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.


11th International Conference; Dublin, Ireland; 2022

Event Details

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Paper Session #132
The Use of Discrimination Techniques to Encourage Responding in Clients with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Saturday, September 3, 2022
3:00 PM–3:50 PM
Meeting Level 1; Liffey Hall 2
Area: VRB
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Chair: Smita Awasthi (Behavior Momentum India)

Teaching Children With Autism Spectrum Disorder to Respond to Question Pairs With Discrimination and Divergence

Domain: Applied Research
SRIDHAR ARAVAMUDHAN (Behavior Momentum India), Smita Awasthi (Behavior Momentum India), Shushmita K.S (Behavior Momentum India), Annamma T. J (Behavior Momentum India), Pavithra Perumal (Behavior Momentum India)

Sundberg, M.L., and Sundberg, C. T (2011) state that even children with a sizeable repertoire of mands, tacts, and listener responses may fail to acquire a functional intraverbal repertoire. Ingvarsson and colleagues (2016) used a blocked trials procedure to teach discriminated responses to pairs of questions to four children with ASD. The stimuli sets were question pairs of the form “what do you ____?” Vs. What do you ____ with?”. The current study used the random rotation step and tact to intraverbal transfer trials to simultaneously train discriminated and divergent responses. The researchers taught divergent responses to each of the questions (e.g., “wash” – “hands, hair, glass, clothes”; “wash with” – “soap, shampoo, colin and detergent”). Three students aged 4-10 years, with a good repertoire of mands, tacts, and listener-responding skills but incorrect responses to questions requiring multiple control, participated in this study. We used a multiple baseline design across question pairs for 3 participants. Two participants acquired four divergent responses together, while one participant had to be trained one exemplar at a time. Intervention is underway with additional question pairs for each participant. Researchers will also discuss the generalization effects on responses to untrained pairs of questions.


Training Discriminated Divergent Responding to Paired Questions by Teaching Divergent Responses and Specific Stimulus Relations

Domain: Applied Research
SMITA AWASTHI (Behavior Momentum India), Sridhar Aravamudhan (Behavior Momentum India), Tejashree Dhruvaraj Mujumdar (Behavior Momentum India), Annamma T. J (Behavior Momentum India), Anupama Jagdish (Behavior Momentum India)

Language training to children with ASD requires overcoming stimulus over selectivity and deficits in audio visual conditional discriminations. The current study extended the Ingvarsson and colleagues (2016) study by training three school-going children with ASD, aged 5 to 10 years, to emit discriminated and divergent responses to paired questions. The study used a multiple probe design across four question pairs. Divergent responses to the first question in a pair (e.g., “name things you wash”) were taught first using tact to intraverbal transfer trials. Specific stimulus relations (E.g., wash hair with shampoo, clothes with detergent) were taught in the next stage. Probes were conducted to test if divergent responses emerged to the second question of the question pair (e.g., “name things you wash with”) and if discriminated responses to both the questions emerged without direct discrimination training. The implications of instructional arrangements to teach discriminated and divergent responses and generalization effects will be discussed.




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