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Evaluating the Convergent Validity of the PEAK Comprehensive Assessment (PCA): Intelligence, Behavior Challenges, and Autism Symptom Severity

Abstract

The present study examined the relationships between the standardized applied behavior analysis (ABA) direct assessment, the PEAK Comprehensive Assessment (PCA), and established assessments commonly used in educational and clinical settings, including the Childhood Autism Rating Scale – Third Edition (CARS-3), the PDD Behavior Inventory (PDDBI), the Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scale – Second Edition (VABS-2), and intelligence, including the Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence (WPPSI-IV) and the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC-V). Utilizing a sample of 73 children with autism ranging from 3 to 21 years old, the present study found the PCA to be significantly correlated with the established measures. The result suggests evidence of convergent validity of the PCA, and internal consistency among its subtests. Implications of this behavior-analytic standardized assessment were discussed.

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Authors

Contributions

Both authors from the University of Illinois Chicago were blind to all subject assignment, experimental conditions, and were only given access to obtained outcomes after completion of the entire study.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Mark R. Dixon.

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Ethical Approval

The procedure of the current study was reviewed and approved by the Hawaii Department of Education Data Governance Office and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Conflict of Interest

Mark R. Dixon receives small royalties from sales of the PCA. The remaining authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Consent to Participate

Parents or legal guardians were informed and consented for their child to be a participant in the study, and were given the opportunity to opt out before the study began and at any time thereafter.

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Sutton, A., Pikula, A., Yi, Z. et al. Evaluating the Convergent Validity of the PEAK Comprehensive Assessment (PCA): Intelligence, Behavior Challenges, and Autism Symptom Severity. J Dev Phys Disabil (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10882-021-09814-9

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Keywords

  • Applied behavior analysis
  • PEAK relational training system
  • Autism treatment
  • ABA therapy
  • PCA