Development and Generalization of Lifetime Leisure Skills for Multihandicapped Participants


  • Michael E Crawford


Multi-handicapped, Lifetime Leisure Skill, Normalized Leisure Setting, Adaptation Hypothesis, Generalization


The purpose of this study was to validate procedures for generalizing lifetime leisure skillsacquired by multi-handicapped participants in segregated settings to natural communityenvironments. The study tested the applicability of contemporary behavioral engineeringtheory and techniques when applied to a recreational service delivery model for the multihandicapped.A two phase project utilizing an ABAB reversal design was utilized. In phaseone individualized behavioral experiments for ten severely multi-handicapped participantswere designed to teach lifetime leisure skills. In phase two, trainers attempted generalizationofleisure behavior established in the segregated setting to natural community environments.The results indicated significant increases in high quality leisure behavior for themajority ofparticipants during phase one training. Phase two generalization ofleisure skillsfrom training to natural environments met with limited success. Natural environmentalcomplexity, lack of instructional control over participants, and negative outcomes fornormal consumers, all contributed to half of the multi-handicapped participants notachieving established behavioral objectives. Further development of generalization strategies,maintenance procedures, and skill acquisition techniques is needed ifthe multi-handicappedare to be effectively served in non-segregated recreational environments.





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