Presentation Title

Integrating Functional Communication Training Strategies in the Individual Therapy Setting

Brief Biography

Ashley was born in Virginia, but grew up in the small town of Hartwell, Georgia. She graduated from the University of Georgia in 2014 with a B.S.Ed in Communication Sciences and Disorders and a B.A. in Spanish. Ashley is currently in her last year of the Communication Sciences and Disorders Master’s program at Georgia State University. She developed a passion for helping children and adults with neurodevelopmental and related disabilities after her younger brother suffered a traumatic brain injury. As a future speech-language pathologist, she hopes to work in a hospital system, where she can fulfill her dream of advocating and educating other healthcare providers about how to interact with patients with communication disorders. During her time in GaLEND, Ashley hopes to learn more about other healthcare and education service disciplines in order to gain the knowledge and experience necessary to provide the best collaborative services possible for individuals with neurodevelopmental and related disabilities.

Highest Degree of Presenter(s)

B.S.Ed Communication Sciences & Disorders

Presentation Abstract

Learning any difficulty new skill can be frustrating at times. This is especially true for children trying to master the ability to communicate in one-on-one speech and language therapy sessions. As any clinician knows, children who may not have the skills to verbally express their wants and needs may resort to exhibiting challenging behaviors that both disrupt the therapy session and limit the progress made toward session goals. Functional Communication Training (FCT) allows the clinician and child to develop a system of mutual communication that can extinguish the use of challenging behaviors. In this way, the clinician can provide positive behavior supports in a one-on-one setting that can help increase a child’s communicative abilities outside the therapy room, in the home, school, and community. This presentation presentation will explain the concept of FCT, the research supporting the efficacy of FCT, and how FCT may be adapted to the needs of an individual child in the therapy setting. It will also cover how the system developed for use in therapy may be modified for parents to use for home therapy practice such as using a visual schedule of therapy activities or a Velcro schedule board for the child to choose the order of activities in the session that can be used to replace disruptive behavior due to not knowing what to expect during the session. This presentation will also give attendees a chance to try creating a plan to implement FCT using two case studies provided by the presenter.

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Integrating Functional Communication Training Strategies in the Individual Therapy Setting

Learning any difficulty new skill can be frustrating at times. This is especially true for children trying to master the ability to communicate in one-on-one speech and language therapy sessions. As any clinician knows, children who may not have the skills to verbally express their wants and needs may resort to exhibiting challenging behaviors that both disrupt the therapy session and limit the progress made toward session goals. Functional Communication Training (FCT) allows the clinician and child to develop a system of mutual communication that can extinguish the use of challenging behaviors. In this way, the clinician can provide positive behavior supports in a one-on-one setting that can help increase a child’s communicative abilities outside the therapy room, in the home, school, and community. This presentation presentation will explain the concept of FCT, the research supporting the efficacy of FCT, and how FCT may be adapted to the needs of an individual child in the therapy setting. It will also cover how the system developed for use in therapy may be modified for parents to use for home therapy practice such as using a visual schedule of therapy activities or a Velcro schedule board for the child to choose the order of activities in the session that can be used to replace disruptive behavior due to not knowing what to expect during the session. This presentation will also give attendees a chance to try creating a plan to implement FCT using two case studies provided by the presenter.