Dorothea C. Lerman

Learn More
Data are summarized from 152 single-subject analyses of the reinforcing functions of self-injurious behavior (SIB). Individuals with developmental disabilities referred for assessment and/or treatment over an 11-year period were exposed to a series of conditions in which the effects of antecedent and consequent events on SIB were examined systematically by(More)
Independent descriptive (correlational) and functional (experimental) analyses were conducted to determine the extent to which the two methods would yield data supporting similar conclusions about variables maintaining the self-injurious behavior (SIB) of 6 subjects. For the descriptive analyses, subjects were observed in their residences and at training(More)
Extinction of operant behavior, which involves terminating the reinforcement contingency that maintains a response, is important to the development, generalization, and reduction of behavior in clinical settings. We review basic and applied research findings on variables that influence the direct and indirect effects of extinction and discuss the potential(More)
Extinction-induced resurgence is the recurrence of previously reinforced behavior when another behavior is placed on extinction (Lieving, Hagopian, Long, & O'Connor, 2004). This phenomenon may account for some instances of treatment relapse when problem behavior recovers during extinction-based treatments. The current study sought to determine whether(More)
Hand mouthing often has been described as a stereotypic response that is maintained by nonsocial (automatic) reinforcement; however, data supporting this conclusion can be found in relatively few studies. This series of studies presents an experimental analysis of conditions associated with the maintenance of hand mouthing. In Experiment 1, a functional(More)
We examined the effectiveness of functional communication training (FCT) in reducing self-injurious behavior (SIB) and in shaping an alternative (communicative) response while SIB continued to be reinforced. Following a functional analysis of 3 individuals' SIB, we attempted to teach an alternative response consisting of a manual sign to each individual,(More)
We present one method for distinguishing between extinction and punishment effects. The proportion of responses that produced a consequence (blocking) was varied while hand mouthing was treated in a man diagnosed with profound mental retardation. Response patterns across the schedule changes suggested that the blocking procedure functioned as a punishing(More)
Recent research findings suggest that reinforcing stimuli may be differentially effective as response requirements increase. We extended this line of research by evaluating responding under increasing schedule requirements via progressive-ratio schedules and behavioral economic analyses. The differential effectiveness of preferred stimuli in treating(More)
In this paper, we review basic and applied findings on punishment and discuss the importance of conducting further research in this area. The characteristics of responding during punishment and numerous factors that interact with basic processes are delineated in conjunction with implications for the treatment of behavior disorders in clinical populations.(More)