Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Behavior Analysis and Therapy

First Advisor

Ringdahl, Joel


This study evaluated the treatment components of a conversation based Behavioral Skills Training (BST) package used to teach conversation skills to three young adults with developmental disabilities via a component analysis. Following each component, participant's performance was compared to a task analysis that included both vocal and non-vocal conversation skills, such as making comments related to the conversation topic, maintaining eye contact, maintaining and appropriate distance from the conversation partner. The components of the BST package included instructions, modeling of an appropriate conversation, rehearsal, rehearsal with feedback, in-situ training with feedback provided to the participants in a private observation room, and in-situ training with feedback plus reinforcement. The results indicated that different components were correlated with acquisition of the conversation skills for each participant. Implications of the results and areas for future research are discussed.




This thesis is only available for download to the SIUC community. Current SIUC affiliates may also access this paper off campus by searching Dissertations & Theses @ Southern Illinois University Carbondale from ProQuest. Others should contact the interlibrary loan department of your local library or contact ProQuest's Dissertation Express service.