Date of Degree

2-2015

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph.D.

Program

Psychology

Advisor

Emily A. Jones

Subject Categories

Social and Behavioral Sciences

Keywords

autism, generality, interactions, self-management, siblings

Abstract

Interactions between children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and their typically developing siblings are often of lower quality compared to their typical peers. Teaching behavior change strategies to typical siblings and their siblings with ASD can improve their interactions, but there is limited empirical evidence that it results in generalized improvements. One method to program for generalization is to teach learners to monitor their engagement in behavior change tactics (i.e., self-management). A multiple baseline probe design across typical sibling-sibling with ASD dyads was used to demonstrate a functional relationship between behavioral skills training with typical siblings and their engagement in self-management of a social skills curriculum. Results indicated that typical siblings learned to self-manage a social skills curriculum, which generalized across novel settings and over time. Comparisons of social-communicative responses by typical sibling-sibling with ASD dyads to their typical peers were variable across participants, but did provide some support for the social validity of the intervention outcomes. These results provide further evidence to support the use of self-management when explicitly programming for generalization, which continues to be a key consideration when including typical siblings in interventions with their siblings with ASD. Alternate programming strategies to further positively impact the interactions between the siblings are discussed.

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