A randomized clinical trial of a virtual-training program for teaching applied-behavior- analysis skills to parents of children with autism spectrum disorder

Wayne W. Fisher, Kevin C. Luczynski, Andrew P. Blowers, Megan E. Vosters, Maegan D. Pisman, Andy R. Craig, Stephanie A. Hood, Mychal A. Machado, Aaron D. Lesser, Cathleen C. Piazza

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Parents play an important role in the treatment of their children's symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD); thus, developing effective, efficient, socially acceptable, and accessible procedures for training parents to implement applied-behavior-analysis (ABA) interventions is critically important. One potential approach involves delivering training via a virtual private network (VPN) over the internet (Fisher et al., 2014). In this study, we conducted a randomized clinical trial to evaluate a virtual parent-training program with e-learning modules and scripted role-play via a VPN. We evaluated parent implementation of ABA skills using direct-observation measures in structured-work and play-based training contexts. Parents in the treatment group showed large, statistically significant improvements on all dependent measures; those in the waitlist-control group did not. Parents rated the training as highly socially acceptable. Results add to the growing literature on the efficacy and acceptability of virtually delivered training in ABA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of applied behavior analysis
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2020

Keywords

  • autism spectrum disorder
  • behavioral skills training
  • early intensive behavioral interventions
  • telehealth
  • telemedicine
  • video conferencing
  • virtual care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Philosophy
  • Applied Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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