Date of Award

12-2001

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Dr. Richard Malott

Second Advisor

Dr. Sebastien Bosch

Third Advisor

Dr. John Austin

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access

Abstract

Improvement in the rate of learning on acquisition programs for individuals diagnosed with autism often depends on the quality of instruction delivered by direct-care staff The present study evaluated the effectiveness of a performance analysis on targeting environmental variables that were maintaining less than optimal staff performance for a least-to-most prompting procedure used to teach a hand-washing task to preschool children diagnosed with autism. Direct observations of technician/child dyads were followed by informant interviews with technicians, supervisors, and other key staff members that pinpointed variables that were maintaining/hindering staff compliance with a prompting procedure designed to promote child acquisition of a hand-washing task. An intervention package, consisting of antecedents that included a job-aid and additional training on the prompting procedure, resulted in substantial increases in staff performance on teaching the hand-washing task. Indices of child performance, including percentage of steps performed independently and on-task performance during the activity, showed modest improvements.

Included in

Psychology Commons

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