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Evaluating Treatment Components for Teaching Request-Based Toilet Training for Individuals w/ Autism

Vista Research and Publications

Kirsten Yurich, Nora Healy, Alicia Burger, G. David Smith
Presented at the National Autism Conference in July 2013 and at the Pennsylvania Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) Conference in March 2013

This purpose of this study is to develop a successful toilet training program for individuals diagnosed with autism by manipulating individual training components and comparing the number of days participants spent in treatment for each of the toilet training programs. Investigators measured the effectiveness of a toilet training program (treatment 1) to identify the relative importance of each individual treatment component.  Treatment effectiveness was determined by measuring the frequency of spontaneous requests to use the bathroom, the frequency of accidents, the frequency of prompted requests to use the bathroom, and latency between sitting on the toilet and eliminating urine.  Based on data obtained from three participants who received treatment 1, the components that were determined to be critical to toilet training success were retained in the treatment 2 package and elements found unnecessary were eliminated (e.g., clothing manipulation and dry pants checks). Five participants then received the modified second toilet training treatment.  The number of days spent in each phase of treatment as well as total days spent in treatment were then compared between treatment 1 and treatment 2.

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