Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department

Child and Family Studies

Major Professor

Kimberly Crosland


applied behavior analysis, education, language acquisition, low incidence disabilities, verbal behavior



Interrupted behavior chain procedures have been shown to be an effective way to teach individuals with intellectual disabilities and autism to mand for missing objects and information concerning missing objects. Research has shown that an interrupted behavior chain procedure is more effective than traditional mand teach trials, which occur at the onset of a behavior chain or in a massed trial format. However, there is a lack of research evaluating the use of interrupted behavior chain procedures to teach vocal mands for missing items and the possible generalization effects thereof. This study evaluated the acquisition of vocal mands for missing items using interrupted behavior chain procedures, as well as participants' generalization of learned mands to novel behavior chains when said chains were interrupted. Each participant exhibited some form of generalization to a novel chain suggesting that interrupted behavior chains may be an efficient means to teach mands to children with autism. However, the extent to which a mand generalized across topographically distinct chains was different for each participant, suggesting that an individual's verbal repertoire could be a factor influencing generalization.