Some Refinements of a Methodology for Examining the Influence of Overt and Covert Self-Rules on Task Completion

AbstractThe purpose of this study was to evaluate the role of overt and covert self-rule statements on the execution of a chained task by participants with developmental disabilities. A multiple baseline design across participants with multi-element phases embedded was used to evaluate the effects of overt and covert self-rules, alternating with blocking and nonblocking phases, on skill acquisition, generalization, and maintenance, in the absence of explicit reinforcement contingencies for accurate performance. All three participants demonstrated acquisition of the chained task and generalization to novel stimuli. Performance was shown to be only moderately disrupted for some participants during conditions in which the emission of overt and covert self-rules were blocked, raising questions regarding the degree to which a functional relationship between task completion and self-rule statements was obtained. Results are discussed in terms of the practical utility of teaching individuals to respond as listeners to their own emission of overt and covert self-rules as speakers.
Source: Journal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities - Category: Disability Source Type: research

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