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Video Modeling (VM)

A video-recorded demonstration of the targeted behavior or skill shown to the learner to assist learning in or engaging in a desired behavior or skill

Evidence Based
Ages: Skip to Evidence

Steps for Implementation

Step 1. Targeting a Behavior for Teaching

  1. Identify an important target behavior.
  2. Define and describe the target behavior so that it is observable and measurable.

Step 2. Using the Correct Equipment

  1. Acquire a video recording device (e.g., handheld video camera, digital camera, smartphone, computer technology).
  2. Identify how the video will be played back (e.g., DVD, VCR, computer).
  3. Become familiar with the equipment and comfortable using it.

Step 3. Planning for the Video Recording

Write a script or task analysis detailing exactly what needs to be said and/or done on the video.

Step 4. Collecting Baseline Data

  1. Ask the learner to complete as much of the skill as possible.
  2. Collect baseline data to identify the steps of the task analysis that the learner can complete without assistance.

Step 5. Making the Video

  1. Identify the kind of video that is appropriate for the learner (e.g., video modeling, self-modeling, point-of-view modeling, video prompting) based on the learner’s skill level and preferences, as well as the target behavior.
  2. Prepare the model (with basic video modeling) or the learner (with self-modeling) for the video.
  3. Record a video that is satisfactory in quality and accurately reflects the steps of the task analysis.
  4. Edit the video and remove any errors and prompts.
  5. Complete voice-overs, if necessary.

Step 6. Arranging the Environment for Watching the Video

  1. Identify the environment where the video will be watched, considering when and how it will be used within natural routines.
  2. Ensure that the materials for the performance of the task match those on the video.

Step 7. Showing the Video

  1. Allow the learner to watch the video and provide prompts necessary to gain and/or keep attention.
  2. Allow the learner to watch the video an appropriate number of times before expecting the learner to use the target behavior.
  3. For video prompting, stop the video after each step of the task analysis so the target behavior can be performed by the learner.

Step 8. Monitoring Progress

  1. Collect data on the performance of the target behavior, noting the specific steps of the task learners were able to do independently.
  2. Note how often and when the learner watches the video when using the target behavior.
  3. If, after collecting data on three to five occasions, the learner is not making progress, begin troubleshooting (see Step 9). If the learner is making progress, instruction is continued until the learner has reached maximum proficiency.

Step 9. Troubleshooting if the Learner is Not Making Progress

  1. Analyze the learner’s progress by monitoring data to identify changes needed for the video modeling procedures.
  2. Adjust intervention tactics to help the learner make progress by asking:
    1. Is the learner watching the video enough times per week?
    2. Is the learner watching the video, but not attending to the most relevant parts?
    3. Is the learner getting enough prompting from adults and/or peers to use the target behavior?
    4. Is the learner receiving the appropriate amount and type of reinforcement for performing, or attempting to perform, the target behavior(s)?
    5. Is the video too complex?
    6. Does another task analysis need to be completed to make sure that the video includes the correct steps?
  3. Implement the adjustments to the video modeling procedures.

Step 10. Fading the Prompting and the Video

  1. Teachers/practitioners fade the use of prompting to encourage independent use and to promote maintenance of the target behavior.
  2. Teachers/practitioners use one or more of the following procedures when fading videos:
    1. Delaying start/premature stop
    2. Error correction
    3. Scene fading
  3. Teachers/practitioners may allow the learner to continue watching the video to some extent if it is appropriate, enjoyable for the learner, and supports the behavior.

Research and Outcomes

Research Summary

Age Range: 0-22

Skills: Communication, social, joint attention, play, cognitive, school-readiness, pre-academic/academic, adaptive/self-help, challenging/interfering behavior, vocational, motor

Settings: Home, school, clinic, community

Evidence Rating: Evidence Based

The information found in the Research Summary table is updated following a literature review of new research and these ages, skills, and settings reflects information from this review.

Outcomes Matrix

The Outcomes Matrix shows outcome areas by age for which this evidence based practice is effective
Age: 0-5 6-14 15-22
Academic/Pre-academic Yes Yes Yes
Challenging/Interfering Behavior Yes Yes
Cognitive Yes
Communication Yes Yes Yes
Joint Attention Yes Yes
Mental Health
Motor Yes Yes Yes
Play Yes Yes Yes
School Readiness Yes Yes Yes
Social Yes Yes Yes
Vocational Yes Yes
More about Intervention Outcomes

Video modeling (VM) is a method of instruction that uses video technology to record and show a demonstration of the targeted behavior or skill. The demonstration is shown to the learner, who then has an opportunity to perform the target behavior either in the moment or at a later point in time. Types of video modeling include adult or peer as video model, video self-modeling, point-of-view video modeling, video prompting, and video feedback. Video modeling is often used with other evidence-based practices (EBPs) such as task analysis, prompting, and reinforcement strategies (Steinbrenner, et al., 2020).