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Treatment Fidelity in the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis: 1991-2010
AuthorPatel, Isha K.
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Treatment integrity is a critical component in ensuring that any protocol is implemented as it is planned. Unfortunately it is not a variable that has been recorded very often in the field of Behavior Analysis. Protocols that are not implemented with high integrity threaten the validity and outcome of the protocol. This review replicated the study of Gresham, Gansle, and Noell (1993) and coded all of the articles with children as subjects between the years of 1991 and 2010 and published in the Journal of Applied Behavioral Analysis. The protocol was modified slightly to allow for the incorporation of the variables: location, article type, presence of disabilities. The results showed that only 33.3% of all of the articles that fit the inclusion criteria for this study reported data on treatment integrity. The shocking lack of growth in awareness for the importance of treatment integrity in the years after Gresham’s (1993) study has huge implications for the state of validity in Behavior Analysis. Treatment integrity is an important factor in Applied Behavior Analysis because protocols that are implemented with high integrity have a more effective outcome than studies which do not provide data on treatment integrity. This study may help further awareness for the importance of the collection of treatment integrity data in protocols implemented in Behavioral Analysis, but also across all other fields of treatment.