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Effects of Fixed Versus Random Sequencing During Multi-element Functional Analyses

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Keywords:

functional analysis; problem behavior; sequence effects; establishing operations; multielement design

Contact:

Sarah E. Bloom, PhD, BCBA-D

Abstract

It has been suggested that a fixed condition sequence might facilitate differential responding during multielement functional analyses (FAs) by capitalizing on or limiting sequence effects (Iwata, Pace, et al., 1994); however, the effects of condition sequence have not been examined empirically. We conducted fixed- and random-sequence FAs for 7 individuals with developmental disabilities to determine the relative effects that sequence may have on assessment outcomes. Experimental conditions during the fixed sequence were conducted in the following order: ignore, attention, play, and demand; condition order during the random sequence was determined randomly. Results showed that sequence had no influence on the FA outcomes for 3 subjects, whereas differential responding emerged either faster (1 subject) or only (3 subjects) under the fixed sequence for the remaining subjects. These results suggest that the fixed sequence, a simple modification, should be used when conducting multielement FAs to accommodate the influence of establishing operations across assessment conditions.

Citation

Hammond, J. L., Iwata, B. A., Rooker, G., ritz, J. N., & Bloom, S. E. (2013). Effects of fixed versus random sequencing during multielement functional analyses. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 46(1), 22-30.  doi:10.1002/jaba.7

 

Faculty & Staff