Date of Award

Spring 5-18-2021

Thesis Type

Open Access

Degree Name

Master in Applied Behavior Analysis and Clinical Science

Committee Member(s)

Dr. Kara Wunderlich

Dr. Michele Williams

Dr. Kimberly Sloman

Supervising Faculty Member

Dr. Kara Wunderlich


Numerous studies have explored which treatments are most effective when treating stereotypy, but little research has been conducted on assessing if and when these interventions are needed. This study compared the levels of stereotypy engagement during unmastered academic tasks. Additionally, separate task conditions for compatible and incompatible responding were assessed to determine under which conditions stereotypy became suppressed. The participant of this study had a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder and engaged in vocal stereotypy that was automatically maintained. Engagement of vocal stereotypy occurred at a higher rate during the no-interaction condition and lower rates during both task conditions. Our assessment showed that formal intervention was not necessary for vocal stereotypy during academic instruction, but further evaluation of the instructional methods may be needed. This research expanded upon the current research on the assessment of stereotypy and when it is appropriate to provide formal intervention.


Portions of this research project were conducted during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020-2021. Appropriate precautions were implemented to protect the health of both researchers and participants. Consequently, the thesis requirements and expectations for Rollins College students were modified during this academic year to ensure quality research experience while also maintaining safety.

Rights Holder

Taylor LaBour