College of Psychology: Faculty Articles

Title

Behavioral Interventions to Reduce Maladaptive Responding in Youth with Dual Sensory Impairment An Analysis of Direct and Concurrent Effects

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

4-1993

Keywords

Behavior Therapy Methods, Blindness, Deafness, Psychology, Rehabilitation, Education of Intellectually Disabled, Disabled Persons, Child

Publication Title

Behavior Modification

ISSN

0145-4455

Volume

17

Issue/No.

2

Abstract

Many persons who have multiple sensory, physical, and developmental disabilities display behaviors that interfere significantly with adaptive functioning and social acceptance. In this investigation, the efficacy of multiple component behavioral interventions for reducing maladaptive responding exhibited by two individuals with dual sensory impairment and profound mental retardation was evaluated. Results indicated that differential reinforcement of other behavior (DRO) approaches were not effective in either case. However, when deceleration procedures (overcorrection or brief physical restraint) were added, target behaviors decreased quickly. Also, interventions were faded in such a way that gains were maintained for 6 months with only minimal effort by staff. Ongoing assessment of concurrent effects of behavior reduction strategies revealed increases in time on task or amount of work completed, even though these responses were not targeted specifically. Yet negative side effects (e.g., increases in self-stimulation) also were documented, highlighting the importance of evaluating multiple behaviors during intervention. Finally, despite the fact that objective assessments led to positive conclusions regarding treatment efficacy, ratings of baseline and treatment behavior samples by independent judges showed overall improvement in only one case. These findings suggest the need for multifaceted evaluation to determine the utility of interventions in applied settings.

DOI

10.1177/01454455930172005

Peer Reviewed

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