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Effects of establishing conceptual repertoires of bigger-than and smaller-than on the emergence of ordinal relations in individuals with autism

Grant number: 13/06734-6
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
Effective date (Start): December 01, 2013
Effective date (End): January 25, 2015
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Psychology - Experimental Psychology
Principal researcher:Deisy das Graças de Souza
Grantee:André Augusto Borges Varella
Home Institution: Centro de Educação e Ciências Humanas (CECH). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


Learning comparative relations ("more than", "less than", "bigger than", "smaller than") require the establishment of ordinal relations between stimuli. These repertoires have been investigated by an expansion of stimulus equivalence paradigm and also by Relational Frame Theory (RFT). Some studies have suggested that conceptual repertoires (nonarbitrary relational responding) may facilitate the acquisition of ordinal relations between arbitrary stimuli (arbitrary relational responding). However, we do not know if the concept formation at this context is necessary for the establishment of ordinal relations, as presumed by RFT. The present study aims to evaluate the effects of teaching the concept repertoires of "bigger than" and "smaller than" on learning ordinal relations between abstract stimuli of the same size in individuals with autism. Eight individuals who did not have the repertoires of "bigger than" and "smaller than" will participate. Half of the participants will be exposed first to AC and BC relations, between auditory words "bigger than" and "smaller than" (A), mathematical symbols ">" and "<" (B) and several stimuli of different sizes (C) as comparisons. The other participants will be taught only AB matching, between auditory samples "bigger than" and "smaller than" (A) and mathematical symbols (B) as comparisons. After that, all participants will be taught the ordinal relations D1>D2>D3>D4>D5 and D5D4, D4D5 and D5

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Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
VARELLA, ANDRE A. B.; DE SOUZA, DEISY G. Using class-specific compound consequences to teach dictated and printed letter relations to a child with autism. JOURNAL OF APPLIED BEHAVIOR ANALYSIS, v. 48, n. 3, p. 675-679, SEP 2015. Web of Science Citations: 2.

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