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.


49th Annual Convention; Denver, CO; 2023

Event Details

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Poster Session #370L
VRB Monday Poster Session
Monday, May 29, 2023
1:00 PM–3:00 PM
Convention Center, Exhibit Hall F
Chair: Brenna R Griffen (University of Arkansas)
151. The Relation between Establishment of Equivalence Classes and Acquiring Verbal Operants in University Students
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
SIMENG HU (University of Tsukuba), Soichiro Matsuda (University of Tsukuba)
Discussant: Brenna R Griffen
Abstract: The current study was to verify Ma, Miguel, and Jennings (2016) if verbal training would be sufficient for the establishment of equivalence classes. Tact training and unidirectional intraverbal training for baseline relation (i.e., A’B’/B’C’) were conducted with university adult participants. After training, they were exposed to test probes for different relations between stimuli from equivalence classes using Matching-to-sample (MTS) and intraverbal tasks in different orders across sessions for different participants to verify the adequacy of verbal training for the establishment of performance consistent with the formation of equivalence class. In Experiment 1 and Experiment 2, 12 of 13 participants demonstrated the success of emergent MTS and intraverbal relations consistent with equivalence class formation. And all the participants could provide experimental defined or self-generated verbal products in the vocal posttest. These results were consistent with previous studies in which adult participants used verbal training to establish equivalence classes, and verbal behavior could mediate the establishment of equivalence class relations. However, from the postexperimental interview reports and the response latencies, it could not be determined that the process of verbal mediation occurred throughout the MTS posttests.
152. Emergence and Maintenance of Untrained Relations in Foreign Language Vocabulary Acquisition: A Systematic Replication
Area: VRB; Domain: Basic Research
MASAYA YAMAGUCHI (University of Tsukuba), Soichiro Matsuda (University of Tsukuba)
Discussant: Eric Bradley Larson (Recruiting Director)
Abstract: By replicating Daly and Dounavi (2020), this study evaluated the effect of foreign tact training and bidirectional intraverbal training on emergence and maintenance of untrained relations in a foreign language. Three university students learned three stimulus sets through three types of training: F-N intraverbal training (vocalizing Japanese words referring to a Spanish textual stimulus), N-F intraverbal training (reversed relation training of F-N intraverbal training), and foreign tact training (tacting a picture in Spanish). Multiple pre–post design across stimulus sets assessed each training’s effect on emergence of untrained relations in a foreign language; maintenance probes data were also collected. The result replicated Daly and Dounavi’s (2020) findings that N-F intraverbal training and foreign tact training were more effective than F-N intraverbal training, despite the suggestion that the maintenance probe’s previously reported tendency might result from the carry-over effect. Because this study introduced the concept of stimulus equivalence, examining current foreign language teaching methods from the behavior analysis perspective would be a progressive way to improve them further.
153. Teaching Children to Recall Events in the Past
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
JEANNE STEPHANIE GONZALEZ (University of Florida), Ciobha A. McKeown (University of Florida), Timothy R. Vollmer (University of Florida)
Discussant: Brenna R Griffen
Abstract: Teaching recall skills to children is a rarely studied subject despite that significance of these skills across several domains of everyday life. Yet the need for these skills is paramount. Children need to be able to report on events in the past for safety reasons and to help with socialization. The purpose of this research is to test the effect differential reinforcement alone has on increasing accurate reporting. Participants in this study are diagnosed with autism or down’s syndrome and are not reliably reporting events in the past. We used a modified component analysis to determine the effect simple differential reinforcement has on increasing reporting. If ineffective, we used probe fading procedures to teach reporting. Results show variable success with only differential reinforcement. The results provide insight into the necessity of more complex teaching methods like probe fading that are paired with differential reinforcement and provide new insight into methods of teaching children complex verbal behavior skills like answering questions about events in the past.
155. The Verbal Operant Experimental Analysis: A Functional Analysis of Verbal Behavior
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
WALBERTO RESENDEZ (Child Study Center, Cook Children’s Health Care System), Lee Mason (Cook Children's Health Care System), Maria Jose Otero (Child Study Center, Cook Children's Hospital, University of North Texas)
Discussant: Brenna R Griffen
Abstract: Language deficits are characteristic of an autism spectrum disorder diagnosis. Prior research has shown that the elementary verbal operants are functionally distinct, and children with autism frequently show disproportionate rates of responding across different environmental conditions. In the current study, we used a verbal operant experimental (VOX) analysis to sample the verbal repertoire of children with autism. The results of each assessment were graphed on a radar chart, which created a unique geometric language profile that could be quantified with various shape descriptors. The child’s language profile was then used to create an individualized system of most-to-least prompts consisting of the four primary verbal operants: mand, echoics, tacts, and sequelics. Each participant received verbal behavior instruction using the prompt hierarchy to transfer stimulus control across the verbal operants. After beginning training, participants demonstrated more robust verbal behavior in subsequent analyses. These results support the use of referent-based verbal behavior instruction to condition proportionate stimulus control over the verbal behavior of children with autism.
157. Does Relational Framing Increase Complexity as Students Progress in Their Education? Moment-to-Moment Analysis of Relational Framing in Conversational Data During Graduate School Classwork
Area: VRB; Domain: Applied Research
BRADEN J TOLER (Capella University ), Thomas G. Szabo (Capella University), Megan Ritchey Mayo (Antioch University ), David Legaspi (Center For Applied Behavior Analysis), Natasha Marroquin (Florida Institute of Technology), Kristy Park (George Mason University), Adryon Ketcham (Goals for Autism ), Yukie Kurumiya (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology)
Discussant: Brenna R Griffen

For decades, basic and applied research on relational framing has focused on large patterns of functional changes to verbal networks that occur during and after relational training (e.g., Rehfeldt et al., 2007). To date, investigators have paid little attention to the way individuals frame relationally during naturalistic conversation (Tannen, 1993). It remains unclear whether framing in naturalistic contexts expands after repeated or prolonged exposure to content that requires complex relational framing. Said differently, changes in real-world performance may or may not mirror results from tests conducted in relational training environments. To date, a molecular evaluation of conversational data has not been advanced. In this session, we describe a novel procedure for the measurement of relational framing that occurs during conversation in small work groups over the course of a graduate school semester before and after an intervention that targets hierarchical and analogical framing. Additionally, we discuss skill acquisition among investigators trained to code relational framing in context. Finally, we review our process for improving the measurement system and procedures for training ABA research assistants to code relational framing that occurs during naturalistic conversation.




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