Tonya N Davis

Tonya N Davis
Baylor University | BU · Department of Educational Psychology

Ph.D., BCBA-D

About

71
Publications
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1,970
Citations

Publications

Publications (71)
Article
Current research has identified poor post-school outcomes for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities; in fact, poorer than any other disability group. Employment support, such as vocational skill training, can improve outcomes and increase opportunities for paid employment. With recent advances in technology, a myriad of techn...
Article
A disproportionate number of individuals with autism spectrum are unable to transition into independent living during adulthood, compromising the ability to experience autonomy and exert self-determination. Over the past 30 years, there has been an increasing trend to incorporate technology into educational and behavioral interventions, including t...
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The trial-based functional analysis (TBFA) offers several advantages in natural settings, such as time efficiency and ecological validity. Previous studies have successfully trained or coached a variety of professionals and parents to conduct a TBFA utilizing in-person training procedures; however, no study has evaluated the effectiveness of telehe...
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Effective training programs for individuals with disabilities often involve the use of positive reinforcement. Social interactions have many benefits over other forms of reinforcement, but more research is needed to determine how to identify social interactions that serve as reinforcers. In the first experiment, we evaluated the use of two procedur...
Article
We evaluated the use of parent‐implemented brief functional analyses in the home with coaching delivered via telehealth. Parents of 7 children with autism conducted functional analyses of their child's challenging behavior. For 4 participants, the brief functional analysis provided information regarding the function of the child's challenging behav...
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Behavior skills training (BST) has been shown to be an effective strategy for teaching new skills. Given the evidence suggesting its efficacy for use as a training package, BST should be considered as an option for training future behavior analysts to implement behavior change strategies. Further, training future practitioners to engage in self-mon...
Article
Background Stereotypic behaviors are repetitive, coordinated, seemingly purposeless behaviors that are most often maintained by automatic reinforcement. Motor stereotypy can range from mild to severe depending on the topography, frequency and extent to which they interfere with ongoing activities. Individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are...
Article
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the accuracy, feasibility, and social validity of a parent‐implemented brief functional analysis in the home. Three toddlers with developmental delay and their mothers participated in the study. The brief functional analysis required 2.4–3.5 hr to complete and parents rated the assessment positively on a so...
Article
Ample research indicates that functional communication training (FCT) is an effective intervention to reduce challenging behavior. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of demand fading on escape-maintained challenging behavior, mands, and task completion for 2 children with autism spectrum disorder. The study utilized an embedded re...
Article
To determine the effects of response–reinforcer arrangements on task performance and preference, participants completed tasks on accumulated and distributed response–reinforcer arrangements. Three males diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder completed tasks before receiving 5-min or 30-seconds access to a preferred stimulus. To enhance discrimi...
Article
Functional communication training (FCT) is a commonly used, often recommended intervention that involves teaching a functionally equivalent communicative response to replace challenging behavior. The purpose of this literature review was to evaluate the strength of the evidence for the use of FCT. A systematic review of the literature resulted in t...
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Demand fading, a schedule thinning procedure for escape-maintained behaviors, typically includes an escape extinction component. The purpose of this study was to examine the effectiveness of demand fading with alternative reinforcement utilizing concurrent reinforcement schedules without extinction. During demand fading, aggression and requests emi...
Article
A functional analysis is a well-established and widely used assessment in the treatment of challenging behavior. Given the fact that functional analysis results can inform treatment selection and procedures, a review of the current literature regarding functional analysis of inappropriate mealtime behavior (IMB) is warranted as it may guide researc...
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Treatment of inappropriate mealtime behavior (IMB) should involve a functional analysis to determine variables maintaining the target behaviors. The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the trial-based functional analysis of IMB and assess correspondence of the results with a traditional functional analysis. The participants were two boys,...
Article
The prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is on the rise. In addition to the social communication skill deficits and restrictive repetitive behaviors and interests, many individuals with ASD engage in challenging behavior. Challenging behavior is associated with a multitude of negative outcomes. Challenging behavior may cause harm to the ind...
Article
The prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is on the rise. In addition to the social communication skill deficits and restrictive repetitive behaviors and interests, many individuals with ASD engage in challenging behavior. Challenging behavior is associated with a multitude of negative outcomes. Challenging behavior may cause harm to the ind...
Article
This review summarizes the literature regarding differential reinforcement of other behaviors (DRO) to treat challenging behavior among children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and determines the quality of studies among the current literature according to the 2014 Council for Exceptional Children (CEC): Standards for Evidence-Based Practices i...
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Preferred forms of social interaction were identified using a paired-stimulus format in which two 3–5 s videos of the experimenter providing the social interaction to the participant were presented. Reinforcer efficacy of the high-, medium-, and low-preferred interactions was evaluated using a progressive-ratio schedule to determine the amount of w...
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The current study used differential reinforcement and shaping to increase the variety of foods accepted by children with autism who demonstrated significant feeding inflexibility. Participants were introduced to four new food items via a hierarchical exposure, which involved systematically increasing the desired response with the food item. Level o...
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The use of behavioral indicators as a measure of satiation was a procedure developed by O'Reilly et al. (Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 32, 371–374, 2009) to systematically manipulate presession access to a tangible reinforcer. In order to gain a better understanding of the utility of behavioral indicators of satiation in applied settings, a...
Article
Providing noncontingent access to a stimulus until an individual displays behavioral indicators of satiation has been used to determine when an abolishing operation is in effect, but there has been variation in its application in the literature. Four males diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder with tangibly maintained challenging behavior partici...
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In this study, desktop video teleconferencing was used to facilitate behavioral consultation at a distance with three parents of school-age children with autism spectrum disorders. Parents were supported via desktop video teleconferencing as they conducted functional analyses and learned to implement an antecedent manipulation strategy, functional...
Article
Previous research has shown tangibly maintained challenging behavior can be temporarily decreased by providing presession access to the relevant tangible. However, the duration of this beneficial effect is unknown. We measured the subsequent duration of behavior reduction effects following presession access during extended classroom observation ses...
Article
Animal assisted intervention (AAI), which has been defined as the use of an animal to provide therapeutic benefit based on a positive relationship between the client and the animal, is a therapy option for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD); therefore, it is beneficial to review studies that evaluated its effectiveness. A systematic searc...
Article
Some individuals with developmental disabilities develop inappropriate sexual behaviors such as public masturbation, disrobing, and touching others in an unwanted sexual manner. Such acts are problematic given the taboo nature of the behaviors and the potential for significant negative consequences, such as restricted community access, injury, and...
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This study examined four interventions targeted at decreasing multiply controlled vocal stereotypy for a 12-year-old boy diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder and a severe intellectual disability. These interventions included Noncontingent Music, Differential Reinforcement of Other Behaviors, Self-Recording, and Functional Communication Training...
Article
This review provides a summary and appraisal commentary on the treatment review by Lorah, E. R., & Parnell, A. (2014). The acquisition of letter writing using a portable multi-media player in young children with developmental disabilities. Journal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities. Advanced online publication. doi: 10.1007/s10882-014-9386-...
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We identified, summarized, and appraised the certainty of evidence for 12 studies investigating the use of music therapy for individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The studies were summarized in terms of (a) participant characteristics, (b) dependent variables, (c) procedures, (d) results, and (e) certainty of evidence. A total of 147 par...
Article
Objective: This article briefly reviews the history and damage caused by facilitated communication (FC) and highlights the parallels between FC and the Rapid Prompting Method (RPM). Background: FC involves a therapist (or facilitator) supporting the hand of a person with autism while a message is typed on a letter board. FC is widely acknowledged...
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In this study, we identified the latency to satiation with an activity that maintained problem behavior for a boy with autism. Next, functional communication training (FCT) was implemented. Prior to FCT sessions, the participant was exposed one of to two conditions of presession exposure to stimuli that served as the reinforcer during subsequent FC...
Article
Individuals with developmental disabilities have limited opportunities to participate in leisure activities, frequently due to lack of skills. The purpose of the current study was to teach three adults diagnosed with mild intellectual disability to use an iPad in the context of playing the video game Angry Birds. We used an adapted multiple baselin...
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Objective: Families of children with autism spectrum disorder are barraged by different treatment options. Some of these options have the support of empirical evidence while others do not. Stimulant treatments are typically utilized to treat symptoms of ADHD indicating an on-label use of such treatment. Methods: This study examines the associati...
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In this study we analyzed the effects of conducting a school-based functional analysis on subsequent classroom behavior. Each participant was observed in the classroom during activities that were reported by teachers to result in high levels of challenging behavior. Participants were observed during (a) baseline, prior to the administration of a fu...
Article
Objectives: This compares effects of explicit delay cue to reinforcement to general delay cue to reinforcement when attempting to decrease tangible-maintained challenging behaviours of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Methods: Two school-age children with ASD participated in this study. In order to evaluate the effects of a general...
Article
Child care arrangements, costs, and satisfaction among parents of children with emotional or behavioral disorders were examined as compared with parents of children with other disabilities. The current study used a large, nationally representative, and community-based sample of approximately 3,000 parents of children with disabilities aged 3 to 5 y...
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In this study we analyzed the effects of a self-monitoring and self-monitoring plus reinforcement intervention on classroom behavior. A typically-developing high school student demonstrating difficulty staying on-task during classroom instruction was observed in three classroom settings associated with high levels of off-task behavior. During basel...
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The Amendments to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 1997 require school to consider assistive technology for students receiving special education. In order to gain insight to the implementation of the mandates, we surveyed special education directors across the state of Texas regarding the assistive technology decision-making and i...
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Objective: This article briefly reviews the history and damage caused by facilitated communication (FC) and highlights the parallels between FC and the Rapid Prompting Method (RPM). Background: FC involves a therapist (or facilitator) supporting the hand of a person with autism while a message is typed on a letter board. FC is widely acknowledge...
Article
Elopement is a potentially dangerous problem behavior prevalent among individuals with developmental disabilities. However, functional analysis of elopement presents unique challenges including potential confounds because of the need for participant retrieval during functional analysis sessions. In the current study, we implemented a latency functi...
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Objective: Analyze the effects of noncontingent matched stimulation (NMS) on the self-injurious behavior (SIB) of an eight-year-old boy with autism. Methods: First, a functional analysis was conducted to identify the reinforcers maintaining SIB. Next, an informal preference assessment was conducted to identify a potential object to provide safe...
Article
Chelation treatment is used to eliminate specific metals from the body, such as mercury. It has been hypothesized that mercury poisoning may be a factor in autism and data suggest that perhaps 7% of individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have received chelation treatment. It would therefore seem timely to review studies investigating the e...
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Objective: Analyse the effects of a weighted vest on the aggressive and self-injurious behavior of a young boy with autism. Methods: The effects of the weighted vest were examined during a functional analysis utilizing an ABAB design with an embedded multielement design, in which the participant wore a five pound weighted vest or no vest. Resul...
Chapter
Developmental and physical disabilities represent a significant and increasingly prevalent source of diversity in educational settings. Consequently, it is important for educators to gain a basic understanding of the learning and behavioral characteristics associated with the various types of developmental and physical disabilities. This chapter de...
Article
Children with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are more likely to engage in inappropriate play (e.g., stereotypy, repetitive behavior) with their preferred items given as reinforcers. Considering the stereotyped behavior is a core characteristic of ASD aimed to reduce, it is necessary to identify alternative reinforcers that does not encourage prob...
Article
This review provides a summary and appraisal commentary on the treatment review by Paul, R., Campbell, D., Gilbert, K., & Tsiouri, I. (2013). Comparing spoken language treatments for minimally verbal preschoolers with autism spectrum disorders. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 43, 418–431. Source of funding and disclosure of interest:...
Article
We examined the influence of an antecedent communication intervention on challenging behavior for three students with developmental disorders. Students were taught to request tangible items that were identified as reinforcers for challenging behavior in a prior functional analysis. Individual participant multielement and reversal designs were used...
Article
The purpose of the current study was to examine the association between structured physical activity, specifically physical education, and symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Physical activity may be associated with lower levels of symptoms of ADHD and this rationale provided the impetus for the current study. A community-b...
Article
In this study we analyzed the effects of a brushing protocol on stereotyped behavior of a young boy with autism. First, a functional analysis was conducted which showed that the participant's stereotypy was maintained by automatic reinforcement. Next, the Wilbarger Protocol, a brushing intervention, was implemented. An ABA design was implemented in...
Article
The purpose of the current study was to investigate the association between fathers' involvement and the presence of later symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children. A community‐based, nationally representative sample of children from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study‐Kindergarten Cohort was utilised. Using a trip...
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The current study examined the effects of motivating operations on problem behavior and academic engagement for 2 students with autism. Classroom sessions were preceded by periods in which the participants had access or no access to the items functionally related to their problem behavior. Results suggested that presession access may result in lowe...
Article
The purpose of this paper was to review intervention studies regarding the use of aided augmentative and alternative communication devices among individuals with hearing loss and one or more additional disabilities. Fourteen experimentally-designed research studies, comprising of 32 participants total were identified and summarized in terms of: (a)...
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This review examined the involvement of teachers in the intervention research for children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) from 1996 through February 2008. Forty-nine studies involving teachers of children with ASD were coded for different types of involvement. Findings are discussed in regards to three issues: (a) the manner in which teachers...
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We examined the effects of performance feedback provided via video tele-conferencing (VTC) on the acquisition of functional analysis procedures by six teachers. A university supervisor used VTC equipment (i.e., computers equipped with web cameras and Internet) to provide feedback to teachers learning to implement functional analysis conditions (i.e...
Article
Children with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) often present with challenging behavior, such as aggression and self-injury. In studies of children with other types of developmental disabilities challenging behavior appears more often to be maintained by attention or escape from demands. Less is known about the operant function of challenging behavi...
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The elopement of a child with Asperger syndrome was assessed using functional analyses and was treated in two school settings (classroom and resource room). Functional analyses indicated that elopement was maintained by access to attention in the resource room and obtaining a preferred activity in the classroom. Attention- and tangible-based interv...
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Preferences of 2 children with developmental disabilities, whose functional analyses indicated that their problem behavior was maintained by access to tangible items, were assessed using three formats (i.e., paired stimulus [PS], multiple-stimulus without replacement [MSWO], and free operant [FO]). The experimenter administered each format five tim...
Article
We implemented functional communication training (FCT) with a child with Pervasive Developmental Disorder-Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS) who exhibited challenging behavior when preferred toys were removed. Prior to FCT sessions the participant was exposed to 15min of access to the toys that maintained challenging behavior versus no access. The p...
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We examined the effects of three different presession conditions on tangibly maintained problem behavior for 2 students with autism, using individual-participant multielement designs. First, an analogue functional analysis demonstrated that problem behavior was maintained by access to tangible items. Next, topographies of item rejection were identi...
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We conducted a functional analysis of challenging behavior for two students with autism using widely available videoconferencing equipment (laptop computers equipped with web cameras). Observers used the videoconferencing facilities to collect data on challenging behavior and to instruct the therapist conducting the assessment. Results of the funct...
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We used widely available videoconferencing equipment to support teachers to conduct preference assessments for three students with autism and developmental disabilities. Supervisors located at a university used videoconferencing equipment to collect data on students’ choice of items, the fidelity of teacher implementation of the assessment protocol...
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The purpose of the current study was to examine those variables that we postulated as predicting whether a registered college student with a disability would request accommodations in higher education. To achieve this purpose, a variety of predictor variables were considered as predicting whether a student with a disability would decide to request...
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A student's Individualized Education Program (IEP) has a direct impact on the development of curricular and instructional services for students receiving special educational services across the United States. Parents of students with autism and other disabilities often perceive a disconnect between those services provided by the school and what the...
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The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of Functional Communication Training (FCT) and a Voice Output Communication Aid (VOCA) on the challenging behavior and language development of a 4-year-old girl with autism spectrum disorder. The participant's mother implemented modified functional analysis (FA) and intervention procedures in Ker...
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The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of enhanced milieu teaching when combined with a voice output communication aid on the requesting skills of three children with autism. The research design was a multiple probe across participants. All sessions were conducted during 5-min play sessions in the child's classroom. All three childre...

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