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An Evaluation of Three Methods of Denying Access to Computers to a Person with Learning Disabilities PowerPoint Presentation
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An Evaluation of Three Methods of Denying Access to Computers to a Person with Learning Disabilities

An Evaluation of Three Methods of Denying Access to Computers to a Person with Learning Disabilities

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An Evaluation of Three Methods of Denying Access to Computers to a Person with Learning Disabilities

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  1. An Evaluation of Three Methods of Denying Access to Computers to a Person with Learning Disabilities Duncan Pritchard Aran Hall School Marguerite Hoerger Bangor University Annette Ikin, Jane Kochy, Karen Thomas & Heather Penney Aran Hall School F. Charles Mace Nova Southeastern University duncanpritchard@aranhall.com

  2. Aran Hall School, Dolgellau • Aran Hall School provides care and education to children and young people with autism, learning disabilities and challenging behaviour • Children and young people referred to the school have experienced multiple placement breakdowns due to the severity of their problem behaviour • IQ, ABAS

  3. Literature Review • ‘Do’ requests are more effective than ‘don’t’ requests (Adelinis & Hagopian, 1999) • Problem behaviours are reduced when alternative reinforcers are made available in the absence of the preferred reinforcer (Fisher et al., 1998) • Deprivation of the reinforcer may alter the sequence of responses making more severe topographies more likely (O’Reilly, 1999) • That prosocial alternative behaviours can be added into a response class hierarchy to prevent escalation (Lalli et al., 1995)

  4. Literature Review (cont’d) • Response class hierarchies are defined by topographically distinct responses that produce common effects on the environment, but have different probabilities of occurrence (Lalli et al, 1995) • The participant in the Lalli et al. study emitted escape-maintained screams, aggression and self-injury in a stable, escalating sequence • To date, no research has explicitly examined the effects of different methods of denying children access to preferred activities on response class hierarchies maintained by positive reinforcement

  5. Functional behaviour analysis • A systematic means of identifying the variables that may control a behaviour • Both the antecedents and the consequences are examined to help us understand why a behaviour occurs in a particular environmental context • We can then design and implement a function-based intervention e.g. DRA, RIR

  6. Pilot Study • We replicated a pilot study carried out at Aran Hall by Mace et al. (in press) that evaluated the relative effects of three methods of ‘saying no’ on requests to engage in a preferred activity on the occurrence and escalation of problem behaviour

  7. Participant in the pilot study • 13 year old boy with high functioning autism and challenging behaviour • Descriptive assessment indicated that challenging behaviour was maintained by access to preferred reinforcers • The participant presented oppositional vocalisations, loud vocalisations, disruptive behaviour and aggression in a stable, escalating sequence

  8. Three methods of ‘saying no’ • A ‘No you can’t; I’m busy doing my work’ • B ‘You can’t use it at the moment but you can play football with Kevin now’ • C ‘Yes you can, just as soon as you have done your school work’

  9. Baseline 1 Intervention B & C 1 Baseline 2 Intervention B & C 2 Percentage of 10-s Intervals Sessions

  10. Limitations of the pilot study • Only one individual with high functioning autism participated in the pilot study so additional replications are needed to establish generality • The participant’s immediate and pronounced response to the alternative methods of ‘saying no’ may not hold true for all children • The pilot study did not incorporate a preference assessment to establish the reinforcement value of the alternative activity i.e. playing football

  11. Participant • 17 year old male with a moderate learning disability, ADHD and severe challenging behaviour • Good receptive and expressive language • Height 185cm and weight 115kg • Risperidone and Concerta XL prescribed for the management of problem behaviour • Epilim for seizure control

  12. Participant (cont’d) • Excluded from two residential schools prior to his admission to Aran Hall School • Problem behaviour interfering with the activities of the other pupils in his class • Response class hierarchy i.e. hits objects (thumps desks, windows, walls), aggression (pushing, hugs, slaps, throwing objects), flops on to the floor

  13. Three ways of ‘saying no’ • A “No you can’t; I’m busy with my work.” • B “You can’t use it just now, but you can play your guitar, keyboard, football, or do some drawing. You choose.” • C “Yes you can, just as soon as you’ve done some school work. Let me show you on the card.”

  14. Why does A work? • Extinction • ‘No you can’t; I’m busy doing my work’ • Saying ‘no’ probably functioned as an Sby indicating the unavailability of reinforcement • The baseline condition may reflect the undesirable effects of extinction such as increased responding (Lerman et al., 1999)

  15. Why does B work? • Matching Law • ‘You can’t use it at the moment but you can play football with me now’ • An SD for a preferred alternative e.g. football • Choice is a function of relative rate, quality, delay to reinforcement and effort (Herrnstein, 1970)

  16. Why does C work? • Premack Principle • ‘Yes you can, just as soon as you’ve done some school work. Let me show you on the card’ • An SD for access to the computer • The probability of a response will go up if it provides the opportunity to engage in another response more probable than itself (Premack, 1959)

  17. Summary • The research demonstrates that the evocative effects of ‘saying no’ may be reduced by modifying the stimulus properties of the refusal • Use to prevent occurrences of escalating problem behaviours when access to preferred activities must be denied for indefinite periods of time

  18. References Adelinis, J.D. & Hagopian, L.P. (1999). The use of symmetrical ‘do’ and ‘don’t’ requests to interrupt ongoing activities. Journal of Applied Behaviour Analysis, 32, 519-523. Fisher, W.W., Kuhn, D.E, & Thompson, R.H. (1998). Establishing discriminative control of responding using functional and alternative reinforcers during functional communication training. Journal of Applied Behaviour Analysis, 31, 543-560. Herrnstein, R.J. (1970). On the law of effect. Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behaviour, 13, 243-266. Lalli, J.S., Mace, F.C., Wohn, T. & Livezey, K. (1995). Identification and modification of a response class hierarchy. Journal of Applied Behaviour Analysis, 28, 551-559. Lerman, D.C., Iwata, B.A. & Wallace, M.D. (1999). Side effects of extinction: Prevalence of bursting and aggression during the treatment of self-injurious behaviour. Journal of Applied Behaviour Analysis, 32, 1-8. Mace, F.C., Pratt, J.L., Prager, K.L. & Pritchard, D. (in press) Journal of Applied Behaviour Analysis. O’Reilly, M. (1999). Effects of presession attention on the frequency of attention-maintained behaviour. Journal of Applied Behaviour Analysis, 32, 371-374. Premack, D. (1959). Toward empirical behaviour laws: 1. Positive Reinforcement. Psychological Review, 66, 219-233.

  19. An Evaluation of Three Methods of Denying Access to Computers to a Person with Learning Disabilities Duncan Pritchard Aran Hall School Marguerite Hoerger Bangor University Annette Ikin, Jane Kochy, Karen Thomas & Heather Penney Aran Hall School F. Charles Mace Nova Southeastern University duncanpritchard@aranhall.com