Date of Award:

12-2008

Document Type:

Thesis

Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)

Department:

Special Education and Rehabilitation

Advisor/Chair:

Thomas S Higbee

Abstract

To teach operant behaviors to individuals with severe disabilities, stimulus preference assessment (SPA) methods have been developed to accurately identify stimuli that may function as reinforcers. Previous researchers have used multiple-stimulus preference assessments without replacement (MSWO) effectively over a short time period to teach target behaviors to individuals with disabilities. The present study investigated the long-term effects of incorporating brief MSWO preference assessments into the instructional routine for students with severe disabilities on individualized education plan reading goal/objective progress. This was done by investigating the effectiveness of incorporating brief MSWO preference assessments by comparing reading goal progress when a random reinforcer is available, teacher- selected reinforcer is available, or a student-selected reinforcer (via a brief MSWO preference assessment) is available over several weeks for students with severe disabilities in a secondary public school classroom setting.

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