Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts

First Advisor

Dr. Brian Iwata

Second Advisor

Dr. Cheryl Poche

Third Advisor

Dr. Paul Mountjoy

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


Pathological tongue thrust (reverse swallowing) has been linked to malocclusion, articulation problems, difficulty in eating, and excessive drooling. Observable tongue thrust in a 10-year-old severely retarded male was modified during lunch using a contingent pushback procedure. Comparison of baseline and treatment data collected by the partial interval method showed a significant reduction in tongue thrust and food fallout and a substantial increase in observed chewing. Results indicated the possibility that an operant approach to treatment can be effective in the modification of this physiological response.