Date of Award

5-2016

Degree Name

Master of Science

Department

Behavior Analysis and Therapy

First Advisor

Dixon, Mark

Second Advisor

Koch, Shane

Third Advisor

Pingo, John

Abstract

The purpose of the study was to evaluate the efficacy of a procedure for promoting stimulus equivalence class formation inclusive of olfactory, visual, and textual stimuli. The procedures used in the study were taken from the Promoting the Emergence of Advanced Knowledge Relational Training System Equivalence Module (PEAK-E). Four participants diagnosed with autism were taught to match written words (A) with pictures (B) (A-B), and to match pictures (B) with olfactory stimuli (C) (B-C). Following direct training of the A-B and B-C relations, the participants demonstrated both the derived transitive A-C relation, as well as the derived equivalence C-A relation. In addition, after demonstrating the formation of the equivalent olfactory-visual-textual classes, the participants also demonstrated untrained speaker (tact) as well as listener (mand) responses. The study was the first to demonstrate the emergence of equivalence classes inclusive of olfactory stimuli.

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