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Res Dev Disabil. 2000 May-Jun;21(3):183-96.

Skill acquisition in parents of children with developmental disabilities: interaction between skill type and instructional format.

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Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, USA.


A variety of instructional formats have been used to teach parents of children with developmental disabilities how to implement treatments for problem behavior. Although several authors have suggested that the efficacy of various instructional methods might depend on the type of skill taught to parents, no studies have been designed to systematically explore this potential interaction. In this preliminary study, three parents who requested outpatient services for treatment of their children's problem behavior were taught to implement multiple treatment components. Therapists employed the most cost-efficient method first (i.e., written and verbal instructions) to teach prescribed behavior management strategies (e.g., differential reinforcement). If the parent's behavior failed to meet a performance criterion, feedback was included in training sessions. The efficacy of verbal and written instructions varied across different components of the child's treatment program.

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