The use of a timeout intervention with and without escape extinction for treatment of escape-maintained noncompliance in a classroom setting

Joshua Loren Needelman


The present study investigated the effectiveness of two time-out (TO) procedures in reducing escape-maintained noncompliance of four children in a classroom setting. Participants were screened to assess that compliance with teacher-presented instructions was low and noncompliance was escape-maintained. Teachers were then trained to use two TO procedures, one without escape extinction (EE) and one with escape extinction following TO release. Two nonconcurrent multiple baseline across participants designs with a crossover element were used to compare levels of compliance across baseline, TO, and TO-EE phases. Increases in compliance were seen from baseline to the first intervention phase, and these increases were maintained in the second intervention phase regardless of the order of the phases. Small increases in compliance or decreases in variability were seen for some participants from the first to second intervention phase. Results indicate that TO with or without escape extinction may be an effective treatment for escape-maintained noncompliance. These results are discussed within the context of previous research on the use of TO with escape-maintained noncompliance.