McDonnell (1996) compared the effects of massed practice instruction to a combined massed practice and distributed practice format on the acquisition, transfer, and generalization of prompted requests for five students with developmental disabilities.
The dependent measures used to compare the relative effectiveness of one-to-one embedded and one-to-one massed practice were the percent of correct responding during testing probes, total trials to criterion, and the perceptions of the teacher and paraprofessional regarding the utility and acceptability of the two instructional formats.
Weekly test probes were conducted by the authors to assess the acquisition of the target skills taught through one-to-one embedded and one-to-one massed practice.
In addition, the authors calculated the total number of instructional trials provided to each student in each session of both the one-to-one embedded and one-to-one massed practice instructional procedures to ensure their equivalence.
The study utilized a single subject alternating treatment design (Holcombe, Wolery, & Gast, 1994) to compare the relative effectiveness of one-to-one embedded instruction in the general education classroom and one-to-one massed practice instruction in the special education class.
One-to-one massed practice in the special education classroom.
The training included a summary of the current research and rationale for embedded instruction and massed practice.
Thus trainers could provide opportunities for discussions to overcome the detrimental effects of massed practice.
In summary, the present results imply that unguided discussion might be a cost-effective way to enhance learning in training centers that teach selected men and women complex skills with independent learning goals and massed practice schedules.