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

Event Details

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Paper Session #443
Behavior Analysis and Community Applications
Monday, May 27, 2019
10:00 AM–10:50 AM
Fairmont, Lobby Level, Cuvee
Area: CSS
Instruction Level: Advanced
Chair: Ron Van Houten (Western Michigan University)

CANCELED: Changing the Traffic Safety Culture in Three Cities: A Program to Increase Motorist Yielding to Pedestrians on a City Wide Basis

Domain: Applied Research
RON VAN HOUTEN (Western Michigan University)

Research supported by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that a multi-faceted behavioral approach could increase driver yielding on a city wide basis in Gainesville, Florida and follow data collected four years later found the percentage yielding had further increased suggesting a tipping point effect. This paper received a major award from the Transportation Research Board, an arm of the National Academy of Sciences. These data will report on a replication in two additional cities (Ann Arbor, Michigan and St. Paul Minnesota) using a partially current multiple baseline design. In both cities yielding increases significantly at untreated sites. In one city many drivers passed drivers yielding to pedestrians in crosswalks, a very dangerous behavior. The intervention was associated with a decrease in this behavior from 15% to 6%. It appeared that the feedback signs showing the percentage of drivers yielding the past week in each city along with the record were instrumental in potentiating the effect of the intervention. Data also suggested that social norming working as a motivating operation was instrumental in producing this effect. The paper will also discuss how a similar approach could be employed to increase healthy eating or exercise on a city wide basis.

The Effects of a Collaborative, Multidimensional Truancy Prevention and Diversion Program: A 10-Year Analysis of Single-Subject and Group Data
Domain: Applied Research
KELSEY DACHMAN (University of Kansas), Jan B. Sheldon (University of Kansas), James A. Sherman (University of Kansas)
Abstract: Education is fundamental to the development of skills required for academic and social success. When students fail to attend school, adverse consequences result at the individual, school, and societal level. Past research suggests the need for a collaborative and comprehensive approach to address truancy that includes monitoring attendance, mentoring, providing consequences, parent and school involvement, and ongoing evaluation. This study evaluates the effects of a truancy prevention and diversion program on the decrease in unexcused absences accumulated by students (N= 450) in violation of the compulsory education law. The program has been offered as an alternative to formal court involvement for 40 years and is a collaborative effort with public schools, the district attorney’s office, a child protective and youth services agency, and a midwestern university. Undergraduate practicum students act as mentors by developing positive relationships, monitoring attendance, and providing incentives through a behavioral contract. The program includes a review team led by an assistant district attorney. The primary investigator analyzed group data collected over the past 10 years and a representative sample (n= 60) of individual participant data per year using single-subject methodology. Results show the program is effective in reducing truancy across students and years.



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