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Theses Doctoral

The Effects of the Listener Emersion Intervention on Rate of Learning and Increases in the Naming Capability in Preschool Children with Developmental Delays

Goswami, Ananya

I tested the effects of the listener emersion protocol on rate of learning across academic instruction and the emergence of Naming. In two experiments, using a delayed multiple probe design, I first tested the effects of the listener protocol and then tested for the emergence of the listener and speaker components for Naming. In Experiment I, the participants were three preschoolers with developmental delays who had a limited repertoire of listener skills and had difficulty meeting their instructional objectives. None of them emitted a selection or listener response following mastery of match-to-sample responses for visual stimuli while hearing the word for the stimuli they matched during the listener half of Naming probes. Prior to the onset of the listener emersion training, participants' academic curricula were suspended and they were immersed in learning instructional sets of listener responses. The instructional procedure required the participants to respond only to the auditory properties (speech sound combination) of speech presented to them face-to-face, as well as to voices recorded on tape. This was done until the participants acquired both accuracy and rate of responding criteria for all the sets of the listener emersion protocol. Results from this experiment showed that mastery of the listener emersion protocol accelerated participants' rate of learning (decreased their learn units-to-criteria) to meet instructional objectives. The listener half of Naming emerged for two out of the three participants. In Experiment II, the listener emersion protocol was used to test for the emergence of the speaker and the listener component of Naming for four preschoolers who had more vocal verbal behavior and faster rates of learning than the first group of participants. An additional novel set (two-dimensional stimuli) was used to test for the emergence of Naming. Results from Experiment II showed that the listener emersion protocol was effective in increasing the rate of learning for all participants. In addition, the listener and speaker halves of Naming emerged for two of the four participants.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Applied Behavior Analysis
Thesis Advisors
Greer, R. Douglas
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
July 7, 2014