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Differential reinforcement of other behaviors (DRO) means that reinforcement is provided for desired behaviors, while inappropriate behaviors are ignored. This module will provide information on differential reinforcement.

Estimated Time to Complete: 2 hours

  • What's Included
  • 28 pages
  • Pre/post-assessments
  • Optional $20 certficate
  1. Define a problematic behavior in terms of the topography, frequency, intensity, location, and duration of the behavior
  2. Identify data collection measures to monitor the frequency, duration, and intensity of the behavior at the start of, throughout, and following the extinction process
  3. Identify the function of the behavior based upon direct observation, data measures (e.g., functional behavioral assessment (FBA), functional analysis), and interviews with school staff, family members, and the learner (if appropriate), once extinction procedures have begun
  4. Identify a more appropriate response for the learner to use instead of the problematic behavior
  5. Develop and carry out a list of intervention steps for a differential reinforcement procedure (i.e., DRI, DRA, DRO, DRL).
  6. Define and implement other intervention procedures (e.g., extinction, functional communication training FCT), self-management) that might be implemented with the differential reinforcement program
  7. Analyze collected outcome data on the effectiveness of the intervention program and determine whether modifications are needed

Module Authors

Laurie Vismara, Ph.D., BCBA-D

Dr. Laurie Vismara has spent the last 15 years contributing to the science, program development, and therapy of the Early Start Denver Model (ESDM). She uses online platforms and travels throughout the United States and internationally to help families and publicly funded early intervention agencies develop ESDM programs in 1:1 intervention, parent coaching, and group preschool models. Her co-authored book, An Early Start for Your Child with Autism covers practical strategies and tips for families to use the ESDM with their children, especially while waiting for intervention services to begin. Her second book to help early intervention providers coach families in the ESDM is coming soon.

Module Contributors

National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders

The National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorder (NPDC) was funded by the Office of Special Education Programs in the US Department of Education from 2007-2014. The work of the NPDC was a collaboration among three universities-the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and the MIND Institute, University of California-Davis. The goal of the NPDC was to promote the use of evidence-based practices (EBPs) for children and youth with ASD, birth to 22 years of age.

Module Content Provided By

Content for this module was developed by The National Professional Development Center On Autism Spectrum Disorders

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