Methods.docx - Methods Participants Participants...

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Methods Participants Participants. Participants will include 32 children, 16 females and 16 males. All participants will have received a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder. The participants will be between the ages of 4-6 years old. All participants will have the prerequisite skills to understand a social story. The participants will have verbal communication skills and be at an average reading level, which includes literacy and comprehension skills that are comparable to their typically developing peers. These learners have not been to the dentist and portray anxious behaviors when the dentist is discussed. Special education teachers will select the participants. Each child will randomly be assigned to a control and experimental group. Procedure for Sessions Sessions. Each session will be held 3 times a week for 2 weeks totaling 6 sessions. Each individual session will be twenty-five minutes in duration. At the beginning of each session, the participants will pick a reinforcer during a preference assessment. When 10 minutes have passed, the students will be given a 5-minute break; this will be used to keep anxiety levels low and set the learner up for success. Setting. The session will take place in an isolated classroom in the participant’s school. The students will work at a child-sized table, with child-sized chairs. There will be a shelf of reinforcers in the corner of the room; this will be used to conduct the preference assessment. The supplies for the work session will be placed on the shelf in a non-transparent container, so that the students will not be able to anticipate what will occur. Breaks will be given on a rug.
Groups . Each group will consist of 8 females and 8 males. Group 1. Participants will be called to the classroom individually. They will then be exposed to the Social Story about going to the dentist. This includes explaining waiting in the waiting room, speaking to the dentist, and laying back in the chair. This also includes the examination of the child’s teeth, which will be explained in greater detail through the Social Story. The experimenter will encourage comments, concerns, and questions throughout the process. Group 2. These participants will be exposed to the experimenter explaining the process of going to the dentist. This includes explaining waiting in the waiting room, speaking to the dentist, and laying back in the chair. It also includes an explanation of how the dentist will explore the learner’s teeth through a strict verbal discussion.

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