Using Video Modeling to Enhance the Learning Process

by Laura Ferguson, M.Ed., BCBA


Modeling is an important part of the learning process. Modeling allows individuals to see what is expected of them and then practice the behavior. Individuals who are visual learners may acquire new skills more rapidly when the desired behaviors are demonstrated for them.  With so many different types of technology resources out there, modeling has become an even more accessible way to demonstrate targeted skills. One type of modeling that has been effective is video modeling.




What is video modeling?

Video modeling is a type of teaching that involves video recording a behavior that then provides a visual model of that targeted skill. This practice has been used to teach skills such as; play skills, functional skills, and social initiation. It has been used in instances to decrease disruptive behaviors and aid in transitions. 
Let’s look at the most popular form of video modeling and how it can be used to aid in successful transitions from preferred to non-preferred activities. The most popular form of video modeling is other-as-model. This involves recording a peer that has the same attributes or someone that the individual demonstrates interest in, appropriately engaging in the targeted skill.





Let’s look step by step how we would record a successful transition:

1. First select the target individual
2. Explain what behavior you would like them to engage in
3. Record the behavior in the most natural setting (how it would look when the   individual would engage in the behavior). Since the target behavior is transitioning, record the individual being given a warning of how much longer they have with the preferred item. Then have the adult place the demand to transition. Record the individual walking from the reinforcer to the non-preferred.
4. Once the individual has engaged in the behavior, record them contacting a reinforce, such as praise or a preferred item/activity
5. Now that the recording is complete, allow the target individual to watch the recording, and then practice the skill.






Video modeling is a great way to teach new skills. Hopefully you will find it useful in your home or classroom.


Laura Ferguson is a certified behavior analyst and a Field Training Coordinator for the KY Autism Training Center. She provides direct training and technical assistance to education staff, social and community personnel, counselors, job coaches and families.


KY Autism Training Center Fall 2012 Newsletter November 2012