Using multiple schedules during functional communication training to promote rapid transfer of treatment effects

Wayne W Fisher, Brian D Greer, Ashley M. Fuhrman, Angie C. Querim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Scopus citations


Multiple schedules with signaled periods of reinforcement and extinction have been used to thin reinforcement schedules during functional communication training (FCT) to make the intervention more practical for parents and teachers. We evaluated whether these signals would also facilitate rapid transfer of treatment effects across settings and therapists. With 2 children, we conducted FCT in the context of mixed (baseline) and multiple (treatment) schedules introduced across settings or therapists using a multiple baseline design. Results indicated that when the multiple schedules were introduced, the functional communication response came under rapid discriminative control, and problem behavior remained at near-zero rates. We extended these findings with another individual by using a more traditional baseline in which problem behavior produced reinforcement. Results replicated those of the previous participants and showed rapid reductions in problem behavior when multiple schedules were implemented across settings.



  • differential reinforcement
  • functional analysis
  • functional communication training
  • mixed schedules
  • multiple schedules

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Philosophy
  • Applied Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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