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The Behavioral Observations Podcast with Matt Cicoria

This is a podcast about the field of Behavior Analysis. Each episode will feature an interview with a Behavior Analyst where we discuss a specific topic in the field of Applied Behavior Analysis. Some of these topics include functional behavioral assessment, treating severe behavioral disorders such as aggression and self-injurious behavior, acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), behavioral ethics, autism treatment, parenting, and the history of Applied Behavior Analysis.
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The Behavioral Observations Podcast with Matt Cicoria
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Now displaying: 2021
Dec 29, 2021

Hi folks, as I note in my opening comments, my friends from ABA Inside Track and I got together again for a Year-In-Review episode.

Perhaps in keeping with our mood, we kept this year's review somewhat light. Instead of discussing the weighty issues of Behavior Analysis, we talked about what we've been up to in 2021. Jackie and I talk about our Covid stories, Diana shares her go to source on all things pandemic, and Rob and I talk about what we're seeing in schools these days.

We also talk about what's new for our shows, and at the very end, we discuss some of our favorite non-ABA podcasts too.

Before signing off for 2021, I want to extend a huge thanks to everyone who listened to the show this year. I'd also like to thank my awesome sponsors (special shout outs to Behavior University and HRIC!), Patreon subscribers, and CEU customers. Collectively, you've all made this podcast truly viable, and for that I am eternally grateful!

On that note, I hope everyone in listener-land has a safe, happy, and prosperous New Year. I look forward to sharing more fun conversations with you in 2022!

Dec 21, 2021

If you're like me, you are seeing more and more news articles about the challenges schools are facing with students engaging in problem behavior. For example, not too far from my home, a school district in Vermont recently proposed to shorten the school week in order to provide teachers with extra time to prepare for, and perhaps recover from, challenging behaviors in the classroom setting.

As we've discussed many times before on this podcast, clearly there is a role for Behavior Analysis in these settings. And it is with that in mind that I was excited to chat with Dr. Paulie Gavoni, Anika Costa, and Andrew Houvouras about the book that they recently published with co-authors Frank Krukauskas and Eric Gormley. It's called "Quick Responses for Reducing Misbehavior and Suspensions: A behavioral toolbox for classroom and school leaders."

In this episode, we spend a good chunk of time discussing the impact of the pandemic on student behavior, and why they felt this type of book was necessary to write. And while they provide an overview of the Quick Room process, I do think the book is worth getting for any school leader who is grappling with these increasingly common problems.

For Patreon subscribers, we spent an additional 10-20 minutes talking about the book writing process more generally, along with what the authors learned after putting this incredible resource together. If you'd like to become a Patreon member to get commercial free access to the show, it's really easy to do so. Just go to Patreon.com/behavioralobservations to learn more.

During our chat, we referenced a ton of resources, and I have done my best to catalog them below:

This podcast is brought to you by the following:

  • Institutional Tier Patron Greenspace Behavioral Technology. Greenspace behavior offers cutting edge supervisor coaching, performance and competency-based trainings, and organizational supports for new BCBA and trainees. Find out how you can optimize your supervision practices, improve clinical outcomes, and increase employee satisfaction at Greenspacebehavior.com.
  • Our very own BOP CEU offerings! Did you know we offer over 28 CEU events? To add to that, I'll have a few more that I'll be putting out there in early 2021, so if you'd like to learn about functional assessment, supervision, ethics, school consultation, along with the nerdy goodness of all the Inside JABA episodes, learn more at Behavioralobservations.com/Get-ceus!
  • Lastly, if your 2022 plans include marketing your product, service, or agency to one of the largest and most engaged ABA audiences, consider advertising on Behavioral Observations.

Dec 6, 2021

Mandy Mason's road to discovering Behavior Analysis is a little different than most of my guests. When her daughter was diagnosed with Autism, she literally traveled the globe to find out how best to help her.

I don't want to spoil the story too much, but what I will say is that Mandy's search for an effective treatment changed not only her daughter's life, but the lives of countless others. That's because once Mandy discovered ABA, and combined it with the power of Precision Teaching and Precision Measurement, she was off to the races.

Mandy is the founder and CEO of Fit Learning Australia, where she and her team provide learning and behavioral interventions for a wide variety of clients. Her talents extend far beyond the world of Precision Teaching though. She is an Autism advocate in Australia, a Motivational Speaker, and in her spare time, a World Champion sprinter.

Oh yeah, in her "spare" time, she also hosts The ABA and PT Podcast, which you can find on just about all podcast platforms (please check it out, and if you do, be sure to leave a great rating and review!).

In this episode, we get into how Mandy discovered ABA, what led her to adopting a PT approach to her daughter's programming, how she connected with longtime friend-of-podcast Dr. Kimberly Berens, how she started Fit Learning Australia, how she balances such incredible work and life demands, and much more.

For Patreon subscribers, we spend about another 20 minutes talking about how she got into sprinting, athlete management and coaching, and other fitness-related topics.

This podcast is brought to you by:

  • HRIC Recruiting. Barb Voss has been placing BCBAs in permanent positions throughout the US for just about a decade, and has been in the business more generally for 30 years. When you work with HRIC, you work directly with Barb, thereby accessing highly personalized service. So if you're about to graduate, you're looking for a change of pace, or you just want to know if the grass really is greener on the other side, head over to HRIColorado.com to schedule a confidential chat right away.
  • Behavior University. (who incidentally is sponsoring the Stone Soup Conference!) Their mission is to provide university quality professional development for the busy Behavior Analyst. Learn about their CEU offerings, including their brand new 8-hour Supervision Course, as well as their RBT offerings over at behavioruniversity.com/observations.
  • The Professional Crisis Management Association, or PCMA for short. Later on in the show, you'll hear from one of the most popular podcast guests, Dr. Merrill Winston, where he'll talk about how PCMA helps agencies support individuals who exhibit dangerous behaviors. For more info on them, go to PCMA.com.
Nov 18, 2021

If you're a BCBA supporting kids in public school settings, or even if you're a parent who has kids in school, you probably already know that sound classroom management is hard to come by. This phenomenon is perhaps more acute as schools have to contend with the disruptions in continuity imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

As such, it is reasonable to ask what Behavior Analysis has to offer when it comes to helping teachers spend more time teaching, and less time dealing with conduct problems.

Luckily, Behavior Analysis has provided us with a tried and true, easily implemented strategy for improving classroom management, and it's called The Good Behavior Game (GBG for short). And in Session 171, I had the opportunity to speak with Dr. Jeanne Donaldson from Louisiana State University about the GBG in quite a bit of detail.

As you'll discover in the interview, Jeanne earned her Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Florida and is now an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology at Louisiana State University, where she conducts research on commonly-encountered childhood behavioral challenges. She was the 2018 recipient of the B. F. Skinner Foundation New Applied Researcher Award from APA Division 25. She is currently an Associate Editor at the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis. Dr. Donaldson is a BCBA-D and Licensed Behavior Analyst in the state of Louisiana.

In this episode we discuss how Jeanne got into Behavior Analysis, we provide an overview of the general structure of the GBG, and we hear what it was like for Jeanne to run the GBG for the first time in a classroom setting. We also talk about procedural variations of the GBG as well as how to troubleshoot when the GBG.

In these exchanges, I hope you'll develop an appreciation of the broad applicability of this approach, especially in light of some of the positive outcomes that have been documented in some longitudinal studies of the GBG.

At the same time, I always get a bit disappointed when discussing the GBG, because we have an extraordinarily robust intervention ready to offer the world, but as we discuss in this episode, most public school teachers have no clue about it. It's kind of the opposite of the Habit Reversal literature, where the behavioral treatment of tic disorders could be considered standard-of-care these days.

As such, for my fellow school-based practitioners, I'd love to hear what you think the barriers are to this intervention.

Lastly, Jeanne has also contributed to the Time Out literature, and for Patreon subscribers, we spend the last 15 minutes or so discussing what some current best practices are for using this procedure. Patreon subscribers can get early access and ad-free episodes, along with bonus content like this.

Here are links to the resources we discussed:

This podcast is brought to you with the support of:

  • HRIC Recruiting. Barb Voss has been placing BCBAs in permanent positions throughout the US for just about a decade, and has been in the business more generally for 30 years. When you work with HRIC, you work directly with Barb, thereby accessing highly personalized service. So if you're about to graduate, you're looking for a change of pace, or you just want to know if the grass really is greener on the other side, head over to HRIColorado.com to schedule a confidential chat right away.
  • Behavior University.  Their mission is to provide university quality professional development for the busy Behavior Analyst. Learn about their CEU offerings, including their brand new 8-hour Supervision Course, as well as their RBT offerings over at behavioruniversity.com/observations.
  • Consider joining the BOP Patreon. Patreon members get early access to podcasts, bonus podcast material, discounts on CEU events from FTF and other continuing ed purveyors, occasional Zoom hangouts, and more!
  • Institutional Tier Patron Greenspace Behavioral Technology. Greenspace behavior offers cutting edge supervisor coaching, performance and competency-based trainings, and organizational supports for new BCBA and trainees. Find out how you can optimize your supervision practices, improve clinical outcomes, and increase employee satisfaction at Greenspacebehavior.com.
Nov 3, 2021

In the ninth installment of the Inside JABA Series, I'm joined by Drs. Claire St. Peter, Jeff Tiger, and many-time guest Derek Reed. Unfortunately the JABA Editor in Chief, Dr. Linda LeBlanc, was not able to join us, but she did choose some very cool articles for us to talk about. The articles are:

  • Vaidya & Armshaw (2021). Surface electromyography and gamification: Translational research to advance physical rehabilitation.
  • Gravina et al. (2021). Increasing adherence to a standardized rounding procedure in two hospital in-patient units.
  • The reason Derek joined us for this episode because he was the action editor for these two papers.

And while we did review the papers, we went super deep into the inner workings of the JABA review process. In doing so, what qualities an action editor looks for in selecting manuscript reviewers and how reviewers become 'known' for specific areas of expertise.

While we didn't solve the mystery of why Reviewer #2 is consistently a pain in the neck, we did talk about considerations of when to publish in JABA, and when to look towards other scientific outlets. This led to an unexpected but nonetheless fascinating discussion of how to disseminate one's research outside of mainstream behavior analytic journals. If you don't listen to any other part of this episode, please check that section out.

I'll leave you with this quote from the abstract from Sidman (2011):

 

I have written before about the importance of applied behavior analysis to basic researchers. That relationship is, however, reciprocal; it is also critical for practitioners to understand and even to participate in basic research. Although applied problems are rarely the same as those investigated in the laboratory, practitioners who understand their basic research background are often able to place their particular problem in a more general context and thereby deal with it successfully. Also the procedures of applied behavior analysis are often the same as those that characterize basic research; the scientist-practitioner will appreciate the relation between what he or she is doing and what basic experimenters do, and as a consequence, will be able to apply therapeutic techniques more creatively and effectively.

As always, the Inside JABA Series podcasts are presented without sponsors, though I would encourage listeners to subscribe to JABA, which when compared to many other journals, is relatively inexpensive, especially when you consider the number of papers that a typical issue of JABA has. When I first started subscribing to JABA in the 90's, I think the issues were about 1/5 to 1/4 of the size of those that are published currently. If this is something you're interested in, click here to subscribe.

The last thing I'd like to mention is that these Inside JABA episodes are eligible for BACB Continuing Education credits though the CEU store at behavioralobservations.com. What's even better is that because so much of this episode focused on dissemination, this one will qualify for 1.5 hours of ethics related CEU's. That's code element 6.02 for those playing along at home.

If I could beg of you one final indulgence, if you are enjoying the Behavioral Observations Podcast, please share your favorite episodes with friends, colleagues, random people on the street, and so on.

Oct 25, 2021

This, my friends, is a conversation that I've been looking forward to sharing with you for quite some time. In this episode, I'm joined by Drs. Mara Vanderzell and Erik Jacobson from the Upstate Cerebral Palsy Center.  As you'll hear right out of the gate, we started the episode off by attempting to operationally characterize the Boy Band pop music genre. You read that correctly... but, don't worry if you're not a fan of Nsync or 98 Degrees... there's a lot of fantastic insights into the clinical leadership model in this conversation. 

And if you are indeed interested in organizational and clinical change on a big scale, this is the episode for you. As Erik and Mara describe, residential and day treatment centers have historically provided treatment from a care model. Over the past few years however, the leadership at UCP has been busy changing this philosophy to an active treatment model. 

As such, they've made considerable investments in bringing in various thought leaders in the field to implement things like Essential for Living, Pre-school Life Skills, the BALANCE program, Skills-Based Treatment, and much much more. In our conversation, we discuss what they've learned from this process, and where the organization is going moving forward. 

We also went down a few unexpected rabbit holes here and there, so you'll want to check out the entire conversation. One of those included Mara telling us about what it was like to be a student of Ted Carr. That's a segment you definitely don't want to miss. 

If you’re a Patreon subscriber, well, you’re not listening to this feed as the ad-free subscriber feed was published last week. That episode also featured an additional 15-20 minutes of content at the end of the interview, where the three of us discuss things like running, cross-fit, and health/fitness more generally. So if you’d like to learn more about this, please check out patreon.com/behavioralobservations.

Last but not least, I'd like to thank Dr. Tony Cammilleri, the Director of Education at FTF and all around great guy, for his help in crafting the questions and talking points for this conversation.

Here are the links to the things we referenced in the show:

This episode was brought to you with the support from the following sponsors:

  • The Secret Agent Society Small Group Program helps kids 8 to 12 years old crack the code of emotions and friendships through an animated ‘secret agent’ theme.  Now with flexible face-to-face or telehealth options, services who have used the SAS program for many years are blown away and excited by the new digital health solution. Mention this podcast for a free Secret Agent Society Assistant Short Course to sample the SAS program. Also, if you’re interested in learning more, there will be a free SAS demo on November 2nd.
  • Institutional Tier Patron Greenspace Behavioral Technology. Greenspace behavior offers cutting edge supervisor coaching, performance and competency-based trainings, and organizational supports for new BCBA and trainees. Find out how you can optimize your supervision practices, improve clinical outcomes, and increase employee satisfaction at Greenspacebehavior.com.
  • HRIC Recruiting. Barb Voss has been placing BCBAs in permanent positions throughout the US for just about a decade, and has been in the business more generally for 30 years. When you work with HRIC, you work directly with Barb, thereby accessing highly personalized service. So if you're about to graduate, you're looking for a change of pace, or you just want to know if the grass really is greener on the other side, head over to HRIColorado.com to schedule a confidential chat right away.
Oct 8, 2021

My friends at the Virginia Association for Behavior Analysis were kind enough to invite me to moderate their panel discussion at their annual conference that took place last April. One of the fun parts of moderating panels like these is being able to share it with the wider Behavioral Observations audience.

This event was no exception. The 2021 VABA panel featured Drs. Nasiah Cirincione-UleziChristine Barthold, and T.V. Joe Layng. In our chat, we fielded questions from VABA attendees, which occasioned discussion of some of the following topics:

  • How to deal with Imposter Syndrome.
  • Subtle biases in the workplace.
  • Advice the panelists would give to their early-career selves.
  • Reading literatures outside of Behavior Analysis.
  • Ecological Systems Theory and Meta-Contingencies.
  • How perspective taking in married couples is overrated.
  • The value of mentoring (including some exceptional mentee duties Joe performed as a graduate student... not to be missed, and gives new meaning to the phrase, "and other duties as assigned").

I should note at the outset that we had both connection issues and some general unevenness in the audio feed. I've done my best to smooth things out in post production, so please bear with us, because I think the conversation is really interesting.

Again, it's worth pausing and giving a shoutout to our hosts, VABA, as well as their conference sponsor, Mary Baldwin University. If you'd like to attend their 2022 convention, it is taking place on April 29th and 30th, with speakers, etc... to be determined (hop on their email list here to keep up to date as more info becomes available, and you can follow them on Facebook here).

This episode is brought to you by:

  • The Stone Soup Conference, again, use the promo code PODCAST to save, and hear talks from folks like Drs. Linda LeBlanc, Adithyan Rajaraman, Jordan Belile, and more!
  • Behavior University. (who incidentally is sponsoring the Stone Soup Conference!) Their mission is to provide university quality professional development for the busy Behavior Analyst. Learn about their CEU offerings, including their brand new 8-hour Supervision Course, as well as their RBT offerings over at behavioruniversity.com/observations.
  • Consider joining the BOP Patreon. Patreon members get early access to podcasts, bonus podcast material, discounts on CEU events from FTF and other continuing ed purveyors, occasional Zoom hangouts, and more!
  • The Professional Crisis Management Association, or PCMA for short. Later on in the show, you'll hear from one of the most popular podcast guests, Dr. Merrill Winston, where he'll talk about how PCMA helps agencies support individuals who exhibit dangerous behaviors. For more info on them, go to PCMA.com.
Sep 28, 2021

Dr. Jim Moore returns to Behavioral Observations in this session. And I'm so thankful he had the time to chat, because this episode is jam-packed with great information for practitioners at all experience levels.

We spent a few minutes catching the audience up on some of the changes in Jim's life since his last appearance on the show. In particular, we discuss his new job as Chief Clinical Officer of Apollo Behavior and his move to the Atlanta area.

Afterwards, we managed to touch on several important issues in clinical practice, including the following:

  • Our differing (initially) views on what it means to engage in scientific behavior... i.e., who is and is not a scientist.
  • How identifying research questions differs in academia and practice.
  • Solving behavior problems by examining overly strict rule adherence (and what to do about it).
  • What to pay attention to when interviewing caregivers about problem behavior.
  • How to trouble shoot stalled learner progress.
  • Using Socratic questioning during clinical supervision (if you listen to any part of this episode, listen to this one!).
  • A preview of what sounds like an incredibly interesting talk at the upcoming Stone Soup Conference (and if you're interested in attending this incredibly affordable and informative event, use the code PODCAST to save even more at checkout).
  • Jim's point of view on the varying functional analysis practices that are being discussed in the literature.

We also recorded about 20 or so minutes of bonus content, which is available to Patreon subscribers (check out this link to learn more). In this segment of the show, Jim went into some detail regarding his ups and downs with his health and fitness, and how he's trying to get back on track, what it's like to be a Saints fan in the Atlanta Metro area, the parallels between good coaching and good leadership, and lots more.

Lastly, Jim was too gracious to shamelessly plug his practice group, but if the type of practice he describes interests you, hit him up on LinkedIn, or elsewhere on social media, as he's pretty easy to find.

Here are links to some resources we discussed:

Quote #1:

The differences between applied and basic research are not differences between that which “discovers” and that which merely “applies.” Both endeavors ask what controls the behavior under study

                                         Baer, Wolf, & Risley (1968)

Quote #2:

An applied behavior analysis will make obvious the importance of the behavior changed, its quantitative characteristics, the experimental manipulations which analyze with clarity what was responsible for the change, the technologically exact description of all procedures contributing to that change, the effectiveness of those procedures in making sufficient change for value, and generality of that change

                                         Baer, Wolf, & Risley (1968)

Quote #3:

Applied research is designed to solve practical problems of the modern world, rather than to acquire knowledge for knowledge’s sake. One might say that the goal of the applied scientist is to improve the human condition.

                                         Lawrence Berkley National Laboratory

This episode is brought to you by:

  • The aforementioned Stone Soup Conference, again, use the promo code PODCAST to save, and hear talks from folks like Drs. Linda LeBlanc, Adithyan Rajaraman, Jordan Belile, and more!
  • Behavior University. (who incidentally is sponsoring the Stone Soup Conference!) Their mission is to provide university quality professional development for the busy Behavior Analyst. Learn about their CEU offerings, including their brand new 8-hour Supervision Course, as well as their RBT offerings over at behavioruniversity.com/observations.
  • Consider joining the BOP Patreon. Patreon members get early access to podcasts, bonus podcast material, discounts on CEU events from FTF and other continuing ed purveyors, occasional Zoom hangouts, and more!
  • The Professional Crisis Management Association, or PCMA for short. Later on in the show, you'll hear from one of the most popular podcast guests, Dr. Merrill Winston, where he'll talk about how PCMA helps agencies support individuals who exhibit dangerous behaviors. For more info on them, go to PCMA.com.
Sep 15, 2021

I'm not a gamer... well, at least not at this stage of my life. But that aside, I really enjoyed this conversation with FIT doctoral student, James Riswick-Estelle.

We talked about his he got into ABA in the first place, a brief history of eSports, the current status of eSports, and then, how he uses behavior analytic principles to enhance the performance of athletes.

To be honest, I was blown away with how vast and popular eSports is right now. So popular that Florida Tech now has their own department dedicated to it! And James and I discussed how he "pitched" the use of ABA to the eSports director, and shared his thoughts on how to do this successfully.

We went on to discuss some of the specific interventions that he and his colleagues have used to optimize player performance. I think you'll find it quite interesting. Even if you're not a gamer, I believe there will be many parallels that you'll likely readily identify.

In this episode, we mentioned the following resources:

Today's episode is brought to you with the support of the following sponsors:

  • The ABA Marketing Minute from Rich Brooks at Flyte New Media. If you're wondering how to successfully market your ABA practice, go to takeflyte.com/abaminute, and check out Flyte New Media's free 35 minute lesson on building effective websites.
  • The Professional Crisis Management Association, or PCMA for short. Later on in the show, you'll hear from one of the most popular podcast guests, Dr. Merrill Winston, where he'll talk about how PCMA helps agencies support individuals who exhibit dangerous behaviors. For more info on them, go to PCMA.com.
  • HRIC Recruiting. Barb Voss has been placing BCBAs in permanent positions throughout the US for just about a decade, and has been in the business more generally for 30 years. When you work with HRIC, you work directly with Barb, thereby accessing highly personalized service. So if you're about to graduate, you're looking for a change of pace, or you just want to know if the grass really is greener on the other side, head over to HRIColorado.com to schedule a confidential chat right away.
  • Institutional Tier Patron Greenspace Behavioral Technology. Greenspace behavior offers cutting edge supervisor coaching, performance and competency-based trainings, and organizational supports for new BCBA and trainees. Find out how you can optimize your supervision practices, improve clinical outcomes, and increase employee satisfaction at Greenspacebehavior.com.
Sep 2, 2021

In Session 165, I spoke with Brett Yarris, founder of The Bx Movement and co-founder of the Pro Football Network.

I first heard about Brett when he was featured on The Controversial Exchange podcast with Ryan and Dimitri. In that episode, I recall how passionately Brett advocated for a wider application of our science, and in this regard, he is really leading by example.

In this episode, we discussed how he found his way into Applied Behavior Analysis, how his frustration with the status quo led him to start his own company, how he got into coaching elite-level football players, and how he broke into the crowded and noisy field knowns as the NFL sports media.

In addition to these topics, I think the two most interesting segments of this show came from his discussion of how he devotes a significant amount of consultation and training time to helping individuals with Developmental Disabilities improve their physical health, and then later on in the show, where Brett shares his thoughts on the relevance of the Behavior Analysis Certification Board. That part of the show came towards the end, and without spoiling things too much, Brett doesn't hold back, so you'll definitely want to listen all the way through.

I should also note that there are some over-arching lessons in this conversation, mainly about identifying one's occupational interests and values, and offering novel solutions and/or services to common problems, all while using behavior-analytic principles as a guide. As such, if you've been contemplating striking out on your own, this is a must-listen episode, regardless of whether you care about the NFL, sports, wellness, and so on.

Lastly, for Patreon subscribers, Brett hangs out a little while longer and answers some questions about the upcoming NFL season. In particular, we discuss the 2021 prospects of my son's favorite team, the LA Chargers, and then of course, the New England Patriots. With regard to the latter, Brett shared some insider insight as to why New England cut Cam Newton, and we discussed the AFC East more generally. We ended the Patreon segment with Brett's prediction for the Superbowl.

Here are the links to the resources we discussed in this episode:

This podcast is brought to you by:

  • The ABA Marketing Minute from Rich Brooks at Flyte New Media. If you're wondering how to successfully market your ABA practice, go to takeflyte.com/abaminute, and check out Flyte New Media's free 35 minute lesson on building effective websites.
  • The Professional Crisis Management Association, or PCMA for short. Later on in the show, you'll hear from one of the most popular podcast guests, Dr. Merrill Winston, where he'll talk about how PCMA helps agencies support individuals who exhibit dangerous behaviors. For more info on them, go to PCMA.com.
  • The 2021 New Hampshire ABA Conference! If you're in New England on September 11th, 2021, take the short drive to beautiful Concord, NH to attend this year's event. If you're not local to the region, don't worry, the event is available virtually as well! This year's program features both clinical and business tracks, a free lunch, an afternoon ice cream social, oh, and there will be great talks too, including Drs. Kelsey Ruppel, Paulie Gavoni, Byron Wine, Peter Gerhardt, Antonio Harrison, and more! Go to NHABA.net, and click the conference tab for details. While you're there, use the promo code Matt2021 to save at checkout.
  • Institutional Tier Patron Greenspace Behavioral Technology. Greenspace behavior offers cutting edge supervisor coaching, performance and competency-based trainings, and organizational supports for new BCBA and trainees. Find out how you can optimize your supervision practices, improve clinical outcomes, and increase employee satisfaction at Greenspacebehavior.com.
Aug 26, 2021

Earlier this summer I had the chance to chat with Dr. Kelsey Ruppel, who is a Senior Consultant and the Director of Operations at FTF Behavioral Consulting. After I stopped getting tongue-tied in the introduction, we were able to cover a wide variety of topics, including:

  • How she got into ABA.
  • Pro-tips for remote consultation.
  • A quick review of the Preschool Life Skills curriculum.
  • Her research on addressing emerging problem behaviors, i.e., the development of the BALANCE program.
  • More pro-tips: How to speed up the Skills-Based Treatment Process.
  • What Kelsey plans to talk about at the upcoming Stone Soup Conference.
  • And what is meant by the term, "Gray Reinforcement."

In short, this interview has tons of practical tips for everyday BCBA's, and I hope you enjoy the conversation as much as I did.

Here are some links to what we discussed:

This episode is brought to you with the support of the following:

  • The 2021 Stone Soup Conference! I challenge you to find a better CEU value in any virtual conference out there. With pod faves like Drs. Linda LeBlanc, Dithu Rajaraman, Jim Moore, Kerri Milyko, and more, there's something for everyone at this event. Use promo code PODCAST to save even more at checkout! Click here for additional details.
  • The 2021 New Hampshire ABA Conference! If you're in New England on September 11th, 2021, take the short drive to beautiful Concord, NH to attend this year's event. If you're not local to the region, don't worry, the event is available virtually as well! This year's program features both clinical and business tracks, a free lunch, an afternoon ice cream social, oh, and there will be great talks too, including Drs. Kelsey Ruppel, Paulie Gavoni, Byron Wine, Peter Gerhardt, Antonio Harrison, and more! Go to NHABA.net, and click the conference tab for details. While you're there, use the promo code Matt2021 to save at checkout.
  • If you like what you hear on the Behavioral Observations Podcast, you can support the show by either joining the Patreon group, which provides numerous benefits (ad-free podcasts, members-only events, discounts on cool stuff, and more!), or by considering the BOP for your continuing education needs.
Aug 10, 2021

Sara Litvak and Dr. Ellie Kazemi return to the podcast - this time together - to catch us up on what's new with the Behavioral Health Center of Excellence, or BHCOE for short.

Specifically, we discuss how the BHCOE has grown since Sara last checked in with us, how Ellie joined up with the organization as their Chief Science Officer, how the BHCOE determines quality standards, documentation guidelines for clinical records, ethical marketing practices, why the BHCOE is the "nicest place to complain to," and much more. We close the show by talking about what newly-minted BCBAs should look for when selecting an employer.

If you'd like to learn more about what the BHCOE does, head over to BHCOE.org.

Here are some links to resources, etc... we discussed:

This show is brought to you by the following sponsors:

  • Behavior University. Their mission is to provide university quality professional development for the busy Behavior Analyst. Learn about their CEU offerings, including their brand new 8-hour Supervision Course, as well as their RBT offerings over at behavioruniversity.com/observations.
  • I also want to let you know that Behavior University is also a huge supporter of the 2021 Stone Soup Conference! I challenge you to find a better CEU value in any virtual conference out there. With pod faves like Drs. Linda LeBlanc, Dithu Rajaraman, Jim Moore, Kerri Milyko, and more, there's something for everyone at this event. Use promo code PODCAST to save even more at checkout! Click here for additional details.
  • HRIC Recruiting. Barb Voss has been placing BCBAs in permanent positions throughout the US for just about a decade, and has been in the business more generally for 30 years. When you work with HRIC, you work directly with Barb, thereby accessing highly personalized service. So if you're about to graduate, you're looking for a change of pace, or you just want to know if the grass really is greener on the other side, head over to HRIColorado.com to schedule a confidential chat right away.
  • Lastly, if you get a chance, check out the BOP CEU offerings as well as the benefits of joining our Patreon group.
Jul 23, 2021

Dr. Natalie Parks from Behavior Leader stopped by the podcast again for another fun conversation. In her previous appearance, we talked about the importance of providing feedback "the right way." And in this episode, we extend that theme and discuss the work that she and her colleagues have done in helping several fire departments in the St. Louis area improve their operations.

In particular, we covered:

  • The challenges of consulting in a shift-work setting.
  • The cultural idiosyncrasies of fire departments.
  • Working with unionized personnel.
  • Streamlining policies and procedures for more efficient fire department operations, and,
  • Making inroads relative to diversity and inclusion in these settings.

Even if you have no connection with, or interest in emergency service settings, I encourage you to listen all the way through this episode anyway, as I think there are plenty of lessons that easily translate to other workplace environments.

I also want to note that Natalie's company, BehaviorLeader, offers training in the areas of Diversity, Equity, and InclusionLeadership, and Business Development. They're even developing a course on inclusion, which you can learn more about here . Be sure to follow their work on Facebook.

Session 161 is brought to you by the following:

  • The ABA Marketing Minute from Rich Brooks at Flyte New Media. If you're wondering how to successfully market your ABA practice, go to takeflyte.com/abaminute, and check out Flyte New Media's free 35 minute lesson on building effective websites.
  • The Professional Crisis Management Association, or PCMA for short. Later on in the show, you'll hear from one of the most popular podcast guests, Dr. Merrill Winston, where he'll talk about how PCMA helps agencies support individuals who exhibit dangerous behaviors. For more info on them, go to crisisintervention.com.
  • If you like what you hear on the Behavioral Observations Podcast, you can support the show by either joining the Patreon group, which provides numerous benefits, or by considering us for your continuing education needs.
Jun 12, 2021

In Session 159 of The Behavioral Observations Podcast, Michael Maloney returns to the show. We spend a few minutes catching up since the last time we spoke (see Session 129), but then pivot to his recent collaboration with the Canadian charity organization, the Amorak Society. With help from the Rotary International's literacy initiative, these partners deployed Michael's reading program, The Maloney Method, to over 2500 children in some of the poorest areas of Bangladesh via a smartphone-based app. 

I won't spoil the all the good parts here in the episode description, but let me just say that this is an amazing story of dissemination that I hope you enjoy as much as I did. 

For those interested in learning more about Michael and/or the reading software, check out his website, MaloneyMethod.com. Michael will also be conducting a series of webinars with Behavior Development Solutions throughout the month of June, so please check those out if you'd like to learn directly from him. 

This episode of Behavioral Observations was brought to you with support from:

  • HRIC Recruiting. Barb Voss has been placing BCBAs in permanent positions throughout the US for just about a decade, and has been in the business more generally for 30 years. When you work with HRIC, you work directly with Barb, thereby accessing highly personalized service. So if you're about to graduate, you're looking for a change of pace, or you just want to know if the grass really is greener on the other side, head over to HRIColorado.com to schedule a confidential chat right away.
  • Consider joining the BOP Patreon. Patreon members get early access to podcasts, bonus podcast material, discounts on CEU events from FTF and other continuing ed purveyors, occasional Zoom hangouts, and more!
  • The Whoop Strap! I've been wearing the Whoop Strap for just a few weeks and I can't tell you how much I've enjoyed getting quantitative information on all aspects of my health, including sleep analytics, heart rate, along with heart rate variability, calorie burn, exercise intensity, and Whoop's proprietary "strain" score. I could extol this neat device's virtues indefinitely to you, but instead, you can go check it out for yourself. To get your first month free, head over to behavioralobservations.com/whoop! Also, feel free to join the Behavior Analysts who Whoop Facebook group!
  • Lastly, check out the 2021 Stone Soup Conference! I challenge you to find a better CEU value in any virtual conference out there. With pod faves like Drs. Linda LeBlanc, Dithu Rajaraman, Jim Moore, Kerri Milyko, and more, there's something for everyone at this event. Use promo code PODCAST to save even more at checkout! Click here for additional details.
May 27, 2021

Rather than writing up a compelling introduction to this episode, I'm tempted to say, "just listen to the whole thing!" and leave it there. In Session 158, I chat with one of my oldest friends and Auburn classmate (obligatory "War Eagle!"), Dr. Jim Murphy from the University of Memphis, about the impossibly-broad topic of Substance Use Disorders (SUDs).

Fortunately for us, Jim has spent over 20 years studying this issue from Behavior Analytic/Behavioral Economic points of view, and he has developed an uncanny ability to discuss these complicated repertoires in easy to understand, everyday terms.

As such, in this episode we cover the following:

  • How the environment often plays a key role in substance use.
  • Why the abstinence model for problem drinkers may not be the best fit for some individuals.
  • Why the terms, "alcoholic," and "addict," are neither descriptive, nor helpful.
  • Why we should be more concerned about binge drinkers.
  • How alcohol increases social interactions.
  • How certain age-ranges are at risk for binge-style use patterns.
  • What is Motivational Interviewing, and how it can be used to address binge drinking.
  • The differences in substance use patterns between young adults who do and don't go to college.
  • How developing hobbies and other values-based activities can help curb problem drinking.
  • What does the research say about Alcoholics Anonymous and similar 12-step programs, and in general, the pros and cons of these approaches.
  • How using a Hypothetical Demand Curve analysis can be used to assess motivation to reduce drinking behavior.
  • Why BCBAs should consider getting training in Motivational Interviewing.

Jim was also kind enough to stick around after the interview for a few more minutes in the commercial-free Patreon feed. In this bonus segment, Jim shares his thoughts on drug legalization in America, particularly the legalization of cannabis. If you're interested in checking this out, as well as partaking in other Patreon-only benefits, check out patreon.com/behavioralobservations.

Here are the links to the resources we discussed:

Please permit me a few quick housekeeping notes:

  • We had a few connection issues, so the audio fades in a few places, but I don't think it detracts from the overall content of the show.
  • As with Session 157, this episode was recorded in December of 2020, so there may be a few time-based references that will seem out of sync... however, I don't think they have much bearing on the overall gist of the podcast.

This episode is brought to you today with the generous support of:

  • Institutional Tier Patron Greenspace Behavioral Technology. For more information on their products and services check out greenspacebehavior.com.
  • The Whoop Strap! I've been wearing the Whoop Strap for just a few weeks and I can't tell you how much I've enjoyed getting quantitative information on all aspects of my health, including sleep analytics, heart rate, along with heart rate variability, calorie burn, exercise intensity, and Whoop's proprietary "strain" score. I could extol this neat device's virtues indefinitely to you, but instead, you can go check it out for yourself. To get your first month free, head over to behavioralobservations.com/whoop! Also, feel free to join the Behavior Analysts who Whoop Facebook group!
  • Behavior University. Their mission is to provide university quality professional development for the busy Behavior Analyst. Learn about their CEU offerings, including their brand new 8-hour Supervision Course, as well as their RBT offerings over at behavioruniversity.com/observations.
  • Consider joining the BOP Patreon. Patreon members get early access to podcasts, bonus podcast material, discounts on CEU events from FTF and other continuing ed purveyors, occasional Zoom hangouts, and more!
May 18, 2021

Dr. Becca Tagg from Del Mar Behavioral Health joins me to discuss the unique approach her agency uses to train early-career BCBAs. This conversation was inspired by the interview I conducted with Dr. Mary Jane Weiss last year, in which we talked about how cool it would be if the field had an ABA equivalent of a medical residency model, so that BCBAs can learn about practicing with a variety of populations.

As you'll hear in the interview, Becca heard this and reached out to say that this is exactly what they do, and we spend the majority of the conversation discussing just how they implement this unique training strategy.

Before we get to the residency topic, we spent a little bit of time catching up since our last chat, and especially focus on how Del Mar's services adapted to the Covid-19 pandemic. To this end, I should also note that we recorded this conversation in December, and as such, some of the references may seem a bit anachronistic, but many of these challenges are still with us in the Spring of 2021, so I chose to keep that part of the conversation in this episode.

If you like these types of topics, I suggest that you join the ABA Business Builders Facebook Group if you haven't already done so. While you're there, say hello to Becca!

Here are the links to resources we discussed:

This episode of Behavioral Observations was brought to you with support from:

  • HRIC Recruiting. Barb Voss has been placing BCBAs in permanent positions throughout the US for just about a decade, and has been in the business more generally for 30 years. When you work with HRIC, you work directly with Barb, thereby accessing highly personalized service. So if you're about to graduate, you're looking for a change of pace, or you just want to know if the grass really is greener on the other side, head over to HRIColorado.com to schedule a confidential chat right away.
  • Consider joining the BOP Patreon. Patreon members get early access to podcasts, bonus podcast material, discounts on CEU events from FTF and other continuing ed purveyors, occasional Zoom hangouts, and more!
  • The Whoop Strap! I've been wearing the Whoop Strap for just a few weeks and I can't tell you how much I've enjoyed getting quantitative information on all aspects of my health, including sleep analytics, heart rate, along with heart rate variability, calorie burn, exercise intensity, and Whoop's proprietary "strain" score. I could extol this neat device's virtues indefinitely to you, but instead, you can go check it out for yourself. To get your first month free, head over to behavioralobservations.com/whoop! Also, feel free to join the Behavior Analysts who Whoop Facebook group!
May 4, 2021

Dr. Adithyan "Dithu" Rajaraman joins me in Session 156 to discuss his work in the Practical Functional Assessment/Skills-Based Treatment literature. 

Dithu is a former student of pod-fave Dr. Greg Hanley, and as one might expect, Dithu approaches his work with a similar degree of humility and open-mindedness. He earned his Ph.D. at Western New England University, and is now an Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland Baltimore County 

As we discuss in the first few minutes of the show, I met Dithu about four or five years ago at APBA, and I was instantly struck with how well he communicated complex ideas in a manner that just about anybody can understand. We've kept in touch since then, and I was fortunate enough to find a time where we could get together for an in-depth conversation on the podcast. 

In this episode, we covered his entry into the field of ABA, the seemingly false distinction of behavior-reduction vs. skill instruction, the basics of the Practical Functional Assessment and Skills-Based Treatment models, dealing with caregiver objections to these approaches, Dithu's research on what he calls the Enhanced Choice Model of skill instruction, implementing these procedures in public school settings, and much more. We also talk about how he stumped me with a question when I was a panelist at an ABAI event…

You’re going to want to stay through to the very end because Dithu provides some really unique advice – not only for newly-minted BCBAs, but practitioners of all experience levels.

The Patreon version of this show involves an extra 45-50 minutes of content, in which we talk about Dithu’s passion for the sport Cricket and field questions from Patrons. Last but not least, Dithu, as some of you might know, is quite the singer, and he ends the bonus footage by sharing his vocal stylings. To get access to this content, as well as commercial-free podcast feeds, discounts on FTF trainings, and more, check out patreon.com/behavioralobservations. And while we’re on the topic of Patreon, Dithu has agreed to do a Zoom call with members, where he’ll take questions directly from listeners.

I should also add that Dithu insisted I give some shoutouts to the following folks who helped him with his research, and they include the aforementioned Greg Hanley, as well as Holly Gover, Johanna Staubitz, John Staubitz, Kathleen Simcoe, Rachel Metras, Robin Landa, and Kelsey Ruppel. This research has been recently published in Behavior Analysis in Practice as well, so I recommend you check it out when you get a chance. 

If you like Dithu's approach and want to learn more from him, my friends at Behavior University are hosting a webinar with him titled: Enhanced Choice Model: Trauma-informed Process for Assessing and Treating Dangerous Behavior. Behavior University is a sponsor of the podcast, and if you'd like to save on your registration for this event, use the code PODCAST at checkout. 

Also, if you're looking for a grad program and you really want to dive deep into this area, UMBC is always accepting applicants to their Master's program in ABA, which is closely affiliated with the Kennedy Krieger Institute, and that Dithu is accepting doctoral students in the Applied Developmental Psychology program. 

In addition to Behavior University and the Patreon Group, this episode is also brought to you by How-to-ABABeing a BCBA can be lonely and overwhelming.  At howtoaba.com, we help BCBA’s feel supported and confident by providing easy to access printables, CEU's and a collaborative community. Also, your monthly pro membership includes access to CEU’s! Along with the community of over 1000 ABA professionals, howtoaba.com will help you save time, feel confident and master what you love! For more information, Go to howtoaba.com/joinbxresource.  When you join today and use code BOP, you’ll receive 10% off a yearly subscription (includes CEU’s!).

Apr 26, 2021

In previous appearances on this podcast and elsewhere, Pat Friman has told the story of Father Flanagan, founder of BoysTown. According to Pat, Father Flanagan often made the following statement when describing his philosophy of helping troubled youths: "there is no such thing as a bad boy, only bad environments, bad modeling, and bad teaching."

For the Spring 2021 issue of the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, Dr. Linda LeBlanc invited Pat to expand on these remarks in the issue's lead paper. In this podcast, I'm joined by both Linda and Pat, as well as Inside JABA regular, Dr. Claire St. Peter, where we talk at length about the "circumstantial view" of behavior as it applies to both clinical practice in particular, and societal trends more generally.

Specifically, we discuss the following:

  • How this paper fits into LeBlanc’s “big idea paper” concept.
  • How “big idea” papers are often conceptual rather than data based.
  • Why Pat stopped presenting papers with original data, and why he started giving more thematic talks.
  • The difference, from Pat’s perspective between giving a talk and writing a journal article.
  • A brief history of BoysTown.
  • Just what is the Circumstantial View of problem behavior?
  • Some examples from Pat’s life where he failed to take the Circumstantial View of behavior.
  • Why the Circumstantial View has failed to flourish?
  • How supervisors can incorporate these views with trainees and other team members?
  • Why it is important to tell a real-life story as a vehicle for explain a behavioral principles.
  • Why Pat’s view of Walden Two has changed.
  • Movies that demonstrate both the Circumstantial and Characterological View of behavior.
  • And much more!

During this conversation, we discussed many papers and other resources. I've done my best to capture all of them below:

In keeping with previous Inside JABA Series podcasts, there will be no ads in this episode. However, this show happens to be eligible for BACB Continuing Education. So click here for more information. And, to help incentivize getting Pat's important message out there, I’m running a 50% 55% off sale from now, through the first week of May, 2021. Use offer code Boystown, to get more than half off any CEU in the Behavioral Observations catalog.

I hope you enjoy this conversation as much as I did. If so, please consider sharing with friends and colleagues!

Apr 13, 2021

I had a great chat with fellow Auburn University alum Dr. Alice Shillingsburg. Alice has been doing great work in the field for decades, as you can see from her bio below:

Dr. Shillingsburg currently serves as Sr. Vice President of Children’s Clinical Services and Training at May Institute. She received her PhD in clinical psychology from Auburn University and completed her predoctoral internship and post-doctoral fellowship at the Marcus Institute. She previously served as the Director of the Language and Learning Clinic at the Marcus Autism Center and held an appointment of Associate Professor at Emory University in the Division of Autism and Related Developmental Disabilities. Dr. Shillingsburg is a licensed psychologist and Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA-D). Her clinical expertise includes the development of language and behavioral programming to address a variety of behavioral difficulties and social communication deficits associated with autism and other developmental disabilities. She has published over 50 empirical papers and book chapters on interventions for children with autism and related developmental disabilities. She is currently an associate editor for the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, editorial board member of Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities, and is past associate editor for The Analysis of Verbal Behavior.

In this episode we talk about:

  • How she got into the ABA field.
  • Our similar experiences at Auburn University's Psychology Department
  • Her work in clinical leadership at The May Institute.
  • Things to avoid when trying to advocate for change.
  • Her upcoming talks (two of them!) at the Verbal Behavior Conference 2021
  • Teaching Social Skills.
  • Using Speech Generation Devices... and so much more. 

As noted in the interview, the VBC is coming up right around the corner. If you do decide to register, use the code Podcast10 at checkout to save some $$$. As we mentioned towards the end of the show, the May Institute is looking for staff to invest in, so click here to learn more about available job opportunities.

This podcast is brought to you by the following:

  • Behavior University. Their mission is to provide university quality professional development for the busy Behavior Analyst. Learn about their CEU offerings, including their brand new 8-hour Supervision Course, as well as their RBT offerings over at behavioruniversity.com/observations.
  • How-to-ABABeing a BCBA can be lonely and overwhelming.  At howtoaba.com, we help BCBA’s feel supported and confident by providing easy to access printables, CEU's and a collaborative community. Also, your monthly pro membership includes access to CEU’s! Along with the community of over 1000 ABA professionals, howtoaba.com will help you save time, feel confident and master what you love! For more information, Go to howtoaba.com/joinbxresource.  When you join today and use code BOP, you’ll receive 10% off a yearly subscription (includes CEU’s!).
  • Consider joining the BOP Patreon. Patreon members get early access to podcasts, bonus podcast material, discounts on CEU events from FTF and other continuing ed purveyors, occasional Zoom hangouts, and more!
Apr 5, 2021

In Session 153, , which I'll get to in just a minute. But to set the context for our conversation, I'd like to start by noticing that I often see the quote by Skinner, "When you run into something interesting, drop everything else and study it," posted on social media quite frequently. In fact, when I plugged that quote into Google, it returned almost 9 million results!

Now, I could be wrong about this, but this notion of following one's interests would seem to fly in the face of developing a successful research career. That is, it may be more productive from a publishing point of view to go an inch-wide and mile-deep into a particular topic, and that academic contingencies perhaps nudge researchers away from investigating a wider range of phenomena.

What does all this have to do with this interview? Well, it seems that Nicole had done quite well in bucking this tendency, and that she has been quite successful doing research across a wide area of clinical topics. And in this conversation, we cover many of these research and practice interests, including supporting individuals with restricted and repetitive problem behaviors, the effects of physical reactions to aggressive behavior, what she's going to be talking about at the 2021 Verbal Behavior Conference, her outreach to Spanish speaking clients and families, and what it's like to pursue so many different research ideas.

She closes out the show with some fantastic advice that is not only applicable to newly minted BCBA's, but practitioners of all experience levels. I don't want to spoil it here in the intro, so you'll want to make sure to listen all the way through. Long story short, this was a fun conversation, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

In this episode, we discussed the following:

This podcast is brought to you with support from the following:

  • Institutional Tier Patron Greenspace Behavioral Technology. For more information on their products and services check out greenspacebehavior.com.
  • HRIC Recruiting. Barb Voss has been placing BCBAs in permanent positions throughout the US for just about a decade, and has been in the business more generally for 30 years. When you work with HRIC, you work directly with Barb, thereby accessing highly personalized service. So if you're about to graduate, you're looking for a change of pace, or you just want to know if the grass really is greener on the other side, head over to HRIColorado.com to schedule a confidential chat right away.
  • Consider joining the BOP Patreon. Patreon members get early access to podcasts, bonus podcast material, discounts on CEU events from FTF and other continuing ed purveyors, occasional Zoom hangouts, and more!

Become a Patron!

Mar 17, 2021

Are you consulting Google to determine how to keep your clients and co-workers safe in this seemingly never-ending Covid-19 pandemic? Well, lucky for you, my guests in Session 152 have done the heavy lifting and thoroughly researched best practices in risk-mitigation in ABA clinical practice.

My guests for this episode include Drs. Zahra HajiaghamohseniMary Caruso-AndersonJennifer SweenySarah Duarte, and Christy Evanko. These Behavior Analysts hail from all over the country and came together to develop a continuum of care screener, which is a tool that ABA providers can use to manage risk in their practice.

In this show, we discuss what risk-mitigation means, why the practice of ABA presents unique risk-mitigation challenges, and steps providers can take to reduce the likelihood of becoming infected with Covid-19. We cover a lot of ground in this episode, and this may be one that you want to share with your co-workers, supervisors, and anyone else who is charged with the health and safety of clients and staff members.

Here are the links to some resources that were discussed:

This episode is brought to you with support from:

  • The 2021 Virginia Association for Behavior Analysis Conference! This year's VABA conference is April 15th and 16th. While this will be a safe and socially-distanced in-person event, it will also be available online, so don't worry if you're not local to the Virginia area. If you do sign up for it, use the promo code, GOMBU - a nod to conference sponsor, Mary Baldwin University, to save at checkout.
  • HRIC Recruiting. Barb Voss has been placing BCBAs in permanent positions throughout the US for just about a decade, and has been in the business more generally for 30 years. When you work with HRIC, you work directly with Barb, thereby accessing highly personalized service. So if you're about to graduate, you're looking for a change of pace, or you just want to know if the grass really is greener on the other side, head over to HRIColorado.com to schedule a confidential chat right away.
  • The Whoop Strap! I've been wearing the Whoop Strap for just a few weeks and I can't tell you how much I've enjoyed getting quantitative information on all aspects of my health, including sleep analytics, heart rate, along with heart rate variability, calorie burn, exercise intensity, and Whoop's proprietary "strain" score. I could extol this neat device's virtues indefinitely to you, but instead, you can go check it out for yourself. To get your first month free, head over to behavioralobservations.com/whoop! Also, feel free to join the Behavior Analysts who Whoop Facebook group!
  • Consider joining the BOP Patreon. Patreon members get early access to podcasts, bonus podcast material, discounts on CEU events from FTF and other continuing ed purveyors, occasional Zoom hangouts, and more!
Mar 8, 2021

In Session 151, I chat with Dr. Nasiah Cirincione-Ulezi about a range of topics, but we spent the majority of the time discussing her recent paper in Behavior Analysis in Practice titled: Black Women and Barriers to Leadership in ABA. Nasiah is the CEO of two organizations, Ulezi, LLC and Pivot 2 Inclusion.

If you haven't read her paper yet, please pause this show and go do so. It's a sobering account of some of the struggles faced by Black women in our field. Nasiah highlights her findings in this conversation, so I don't want to spoil them here in the introduction, so let's just say it's unsettling, yet necessary to hear about some of the challenges faced by Black women in our field. 

Fortunately, Nasiah discusses some potential solutions, and more generally, provides us with some things to think about moving forward. In this episode, we also discussed her upcoming keynote address at this year's Virginia ABA conference, which is scheduled for April 16th and 17th. VABA is offering this event as both an in-person conference as well as a virtual experience. It you'd like to learn more, go to Virginiaaba.org, and if you sign up, use the code GOMBU to save at registration.   

We closed the show out with a brief discussion of what behaviorally-based life-coaching looks like, as that's a service that Nasiah has been offering for some time. And then she closes the show with some outstanding advice for Behavior Analysts of all experience levels. 

Here are the links to the resources we discussed:

I hope you enjoy this conversation as much a I did, and thanks so much for supporting the show!

This podcast is brought to you with support from:

  • Gateway Learning Group, and their Autism Leadership Academy. Designed for new Regional Directors, the Autism Leadership Academy develops motivated BCBAs into successful leaders in the autism field. If you’re interested in running your own regional center and want to learn the skills to do so successfully, check out gatewaylg.com/BOPNote: Immediate openings available in Texas. BCBAs across the U.S. are encouraged to apply!
  • Consider joining the BOP Patreon. Patreon members get early access to podcasts, bonus podcast material, discounts on CEU events from FTF and other continuing ed purveyors, occasional Zoom hangouts, and more!
Mar 1, 2021

In Session 150 of The Behavioral Observations Podcast, I got a chance to finally interview Dr. Vince Carbone. In our conversation we covered a lot of interesting topics.

Instead of covering the ins and outs of Verbal Behavior - the topic it's fair to say that Vince is best known for - we talked about the history and evolution of the field of Behavior Analysis. Specifically, we discussed how he transitioned from aspiring baseball player to Psychology student, what the field was like when he first got started, his early career experiences in the Juvenile Justice and public education systems, and why he started the Carbone clinics.

We spend a fair amount of time on his ideas for sustainably growing an ABA practice, including how he built a pipeline of exceptional clinicians and some of the challenges he sees in the field as a whole.

Vince also shared many anecdotes from his various interactions with B.F. Skinner. Additionally, Vince shared his thoughts on the recent passing of Jack Michael.

Here are a few references that were mentioned in the show:

Vince will be giving two talks at the 2021 Verbal Behavior Conference, which is on April 22-23, and is brought to you by my friends at the Central Texas Autism Center. There will be many other great speakers at the conference as well, and like last year, they invited me to facilitate a panel discussion, so if you'd like to learn more, click here to learn more. If you decide to register, use the code Podcast10 to save 10% at checkout!

Today's episode is brought to you with the generous support of the following:

  • Essential For Living. The Essential for Living is the most comprehensive life skills curriculum and teaching handbook on the market today. It is designed for both children and adults with moderate-to-severe disabilities, including, but not limited to autism. The EFL is extraordinarily helpful in guiding the instruction of all adults with moderate-to-severe intellectual disabilities. To learn more, go to essentialforliving.com, and if you decide to purchase any EFL materials, use the code BOEFL to save 10% off your order now through the end of March!
  • How-to-ABABeing a BCBA can be lonely and overwhelming.  At howtoaba.com, we help BCBA’s feel supported and confident by providing easy to access printables, CEU's and a collaborative community. Also, your monthly pro membership includes access to CEU’s! Along with the community of over 1000 ABA professionals, howtoaba.com will help you save time, feel confident and master what you love! For more information, Go to howtoaba.com/joinbxresource.  When you join today and use code BOP, you’ll receive 10% off a yearly subscription (includes CEU’s!).
  • Behavioral Observations Patreon. A lot of folks have been joining the BOP Patreon Group since its launch in January. So if you're interested in getting awesome discounts for professional development from FTF, accessing an ad-free podcast feed, listening to bonus patrons-only content, and more, head over to patreon.com/behavioralobservations.
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