ERIC Number: ED385961
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Jun
Computer-Assisted Instruction for Severely Handicapped Persons: A Program Based on Stimulus Control Research Modifying Current Software and Hardware. November 1, 1988-April 1, 1990. Final Report.
Karsh, Kathryn G.
This final report describes activities of a federally funded project which developed an educational computer-assisted instructional program for persons with severe disabilities. A preliminary review of the literature identified specific inadequacies of most software for this population, such as: too few examples of a task or concept thus limiting generalization; distracting extra-stimulus prompts; and insufficient trials, no criteria for mastery, and inadequate correction procedures. The Task Demonstration Model, a comprehensive model of instruction which provides nearly errorless learning by incorporating features of fading and general case programming, was utilized for the software development. The program which was developed teaches identification of 25 functional words and their symbols, 4 coins and their values, 4 bills and their values, and 4 clock times to the hour (both analog and digital). The program is characterized by: (1) inclusion of age-appropriate, functional tasks; (2) inclusion of the most recent research on effective instruction for persons with severe disabilities; (3) inclusion of the most recent innovations in computer software and hardware technology (written in Pascal; intended for use on Apple IIGs); and (4) use of a test-evaluate-revision process to further improve the program. Evaluation with 10 students found students maintained a high level of correct responding and a high level of active engagement. Development efforts suggest that an investigation of improved graphics or video-based representations is warranted. Also, efforts are needed to improve generalization through both improvement of the instructional medium and improvement of the teacher's use of the software program. (Contains 10 references.) (DB)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A
Note: Prepared at the Educational Research and Services Center, DeKalb, IL.