Graduation Date

Spring 5-5-2018

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Medical Sciences Interdepartmental Area

First Advisor

Brian D. Greer, Ph.D.


The success of behavioral treatments like functional communication training depends on their continued implementation outside of the clinical context, where failures in caregiver treatment adherence can lead to the relapse of destructive behavior (St. Peter Pipkin, Vollmer, & Sloman, 2010). In Chapter 2, we developed a laboratory model for evaluating the relapse of undesirable caregiver behavior (e.g., delivering reinforcers following destructive behavior) in which we used an adult confederate who engaged in destructive behavior to simulate a treatment-adherence challenge. Undesirable caregiver behavior relapsed in three of four treatment-adherence challenges despite a behavior analyst using behavioral skills training (BST) to teach caregivers to avoid these responses. In Chapter 3, we used a between-groups design to compare relapse following BST or enhanced BST (i.e., BST with continued performance feedback, multiple-context training, and a treatment signal). A one-tailed binomial-distribution test of these preliminary data was statistically significant, suggesting that enhanced BST may be a worthwhile training package to evaluate during caregiver training.