Encyclopedia of Autism Spectrum Disorders

Living Edition
| Editors: Fred R. Volkmar

High-Probability Requests

  • Mary Jane WeissEmail author
  • Samantha Russo
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-6435-8_1910-3


High-probability request sequence is an intervention used to increase compliance. It is a nonaversive intervention commonly used to treat noncompliance by reducing escape-motivated behavior. It is also associated with and has been historically referred to as interspersed requests, pretask requests, and behavioral momentum. It is considered an antecedent intervention.

The basic procedure involves the teacher presenting three to five “high-probability requests,” which are easy and quick responses already mastered by the child and highly likely that the child will emit. The teacher presents these requests quickly, one after the other, providing brief verbal praise after each one. Immediately after receiving praise for the last of these high-probability requests, the teacher immediately presents the request to which the child has historically not complied. Reinforcement can also be added to the high-probability sequence to effectively increase compliance with low-p instructions...

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References and Reading

  1. Mace, F. C., & Belfiore, P. (1990). Behavioral momentum in the treatment of escape-motivated stereotypy. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 23, 507–514.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Wilder, D. A., Majdalany, L., Sturkie, L., & Smeltz, L. (2015). Further evaluation of the high-probability instructional sequence with and without programmed reinforcement. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 48(3), 511–522.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media LLC 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute for Behavioral StudiesEndicott CollegeBeverlyUSA
  2. 2.Endicott CollegeBeverlyUSA