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Teaching Joint Attention and Peer to Peer Communication Using the Cool Versus Not Cool Procedure in a Large Group Setting

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Abstract

This study evaluated the use of the cool versus not cool procedure to teach sixteen children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder how to initiate or respond to bids for joint attention and how to increase peer to peer communication with their peers. The cool versus not cool procedure consisted of the teacher modeling the targeted social behaviors both the cool (i.e., appropriate) and not cool (i.e., inappropriate) way, having the participants discriminate if the model was cool or not cool, having the participants state reasons why the model was cool or not cool, and having the participants role-play the targeted social behavior. All instruction was provided in a group format. Using a non-concurrent multiple baseline design across skills and participants the results showed that the cool versus not cool procedure was successful, with the majority of participants acquiring the two social behaviors and maintaining these behaviors after intervention had concluded.

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Acknowledgements

We wish to thank Eric Rudrud and Kim Schultze for their help on this project especially as it applies to the fulfillment of the master’s degree. We also wish to thank the families and the penguins (the children) who participated in this study.

Author information

Correspondence to Justin B. Leaf.

Ethics declarations

Funding

This investigation was conducted to meet, in part, the requirements for the MA degree in the Department of Community Psychology, Counseling and Family Therapy at St. Cloud State University. This study was partially funded from a grant that we received from the Organization for Autism Research.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with ethical standards of the institutional research committee and with 1964 Helsinki decoration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from the parents of all individual participants included in the study.

Conflict of Interest

This study was partially funded by a grant received from the Organization for Autism Research. The grant was directly provided to the third, seventh, eighth, and ninth author. The tenth author received an honorarium for her involvement. The seventh, eight, and ninth authors have commercial products for the procedure used in this study and own an agency that provides behavioral intervention, which includes using the procedure described in this study.

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Milne, C., Leaf, J.A., Leaf, J.B. et al. Teaching Joint Attention and Peer to Peer Communication Using the Cool Versus Not Cool Procedure in a Large Group Setting. J Dev Phys Disabil 29, 777–796 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10882-017-9556-y

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Keywords

  • Cool versus not cool
  • Discrimination
  • Joint attention
  • Modeling
  • Role-playing
  • Peer to peer communication