Preferred Name

Claire Gallagher

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.


Date of Graduation

Spring 2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Department of Graduate Psychology


Dan Holt

Trevor Stokes

Tracy Zinn



The current study examines the effects of using Behavior Skills Training (BST), an evidenced-based practice for teaching, to train direct care staff members in a Memory Care Community to employ a multi-component, behaviorally-based intervention with residents that have a memory impairment. This study utilizes single case methodology with a stacked AB design replicated across three staff members, three residents, and three transition environments. The design is comprised of a baseline condition, training with BST, a post-training condition with in-vivo coaching, and a maintenance probe. Results include an increase in the percent independence with which staff participants accurately complete the task analysis of interaction behaviors, as well as an increase in the percent occurrence of all of the resident participants engaging in pro-social skills, such as answering questions, complying with demands, and attending community activities with zero instances of problem behavior. The results of this study provide an addition to the paucity of literature on the use of Applied Behavior Analysis in the field of Behavioral Gerontology and with aging individuals who have dementia and, furthermore, expand upon growing evidence of the use of Applied Behavior Analysis in novel environments as a method of increasing the efficacy of service provision across varying populations.

Key Words: behavior skills training, memory, dementia, behavioral gerontology



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