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Wednesday 22 Nov 2017

Using Pivotal Response Treatment to Teach Social Skills


Pivotal Response Treatment (PRT) is an intervention based on the science of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). PRT is considered a naturalistic intervention because it is implemented in the natural environment which can help promote maintenance and generalization of skills. PRT can be used to teach a variety of important skills including communication, social skills, adaptive behaviors, and academics. In these three studies PRT was used to improve social behaviors.

Peer-Implemented PRT: Article 1 and Article 2.

In these two studies, Karen Pierce and Laura Schreibman (Dr. Schreibman is one of the developers of PRT) used peer-implemented PRT to improve the social skills of four students with autism (ages 8-10). In both studies the participants improved in the percent of time they were actively engaged with their peers and there were also increases in the number of initiations from the student with autism to their peer. In the second study, the authors increased the numbers of peers they trained and played with the target students. In this study, the positive results generalized to play with novel peers.

Use of Self-Mangagement Systems to Improve Social Behavior: Article

In this study, Robert Koegel and William Frea (Dr. Koegel is one of the developers of PRT) taught two students (ages 13 and 16) to use a self-management system to monitor and control a variety of behaviors which were considered to be “stigmatizing” and impacting the students ability to engage in social interactions with peers. The two participants were taught to self-manage the social behaviors of eye gaze, non-verbal mannerisms and topic perseveration while engaged in social interactions with typically developing peers. The authors of this study also found positive effects in untargeted social behaviors including topic perseveration, voice volume, and facial expressions/affect.

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