Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) Study Topics: Measurement
“The Registered Behavior TechnicianTM (RBT®) is a paraprofessional who practices under the close, ongoing supervision of a BCBA, BCaBA, or FL-CBA. The RBT is primarily responsible for the direct implementation of behavior-analytic services. The RBT does not design intervention or assessment plans.” (https://bacb.com/rbt/)
The RBT Task list is a document that describes various concepts that a Registered Behavior Technician must be familiar with in order to perform their services in a quality and effective manner.
There are many topics on the RBT task list including: Measurement, Assessment, Skill Acquisition, Behavior Reduction, Documentation and Reporting, and Professional Conduct and Scope of Practice. (https://bacb.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/161019-RBT-task-list-english.pdf)
The Measurement category of the RBT task list includes the following topics:
- A-01 Prepare for data collection
- Data collection is such an important aspect of applied behavior analysis. Some employment agencies may require the use of electronic data collection methods while others may require paper data collection methods. Either way, it is important to have your data collection materials prepared when working with your client. Set up your environment to make data collection as easy as possible, so that you can take accurate data while also attending to the client as needed.
- A-02 Implement continuous measurement procedures (e.g., frequency, duration).
- Examples of times you may take continuous measurement procedures include taking frequency data on the number of times a child displays self-injury (more specifically, hitting one’s head against a wall or scratching one’s skin with his fingernails) or taking duration data on how long a child engages in crying or time spent sitting at a desk (when this is the target behavior).
- A-03 Implement discontinuous measurement procedures (e.g., partial & whole interval, momentary
- BehaviorPedia states the following definitions:
- Discontinuous measurement: measurement conducted in a manner such that some instances of the response class(es) of interest may not be detected (Cooper, Heron, & Heward, 2007).
- Partial interval recording: a time sampling method for measuring behavior in which the observation period is divided into a series of brief time intervals (typically from 5-10 seconds). The observer records whether the target behavior occurred at any time during the interval. Partial-interval recording is not concerned with how many times the behavior occurred during the interval or how long the behavior was present, just that it occurred at some point during the interval; tends to overestimate the portion of the observation period that the behavior actually occurred (Cooper, Heron, & Heward, 2007).
- Whole interval recording: a time sampling method for measuring behavior in which the observation period is divided into a series of brief time intervals (typically from 5-15 seconds). At the end of each interval, the observer records whether the target behavior ocurred throughout the entire interval; tends to underestimate the proportion of the observation period that many behaviors actually occurred (Cooper, Heron, & Heward, 2007).
- Momentary time sampling: a measurement method in which the presence of absence of behaviors are recorded at precisely specified time intervals (Cooper, Heron, & Heward, 2007).
- A-04 Implement permanent product recording procedures.
- Permanent product recording procedures do not require the direct observation of the target behavior. For example, a teacher can provide a percentage grade for how many math problems are correct on a math worksheet even if they didn’t specifically watch the student complete the math problems.
- A-05 Enter data and update graphs.
- RBT’s may assist the BCBA with entering data and updating graphs. Although electronic data may decrease the need for RBT assistance in this area, RBT’s should still understand the purpose of data and graphs and also be able to enter data and update graphs as requested by their supervisor.
See the RBT Task List for more information about topics necessary for the RBT to understand.
Reference: BACB. RBT Task List. https://bacb.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/161019-RBT-task-list-english.pdf
image credit: © tanyastock via Fotalia
Gilmore, H. (2017). Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) Study Topics: Measurement. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 20, 2017, from https://pro.psychcentral.com/child-therapist/2017/06/registered-behavior-technician-rbt-study-topics-measurement/