Healthy Manding
(*available as a half day or full day workshop)

 

Skinner (1957) identified the mand as a primary verbal operant, critical to the development of verbal and social repertoires. The importance of the mand (request) has been popularized over the past 20 years, especially by Sundberg and Partington (1998), and many learners have made tremendous gains. Students have communicated wants and needs to family and teachers, engaged in fewer problem behaviors, developed functional vocabulary, learned to appreciate the value of others, learned to make eye contact, and become increasingly cooperative. Mand repertoires have served as a foundation that has ultimately led to fluent conversational repertoires.

But many learners have:
-failed to develop functional mand repertoires
-failed to develop spontaneity
-resisted prompts to mand
-become dependent upon prompts to mand
-“scrolled” (i.e., rapidly emitted a variety of inaccurate mands before landing on the correct mand)
-turned into “manding machines” (i.e., students who mand at an excessive rate, fail to tolerate delays, or fail to tolerate “no”)

For some students, functional mand repertoires, and their many potential collateral benefits, cannot be realized without the use of refined teaching procedures. Those procedures will be detailed in this workshop.

Participants will be able to:
-identify at least 3 potential benefits of the development of a healthy mand repertoire
-identify at least 2 potential hazards associated with the development of a mand repertoire
-describe how the timing of prompts impacts a learner’s responsiveness to, or dependence upon, those prompts
-distinguish between appropriate and inappropriate prompts
-individually tailor differential reinforcement policies to the needs of a particular student
-establish stable and flexible tolerance of delays in reinforcement from their learners
-gather data on the development of healthy mand repertoires 

 

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