The purpose of this research paper is to examine a Single Subject Research Design (SSRD). Single-subject designs are an effective approach to identifying behavioral interventions that focus on the individual as the unit of concern, active intervention, and practical procedures that can he used in typical school, home, and community contexts (Shavelson &Towne, 2002). 1 The participant serves as his or her own control and performance prior to intervention is compared to performance during the intervention through close monitoring. SSRD is commonly used to examine the changes in the behavior of an individual as a result of treatment.
The subject of the experiment is a 21-year-old African female named Maggie. She came to the United States two years ago to attend medical school at the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine at the University of North Texas Health Science Center (UNTHSC). The other members of her family still reside in Nigeria and her ability to communicate or visit is limited due to a lack of time and finances. At the tender age of 3 months, Maggie’s parents enrolled her into daycare. Her mother was a bank manager and her father was a corporate lawyer; both parents had busy schedules and could not take care of Maggie on their own. Upon completing elementary school Maggie was immediately enrolled into a boarding school in Ghana. Once again her parents failed to give her social support causing Maggi to feel unloved by her family. Maggie’s parents felt like they were doing the right thing by enrolling her into highly ranked private schools. In their eyes sending Maggie to the most expensive schools was the best way to show Maggie that they loved and cared for her. Maggie has detached herse...
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...y extraneous factors. The same is true of the AB design modeled by this experiment. It is possible that changes in Maggie’s mood and behavior during the treatment phase were a result of unknown environmental events not related to the treatment. For example, Maggie while enabling Maggie to interact and join social groups she could have met a significant other that affected her treatment; even if her significant other aided in reducing her depression he would still be a variable that was not controlled for in the experiment. Due to the successful outcome, it is tempting to accept the results of the AB design and conclude that the treatment had an effect when decrease levels of baseline behavior (A) are followed by gradual or dramatic increases due to the introduction of the treatment (B). But the truth of the matter is that proper control procedures were not present.
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