Support Professionals and Students in the
Field of Developmental Disabilities

Journal on Developmental Disabilities

The Journal on Developmental Disabilities is a peer-reviewed journal with a growing regional and international readership.

Volume 21 Number 1 – General


Evaluation of Video Modelling and Self-Instructional Manual to Teach Students to Conduct a Preference Assessment
Morena Miljkovic, Lauren Kaminski, C.T. Yu, and Lindsay Wishnowski

This study evaluated the use of video modelling to teach university students to conduct multiple-stimulus without replacement preference assessment. Using a multiple-baseline across six participants and using a multiple-probe technique, video modelling substantially improved performance accuracy from baseline for all participants. However, none of the participants met a predetermined mastery criterion of 85% accuracy. A self-instructional manual was added to the video modelling and all participants met the mastery criterion. Moreover, all participants maintained their performance accuracy above 85% during a one-week retention/generalization assessment.

Comparing Hospital-Based Dental Care Between Individuals With and Without Developmental Disabilities in Manitoba: A Population-Based Study
Shahin Shooshtari, Marni Brownell, Helene Ouellette-Kuntz, C.T. Yu, Saba Naghipur, Brian Hennen, Beverley Temple, Natalia Dik, and Charles Burchill

The main objective of the present study was to compare the use of hospital-based dental care between persons with and without developmental disabilities (DD) in Manitoba. Five years of linked administrative data were used to identify persons with DD. Each DD case was matched with two controls based on age, sex and place of residence. The procedures labelled as hospital-based dental care included: surgical extraction of tooth, restoration of tooth by filling or other, and dental scaling, polishing and debridement. We found that 1.78% of the matched comparison group experienced at least one episode of hospital-based dental care over the study period. Among the group with DD, 13.95% had such a history. There was a significant difference in the average number of hospitalizations for dental care between the two groups (t = -23.28, df = 5824, p<0.0001). Oral health care for persons with DD should be considered as a priority for training, practice and research.

Online Training of Discrete-Trials Teaching for Educating Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders: A Preliminary Study
Alejandra Zaragoza Scherman, Kendra Thomson, Ashley Boris, Lindsay Dodson, Joseph J. Pear, and Garry Martin

We evaluated a self-instructional manual supported by an online Computer-Aided Personalized System of Instruction (CAPSI) for teaching Discrete-Trials Teaching (DTT) to university students. During baseline and post-training, five participants taught three tasks commonly taught to children with autism spectrum disorders to a confederate role-playing a child with autistic disorder. During training, participants studied a self-instructional manual using CAPSI to demonstrate mastery of study questions about DTT. Overall mean baseline accuracy was 54.9%, and improved to 84.7% in post-training, a 30% improvement. These preliminary results are suggestive that CAPSI is an effective educational tool for the delivery of the DTT self-instructional manual.

The Parent Involvement Questionnaire: Measuring Parents' Involvement in Behavioural Intervention for their Children with an Autism Spectrum Disorder
Abbie Solish, Adrienne Perry, and Rebecca Shine

Professionals in the field have emphasized the importance of parentss involvement in Intensive Behavioral Intervention (IBI) programs for their children with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD); however, little research has explored this involvement or what it entails. A parent self-report questionnaire was designed, in which parents involvement, along with other factors related to involvement, were operationalized and measured. Questionnaires were completed by 105 parents of children with ASD. To create a theoretically sound and statistically reliable measure of involvement, an exploratory factor analysis of 20 involvement items was conducted. This resulted in a good-fitting four-factor model, in which four distinct types of involvement emerged: formal IBI, child program, training, and agency involvement. These results demonstrate that there are several different ways that parents can be involved in their childrens IBI program. Implications for working with parents are discussed.

Motivation and Attitude in a Computer-Aided Personalized System of Instruction Course on Discrete-Trials Teaching
Karli Pedreira and Joseph J. Pear

This study examined the differences in motivation levels and attitude valences produced by two different learning methods in a mini-course on discrete-trials teaching. One method was computer-aided personalized system of instruction (CAPSI) in combination with a discrete-trials teaching (DTT) self-instructional manual. The second method was the DTT manual alone. In addition, correlations between performance scores, motivation, and attitudes were explored. Participants were randomly assigned to one of the two conditions (CAPSI + DTT manual or DTT manual only). The main hypotheses tested were that: (a) participants using CAPSI + DTT manual would show higher levels of motivation and attitude valences compared to participants using only the DTT self-instructional manual, and (b) there would be positive correlations between the participants overall performance, motivation level, and attitude valence. Predictions were partially supported: participants using CAPSI + DTT manual reported higher levels of motivation, whereas there was no significant difference in self-reporting of attitude. Furthermore, only the participants in the CAPSI condition demonstrated a significant positive correlation between performance scores, and motivation levels. These results aid in the confidence of using CAPSI as an effective and favourable teaching method for DTT.

Reliability of Four Subtests of the Jebsen Test of Hand Function Among Adults with Autism and an Intellectual Disability
Kelly Carr, Phillip McKeen, James Daabous, Nadia R. Azar, Sean Horton, and Chad A. Sutherland

Motor impairments have been acknowledged as a symptom of autism spectrum disorder (ASD); however, few reliable measures of motor control are available for individuals with ASD, particularly for adults. This study examined the reliability of four Jebsen Test of Hand Function (JTHF) subtests (card turning, small common objects, checkers, heavy cans) for adults with ASD and an intellectual disability (ASD/ID). Eleven adults with ASD‑ID completed these four subtests weekly for three consecutive weeks. Absolute agreement intra-class correlations (ICC) revealed high test re-test reliability for each subtest (ICC > 0.90). These subtests of the JTHF are recommended to monitor change in hand function during motor control interventions designed for adults with ASD/ID.


Case Report

Une etude de cas. Le portfolio : un outil de transition vers la maternelle pour une fillette presentant un trouble du spectre de l'autisme
Nathalie Poirier et Georgette Goupil

Le portfolio presente la progression d'un enfant en colligeant des pieces qui t'moignent de ses progres dans le temps. Cet article a pour objectif d'illustrer comment ce dispositif a ete utilise, avant l'entree en maternelle, pour decrire les apprentissages deune fillette ayant un trouble du spectre de l'autisme impliquee dans un programme d'intervention intensive. Les piices ont ete recueillies au cours d'une annee complete et organisees chronologiquement. Le portfolio est structure selon les six competences du programme de la maternelle du ministere de l'education, du Loisir et du Sport du Quebec (2006). L'article presente, dans une visee didactique, l'organisation de ce portfolio et offre des exemples des pieces associees e chacune des competences du programme du prescolaire. The portfolio displays a childs progress by collecting work pieces that illustrate her learning through time. This article aims to describe the use of the portfolio prior to the start of kindergarten and does so through one participant: a girl presenting with an autism spectrum disorder and involved in an intensive intervention program. The work pieces were collected over a year and were organized chronologically. The portfolio is organized according to the six competencies ascribed by the preschool program from the Quebec, Ministere de l'education, du Loisir et du Sport (2006). This article presents, with didactic purpose, the structure of this portfolio and provides examples of the work pieces associated with each of the six competencies required by the preschool program.