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Multiple-Baseline Design

Introduced in 1968 by Donald Baer, Montrose Wolf, and Todd Risley, the multiple-baseline design (MBD) is a single-case experimental design capable of demonstrating experimental (or functional) control over an intervention without requiring its withdrawal. With an MBD, experimental control is demonstrated when (a) an intervention, (b) introduced across two or more concurrently evaluated persons, behaviors, or settings (hereafter referred to as “tiers”) at different points in time, (c) produces similar corresponding changes in responding only at the intervention-introduction point. The practicality of this design has made it particularly useful in a wide range of clinical settings for conducting empirical evaluations of interventions.

Rationales for Use

There are at least three circumstances for which the MBD is a well-matched experimental design. First, when the effects of an ...

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