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Title page for ETD etd-03262018-182850

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Zimmerman, Kathleen Nicole
URN etd-03262018-182850
Title Antecedent Interventions: Investigating Social Stories and Visual Supports Interventions for Children At-risk for Emotional and Behavioral Disorders
Degree PhD
Department Special Education
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Jennifer R. Ledford Committee Chair
Blair P. Lloyd Committee Member
Daniel M. Maggin Committee Member
Erin E. Barton Committee Member
  • social stories
  • visual supports
  • antecedent interventions
Date of Defense 2018-03-12
Availability unrestricted
Children at-risk for emotional and behavioral disorders (EBD) are likely to display problem behavior at higher frequencies than other children. Although early intervention may improve long term outcomes, children at-risk for EBD are less likely to access preventative services than children with identified developmental or physical disabilities. Preventative interventions to address problem behavior and classroom engagement for at-risk children are more likely to be implemented by general education staff who report an inability to identify appropriate interventions that are feasible in non-specialized settings. Antecedent interventions are often used as preventative interventions to address problem behavior and engagement, but few studies have evaluated their effectiveness with children at-risk for disability. The following study evaluated the effectiveness of two commonly recommended antecedent interventions that have limited empirical support for use with children at-risk for disability: social stories and visual supports. Two comparisons were conducted in the context of sequential alternating treatments designs: social stories comparison and visual supports comparison. Social stories were ineffective in improving children’s levels of engagement during targeted activities; visual supports resulted in increases in children’s engagement relative to baseline conditions. Future use of visual supports for children at-risk for EBD should include evaluations of the feasibility of implementation by teaching staff.
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