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Video Modeling and the Activity Trainer. Thursday 9/12/2013 3 :00 PM Eastern Karl Smith, Founder Accelerations Educational Software Personal Connection. Accelerations Educational Software. Products in over 1100 School Districts

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Video modeling and the activity trainer

Video Modeling

and the

Activity Trainer

Thursday 9/12/2013

3:00 PM Eastern

Karl Smith, Founder

Accelerations Educational Software

Accelerations educational software
Accelerations Educational Software

  • Products in

    • over 1100 School Districts

    • 100s of Private Schools & Institutions

    • 1000s of homes

    • 2 Foreign Versions

      • Canadian & Spanish

  • DT Trainer & Activity Trainer

Products advisory board
Products Advisory Board

  • Peter Gerhardt, Ed. D.

    Chairman Scientific Council for the Organization for Autism Research

  • Dr. Stephen Shore

    Professor of Special Ed, Board Member Autism Society of America

    Author & Internationally Known Speaker on Autism, Individual with Autism

  • Robert Stromer, Ph. D.

    BCBA, Behavioral Scientist, Professor, Computer based technologies Expert

  • Dr. Bridget Taylor

    BCBA, Professor, Director of Eden II/Genesis Outreach Autism Center

  • Dr. Mary McDonald

    BCBA, Director of Alpine Learning Group, International Speaker on Autism,

    VP of the Association for Science in Autism Treatment

Our other product discrete trial dt trainer
Our Other ProductDiscrete Trial (DT) Trainer

Used in range of settings
Used in Range of Settings

  • School Districts

    • Self Contained Classes

      • Preschool

      • Elementary

      • Where students are significantly delayed at:

        • Middle School

        • High School

    • Full day main-streamed students

    • At risk preschool & kindergarten classes

Accelerations Educational Software

Used in range of settings1
Used in Range of Settings

  • Institutions & Private Schools

  • Autism Centers and Home Programs

  • Group Homes

  • Private Homes

    • Autism & Intellectual Disabilities

    • Typical Siblings

Accelerations Educational Software

Range of licenses
Range of Licenses

  • Single Computer

    • Subscriptions & Perpetual

    • Unlimited Students or Single Student

    • Institutional or home

  • Site Licenses

    • District Wide for Special Education

    • Institution Wide for All or Target Population

    • Special Cases

  • Free Demo / Presentation Licenses

    • For anyone needing to present to or train others

    • Demo labs (AT resource centers, …)

Accelerations Educational Software

Wealth of supporting research
Wealth of Supporting Research

  • > 20 years of research

  • Wide range of skills & behaviors

    • Simple to Complex

  • Wide range of learners

  • Increases acquisition rates…

    • Sometimes quite dramatically!

  • Sample of research references at:


Tiny sample of research
Tiny Sample of Research

  • Apple, A. L., Billingsley, F., & Schwartz, I. S. (2005).

    • Effects of video modeling alone and with self-management on compliment-giving behaviors of children with high-functioning ASD. Journal of Positive Behavior Interventions, 7 (1), 33-46.

  • Bellini, S. & Akullian, J. (2007).

    • A meta-analysis of video-modeling andself-modeling interventions for children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder.. Exceptional Children, 73, (3), 267-287.

  • Charlop-Christy, M. H., & Daneshvar, S. (2003).

    • Using video modeling to teach perspective taking to children with autism. Journal of Positive Behavior Interventions, 5 (1), 12-21.

  • Charlop-Christy, M. H., Le, L., & Freeman, K. A. (2000).

    • A comparison of video modeling with in vivo modeling for teaching children with autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 30 (6), 537-552.

  • Corbett, B. A., & Abdullah, M. (2005).

    • Video modeling: Why does it work for children with autism? Journal of Early Intensive Behavioral Intervention, 2, 2-8.

  • Coyle, C., & Cole, P. (2004).

    • A videotaped self-modelling and self-monitoring treatment program to decrease off-task behaviour in children with autism. Journal of Intellectual & Developmental Disabilities, 29(1), 3-15.

  • ...

General conclusions
General Conclusions

  • Increases Acquisition Rates across wide variety of skills

  • Effective with Autism & other Learning Disabilities

  • Model generally does not matter

  • Video Self Model can improve interest

General conclusions cont
General Conclusions (cont.)

  • Should be Common Practice… try VM where students are not learning quickly with other methods

  • Not a panacea…

    • will not work for all skills and all students

  • VM better than next best method

    • 2 teachers... One modeling & one facilitating

    • 2 teachers… We barely get 1 on 1!

Vm works because
VM Works Because…

  • Consistent Model

  • Non Threatening

  • Separation of Modeling & Facilitation

    • Parallel Model and Execution

    • Minimize representation

    • Minimize observational memory

Vm works because1
VM Works Because…

  • Clear Objective

    • Perspective / Orientation

    • Minimize extraneous information

    • Maximize salient features

  • Supports Visual Learners

  • May be more interesting

Vm works because2
VM Works Because…

  • Quicker success improves interest

  • Success on sub steps creates increased interest / cooperation on task

  • Building history of success – cooperative learner

Poor observational learners
Poor Observational Learners

  • Poor observational memory

    • Inability to mentally represent model

    • Inability to remember long enough to preform task

  • Lack of ability to translate observation to behavior

  • Lack prerequisite skills for task

Poor observational learners1
Poor Observational Learners

  • Not attending to salient features

  • Attending to extraneous information

  • Lack of understanding what they are supposed to do

    • Lack typical mimicking behavior

  • Uninterested / Uncooperative

  • Threatened by model or task

Benefits to student
Benefits to Student

  • Improve cooperation / interest

  • Improve self confidence

  • Learn skills

Benefits to student1
Benefits to Student

  • Learn to learn

    • Learn to attend

      • In general

      • Salient Features

      • Longer

      • More complex

    • Improve observational memory

    • Improve translation skills

Practical considerations
Practical Considerations

  • Virtual extra teacher/teaching assistant

    • Barely get one-on-one… otherwise should have two-on-one (teachers to student)

  • Allows staff more time to actually teach

    • Students able to perform tasks previously performed by staff…

  • Potentially enables acquisition

    • We tend to give up if not learning in some time period

Practical considerations1
Practical Considerations

  • Takes time to create own video

    • Planning

    • Scripting

    • Coordinating actor(s)

    • Obtaining equipment

    • Editing

    • Rework

    • Frequently net savings in time – substantially less teaching time

Possible platforms
Possible Platforms

  • TVs

  • Computers

  • Mobile devices

Activity trainer1
Activity Trainer

  • Problem to solve

    • 20 years of research indicating VM should be used

    • Not common practice

Vm problems
VM Problems

  • Tapes, CDs, and DVDs

    • Clumsy at best

  • Media Players

    • No support for Task Analysis, Sequences, Organization of Materials, Data Collection, …

  • Video Modeling

    • Not just about playing videos

    • Is about micro-management of process

Vm problems1
VM Problems

  • Creating Video Models

    • Time consuming

    • Most teachers not trained

  • PowerPoint

    • Supports useful features

    • Still lacks support for organization, data collection, …

    • Task analysis and sequences are clumsy

Solution activity trainer
Solution: Activity Trainer

  • Makes VM Practical, Easy, & Specific

  • Extends VM - Activities

    • Combines Video, Images, Texts, Audio

    • Task Analysis, Sequences, Transitions from Videos to Images & Images to Text, Data Collection, Organization of Materials

    • Worksheets

  • Integrated with Visual Schedule

  • Skills, User, Can support 3rd Party Libraries

Basic vm teaching strategy
Basic VM Teaching Strategy

  • Build automatic mimic response to video

    • Generally start with simple non-verbal imitation

    • Build (as slowly as necessary) to more complex skills

    • Goal is to use no or minimal facilitation

    • Strategy will frequently be domain specific

      • Facilitation will be different for verbal, social, daily living, …


  • Facilitation / prompting

    • Hand over hand

    • Verbal

    • Gestural

    • Proximity


  • Only use facilitation techniques were

    • Safety is an issue

    • More information is needed to supplement video to obtain success

    • Lack of success building automatic mimic response

      • E.G. Needs extra fine motor support


  • From behind (where appropriate)

  • Hand over hand (where necessary)

Fading facilitation
Fading Facilitation

  • Fading Facilitation

    • Fading hand-over-hand

    • Fading gestural prompts

    • Fading verbal prompts

    • Fading proximity

Fading video
Fading Video

  • Video source further away

  • Make picture smaller

  • Turn down sound

  • Play smaller portion of video

  • Play video prior to performance

  • Transition to image cue

  • Transition to text

  • Play on smaller device

Vm transition from video
VM - Transition from Video

  • Automatic

    • Student automatically performs task in natural situation

  • Transitional Teaching

    • Teacher facilitates generalization to natural situation

  • Transition to Image Cue

    • Only needs image cue to initiate behavior

  • Transition to Verbal Instruction

  • Transition to Text instruction

  • Visual Schedules

  • To-Do lists

Educational considerations
Educational Considerations

  • How vs. Why

    • Teach how to do something

    • Then teach why (and when)

  • Reproducibility of scene objects

    • For single student / small group: non issue

    • For resource: use commonly available objects

      • Allow teaching of “contrived” task

      • Then generalizes to student’s actual environment

Simple action
Simple Action

  • Single or simple action (for level of student)

Repeated action
Repeated Action

  • Repeats or just “more of the same”

Complex tasks
Complex Tasks

  • Steps



  • Pauses

    • Breaks between task steps

  • Speed of action

    • Different levels of learner

  • Disjoint to fluid

    • May require multiple VMs

1 st person view
1st Person View

  • Fine motor & other skills

2 nd person opposite mirror view
2ndPerson – Opposite – Mirror View

  • Simple actions

3 rd person scene view
3rdPerson – Scene View

  • Capture details of larger movements

Other views
Other Views

  • From Behind

  • Over shoulder

  • Angle view

Actor s

  • Can do activity

  • Age less important

    • Generally use late teen or young adult

      • To target wide range in age of learners

    • Can use young models

      • Especially for social skills

      • If targeting just young children

Actor s1

  • Self Model

    • If student can barely do activity

    • Fake it!

      • With multiple shots & editing can make student look like he performed activity

More information
More Information


  • Free trials

  • 803-233-0541




Video modeling and the activity trainer

End of

Activity Trainer Training

Thank you for attending!

Karl Smith – Developer/Founder

Accelerations Educational Software