After spending two days in Tempe, Arizona, learning all about the PEAK: Relational Training System, I definitely feel like I have a much better understanding of not only what it is all about, but how to actually use it too!
PEAK Level 1 Certification - Achieved!
The workshop was very comprehensive, but didn't feel too rushed, which is great. Also, the venue, Holiday Inn Express & Suites, Tempe - fantastic. Stay there, if you're ever in Tempe :)
There is a lot of promising research about the effectiveness of this curriculum and assessment, which stands for Promoting the Emergence of Advanced Knowledge, and it's whole premise is to help learners "get there faster" by using relational frame training. Very technical, but kind of cool how if we can teach one "relation", we can quickly add in other relations, without having to teach it explicitly. This isn't a new concept in the field of learning, and ABA, but this packaged product, is fairly new, which is exciting. (I love packaged products, because it can save you a bit of time - however, as with any program put in place, it does need to be individualised for the person who you are putting the program together for!)
There are four modules, that cover from ages 2 through to 17+, the modules being names 'Direct Training', 'Generalisation', 'Equivalence', and 'Transition'.
It is a very comprehensive program, that covers beginning 'learning to learn' skills, right through to being able to understand and apply very complex concepts. The thing I found very interesting was the idea that you could use programs from all four of the modules, for a beginning program, you don't just necessarily work through them in sequential order. Helpful to consider for some of my clients and their needs.
It also has a neat pre-assessment, and assessment system where you can do a (fairly) quick pre-assessment, which I have managed to do (fairly) quickly with a few clients, and then based on the results from that, you can implement an indirect assessment by asking parents/caregivers, or filling it in yourself. Anything you are still unsure about, you would directly assess for that module.
I can definitely see a lot of value for this program in an early intervention setting - particularly in a clinic setting. A lot of the video examples showed a lot of 'table time' work - not a whole lot of natural environment teaching, which is a bit different to how we run programs, but I do love the long list of activities and ideas that I could pull from for teaching skills.
I am excited to begin using this with a few specific clients, and am feeling very grateful that I was lucky enough to attend a workshop, as they are in high demand!