Individuals with ASD frequently exhibit generalization errors. Although there are many intervention programs that are used to support individuals with ASD, however many instructional programs fail to address this deficit. Generalization errors encompass when the learner should extend the use of a newly taught behavior to other contexts. It also includes that learned things should not be under-generalized, as well as when he or she should not use the newly established behavior in new contexts but does. This study was done to evaluate the generalization errors of a preschooler with ASD.
After the use of an intervention in which the participant was taught to request assistance with difficult tasks using a continuous reinforcement schedule, generalization gradients across levels of task difficulty were implemented to examine patterns of generalization. Initial results showed over-generalization of assistance requests and corresponding reductions in independent task completion across all levels of task difficulty. A final phase involving competing schedules of reinforcement for assistance requests and independent work with video modeling.
The study concluded through its findings that the program led to improved conditional use of assistance requests. Implications for teaching conditional use of assistance requests are discussed.