Evaluation of the effectiveness and efficiency of two stimulus prompt strategies with severely handicapped students

  • Steege M
  • Wacker D
  • McMahon C
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In this study we compared the effectiveness and efficiency of two treatment packages that used stimulus prompt sequences and task analyses for teaching community living skills to severely handicapped students. Four severely and multiply handicapped students were trained to perform four tasks: (a) making toast, (b) making popcorn, (c) operating a clothes dryer, and (d) operating a washing machine. Following baseline, each student was exposed to two types of training procedures, each involving a task analysis of the target behavior. Training Procedure 1 (Traditional) utilized a least-to-most restrictive prompt sequence. Training Procedure 2 (Prescriptive) utilized ongoing behavioral assessment data to identify discriminative stimuli. The assessment data were used to prescribe instructional prompts across successive training trials. Performance on the tasks was evaluated within a combination multiple baseline (across subjects) and probe (across tasks) design. Training conditions were counterbalanced across subjects and tasks. Results indicated that both training procedures were equally effective in increasing independent task acquisition for subjects on all tasks; however, the prescriptive procedure was the more efficient procedure. DESCRIPTORS: stimulus prompts, behavioral assessment, severely handicapped

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  • M W Steege

  • D P Wacker

  • C M McMahon

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