Video Self-Modeling

Video Self-Modeling

Video self-modeling (VSM) involves making a brief video of the student with autism engaging in a target social behavior. VSM is a variation of video modeling. In video modeling (VM)video modeling (VM)An intervention in which the student with autism views a brief video of a model (another child or an adult) demonstrating a target skill. video modeling (VM)An intervention in which the student with autism views a brief video of a model (another child or an adult) demonstrating a target skill., a model (another child or an adult) demonstrates the target skill in the video. In both VM and VSM, the student with autism views the video and is instructed (and taught) to imitate the behavior of the model (either the other student or adult, or the student him- or herself). Both VM and VSM are widely used, evidence-based interventions for teaching a variety of skills, including social behaviors, for students with autism and other disabilities (Bellini & Akullian, 2007; Wong et al., 2015).

In addition to efficacy, VM and VSM as socialization interventions offer other benefits, including ease of use and versatility. The relatively simple steps to create a VM or VSM are:

1. Identify the target skills to be modeled. A single video should focus on only one skill, but that skill may have multiple steps that should be clearly identifiable in the video. Also, a single skill may be depicted in multiple videos that depict different scenarios in which the skill should be used.

2. Task analyze the skill. If some of the steps are not observable (e.g., student must think about his response), then the hidden steps should be demonstrated by talking aloud in a quiet voice.

3. Write a script for the VM or VSM. Be sure that the script includes a clear antecedent for using the skill, a salient demonstration of each step in the skill, and a positive outcome for the scenario. The scenario(s) depicted in the VM or VSM should reflect a situation that the student will encounter as closely as possible.

4. Record the video. If possible, record the video in the environment where the target skill will be used. Videos are easily recorded using a cell phone or tablet. If you are making a video for VSM, you may need to prompt the student for some or all of the steps in the skill.

5. Edit the video, if needed. You may need to edit out mistakes, interruptions, or other elements that detract from the core message of the video. Many cell phone and tablet recording apps include simple editing features.

6. Plan for when, where, and how many times the student will view the video. Typically, videos are viewed just prior to the activity in which the skill is expected to be used.

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