Further extensions of precision medicine to behavior analysis: A demonstration using functional communication training

John Michael Falligant, Louis P. Hagopian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The potential applicability of concepts and methods of the paradigm of precision medicine to the field of applied behavior analysis is only beginning to be explored. Both precision medicine and applied behavior analysis seek to understand and classify clinical problems through identification of their causal pathways. Both aim to develop treatments directly targeting those causal pathways, which also requires an understanding of the mechanisms by which treatments produce change (treatment-action pathways). In the current study, we extend the data-analytic methods and concepts described by Hagopian et al. (2018) toward the identification of variables that predict response to functional communication training (FCT). We discuss emerging conceptual issues, including the importance of distinguishing predictive behavioral markers from predictor variables based on their purported involvement in the causal or treatment-action pathways. Making these discriminations is a complex undertaking that requires knowledge of these mechanisms and how they interact.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1961-1981
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of applied behavior analysis
Volume53
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2020

Keywords

  • functional analysis
  • functional communication training
  • precision medicine
  • predictive behavioral markers
  • predictor variables

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Philosophy
  • Applied Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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