An examination of the effectiveness of video modeling intervention using a speech generating device in preschool children with Austim



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Individuals with severe speech and language impairment as a result of autism may rely on non-speech communication aids to augment or replace speech. These aids include speech generating devices (SGDs) and graphic symbol software programs that produce synthetic speech upon activation. The primary aim of the present study was to investigate whether preschool children with autism would learn to request a preferred object using a SGD following a video modeling (VM) intervention and generalize requesting behaviors to preferred objects across stimuli and communication partners. Data were also collected on maintenance and generalization of requesting behaviors for preferred objects across subjects and communication partners. A singlesubject multiple baseline design across participants (n=3) was used to assess the effects of VM intervention on requesting behavior. Intervention consisted of having each participant view a VM (mean duration,25.5 seconds) of two adults demonstrating the requesting of a preferred object using the SGD. Additionally, a least-to-mostprompting technique was employed to facilitate the production of a correct response. Results indicated that all three participants demonstrated the ability to request preferred objects following the VM intervention. Additionally, all participants demonstrated the ability to generalize the newly acquired requesting behavior across stimuli and people. These results indicate that a VM treatment package that includes a SGD as one of its components can be effective in facilitating communication in individuals with autism who have little or no functional speech. The overall findings are discussed in terms of the clinical implications.