Behavioral Psychology (Case Study Sample)
The task was a Behavioral Psychology case study requiring analysis. Some of the subtopics ADDRESSED IN THE SAMPLE AS PER PROVIDED INSTRUCTIONS INCLUDE Operational definitions of target behaviors, Results of the functional assessment, Short and long-term behavior goals AND Specific steps to interventions. SPECIFIC SOURCES WERE ALSO PROVIDED
Toby has an intellectual disability and Autism Spectrum Disorder. The kid tends to have behavior issues that require attention. For instance, he displays aggressive conduct, thus engaging in biting, grabbing, hitting, pinching, scratching, slapping, and pulling other people's hair. Toby also has self-injurious behavior, such as biting and hitting himself, not forgetting his sleeping problems. This paper aims at constructing interventions that would help with aggression, self-injury, and sleep problems.
Operational definitions of target behaviors
Toby is experiencing three difficulties encompassing self-injury, aggression, and sleep problems. Aggression can be defined as emotions of irritation or hatred that leads to ferocious or hostile behavior. Individuals with aggression are typically ready to confront or attack. Children with autism tend to get angry and aggressive extremely fast and often find it difficult to handle the anger. The strength and rapidity of this anger could be dangerous. Aggression tends to be high in people with Autism Spectrum Disorder in comparison to individuals with other developmental conditions. Typically, aggression is linked with adverse results for kids who have ASD and their caregivers, comprising reduced life quality, augmented stress intensities, and decreased obtainability of social and educational support (Fitzpatrick et al., 2016).
Self-injury is any self-induced deed resulting in bodily injury and could include various features like punching, self-hitting, headbanging, or scratching focused on body surfaces. Autistic individuals tend to be at a high risk of mental health conditions, suicidality, and self-injury (Camm-Crosbie et al., 2019). A sleeping problem is when children find it difficult to fall asleep or have insufficient seep, and this issue tends to be prevalent among autism kids. Sleep complications can lead to learning issues, behavioral problems like aggression, inattentiveness, and hyperactivity.
Results of the functional assessment
The functional assessment results show that self-injury and aggression occur for a few reasons. These include gaining access to adult attention and escaping demands. The sleep issues are also as a result of the need to access adult attention. Typically, Toby could be mainly feeling ignored, and as such, he is trying to get people to pay attention to him by overreacting. As much as it could be a condition linked to the ailment, the parents could also be ignoring Toby or rather not giving him enough concentration. As stated, Mr. and Mrs. M tend to be working experts with demanding job programs. Considering the busy schedules, it could be difficult to give an autism child the care and time he deserves, not forgetting the 10-year-old brother also needs care. If the teacher does not give adequate attention to the learner, this could also cause issues. Toby does not use vocal terms during communication, which could lead to frustration, thus the undesirable behavior.
Short and long-term behavior goals
The short-term goal is helping Toby stay calm often so that he does not injure himself or participate in self-injurious behavior. Additionally, Toby should be able to sleep better. The long term goals generally involve regulating all adverse behaviors. This involves minimizing tantrums, thus reducing aggressive behavior. Another long-term goal training is training Toby to have the capacity to express frustration effectively.
Specific steps to interventions
One of the distinguished treatment techniques applied in this case is applied behavior analysis. The applied behavior investigation approach has been extensively acknowledged amongst healthcare specialists and is utilized in various schools as well as treatment clinics (Cooper et al., 2007). Applied behavior analysis tends to support positive conduct and, at the same time, depress adverse behaviors for reasons of improving numerous skills. For persons with ASD, therapeutic approaches such as reinforcement tactics, functional behavioral evaluation, and functional training could have a noteworthy effect when it comes to minimizing the intensity and frequency of aggressive conduct (Fitzpatrick et al., 2016).
For the self-injury behavior, positive attention and positive behavior support could minimize the occurrence of Toby's self-injurious conduct. The steps involve identifying a situation where Toby is not engaging in any self-injurious behavior. The second step is blocking the self-injurious behavior before it takes place, but nothing should be said to the child. Next is positively reinforcing any conduct that could make SIB improbable. For example, Toby could be asked to use his hands in an activity that stops him from slapping himself.
Teaching new and effective communication strategies can be used to minimize and eradicate aggression. Assessing the behavior is primarily crucial to comprehend the reasons for the behavior occurrence. The steps to avoiding aggression occurrence include giving Toby some control over the routines or environment by presenting him with choices. Secondly, give him the verbal heads-up of what is expected in a given situation. Thirdly, using visual support such as a photo or picture board can help provide anticipations for all activities. The following step is prompting the desired behavior rather than aggressive conduct. Lastly, when good behavior is evident, it should be praised so that it is continued.
In sleeping problems, creating a routine like a directive of bedtime activities can help the child fall asleep better. Observing consistent bed and wake periods could help in putting the body and brain on a program, thus making sleep more dependable. Positive attention can be very crucial. Toby is generally having these issues because he feels ignored. Concentrating more on him before bedtime can prevent him from seeking this attention.
Discuss how you will collect data and how you will use that data to determine when to adjust your interventions based upon lack of progress or any unintended behavior change
I will collect data by observing Toby's behavior and determining whether there is conduct improvement. Since the goals are evident, the results will be measured against them. If the goals have been attained, then the intervention will be working. I will also collect data by talking to the parents and the teacher. These will be major sources of information because they are in daily contact with the patient and are looking forward to Toby's behavior improvement. I will give them a tracking record, more of a diary to indicate the progress of Toby's improvement from the commencement of the interventions. They will record the day, time, and the progress or deterioration that Toby made in different areas.
How lack of progress or unintended behavior change might affect the intervention
Lack of progress will not be a good sign of the intervention. Initially, the co-operation of the family and teachers is crucial in the recovery of Toby. With the full co-operation and following the given instructions, if the intervention shows no progress, then the particular mediation will not be appropriate for Toby. This would mean that there are other causes of aggression, self-injury, and sleeping disorders. The outcome could still be declared effective in other cases, even after failing in this specific case, because they are scientifically proven to work in autism children. However, improvements would still be made on the intervention strategies to see if it works better.
Discussion of the hypothesized outcome
The hypothesized outcome is that Toby’s aggression and self-injury are as a result of demands
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