Contingency Contracting with Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders in a Public School Setting

Mruzek, Daniel W.; Cohen, Celina; Smith, Tristram
April 2007
Journal of Developmental & Physical Disabilities;Apr2007, Vol. 19 Issue 2, p103
Academic Journal
In this study, a contingency contract procedure was implemented to promote adherence to rules of conduct in an elementary school setting by 2 male participants, one 10-year-old with a diagnosis of Autistic Disorder and one 9-year-old with ADHD and probable Asperger’s Disorder. Prior to intervention, both participants engaged in frequent challenging behaviors, including tantrums, antisocial vocalizations, and physical aggression. Written contracts were developed in collaboration with participants and revised several times during the study as participants progressed; in the final stages, a self-monitoring requirement was included. A changing criterion design was used to evaluate the effects of contracts on participants’ adherence to rules of conduct. Results suggest that contracts were effective for both participants. Thus, contingency contract procedures may be useful for some individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders.


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