Instructor: Bridget A. Taylor, Psy.D., BCBA-D
Description: It is commonly recognized that children with autism present with significant deficits in imitation and observational learning. Most contemporary curricula for children with autism incorporate instruction in a variety of imitative response topographies. Less common in applied research and practice, however, are procedures to ensure that children with autism learn to acquire novel responses through observational learning. Observational learning encompasses generalized imitation, yet exceeds it, requiring subtle discriminations about observed actions and their outcomes. To shift from learning in a one-on-one context to a group setting, for example, a child must identify contingencies as applied to another, and then incorporate into their own repertoire novel responses related to that contingency without directly contacting it themselves. While complex, observational learning is essential for the child with autism to learn more intricate social and academic repertoires.
This workshop will outline empirical research in the area of observational learning and instructional programs that move beyond direct imitation to the skills essential for observational learning. Specific procedures to increase observational learning in children with autism across a variety of responses will be reviewed.
CEs approved: 1 APA, 1 BCBA
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May Institute is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. May Institute maintains responsibility for this program and its content.
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