Effects of Microswitch-Based Programs on Indices of Happiness of Students With Multiple Disabilities: A New Research EvaluationBy Lancioni, Giulio E.; Singh, Nirbhay N.; O'Reilly, Mark F.; Sigafoos, Jeff; Didden, Robert; Oliva, Doretta; Severini, Laura; Smaldone, Angela; Tota, Alessia; Lamartire, Maria L.; American Journal on Mental Retardation, Vol. 112, No. 3, pp. 167-176
American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Publication Date: May 2007
Study to determine the effects microswitch-based programs might have on expressions of happiness in children with profound multiple disabilities. Nine students, boys and girls approximately 4-19 years of age, all with severe or profound intellectual disabilities and varying degrees of visual and/or hearing impairment, participated in the study. Each participant received an ABAB sequence of stimuli, in which A represented baseline phases and B intervention phases. During the B phases, microswitches were used to enable participants to control preferred environmental stimulation with simple responses such as hand-pushing and foot-lifting. Stimuli used included songs, mother talking, a vibrating box placed on the chest, a hand fan, and chimes. The basic expression used as an index of happiness was smiling, identified through repeated observations of participants and confirmed by their parents. All participants increased microswitch responding during the intervention phases, and 7 of them also had significant increases in indices of happiness. The study suggests that students with successful microswitch responding have some mood benefits; also, microswitch responding may have possible implications in terms of constructive occupation and self-determination.
Published by: American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (Website:http://www.aamr.org)
American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (Website:http://www.aamr.org)