Document Type


Date of Degree Completion

Summer 2016

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



Committee Chair

Sadie Lovett

Second Committee Member

Liane Pereira

Third Committee Member

Ralf Greenwald


Activity schedules are commonly used with individuals with developmental disabilities. These schedules have been found to be highly beneficial because they help the learner complete activities independently without additional prompting and support of others. Two young adults diagnosed with Down syndrome, who used pictorial activity schedules, participated in the current study. This study examined an intervention, called stimulus pairing observation (SPO), for helping adults with Down syndrome transfer from use of a pictorial activity schedule to use of a textual activity schedule. Previous research on derived textual control has shown that matching-to-sample (MTS) can be an effective instructional procedure. The current study was done to extend this area of research to see if a SPO procedure is a viable option for deriving stimulus equivalence. The two participants were exposed to a SPO training procedure and were then assessed for their ability to follow a textual activity schedule. The results show that neither of the participants were successful in deriving stimulus equivalence following the SPO training procedure. Results also indicated that a MTS procedure was unsuccessful in deriving textual control. Supplementary research questions evaluated emergent stimulus equivalence relations following a SPO procedure, including the emergence of oral naming of the textual stimuli. Key words: Stimulus equivalence, stimulus pairing observation, match-to-sample, emergent relations, activity schedules