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Effect of Video Modeling and Primary Reinforcers on the Push-Up Performance of Elementary-Aged Male Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Pamela Trocki-Ables, Ron French, Lisa Silliman-French


The purpose was to determine the influence of video modeling reinforcement on the push-up performance of five elementary- aged males with an autism spectrum disorder and a speech impairment. Participants performed an upper body strength and endurance test (i.e., push-ups) under three different treatment conditions: (a) video modeling, (b) primary reinforcers, and (c) no video modeling or primary reinforcers. A randomized alternating-treatment design with repeated measurements was conducted. Based on visual inspection of the data, 2 out of 5 participants performed their highest performance level of push-ups under both Treatment 1 and Treatment 2. Three out of 5 participants performed their highest push-up performance based on the FITNESSGRAM (Meredith & Welk, 2010) criteria, under Treatment 1. Based on statistical analysis, the performance in the Treatments 1 and 2 were statistically significantly greater than (X2 (2) = 28.392, p = .001) Treatment 3. Video modeling and primary reinforcers improved physical fitness skills (i.e., strength performance) for males with autism spectrum disorder.

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Autism spectrum disorder; video modeling; primary reinforcers; FITNESSGRAM; upper body strength and endurance; push-ups

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