with a project and ends with its report, which should be reflected in a paper of quality. The objective of this report is to show the prototype of a system (LABORATORY FOR WRITING PROJECTS AND RESEARCH REPORTS, LABWPRR) that allows college students the design their research projects and prepare the report of their research work. The system includes three modules one for students, another one for teachers and one for tutors. We present the prototype construction process and its operation and self-evaluation that users have made their own research reports. Thrity two students participated, who through LABWPRR developed and self-evaluated a research report. Results indicate that users were able to make a critical analysis their research reports, also of qualify their reports based on the recommendations of the APA Style Manual. This paper was support by PAPIME (PE304813)
40. Exploring environmental factors that increase and decrease novel responding within college students.
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
REGAN GARDEN (University of North Texas), Andrew R. Kieta (University of North Texas), Jesus Rosales-Ruiz (University of North Texas)
Abstract: To date, few studies investigating novelty, or even variability, have included college students, yet novel responding is a critical skill in the modern workforce. Within this study, we used a reversal design to investigate if novel responding can be increased and decreased as a result of the reinforcement contingency within college students using a simple shaping game apparatus. In the game, subjects interacted with a small object placed on the table in front of him or her. During the first condition, reinforcement was delivered contingent on a repeated topography. Within the second condition, reinforcement was delivered contingent on the repetition of a second topography. In the any condition, reinforcement was delivered contingent on any type of interaction with the shaping game object. In the novel condition, reinforcement was delivered when the subject interacted with the object in a way that was topographically different from the previous responses. Mean interobserver agreement was 90%. During the novel condition, the number of topographies increased. Several of the new topographies were combinations of the first two reinforced topographies. Teaching multiple forms of a behavior prior to reinforcing novelty may be an effective strategy for increasing a student’s tendency to combine different skills.
41. Ex-post Facto Analysis of Effects of Feedback on Improving Students’ Learning in University Class
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
MASAKO YOSHIOKA (Aichi University)
Abstract: A teacher and students strongly influence each other. Investigating their activity is important to find feasible variables to enhance spontaneous learning. For this purpose, this study conducted ex-post facto analysis of effects of teacher’s feedback on undergraduates’ written report in six classes (three subjects for two years). Students wrote their questions and thoughts in communication-sheet about the given lecture. The written reports were classified into following four categories, “question”, “ideas”, “others”, and “no answer” (writing dates only). Main target of the intervention was to increase reports of “question”, because they are supposed to enhance creative learning. The intervention was mainly consisted of 1) reply to questions and some thoughts, and 2) praise for the target reports. The feedback was given to the whole class in the first year, to individuals in the second year. In the second year, the number of “question” reports increased in two subjects, however, the average number of letters per students decreased in all subjects. The distribution of “question” reports in subject1 showed only a few students wrote questions more than four times. It is considered that the students’ basic skills of thinking and the types of subjects were interacted with the effects of individual feedback.
42. Examining the Effects of Varying the Availability of Positive Feedback on Performance of a Multiplication Task
Area: EDC; Domain: Basic Research
CADE T. CHARLTON (Utah State University), Christian Sabey (Utah State University ), Shawn R. Charlton (University of Central Arkansas)
Abstract: The availability of positive feedback is considered an essential feedback of quality instruction. This study examined the effects of varying levels of positive and negative feedback on performance during a complex, fast-paced multiplication task . The study consisted of 100 2 x 1 digit multiplication problems (e.g., 22 x 4). Each trial lasted 12 seconds, including up to 8 seconds to answer the problem, 3 seconds of feedback, and a variable ITI. Feedback was provided immediately after an answer or after 8 seconds, whichever occurred first. Positive feedback for correct answers consisted of the word "correct" with a positive graphic that was primarily green in color. An incorrect response or timeout resulted in either Negative ("Incorrect" and a negative graphic that was primarily red in color) or Encouraging ("Good Effort" and a graphic that was primarily green in color) feedback, depending on the condition and trial (encouraging feedback began after the 25th trial). Encouraging feedback was provided whenever the proportion of positive/encouraging feedback over the previous 10 trials was below a randomly assigned cutoff of 0.8, 0.5, or 0.2. Results indicate that participants receiving the highest rate of positive feedback exhibited a significantly higher rate of correct responding than those in the other conditions.
43. The Effects of a 3:1 Positive to Negative Ratio on Performance During a Pattern Recall Task
Area: EDC; Domain: Basic Research
CHRISTIAN SABEY (Utah State University ), Cade T. Charlton (Utah State University), Shawn R. Charlton (University of Central Arkansas)
Abstract: Many researchers and practitioners recommend that teachers maintain a ratio of 3:1 positive to negative interactions (PN ratio) with students. One way that teachers could achieve this ratio is supplementing natural reinforcement with praise or verbal encouragement. In this translational study the effect of praise on engagement during a challenging pattern recall task was examined. Sixty-two undergraduate students participated. Participants were randomly assigned to one of four conditions and performed a computer-based pattern recall task. Participants were shown a sequence of colors and asked to recall the sequence in order. The length of the sequences varied based on each participant's performance to test the effects of praise when correct recall was likely and unlikely. Two conditions allowed for a 3:1 PN ratio by adjusting the difficulty of problems to ensure success (i.e., easy conditions). The presence and absence of praise (i.e., low and high reward conditions) were tested in both high and low success conditions. The latency between responses, a measure of engagement, and the number of problems correct were measured. Results indicate that participants in the low success condition without access to supplemental praise produced more errors and were less engaged. When supplemental praise was delivered participants’ engagement was significantly improved, but their accuracy on the recall task was not.
44. An Evaluation of the Effects of Reinforcer Type on a Preference for Fluent vs. Disfluent Schedules of Reinforcement
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
TYLER LOY (Immaculata University), Nina Carraghan (Graduate Student), Heather Wilford (Penn State Harrisburg), Julie A. Ackerlund Brandt (St Cloud State University)
Abstract: Previous research has shown that individuals with autism spectrum disorders prefer fluent work schedules to disfluent work schedules. A fluent work schedule includes completing all required work prior to receiving access to reinforcers. A disfluent work schedule includes receiving reinforcement periodically throughout a work session. The purpose of the current study was to replicate previous research on preference for fluent and disfluent work schedules with typically developing preschool-aged children, and to extend previous research by the evaluating the effects of the type of reinforcers provided on preferences for fluent and disfluent work schedules. In the current study, children were provided access to edibles, long-access leisure items, and short-access leisure items. Each participants preference for fluent vs. disfluent work schedule was evaluated, using a concurrent-chains arrangement, across the types of reinforcers. Three of four participants had a preference for the fluent work schedule, and one of the fours participants did not show a preference for either the fluent or disfluent work schedule.
45. An Evaluation of the Effects of Task Difficulty on a Preference for Fluent vs. Disfluent Schedules of Reinforcement
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
TYLER LOY (Immaculata University), Rocio Cuevas (Pennsylvania State University), Tempest Kreft (Penn State Harrisburg), Julie A. Ackerlund Brandt (St Cloud State University)
Abstract: Previous research has indicated that some individuals prefer fluent work schedules, meaning all required work is finished before the participant receives access to reinforcers, to disfluent work schedules, meaning reinforcers are periodically provided throughout session following shorter periods of consistent work. It is possible that the type of task presented may affect this preference for fluent and disfluent work schedules. The purpose of the current study was to replicate previous research with typically developing preschool-aged children, and to extend previous research by the evaluating the effects of the type of tasks presented. In the current study, task difficulty was defined as maintenance (easy) vs. acquisition (hard) tasks. These two types of tasks were randomly alternated across sessions, and a concurrent-chains arrangement was used to evaluate participants preference for fluent and disfluent work schedules. Two of three participants had a preference for the fluent work schedule over the disfluent work schedule, and one of the three participants did not show a preference for either work schedule.
46. Improving Middle School Reading Comprehension Using Read to Achieve
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
Nancy Marchand-Martella (Eastern Washington University), CHARALAMBOS C. CLEANTHOUS (Eastern Washington University), Ronald C. Martella (Eastern Washington University), Gregory J. Benner (University of Washington, Tacoma)
Abstract: In contemporary society, reading is fundamental to school and college success, reducing dropout rates, and professional development. The Read to Achieve program was tested for its efficacy in teaching reading comprehension. The experimental group was comprised 20 middle school students: 75% male and 25% female. Forty percent were in the 7th grade and 60% in the 8th grade. Thirty-five percent received special education services. Fifty-five percent received either freed or reduced price lunch. The experimental group received reading instruction for 22 weeks. The comparison group was comprised of 17 students from the same middle school: 53% male and 47% female. Forty-seven percent were in the 7th grade and 53% in the 8th grade. None received special education services or free or reduced price lunch. The dependent measure was the score on the AIMSweb MAZE CBM, a widely used assessment for reading comprehension. The intervention produced statistically and educationally significant effects; that is, the experimental group made greater gains than did the comparison group on reading comprehension. The Read to Achieve reading program holds promise as an efficacious intervention for middle school students who experience reading comprehension difficulties.
47. Use of Computer Software to Teach Fractions
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
JILL HUNT (Judge Rotenberg Educational Center), Michelle Harrington (Judge Rotenberg Center)
Abstract: We will be exploring the effectiveness of using precision teaching methodologies to teach neuro-typical clients how to reduce fractions. These clients are preparing for state assessments, to include the MCAS, Regents and PARCC. Pre-instruction is delivered through a short video clip and students work to a pre-determined level of fluency, with rate correct and rate incorrect. Feedback is delivered on both correct and incorrect answers. Data is plotted on a standard celeration chart. All work is completed on the computer, using a proprietary program, Math Facts. Baseline data shows that no clients are able to complete twenty problems within one minute and also that no clients are able to achieve 100% accuracy. We will be looking at the effectiveness of the video instruction, retention of the skill over time and generalization of the skills from the computer to pencil and paper, to include achievement on state assessments.
48. Using Constant Time Delay to Teach Braille Word Recognition
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
SARAH IVY (Florida State University)
Abstract: Braille illiteracy is a severe and serious issue concerning education for students with visual impairment. Time delay is a systematic response prompting procedure with a strong evidence base to teach functional and academic skills to students with a range of disabilities. Although time delay is considered an evidence-based strategy to teach literacy skills to children with severe disabilities, research on the efficacy of time delay to teach literacy skills to children with severe visual impairment has not been published to date. In this poster session, the presenter will share the results of two single subject studies using constant time delay procedures to teach braille learners. In one study, prompts included physical guidance, modeling, and pointing out salient features of braille words to teach highly motivating words to four students with multiple disabilities. In the second study, verbal prompts were used to teach braille or Nemeth code to three students transitioning from print to braille. The results of these two studies provide strong evidence of the promise of constant time delay as an effective and efficient intervention to teach students with the most severe visual impairments, with and without additional disabilities.
49. An Evaluation of the Reinforcing Efficacy of General Praise and Behavior-Specific Praise in Typically Developing Preschool Children
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
EMILY HUTTER (St. Cloud State University), Nina Carraghan (Penn State Harisburg), Julie A. Ackerlund Brandt (St Cloud State University)
Abstract: Research on problem behavior has indicated that attention will function as a reinforcer, and that certain types of attention may function as stronger reinforcers than other types. One type of attention that may function as a reinforcer is praise. It has also been suggested that behavior-specific praise, or praise that described the target behavior, is more effective than general praise, which does not describe the target behavior. The purpose of the present study is to evaluate whether behavior-specific praise will result in higher levels of behavior than general praise in typically developing preschool children. A multielement design was used to compare behavior-specific and general praise delivered for correct responses on a maintenance task. Our data indicate that both behavior-specific and general praise functioned as a reinforcer; however, behavior-specific praise resulted in slightly higher levels of correct responses. This indicates that behavior-specific praise may be a more effective reinforcer than general praise; therefore it may be beneficial for therapists and teachers to use behavior-specific praise to increase classroom and academic behavior.
50. A Comparison of the Reinforcing Effectiveness of Different Types of Attention on Skill Acquisition in Typically Developing Preschool Children
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
NYIMAS K. ARIEF (St. Cloud State University), Valerie LaCerra (Penn State University, Harrisburg), Julie A. Ackerlund Brandt (St Cloud State University)
Abstract: Previous research on problem behavior has shown that different types of attention may be more effective reinforcers than other types. This is an important consideration for teaching new behaviors. Different types of attention (i.e., praise, conversation, or physical touch) may have varying levels of reinforcing efficacy for different children. The efficacy of these types of attention has been evaluated with regard to maintenance tasks, and shown a consistent differentiation of the efficacy of the different types; but little research has focused on their varying effect with regard to skill acquisition. The present study evaluated the reinforcing efficacy of three types of attention when delivered for an acquisition task. A multielement design was used in which three attention-type conditions (i.e., praise, conversation, or physical touch) were alternated in a quasi-random order to teach sight-word reading. Results showed that, all three types of attention functioned as a reinforcer, and that physical attention (e.g., high-fives and tickles) was most effective for both participants. These results indicate that physical attention, and not praise or conversation, should be used with these children to maximize skill acquisition.



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