Pivotal response treatment
Pivotal Response Treatment (PRT) is a naturalistic and developmental intervention derived from the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), and developed by Robert Koegel, Lynn Koegel, and Laura Schreibman, along with a number of other instrumental researchers. PRT focuses on teaching the child within the natural environment, most often in the context of play, and helping the child to be more responsive to learning and social opportunities through more naturally occurring contingencies.
The motivational components of PRT
and Acquisition Tasks
Immediate and Contingent
Reinforcement is provided immediately following the child’s response, and is contingent upon a response.
Discrete trial teaching
Discrete Trial Training (DTT) is a highly systematic and structured treatment approach within Applied Behavior Analysis, which came to be widely recognized following the influential work of O. Ivar Lovaas and colleagues.
ABC model of a discrete trial
The Antecedent is an instructor or request for the child to perform an action.
Behavior Technician says “touch blue”
The Behavior is the response from the child.
Child touches the blue car
The Consequence is the response by the behavior technician to the child based on the child’s behavior. This can be the behavior technician providing the child with reinforcement in the form of a toy or food item for a correct response, or a correction for an incorrect response.
Behavior Technician gives the child a light up toy and praise the correct response
Positive behavioral support
Positive Behavioral Supports begin with a functional behavioral assessment to help better understand the nature of the individual’s challenging behavior. This information is used to develop a comprehensive behavioral support plan. Once implemented, this plan helps to reduce the likelihood that challenging behavior will occur, teaches desirable alternative behaviors that give the individual a more adaptive way to get their needs met, and often makes challenging behaviors irrelevant and ineffective.
Summary of verbal operants
The following table summarizes the new verbal operants in the analysis of Verbal Behavior.
|Mand||Directly Effective||A boy is being bathed by his father, and says: “more bubbles”. The father pours more bubble mixture into the bath and turns on the tap.|
|Tact||Social||A child looks up at the sky and says: "Look, an airplane!" The parent says, "oh, it is!"|
|Intraverbal||Social||A child looks up at the sky and says: "Look, an airplane!" The parent says, "oh, it is!"|
|Echoic||Social||A therapist says apple while holding an apple. The child repeats "apple". The therapist says "great".|
One must keep in mind, however, that almost all verbal behavior does not consist of these ‘pure’ operants, but of a mixture of them.
Natural environment teaching
The natural environment refers to your child’s day-to-day surroundings. It may include places like school, home, grandma’s house, church, day care, extracurricular activities, etc. This is the environment where your child’s learning and communication skills should be “put to work.”
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