Functional Communication Training With a Discriminative Stimulus
Lancaster, Blake M.
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A series of analyses were conducted to assess and treat aggressive behavior of a young individual with mental retardation and seizure disorder. First, an analogue functional analysis (Iwata, Dorsey, Slifer, Bauman & Richman, 1982/1994) revealed inconclusive evidence regarding the maintaining variables of the client's destructive behavior. Parent reports and naturalistic observations gave insight as to what conditions elicited Andrea's aggressive behavior. Second, two modified functional analyses, based on the parent assessment, were conducted in the social attention and tangible conditions. These analyses indicated that Andrea's destructive behavior was maintained by access to social attention and/or tangible items. Third, a functional communication training treatment intervention was introduced to interrupt the hypothesized response-reinforcer relationship. This procedure was successful in reducing the occurrence of aggressive behaviors. Finally, because aggressive behavior occurred primarily when the individual was denied access to preferred items or denied social attention, a stimulus control procedure was implemented to improve the effectiveness of the intervention in these situations.