Off-campus UNL users: To download campus access dissertations, please use the following link to log into our proxy server with your NU ID and password. When you are done browsing please remember to return to this page and log out.

Non-UNL users: Please talk to your librarian about requesting this dissertation through interlibrary loan.

An Examination of Prompting and Reinforcement Procedures For Training Visual Inspection Skills

Nicholas D Young, University of Nebraska - Lincoln


This dissertation examined the use of empirically supported instructional procedures to improve visual inspection of single-case design data. Participants were exposed to prompt-delay and reinforcement procedures in two different conditions: first, a prompt-delay-plus-accuracy-reward condition and then a prompt-delay-plus-accuracy-and-latency-reward condition. A multiple-baseline- across-participants design was used to evaluate the impact of the instructional package on decision accuracy, response speed, and decision types. Participants without backgrounds in applied behavior analysis first made decisions about graphed case-study data without any training in a baseline condition. Introduction of prompt-delay and reinforcement instructional phases were then staggered across participants. Once instruction was completed, prompt-delay and reinforcement was completely removed in a maintenance phase. Participants also completed a brief social validity survey at the end of the study. Results demonstrated that all participants made substantial improvements in decision accuracy as a function of the combined instructional package. Gains were highest for 3 participants who relied on prompts and developed mastery (at or greater than 90%) in the prompt-delay-plus-accuracy-reward condition. Generalization to unprompted conditions was immediate and maintained after 1 week for all participants. Participants rated procedures as moderately to highly acceptable. Results are discussed in terms of behavioral mechanisms that controlled decision-making during VI instruction, practical applications to training in applied settings, and needs for future research to continue developing effective and efficient instruction procedures.

Subject Area

Educational psychology

Recommended Citation

Young, Nicholas D, "An Examination of Prompting and Reinforcement Procedures For Training Visual Inspection Skills" (2014). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3632758.