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.


44th Annual Convention; San Diego, CA; 2018

Event Details

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Poster Session #78
TBA Saturday Poster Session
Saturday, May 26, 2018
1:00 PM–3:00 PM
Marriott Marquis, Grand Ballroom 1-6
Chair: Traci M. Cihon (University of North Texas)

Curriculum Based Assessment in Higher Education: Using Curriculum Based Assessment in a Special Education Undergraduate Program

Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
MICHAEL C. LAMBERT (Western Washington University), Gail Coulter (Western Washington University)
Discussant: Wendy A. Machalicek (University of Oregon)

The purpose of this research was to provide an data-based method of gauging candidate progress through a teacher special education preparation program. A vocabulary assessment was created and is framed with the CBE and RtI models that have a 30-year research base. Curriculum-based measures were used in order to monitor the progress of candidates as they proceeded through the special education program. Further, the technology appears to hold promise for identifying candidates who were likely to need support; the results showed a difference in candidate acquisition of vocabulary from the beginning of the program to the end of the program. The assessments also accurately identified candidates within the program who were experiencing academic difficulty with program content.

101. Using Behavioral Skills Training to Increase Accurate Instruction as Measured Through the Teacher Percent Rate and Accuracy Scale
Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
KIEVA SOFIA HRANCHUK (Scottsdale Children's Institute), Michael James Williams (Touchstone Behavioral Health)
Discussant: Wendy A. Machalicek (University of Oregon)
Abstract: A delayed multiple probe design across participants was implemented to analyze the effects of behavioral skills training (BST) on increasing teaching assistants’ accuracy and rate of delivery of instruction as measured through their performance on Teacher Percent Rate and Accuracy scales (TPRAs). Three adult teaching assistants, newly employed at a kindergarten readiness program based on the principles of applied behavior analysis, were selected to participate. The participants had no previous experience implementing three-term contingency trials. Dependent variables included two components of the TPRA scale measured pre- and post-intervention: 1) teachers’ percent of correctly delivered trials, and 2) teachers’ rate of trial delivery. Results indicated that the use of BST was effective in increasing participants’ accuracy and rate of delivery of three-term contingency trials as measured through TPRAs.
102. Effects of Video Modeling on Staff Training
Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
JOSMAY PEREZ-DELACRUZ (Bergen County Special Services), David Michael Fincke (Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey), Cassie Romano (Bergen County Special Services)
Discussant: Wendy A. Machalicek (University of Oregon)
Abstract: Behavior analysts working in public school districts are often expected to train teachers and support staff as one of their job duties (Catania et al., 2009). However, factors such as low trainer-to-staff ratios, high demand for services, and high staff turnover often prevent behavior analysts from fulfilling the training needs (Severtson & Carr, 2012). Therefore, it is of utmost importance that behavior analysts develop and use effective, efficient staff training methods. The present poster seeks to investigate the effectiveness of video modeling (VM) as a means of training staff members to conduct error correction procedures during discrete trial instruction. Participants will consist of four staff members working in a public school program for learners with autism. The study will consist of baseline, treatment, and maintenance phases for each participant in which data will be collected on the percentage of steps completed accurately. Additionally, inter-observer agreement will be collected for all phases. The researchers hypothesize that VM will increase the participant’s accuracy by 40% above baseline level and staff members ability to accurately conduct error correction procedures will maintain at follow-up.

Emotional Overtones of Professional Jargon as Experienced by English, Spanish, and Bilingual Speakers

Area: TBA; Domain: Theory
DAISY BUENO (Illinois State University)
Discussant: Wendy A. Machalicek (University of Oregon)

Several studies confirm that many applied behavior analysis (ABA) terms elicit unpleasant emotional reactions, and that emotional responses to ABA terms overall are more negative than to English words in general (Critchfield, et al., 2017). Understanding the emotional perceptions of jargon in ABA is important because it is the contemporary gold-standard of treatment for autism developmental disabilities. ABA is practiced in many countries using different languages. To address this development, the professional certification board has developed glossaries of ABA terms in 12 languages. What is not known is whether word-emotion effects that have been documented in English apply to perceptions of jargon in other languages. Critchfield and Doepke (2017) found cross-language similarities for terms in five non-English languages, but their study discussed preliminary results. The current study will present data from a larger sample of terms and will examine similarities and differences in emotional responses to ABA terms in English and Spanish. In addition, data from bilingual speakers (English and Spanish) will be presented because past research suggests that language proficiency and language preference may play a role in emotional attachment to words (Pavlenko, 2008). The results will provide insights for how to enhance communication between clients and therapists.

104. A Call for Open Educational Resources in Behavior Analysis
Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
VERONICA J. HOWARD (University of Alaska Anchorage)
Discussant: Wendy A. Machalicek (University of Oregon)
Abstract: The increasing cost of textbooks pose a financial burden for students, with some researchers hypothesizing that the high price of course materials may result in students opting to not purchase the text and being under-prepared for the course or taking fewer classes per semester, both resulting in a delay to graduation (Florida Virtual Campus, 2012). On the other hand, the adoption of Open textbooks have been associated with improved student grades, lower withdrawal rates, and higher concurrent and subsequent enrollments (Fischer, Hilton, Robinson, & Wiley 2015; Hilton & Laman, 2012). The aim of the current study will demonstrate the comparative effectiveness of an Open textbook compared to a commercial textbook in an introductory Psychology course on exam student performance and student course satisfaction at a large open-enrollment Alaska university. A review of available Open behavior analysis resources will be reviewed, and the potential for increased dissemination of behavior analysis through Open Educational Resources will be discussed.

Effectiveness and Preference: A Comparative Analysis of Game-Based Fluency Training, SAFMEDS, and Interteaching for Online Students

Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
CHERYL A. YOUNG-PELTON (Montana State University, Billings)
Discussant: Wendy A. Machalicek (University of Oregon)

Students who complete online programs in pursuit of BACB credentials must develop fluency of behavior analytic terms in order to meet demands of practice in the field as well as professional exams at each level (BCaBA, BCBA). The current study was conducted to determine effectiveness of and preference for three popular strategies in online fluency training: Game-based interaction (e.g.,, SAFMEDS, and Interteaching. Eight online students were selected from various online contexts and paired by their level of training (post-bacc BCaBA students, graduate students in a Master's program for ABA, graduate students seeking a Master's degree in education, and post-Master's graduates studying for the BCBA exam). Dyads completed fluency activities in several non-concurrent changing criterion designs. The study involved 40 daily sessions which measured cumulative vocabulary acquisition with mastery criteria set at 100% for 3 consecutive sessions. Random assignments to Interteaching, SAFMEDS, and Quizlet were made for each new vocabulary set. Maintenance probes were conducted at 4, 6, and 10 weeks post-training. A post-study survey of participants examined their preferences and compared preferences with effectiveness.


Demonstration of the Portable Operant Research and Teaching Lab

Area: TBA; Domain: Applied Research
ROB J GOODHUE (University of North Texas), Szu Chi Liu (University of North Texas), Traci M. Cihon (University of North Texas), Mary Elizabeth Hunter (The Art and Science of Animal Training), Jesus Rosales-Ruiz (University of North Texas)
Discussant: Wendy A. Machalicek (University of Oregon)

The use of operant chambers for research and teaching in behavior analysis is in decline due to the expense, maintenance, and ethical considerations of such complex mechanical apparati (Venneman & Knowles, 2005). Other technologies for testing and demonstrating behavioral principles have emerged in the pursuit of creating free operant paradigms that are accessible and effective for students and economical for institutions. One example is a virtual program that emulates the behavior of organisms (Graham, Alloway, & Krames, 1994). Recently, a new instrument has been developed - the Portable Operant Research and Teaching Lab (PORTL; Rosales-Ruiz & Hunter, 2016). PORTL is a tabletop apparatus comprised of various objects and tools that enables students to experience and manage free operant situations. In addition to its instructional benefits, PORTL provides a setting for basic research to be completed quickly and ethically with human participants. One purpose of this presentation is to outline the basic utility and implementation of PORTL in a collegiate setting where students themselves serve as the experimental organisms. A second purpose is to demonstrate PORTL as an alternative to operant chambers and virtual programs that can be easily and inexpensively replicated in any setting involving students of behavior analysis.


Studying the Use of "Successive Approximations" and "Behavioral Momentum" for Teaching Skills to Elementary School Students

Area: TBA; Domain: Basic Research
RICHARD COOK (Pennsylvania State University), Emily Cook (Londonderry School, Harrisburg, PA; Ruth Pauline Cook Foundation)
Discussant: Wendy A. Machalicek (University of Oregon)

For her 5th grade science fair project, the principle author chose to evaluate several behavioral principles, with which she had personal learning experience, in the teaching of skills to elementary school students. Specific targeted skills were the distances of putting a golf ball and kicking a soccer ball into a goal. Materials and Methods: Materials included soccer and golf balls, putters, goals and holes, measuring tapes. Methods: Measurement of pre and post intervention distances; incremental increases in practice distance based upon successful scoring at starting distance; Results/Discussions: Distinct improvements in longer distances were demonstrated for some students The process of conducting a study requires development of skills, and developing and maintaining behavioral momentum Conclusions: Successive approximations and behavioral momentum are constructs/techniques useful for teaching select skills to elementary school students The process of conducting a study is in itself a "successive approximation" loaded with subset "successive approximations," aspects of the study that themselves change from the inception to completion of the study, which requires behavioral momentum to start and complete




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