Using a Pre-requisite Skills Assessment to Identify Optimal Modalities for Mand Training

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May 09, 2014 | 03:00 PM – 04:00 PM EST

Mands have been successfully taught to children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and intellectual disabilities (ID) using many different response modalities including vocalizations, manual sign, and exchanged-based communication systems. A few studies have directly compared the effectiveness of different modalities such as the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) and sign language. Some of these studies have found that the usefulness of either modality varied across students without a clear indication of the relevant characteristics of each student that might predict effectiveness. Thus, one option is unlikely to prove optimal for all children. This presentation will focus on a study that examined the utility of a brief assessment of 8 participant's prerequisite skills for three common response modalities (i.e., vocal, sign language, exchange based communication) to determine if performance on the skills assessment predicts the rate of acquisition during mand training in each response modality. Practical considerations for choosing mand modalities will be discussed based on the results of this examination.

Presenter Bio: Amber Valentino, BCBA-D, Psy.D

In 2008, Amber Valentino received a doctoral degree in clinical psychology from Xavier University in Cincinnati, OH. She completed a predoctoral internship and postdoctoral fellowship at the Marcus Autism Center/Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Her training focused on early intensive behavioral intervention for children with autism and other developmental disabilities with a particular focus on verbal behavior.

She currently serves as the Clinical Director for the Monterey Bay Division of Trumpet Behavioral Health in Salinas, California. Dr. Valentino’s clinical and research interests include the assessment and treatment of language deficits, primarily in children with autism. Her specific interests include the behavioral analysis of alternative and augmentative communication systems, novel strategies to develop vocal verbal behavior, and the development of methods to overcome barriers in verbal behavior acquisition. Dr. Valentino has served as a guest reviewer for the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis and currently serves on the editorial board of The Analysis of Verbal Behavior. She has also had recent peer-reviewed publications in the Journal of Behavioral Education, Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, Behavior Modification, The Analysis of Verbal Behavior, and the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis.

Location Information

This workshop will be held at the DataFinch Technologies headquarters(located at 53 Perimeter Center E, Suite 350, Atlanta, GA 30346) and streamed live online. Attend the workshop in person or from the comforts of your personal computer. On - site space is limited.

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