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.


45th Annual Convention; Chicago, IL; 2019

Workshop Details

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Workshop #W54
CE Offered: BACB
Ecological Assessments in School Settings: Creating Quality Transitions for Learners With Autism Spectrum Disorder and Complex Learning Needs
Friday, May 24, 2019
4:00 PM–7:00 PM
Swissôtel, Concourse Level, Zurich C
Area: AUT/DDA; Domain: Service Delivery
CE Instructor: Amanda Laprime, Ph.D.
AMANDA LAPRIME (The Center for Children with Special Needs; Northeastern University ), NICHOLE COLLINS (The Center for Children with Special Needs), KIMBERLY MARSHALL (The Center for Children with Special Needs; Endicott College), JESSICA ROHRER (The Center for Children with Special Needs; Endicott College), SHAUNESSY M. EGAN (The Center for Children with Special Needs)
Description: Transitions are an essential part of a child’s development into adulthood. Throughout their educational careers, individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities transition into new environments numerous times. Despite the regularity of educational transitions, the majority of practicing behavior analysts do not conduct comprehensive assessments to plan for successful transitions (Dente & Cohles, 2012). In addition, these transitions are often not designed well in advance of their execution. Ecological assessments involve the comprehensive process of identifying key behavioral requisites for a receiving environment across domains (i.e., social behaviors, academic behaviors, communicative behaviors), while simultaneously assessing an individual’s current repertoire across each of these areas. Ecological assessments allow behavior analysts, in conjunction with educational teams, to plan for successful transitions while focusing on independence and meaningful inclusion. Attendees will be introduced to a model for assessing expectations across domains in a receiving environment and utilizing this assessment to guide the development of recommendations for skill acquisition. Planning for independence will be embedded within each aspect of the assessment process. Attendees will be taught general assessment strategies, as well as methods to apply across specific transitions (e.g., transitions to kindergarten, middle school, high school, and post-secondary settings). Additionally, we will teach attendees how to design effective, skill-based treatments prior to a transition that will allow a student to be included in their receiving environment in meaningful ways. Audience members will leave the workshop with a model ecological assessment, graphic organizers for structuring assessments, sample data sheets, and model lesson plans for skill acquisition targets.
Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the workshop, participants will be able to: (1) Describe the process of a comprehensive ecological assessment; (2) Identify targets for observation in receiving educational environments; (3) Define and quantify barriers to successful transition and inclusion; (4) Develop recommendations for skill based treatments based on the results of an individual assessment; and (5) Compare different approaches to ecological assessments across the educational lifespan (e.g., transition to kindergarten, middle school, high school, and post-secondary settings).
Activities: Lecture, discussion, small group breakout, and material development.
Audience: The target audience for this workshop will be behavior analysts who provide consultation to educational programs for learners with significant academic, behavioral, and social learning needs.
Content Area: Practice
Instruction Level: Advanced



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