Date of Award

5-2016

Culminating Project Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Applied Behavior Analysis: M.S.

Department

Community Psychology, Counseling and Family Therapy

College

School of Health and Human Services

First Advisor

Benjamin N. Witts

Second Advisor

Eric H. Rudrud

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Keywords and Subject Headings

medical compliance, physical health exam, adults, developmental disabilities, behavioral techniques, shaping

Abstract

Adults with developmental disabilities are significantly more likely to be in fair or poor general health status when compared to the general population (Sullivan et al., 2011). One of the main reasons is the lack of preventive health services within the developmental disabilities population (Yen et al., 2014). Many studies that have used behavioral treatment package to increase medical compliance involved children (Allen et al., 1992; Cuvo et al., 2010), but very few were with adults. The first purpose of the present study was to investigate the use of a behavioral treatment package that included modeling, choice-making, chaining and shaping with percentile schedules to increase physical health exam compliance in adults with developmental disabilities. The second purpose was to investigate whether or not carry-over effects were present across physical health exam components when training two physical health exam components simultaneously. Last, it evaluated whether generalization of physical health exam compliance occurred across time and settings. The present study found that the behavioral treatment package was successful in increasing physical health exam compliance in adults with developmental disabilities.

Comments/Acknowledgements

I first want to express my utmost gratitude to my adviser and committee chair, Dr. Benjamin N. Witts, for encouraging me to follow my path and guiding me until the end. Your enthusiasm, expertise, and critical feedback has helped shaped this project into one of my proudest work. I would like to extend my appreciation to my committee member, Professor Eric H. Rudrud, for his share of knowledge and valuable contribution.

This project would not be possible without the support of my supervisor and mentor, Kim Frost, and the research assistants at TSE. Thank you all for the motivation and always keeping me on track!

I want to thank my highly spirited colleague, Alexis, for the endless thesis conversation and part-take in my medical experiments.

A special thank you to my roommate, Anna—your friendship, humor, and reassurance has been a big part in keeping my life together throughout this endeavor.

Finally, I am indebted to the persons served that have trusted me and shared this moment with me. Without them, this thesis would not exist. Thank you for reminding me to stay humble and making this an unforgettable journey.

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