Single-Case Research Design

Single-case research designs are a family of scientifically rigorous strategies for documenting experimental effects. Single-case designs have been used to establish basic principles of behavior, document the impact of specific interventions, and more recently validate evidence-based practices. The defining feature of single-case research is that each participant (subject) serves as their own experimental control. This approach to research design arose from early work in the 1940s and 1950s focusing on behavior analysis and was codified in a seminal book, Tactics of Scientific Research by Murray Sidman, in 1960. Sidman defined in detail how repeated measurement of an individual’s behavior over time could be used to test important experimental concepts and expand our fundamental understanding of human behavior.

During the past 70 years, single-case methods have become ...

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