Essay On Selective Mutism

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Selective mutism is an internalizing behavior problem that is challenging to assess and intervene. Selective mutism is characterized by the occurrence of speech in specific situations or with specific people. These individual have functional speech and the ability to comprehend language. Selective mutism is difficult to assess and implement effective interventions due to the environmental factors that influence behavior. There is an urgency to find effective intervention due to the fact that other behavior problems are likely to develop if left untreated and due to duration is dependent on the intervention outcomes. Selective mutism has been subjected to many intervention approaches, but behavioral interventions are the strongest evidence base…show more content…
Mace & West (1986) study observed a boy who was approximately four years old preschooler who did not speak. This participant was exposed to five conditions. Results indicated that speech occurred the least in conditions where the participant had the opportunity to not speak. While prompting to speak, ignoring gestures, and praise for talking resulted in an increase of speech. The intervention should consist of prompting, ignoring, and praising to increase speech. Schill, Kratochwill, & Gardner (1996) studied an 8-year-old girl with selective mutism. This girl was exposed to several experimental conditions. The results indicated that when an unfamiliar person was present the child did not engage in speech and contingent play and fading resulted in speech. These studies demonstrate the usefulness of functional analysis to indentify effective interventions. Although these studies were useful, many limitations were proposed. Therefore, this current study examined functional analysis for selective mutism in creating effective interventions. The study determined whether functional analysis in a natural setting would accurately identify environmental factors related to selective mutism. The last objective of this study was to develop functional assessment procedures that could assist with the varying characteristics of selective
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