Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis

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Achieving socially significant reductions in problem behavior following the interview-informed synthesized contingency analysis: A summary of 25 outpatient applications

Wed, 01/10/2018 - 04:45

Jessel, Hanley, and Ghaemmaghami (2016) reported the results of 30 interview-informed, synthesized contingency analyses (IISCAs) and found the IISCAs to be an effective tool for identifying the functions of problem behavior across a variety of topographies, participants, and settings. Jessel et al. did not, however, include data on the effectiveness of the corresponding treatments. In the current study, we collected and summarized 25 additional applications, from analysis to treatment, in which the IISCA was applied in an outpatient clinic. The IISCA identified various social functions of problem behavior, which informed personalized treatments of functional communication training with contingency-based reinforcement thinning. A 90% or greater reduction in problem behavior was obtained for every participant by the end of the treatment evaluation. The assessment and treatment process was socially validated by caregivers who rated the procedures highly acceptable and helpful, and the improvement in their child's behavior highly satisfactory.

Categories: Academic Journals

Functional analysis and treatment of problem behavior related to mands for rearrangement

Tue, 01/09/2018 - 22:56

This study is a systematic replication of a functional analysis (FA) of the relation between mands and problem behavior. We extended treatment approaches for this problem behavior function, and describe the treatment of problem behavior related to mands for rearrangement demonstrated by a 12-year-old girl with autism spectrum disorder and Smith-Magenis syndrome. The mands consisted of requests for others to change their body positioning or proximity, or rearrange items back to their original position. An FA confirmed the relation between problem behavior and mand compliance, and functional communication training with extinction decreased problem behavior and increased functional communication responses. Problem behavior remained low as gradually longer nonreinforcement periods were introduced using a multiple schedule.

Categories: Academic Journals

Feasibility of and teacher preference for student-led implementation of the good behavior game in early elementary classrooms

Tue, 01/09/2018 - 22:40

The Good Behavior Game (GBG) is a classwide group contingency shown to reduce disruptive student behavior. We examined the feasibility of training young students to lead the GBG in one first-grade and three kindergarten classes. We also examined teacher preference for teacher-led GBG, student-led GBG, or no GBG using a concurrent chains procedure. We successfully trained students in all classes to lead the GBG, and the GBG reduced disruptive behavior regardless of who implemented it. Preference for who implemented the game varied across teachers. Results of this study suggest that students as young as kindergarten age can be trained to implement the GBG and that teacher preference should be taken into account when determining how classwide interventions are to be implemented.

Categories: Academic Journals

Treating liquid expulsion in children with feeding disorders

Mon, 01/08/2018 - 07:00

In the current investigation, we compared and evaluated the effects of two intervention procedures, a modified chin prompt and reclined seating, on the liquid expulsion of 2 children with feeding disorders. For both participants, expulsion decreased to clinically meaningful levels when we added the modified chin prompt or reclined seating to a treatment package consisting of differential reinforcement of acceptance, nonremoval of the cup, and re-presentation. We discuss possible mechanisms underlying the effects of the 2 interventions and areas for future research.

Categories: Academic Journals

Preschool life skills: Recent advancements and future directions

Mon, 01/08/2018 - 07:00

Over the past decade, researchers have replicated and extended research on the preschool life skills (PLS) program developed by Hanley, Heal, Tiger, and Ingvarsson (2007). This review summarizes recent research with respect to maximizing skill acquisition, improving generality, evaluating feasibility and acceptability, and testing predictions of the initial PLS study. For each area, we suggest directions for future research.

Categories: Academic Journals

The role of signals in two variations of differential-reinforcement-of-low-rate procedures

Wed, 01/03/2018 - 09:01

Differential-reinforcement-of-low-rate (DRL) schedules are used to decrease the overall rate of, but not eliminate, a target response. Two variations of DRL, spaced-responding and full-session, exist. Preliminary comparative analyses suggest that the two schedules function differently when unsignaled. We compared response rates under these two DRL variations with and without signals. In Experiment 1, five preschool students played a game in which points were earned under DRL schedules. In some sessions, a stimulus signaled when responses would be reinforced (S+) or not reinforced (S-). In others, only an S- was present. Signals (S+/S-) facilitated and maintained responding in both types of DRL schedules. In Experiment 2, we modified the signals with five different preschoolers. Instead of an S- only, we did not present any signals. Elimination and high variability of the target response were observed with the S- only and absence of S+/S-, respectively. Signaled DRL schedules are recommended for application.

Categories: Academic Journals

Training class inclusion responding in typically-developing children and individuals with autism

Tue, 12/19/2017 - 06:41

In a class inclusion task, a child must respond to stimuli as being involved in two different though hierarchically related categories. This study used a Relational Frame Theory (RFT) paradigm to assess and train this ability in three typically developing preschoolers and three individuals with autism spectrum disorder, all of whom had failed class inclusion tests. For all subjects, relational training successfully established the target repertoire and subsequent testing demonstrated both maintenance and generalization. Limitations and future research directions are discussed.

Categories: Academic Journals

Evaluating the Performance Diagnostic Checklist-Human Services to assess incorrect error-correction procedures by preschool paraprofessionals

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 01:40

The Performance Diagnostic Checklist-Human Services (PDC-HS) has been used to assess variables contributing to undesirable staff performance. In this study, three preschool teachers completed the PDC-HS to identify the factors contributing to four paraprofessionals' inaccurate implementation of error-correction procedures during discrete trial training sessions. The PDC-HS indicated insufficient training as a contributing factor. We then implemented a nonindicated intervention (posting reminders), followed by an indicated intervention (behavioral skills training). The nonindicated intervention failed to produce desired performance improvements; however, the PDC-HS indicated intervention resulted in improvements for all paraprofessionals.

Categories: Academic Journals

A multicomponent approach to thinning reinforcer delivery during noncontingent reinforcement schedules

Sun, 12/10/2017 - 23:05

We evaluated a noncontingent reinforcement procedure that involved initially providing three subjects with signaled, continuous access to the functional reinforcer for aggression and slowly increasing the amount of time subjects were exposed to the signaled unavailability of the reinforcer. Additionally, alternative potential reinforcers were available throughout the sessions. Results showed immediate and substantial reductions in aggression for all three subjects. The clinical utility of this intervention is discussed, and future research directions are recommended.

Categories: Academic Journals

Prevention of the development of problem behavior: A laboratory model

Mon, 12/04/2017 - 21:45

Few studies have isolated the preventive efficacy of common behavioral strategies like noncontingent reinforcement (NCR) and differential reinforcement of alternative behavior (DRA). The purpose of the current study was to develop and evaluate a laboratory model of these two problem behavior prevention strategies. Undergraduate students participated in a computer simulation, in which clicks to a designated area of the computer screen were analogous to the emergence of problem behavior. The responding of participants in a control group, who experienced a percentile schedule used to mimic the shaping of problem behavior, was compared to that of participants in two experimental groups, each with a history of either DRA or NCR. Between-subjects group comparisons showed that both intervention strategies were equally effective in the prevention of our analog to problem behavior when compared to the control group. The strengths and limitations of a laboratory model for prevention are discussed in light of recent applied work in this area.

Categories: Academic Journals

Using progressive ratio schedules to evaluate tokens as generalized conditioned reinforcers

Thu, 11/30/2017 - 01:15

The properties of operant reinforcers are dynamic and dependent on a number of variables, such as schedule and effort. There has been sparse research on the generalized conditioned properties of token reinforcement. We evaluated leisure items, edible items, and tokens using a progressive ratio schedule with three children with diagnoses of ASD and developmental delays. The highest break points occurred during the token reinforcement condition for two out of three participants, but response rates tended to be higher with edibles. We then evaluated the effects of presession access to edibles on the break points of edible items and tokens with two participants. Break points decreased only in the edible reinforcement condition, and the participants chose to work for leisure items rather than edibles when presession access to edibles was in place. These findings suggest that the tokens functioned as generalized conditioned reinforcers.

Categories: Academic Journals

Effects of computer-based training on procedural modifications to standard functional analyses

Mon, 10/30/2017 - 23:45

Few studies have evaluated methods for training decision-making when functional analysis data are undifferentiated. The current study evaluated computer-based training to teach 20 graduate students to arrange functional analysis conditions, analyze functional analysis data, and implement procedural modifications. Participants were exposed to training materials using interactive software during a 1-day session. Following the training, mean scores on the posttest, novel cases probe, and maintenance probe increased for all participants. These results replicate previous findings during a 1-day session and include a measure of participant acceptability of the training. Recommendations for future research on computer-based training and functional analysis are discussed.

Categories: Academic Journals

Guest Eds & Revs Acknowledgement

Thu, 10/12/2017 - 07:51
Categories: Academic Journals

Call for Nominations

Thu, 10/12/2017 - 07:51
Categories: Academic Journals