Initial outcomes of an augmented competing stimulus assessment

Louis P. Hagopian, Michelle A. Frank-Crawford, Noor Javed, Alyssa B. Fisher, Christopher M. Dillon, Jennifer R. Zarcone, Griffin W. Rooker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Competing stimulus assessments (CSAs) are designed to identify stimuli that, when made freely available, reduce problem behavior. Although CSAs have demonstrated utility, identifying competing stimuli can be difficult for some individuals. The current study describes outcomes from an augmented CSA (A-CSA) for 6 consecutively encountered cases with treatment-resistant subtypes of automatically maintained problem behavior. When test stimuli were made freely available, only between 0 and 1 effective competing stimuli were identified for each case. Prompting and response blocking were temporarily employed in succession to promote engagement with stimuli and disrupt problem behavior. When those procedures were withdrawn and stimuli made freely available, the number of effective competing stimuli increased in all 6 cases. Findings suggest that procedures designed to promote engagement and disrupt problem behavior may allow the A-CSA to be a platform not only for identifying competing stimuli, but also for actively establishing competing stimuli.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of applied behavior analysis
StateAccepted/In press - 2020


  • augmented competing stimulus assessment
  • automatically maintained problem behavior
  • prompting
  • response blocking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Philosophy
  • Applied Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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