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Case Reports
. 1996 Jan;20(1):60-84.
doi: 10.1177/01454455960201003.

Functional Communication Training for the Treatment of Multiply Determined Challenging Behavior in Two Boys With Autism

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Functional Communication Training for the Treatment of Multiply Determined Challenging Behavior in Two Boys With Autism

J Sigafoos et al. Behav Modif. .

Abstract

Functional communication training was used to replace multiply determined problem behavior in two boys with autism. Experiment 1 involved a functional analysis of several topographies of problem behavior using a variation of the procedures described by Iwata, Dorsey, Slifer, Bauman, and Richman. Results suggested that aggression, self-injury, and disruption were multiply determined (i.e., maintained by both attention and access to preferred objects). Experiment 2 involved a multiple-baseline design across subjects. The focus of intervention was to replace aggression, self-injury, and disruption with functionally equivalent communicative alternatives. Both boys were taught alternative "mands" to recruit attention and request preferred objects. Acquisition of these alternative communication skills was associated with concurrent decreases in aggression, self-injury, and disruption. Results suggest that multiply determined challenging behavior can be decreased by teaching an alternative communication skill to replace each assessed function of the problem behavior.

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