We completed three different preference assessments with students with EI in an alternative education school. All students had behavior problems that required an intervention plan. We collected data on student reward preferences through a survey then completed a forced choice task and a ranked scale task to identify potential rewards for the students. Rewards were categorized based on function into three different groups: attention-based, escape-based and tangible. Of the seven participants, two (A & B) had results that consistently identified the same category across all three assessment types. Two participants (C & D) reported high levels of preference across all three categories, but they didn’t show a consistent function preference. The last three participants (E, F, & G) only completed the survey, but their results all suggested a strong preference for one category over the other two. Results suggest that there are limitations to preference assessments, but that in combination with other data collection techniques, preference assessments can be a good source of information that can contribute to the reward identification process. These results also suggest that preference assessments can be used to identify potential rewards that might address the function of the student’s problem behavior.
Stigall, Sarah, "Revisiting Reinforcement: Conducting Preference Assessments for Students with Emotional Impairments" (2017). Honors Projects. 615.