Variations of functional communication training and their effects on resurgence
A common treatment that is implemented to decrease problem behavior and increase appropriate behavior in individuals diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is functional communication training (FCT; Carr & Durand, 1985). Although demonstrated to be highly effective, it is possible that procedures will not be implemented with fidelity by caregivers in the natural environment. In these situations, functional communicative responses (FCRs) are likely to undergo extinction, increasing the likelihood of the reemergence of problem behavior (e.g., Fisher et al., 1993; Hanley, Iwata, & Thompson, 2001), known as resurgence. In applied contexts, the resurgence of problem behavior during temporary lapses in procedural fidelity represents a reality for which there are currently few solutions (Lambert et al., 2017). One possible treatment for resurgence of problem behavior in the face of extinction challenges is multiple mand training during FCT. The purpose of this study is to evaluate what effect teaching multiple FCRs as outlined in serial FCT by Lambert, Bloom, Samaha, and Dayton (2017) has on resurgence of problem behavior and FCRs during extinction challenges. We will then evaluate what effect implementing a lag schedule of reinforcement following serial FCT will have on resurgence of problem behavior and FCRs during extinction challenges compared to serial FCT.