A limitation associated with communication-based interventions for problem behavior is the
potential for requesting reinforcement at high rates. Multiple-schedule arrangements have been
demonstrated to be effective for controlling rates of responding (Hanley, Iwata, & Thompson,
2001). In the current study, we extended previous research by teaching individuals to attend to
naturally occurring discriminative stimuli (e.g., caregiver behavior) instead of arbitrary stimuli
(e.g., picture cards). Following successful treatment with functional communication and
extinction, 2 participants were taught to request attention differentially based on whether the
caregiver was engaging in a variety of ‘‘busy’’ (e.g., talking on the phone) or ‘‘nonbusy’’ (e.g.,
reading a magazine) activities. Following training, each participant engaged in communication
primarily when caregivers were engaged in nonbusy activities.
Anne Catherine Denning is a BCBA and an ACE (Approved Continuing Education) Provider with Consultants for Children, Inc. approved by the BACB.
Anne has a passion for improving the quality of providers in the Autism Intervention category and is a Behavior Analyst. She leads cases and supervises RBTs, BCaBAs and BCBAs and keeps her content material relevant and based on recent research.