Theses and Dissertations - UTB/UTPA

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Education (MEd)


Special Education

First Advisor

Dr. Jo Ann Mitchell Burns

Second Advisor

Dr. Laura M. Saenz

Third Advisor

Dr. Marie Simonsson


This single subject multiple baseline study investigated the effect of a student chosen reinforcer on academic engagement during acquisition tasks in an elementary student with autism. The subject was a 6 year-old Hispanic male with a primary diagnosis of autism. The student is in a regular classroom setting greater than 60% of the day, with the remainder of the day spent in a self-contained classroom. A stopwatch was utilized to measure the student's duration of academic engagement duration during acquisition tasks. The acquisition task consisted of an age appropriate fine motor word copying activity. The reinforcer was presented in a fixed response duration schedule based on the duration of academic engagement found during baselines. The research design utilized was a single subject A-B-A-B withdrawal design. The results of the study indicated that the intervention was successful in increasing the amount of time the student was academically engaged.


Copyright 2004 Terrence Jerome Bernard. All Rights Reserved.

Granting Institution

University of Texas-Pan American