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Elimination Of Echolalic Responding To Questions Through The Training Of A Generalized Verbal Response.
Published 1978 · Psychology, Medicine
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Echolalia, the parroting of the speech of others, is a severe communication disorder frequently associated with childhood schizophrenia and mental retardation. Two echolalic children, one schizophrenic and one retarded, were treated in a multiple-baseline design across subjects. Each child was taught to make an appropriate, non-echolalic verbal response (i.e., "I don't know") to a small set of previously echoed questions. After such training, this response generalized across a broad set of untrained questions that had formerly been echoed. The results obtained were the same irrespective of the specific experimenter who presented the questions. Further, each child discriminated appropriately between those questions that had previously been echoed and those that had not. Followup probes showed that treatment gains were maintained one month later. The procedure is economical, in that it produces a rapid and widespread cessation of echolalic responding.