Ian Stewart

Ian Stewart
National University of Ireland, Galway | NUI Galway · School of Psychology

PhD

About

151
Publications
70,320
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4,003
Citations
Additional affiliations
August 2002 - present
National University of Ireland, Galway
Position
  • Lecturer
September 2001 - August 2002
National University of Ireland, Maynooth
Position
  • PostDoc Position

Publications

Publications (151)
Article
Full-text available
Analogical responding is ubiquitous in everyday language and cognition and is a key component in learning. However, there is relatively little behavioral research on analogical responding in young children. Kirsten et al. (2021) recently tested and trained an RFT-based model of analogy as the derived relating of relations in 5-year-old children usi...
Article
Full-text available
Relational frame theory (RFT) sees operant acquisition of various patterns of relational framing (frames) as key to linguistic and cognitive development, and it has explored the emergence of a range of psychological phenomena (e.g., analogy, perspective-taking) in these terms. One potentially important advance for RFT research is to obtain more det...
Article
Full-text available
Analogical responding, or relating relations, as operationally defined by relational frame theory (RFT), is ubiquitous in everyday language and cognition, and is a key component in learning. However, to date, little research on the assessment and training of analogical relations in young children exists in the behavioral literature. The current res...
Chapter
This chapter reviews how learning science is contributing to our understanding of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). Modern learning theories suggest that both enhanced excitatory and inhibitory fear mechanisms as well as fear generalization play an important role in the pathology of GAD. The chapter reviews basic associative and operant learning...
Article
Social and healthcare workers have been shown to experience greater levels of illness, depression and burnout as a result of chronic workplace stress. The purpose of this study was to examine whether brief online ACT and CBT interventions could reduce the experience of stress and burnout in employees, while also improving mental health and psycholo...
Article
Full-text available
Class inclusion (CI) requires responding to an item simultaneously as a member of both a class and a more inclusive class that contains that class. This study extends previous research by Ming et al. (2018) who trained CI responding in typically developing children and individuals with autism using a Relational Frame Theory (RFT) approach according...
Article
Full-text available
Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) often present with developmental deficits in the area of generative verbal behaviour and the ability to accomplish arbitrary applicable relational responding (AARR). This study used Relational Frame Theory and the Training and Assessment of Relational Precursors and Abilities assessment protocol in the f...
Article
Full-text available
This study extended previous research on the effect of education and communication on anti-autism bias and stigmatization, using the Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure (IRAP) as an assessment tool and employing undergraduates as participants. Experiment 1 examined the effect of a simple video and text-based educational intervention on attitud...
Article
Three experiments investigated the symbolic generalization (transformation) of discriminative (bar-pressing) functions in accordance with a five-member arbitrary relational comparative network (A–B–C–D–E) in adults. Following nonarbitrary relational training and testing to establish the contextual functions of MORE-THAN and LESS-THAN for two abstra...
Article
A key aspect of self-forgiveness is that one needs to acknowledge one’s failings and their consequences. The present study used the Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure (IRAP) and an explicit IRAP analog measure to examine (1) responding to perceived failure following exposure to an insoluble task, and (2) the effect of a defusion intervention...
Article
Responding to temporal relational statements that include the original events (e.g., A . . .… B) in a reversed order (e.g., “B after A”) is less accurate and more time-consuming than responding to such statements when they retain the original order of presentation (e.g., “A before B”). The current study assessed whether this effect was limited to t...
Article
Full-text available
Evaluative generalization refers to the fact that when evaluative responses towards a (focal) stimulus are established or changed, people change how they respond to non-focal stimuli as well. Whereas evaluative generalization between perceptually similar stimuli has been firmly established, the available evidence for symbolic evaluative generalizat...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Rationale & Objectives:Previous research by Ming et al. (2018) employed a Relational Frame Theory (RFT) protocol involving multiple exemplar training and non-arbitrary containment training to establish class inclusion responding with children with and without autism. However, this research had several methodological limitations and further research...
Presentation
Background: University students are susceptible to weight gain, as consistent exposure to obesogenic food cues encourages unhealthy eating behaviours. This study aimed to develop and test a four-week mHealth-based mindful eating intervention to improve the implicit food attitudes, explicit food behaviours, and perceived stress of non-clinical male...
Article
The purpose of this article is to highlight the importance within the experimental analysis of behavior of research on human language and more specifically of an empirical approach based on relational frame theory which focuses on derived or arbitrarily applicable relational responding as a key process underlying this phenomenon. The article starts...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Class inclusion involves responding to a stimulus (e.g., ‘a dog’) as simultaneously both a member of a class (‘dogs’) and also of a higher order class (e.g., ‘animals’). The current study provides data regarding the use of procedures based on Relational Frame Theory (RFT) to assess and train class inclusion responding in individuals (12-15 years) w...
Conference Paper
Analogical (A:B::C:D) relational responding is a key repertoire in the emergence of verbal and intellectual repertoires. This paper will discuss the development and testing of the Analogical Relations Assessment (ARA), an RFT-based assessment of analogical relations in 3-8 year old children. In order to assess and contextualize analogical relationa...
Article
The current research aimed to assess and train relational framing of categorization in young typically developing children and to assess the impact of training on relevant measures of language and categorization. In two experiments, children were assessed and trained in mutual and combinatorial entailment and transformation of function. In Experime...
Article
Full-text available
In a class inclusion task, a child must respond to stimuli as being involved in two different though hierarchically related categories. This study used a Relational Frame Theory (RFT) paradigm to assess and train this ability in three typically developing preschoolers and three individuals with autism spectrum disorder, all of whom had failed class...
Article
Previous research has shown classification type (“class/member”) hierarchical responding as relational framing. The aim of this study was to use the same paradigm to investigate analysis type (“part-whole”) hierarchical responding. A total of 10 participants were exposed to (1) a procedure involving non-arbitrarily related multi-dimensional stimuli...
Article
Full-text available
Background and Objectives: The relationship between self-esteem and paranoia may be influenced by social stress. This study aimed to replicate previous research on the impact of social exclusion on paranoia and self-esteem in a non-clinical sample and to extend this work by examining the effect of exclusion on self-esteem at the ‘implicit’ level....
Article
Full-text available
The aims of the current study were to measure patterns of relational framing linked with categorization in young, typically developing children and to correlate framing performance with linguistic and cognitive potential as measured by standardized instruments, including the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test, Fourth Edition (PPVT–4), the Stanford–Bin...
Conference Paper
It will be presented a series of papers that employ the Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure (IRAP) in the context of self-forgiveness. Specifically, brief and immediate relational responses (BIRRs) and extended and elaborate relational responses (ERRs) related to feelings and expected outcomes in the context of minor failings and successes. Th...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Recent studies suggest that relational skills may be closely related to, or possibly fundamental, to general intellectual performance. Various correlational analyses have highlighted the relevance of specific relational frames to various domains of intelligence. However, as of yet, there has not been a comprehensive analysis of the relative importa...
Article
Spatial reasoning, where novel spatial relationships are inferred based on trained relationships, can be conceptualized as arbitrarily applicable spatial relational responding. Here, we conducted two experiments to develop and validate, for the first time, a laboratory procedure to establish arbitrarily applicable spatial relational responding in a...
Article
The relational evaluation procedure (REP) is seen by proponents of relational frame theory (RFT) as a useful means by which to assess and train relational responding. Most REP work so far has been conducted with typically developing adults; however, given the importance of relational responding as a repertoire and of the potential utility of the RE...
Article
Full-text available
Answering yes/no questions (Y/N-Q responding) is a fundamental repertoire in human language and thus it is of both theoretical and practical importance to investigate the origins and development of this repertoire in children and to examine processes whereby it can be trained in populations in whom it does not easily emerge. This article examines r...
Article
Full-text available
Responding to stimuli as same and different can be considered a critical component of a variety of language and academic repertoires. Whereas responding to "sameness" and generalized identity matching (i.e., coordination) have been studied extensively, there appears to be a significant gap in behavior analytic research and educational programs with...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The second paper will present data from two experiments on the training of analogical and pseudo analogical responding in a laboratory setting. This will include a discussion on the recent expansion of the RFT account of analogy to also include pseudo analogical responding. Implications for the ability to predict and influence verbal behaviour of i...
Article
Objectives: The aim of this study is to review the effectiveness of third wave mindfulness-based cognitive behavioral therapies (CBTs) for depressive or anxiety symptomatology in older adults across a wide range of physical and psychological conditions. Methods: Electronic literature databases were searched for articles, and random-effects meta-...
Article
The relating of relations is a key feature of the development of complex relational networks. Despite this, thus far there has been little empirical study of this phenomenon, outside of analogy. The latter, which involves coordination of relational networks, is indeed an important example of the relating of relations but there are other examples th...
Article
Full-text available
Throughout the past century the topic of delusions has mainly been studied by researchers operating at the mental level of analysis. According to this perspective, delusional beliefs, as well as their emergence and persistence, stem from an interplay between (dysfunctional) mental representations and processes. Our paper aims to provide a starting...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Hierarchical relational responding is seen within Relational Frame Theory (RFT) as a key repertoire for categorization. Containment relations are seen as an important precursor to hierarchical responding. The current studies used a protocol to assess and train these repertoires in young children. Part 1 measured these repertoires in young typically...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Several previous behavior analytic and specifically Relational Frame Theory (RFT) studies have modelled analogical responding as the relating, through sameness relations, of derived sameness relations (also called equivalence-equivalence). Study 1 in this paper sought to advance this work by examining the relating via multiple stimulus relations of...
Article
Full-text available
Sexual difficulties (i.e., disturbances in normal sexual responding) have the potential to significantly and negatively affect men’s social and psychological well-being. However, a review of published measurement tools indicates that most have limited applicability to gay men, and none offer a nuanced understanding of sexual difficulties, as experi...
Article
Previous research suggests the relational evaluation procedure (REP) is a useful means by which to assess and train relational responding. Most work so far has been with adults; however, given the potential utility of the REP for assessing and training relational responding, researchers need to investigate its use with young children. The current s...
Article
Background: Previous research found that pre-teenage ability to derive arbitrary 'same', 'opposite', 'more', and 'less' relations correlated with measured intelligence quotient (IQ) and that training this derived relational responding (DRR) skill produced substantial IQ rises. Aims: This study extended previous work by comparing the effects of D...
Article
Full-text available
This study aimed to replicate and extend the pilot findings of Cassidy et al. (2011) which found that teaching children to derive various relations among stimuli leads to increases in the full scale IQ scores of both typically developing children and those with educational and learning difficulties. In Experiment 1, fifteen 11-12 year old children...
Article
The recently developed Function Acquisition Speed Test (FAST) represents an effort to assess the relative strength of stimulus relations by traditional behavior-analytic means (i.e., acquisition curves). The current study was the first application of the FAST to the assessment of natural, pre-experimentally established stimulus relations. Specifica...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The current study used procedures based on Relational Frame Theory to assess and train Piagetian class inclusion type responding in both typically developing and developmentally delayed children. In Experiment 1, typically developing 3-year-olds were exposed to multiple exemplar non-arbitrary class inclusion training in the presence of contextual c...
Article
The current paper introduces relational frame theory (RFT) as a functional contextual approach to complex human behaviour and examines how this theory has contributed to our understanding of several key phenomena in psychological science. I will first briefly outline the philosophical foundation of RFT and then examine its conceptual basis and core...
Poster
Social and health care workers experience high levels of illness, depression and burnout as a result of chronic stress. Common stressors include role ambiguity and role conflict, heavy workloads and time pressures, emotional burdens, organisational constraints, and low levels of perceived control and support. Coping styles mediate the effects of oc...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of this study was to investigate transformation of thought suppression functions via ‘same’ and ‘opposite’ relations. In Experiment 1 participants were given training and testing with the aim of generating same and opposite relational responding in two five-member relational networks. They then had to suppress a target word from one of the...
Article
Full-text available
This study compared an acceptance-based strategy with a control-based strategy (distraction) in terms of the ability of participants to tolerate a painful stimulus, across two experiments. In addition, participants were either actively encouraged, or not, to link pain tolerance with pursuit of valued goals to examine the impact of pursuing a person...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Analogical reasoning is a pattern of behaviour associated with creative reasoning, and intelligence more broadly. Relational Frame Theory (RFT) defines analogical responding as the establishment of frames of coordination between functionally equivalent relational networks. One strand of RFT research has used the Relational Evaluation Procedure (REP...
Article
Full-text available
While many individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) develop a flexible, generative language repertoire following intensive early intervention, many others continue to require intensive teaching and exhibit language repertoires that could be characterized as rigid or rote. Research in the area of derived stimulus relations shows promise for...
Article
Full-text available
The current article argues that the conceptual analysis of metaphor as offered by relational frame theory (RFT) illustrates one way in which the theory may be integrated with, and have a constructive influence on, acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT). The article walks through the basic account of metaphor as the relating of relations and summar...
Article
It is possible to understand instructions and yet not follow them. In the current study, participants responded in accordance with derived instructions and then this relational repertoire was brought under over-arching consequential control. Across two experiments, nine undergraduates, trained to respond in accordance with Same/Different and Before...
Article
Full-text available
The Training and Assessment of Relational Precursors and Abilities (TARPA) protocol was developed to assess the emergence of derived relational responding, which has been argued by relational frame theory (RFT) to be the key process underlying language. Previous research showed a correlation between the TARPA and the Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scal...
Article
A variety of cognitive mechanisms have been proposed to apprehend the maintenance of delusional beliefs, a typical feature of schizophrenia. However, none of these mechanisms takes into account the verbal properties of delusions. An alternative behavioral approach is proposed, which considers delusional beliefs as verbal rules and maintenance of de...
Article
Full-text available
The current study seeks to further investigate the previously reported disruptive effect of competing non-arbitrary stimulus relations on derived relational responding (Stewart et al. The Psychological Record, 52, 77–88, 2002; Kenny et al. The Psychological Record, 2014). Initially, Experiment 1 utilised procedures adapted from the previous Stewart...
Article
Full-text available
Abstract Background : The current study sought to extend the work of Stewart et al. (The Psychological Record, 52, 77–88, 2002) by investigating the effects of differing histories with regard to color on participant’s equivalence test performances. Method: Thirty-two university students were divided into four groups exposed to different training p...
Article
The purpose of this study was to model hierarchical classification as contextually controlled, generalized relational responding or relational framing. In Experiment 1, a training procedure involving nonarbitrarily related multidimensional stimuli was used to establish two arbitrary shapes as contextual cues for 'member of' and 'includes' relationa...
Article
The aims of the current study were (i) to explore the flexibility and generalizability of non-arbitrary relational contextual control in human participants and (ii) to provide a simple empirical model of pragmatic verbal analysis, a key element in the relational frame theory approach to problem solving. Participants were trained to respond to abstr...
Article
Full-text available
The ‘self’ is a highly popular concept in modern psychology, but is ill-defined in operational terms. The term ‘self’ is not a technical term in traditional behaviour analysis and for many decades, no attempt was made to define this concept. Skinner provided an early behavioural definition as ‘responding to one’s own responding’. More recently, rel...
Article
The current article reports the first attempt to test the Implicit Relational As- sessment Procedure (IRAP), as a group-based measure of natural verbal rela- tions, using both response-latency and event-related potentials as dependent variables. On each trial of the IRAP, participants were presented with 1 of 2 at- tribute stimuli ("Pleasant" or "U...
Conference Paper
The current presentation will summarize a research PhD about smoking-related implicit cognition as a first example of how the Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure (IRAP) might be used to systematically discover new ways of enhancing people’s self-control. To begin with, the IRAP revealed automatic thinking that not only tallied very strongly wi...
Article
Full-text available
Investigators examined the role of deictic complexity in the context of false-belief understanding. Deictic relations (i.e., I and YOU, HERE and THERE, and NOW and THEN) are used to describe one’s perspective on events in the environment. Differences in complexity between responding in accordance with “I” (self) and “YOU” (other) relations are thou...
Article
Full-text available
The current study seeks to further investigate the previously reported disruptive effect of competing non-arbitrary stimulus relations on derived relational responding (Stewart et al., 2002; Kenny et al., in press). Initially, Experiment 1 utilised procedures adapted from the previous Stewart et al. (2002) study rendering them developmentally appro...
Article
The aims of the current study were (i) to explore the flexibility and generalizability of non-arbitrary relational contextual control in human participants and (ii) to provide a simple empirical model of pragmatic verbal analysis, a key element in the relational frame theory approach to problem solving. Participants were trained to respond to abstr...
Article
This study extended previous research on stimulus equivalence with all auditory stimuli by using a methodology more similar to conventional match-to-sample training and testing for three 3-member equivalence relations. In addition, it examined the effect of conflicting non-arbitrary relations on auditory equivalence. Three conditions (n = 11 partic...