Preliminary findings of a randomized clinical trial of a virtual training program for applied behavior analysis technicians

Wayne W Fisher, Kevin C Luczynski, Stephanie A. Hood, Aaron D. Lesser, Mychal A. Machado, Cathleen C Piazza

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

As the demand for applied behavior analysis (ABA) services for children with an autism spectrum disorder continues to grow, it is critical to develop efficient, effective, and widely accessible procedures for training technicians to implement ABA interventions. One approach would be to develop efficacious training programs that could be delivered over the Internet via a virtual private network (VPN). In the current study, we developed a 40-h virtual training program in which participants completed e-learning modules and also received behavioral skills training over a VPN to implement behavior reduction and skill acquisition protocols in both discrete-trail and play-based formats. This virtual training program was evaluated in a randomized-clinical trial (RCT) using direct-observation measures on the implementation of discrete-trial training and play-based procedures as the primary dependent variables (which were also collected via a VPN). Participants in the treatment group showed robust and statistically significant improvement in their implementation of behavior reduction and acquisition programs under both discrete-trial and play-based formats, and they rated the training as highly socially acceptable. These preliminary results from an ongoing RCT suggest that this effective, convenient, and socially acceptable virtual training program has the potential to extend access to ABA services to families in rural and other underserved areas or populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1044-1054
Number of pages11
JournalResearch in Autism Spectrum Disorders
Volume8
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2014

Fingerprint

Randomized Controlled Trials
Education
Internet
Observation
Learning
Applied Behavior Analysis
Population
Therapeutics

Keywords

  • Applied behavior analysis
  • Autism
  • Behavioral skills training
  • Early intensive behavioral interventions
  • Telehealth
  • Virtual care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this

Preliminary findings of a randomized clinical trial of a virtual training program for applied behavior analysis technicians. / Fisher, Wayne W; Luczynski, Kevin C; Hood, Stephanie A.; Lesser, Aaron D.; Machado, Mychal A.; Piazza, Cathleen C.

In: Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, Vol. 8, No. 9, 09.2014, p. 1044-1054.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{e1efa89f427c4df7aa16024c591abafa,
title = "Preliminary findings of a randomized clinical trial of a virtual training program for applied behavior analysis technicians",
abstract = "As the demand for applied behavior analysis (ABA) services for children with an autism spectrum disorder continues to grow, it is critical to develop efficient, effective, and widely accessible procedures for training technicians to implement ABA interventions. One approach would be to develop efficacious training programs that could be delivered over the Internet via a virtual private network (VPN). In the current study, we developed a 40-h virtual training program in which participants completed e-learning modules and also received behavioral skills training over a VPN to implement behavior reduction and skill acquisition protocols in both discrete-trail and play-based formats. This virtual training program was evaluated in a randomized-clinical trial (RCT) using direct-observation measures on the implementation of discrete-trial training and play-based procedures as the primary dependent variables (which were also collected via a VPN). Participants in the treatment group showed robust and statistically significant improvement in their implementation of behavior reduction and acquisition programs under both discrete-trial and play-based formats, and they rated the training as highly socially acceptable. These preliminary results from an ongoing RCT suggest that this effective, convenient, and socially acceptable virtual training program has the potential to extend access to ABA services to families in rural and other underserved areas or populations.",
keywords = "Applied behavior analysis, Autism, Behavioral skills training, Early intensive behavioral interventions, Telehealth, Virtual care",
author = "Fisher, {Wayne W} and Luczynski, {Kevin C} and Hood, {Stephanie A.} and Lesser, {Aaron D.} and Machado, {Mychal A.} and Piazza, {Cathleen C}",
year = "2014",
month = "9",
doi = "10.1016/j.rasd.2014.05.002",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "8",
pages = "1044--1054",
journal = "Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders",
issn = "1750-9467",
publisher = "Elsevier BV",
number = "9",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Preliminary findings of a randomized clinical trial of a virtual training program for applied behavior analysis technicians

AU - Fisher, Wayne W

AU - Luczynski, Kevin C

AU - Hood, Stephanie A.

AU - Lesser, Aaron D.

AU - Machado, Mychal A.

AU - Piazza, Cathleen C

PY - 2014/9

Y1 - 2014/9

N2 - As the demand for applied behavior analysis (ABA) services for children with an autism spectrum disorder continues to grow, it is critical to develop efficient, effective, and widely accessible procedures for training technicians to implement ABA interventions. One approach would be to develop efficacious training programs that could be delivered over the Internet via a virtual private network (VPN). In the current study, we developed a 40-h virtual training program in which participants completed e-learning modules and also received behavioral skills training over a VPN to implement behavior reduction and skill acquisition protocols in both discrete-trail and play-based formats. This virtual training program was evaluated in a randomized-clinical trial (RCT) using direct-observation measures on the implementation of discrete-trial training and play-based procedures as the primary dependent variables (which were also collected via a VPN). Participants in the treatment group showed robust and statistically significant improvement in their implementation of behavior reduction and acquisition programs under both discrete-trial and play-based formats, and they rated the training as highly socially acceptable. These preliminary results from an ongoing RCT suggest that this effective, convenient, and socially acceptable virtual training program has the potential to extend access to ABA services to families in rural and other underserved areas or populations.

AB - As the demand for applied behavior analysis (ABA) services for children with an autism spectrum disorder continues to grow, it is critical to develop efficient, effective, and widely accessible procedures for training technicians to implement ABA interventions. One approach would be to develop efficacious training programs that could be delivered over the Internet via a virtual private network (VPN). In the current study, we developed a 40-h virtual training program in which participants completed e-learning modules and also received behavioral skills training over a VPN to implement behavior reduction and skill acquisition protocols in both discrete-trail and play-based formats. This virtual training program was evaluated in a randomized-clinical trial (RCT) using direct-observation measures on the implementation of discrete-trial training and play-based procedures as the primary dependent variables (which were also collected via a VPN). Participants in the treatment group showed robust and statistically significant improvement in their implementation of behavior reduction and acquisition programs under both discrete-trial and play-based formats, and they rated the training as highly socially acceptable. These preliminary results from an ongoing RCT suggest that this effective, convenient, and socially acceptable virtual training program has the potential to extend access to ABA services to families in rural and other underserved areas or populations.

KW - Applied behavior analysis

KW - Autism

KW - Behavioral skills training

KW - Early intensive behavioral interventions

KW - Telehealth

KW - Virtual care

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84903215479&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84903215479&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.rasd.2014.05.002

DO - 10.1016/j.rasd.2014.05.002

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:84903215479

VL - 8

SP - 1044

EP - 1054

JO - Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders

JF - Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders

SN - 1750-9467

IS - 9

ER -