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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: January, 2021
Jan 21, 2021

In Session 145, I speak with Deidre Sturm and Anne Denning from The Consultants for Children, an agency that supports individuals with ASD based out of Colorado.

Together, Anne and Deidre tell the story of how they completely revamped their agency’s approach to supporting individuals with problem behavior. After not seeing much success with their existing functional assessment practices, they dove deep into the work of Dr. Greg Hanley and his colleagues.

After taking all the online professional development that’s available on the IISCA or PFA approach, Deidre and Anne, along with the rest of their colleagues at The Consultants for Children, began slowly rolling out this process on an agency-wide basis.

During this conversation, we cover how they got started, what they’ve learned from implementing these procedures “in the real world” – especially in the context of telehealth – and lots more.

Here are the links to the resources we discuss:

As an aside, an ad-free version show has already been shared with members of my Patreon group, which you can learn more about at patreon.com/behavioralobservations. Also, if you're a member of the All-Access Patron Tier or above, you have access to 20% discount codes to FTF's online trainings. There are more benefits available too, but this one alone is literally worth the cost on its own.

Session 145 is also 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!
  • 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.
Jan 12, 2021

I've been wanting to interview Dr. Carl Hart ever since I first heard him speak at the 2015 Mass ABA conference. Put differently, when asked who would be a 'bucket list' interview, Carl Hart was usually the first name that I answered with.

Ever since learning about Carl's work, I've admired his ability and willingness to advance science-based arguments in the popular press media. If this is your first time hearing his name, let me share a little of his background information. Carl is the Ziff Professor of Psychology at Columbia University, where he's been researching the behavioral and neuropharmacological effects of psychoactive drugs in humans for nearly 20 years.

Carl's research, along with his personal experience and observations, has shaped an honest and refreshing point of view as to how society treats the behavior of drug taking, and what we need to do in terms of changing public policies in this area. Even if you disagree with his main thesis, I encourage you to listen all the way through our interview. Personally, I have my own homework to do in terms of thinking through whether the full legalization of all classes of drugs is a good idea, but I think in general, it's good to challenge our assumptions and views, even if only periodically.

One of the other things that I like about Carl is that he has been successful in communicating complex and nuanced scientific findings in the area of mass media. He's been featured in the op-ed pages of major newspapers and on network television. Carl has also been a guest on The Joe Rogan Experience, which is, by audience standards, very likely the largest podcast out there right now.

Even more impressive though is how Carl has taken the time to share his views in popular press books. His first book, High Price, was a New York Times bestseller, and I have no doubt that Drug Use for Grown Ups will meet or exceed the success of it. Long story short, I think there are lessons for dissemination we can all learn from him. 

Here are the links to the various sources we mentioned:

 

Today's episode is brought to you with the generous support of 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!).
  • The long-awaited Behavioral Observations Patreon. For the last few years, I've run a private membership group on my website, and I'm excited to announce that I'm transitioning this over to the Patreon platform. There are several different options based on your needs and budget, so if you're interested in getting awesome discounts for professional development from Greg Hanley's company, FTF, accessing an ad-free podcast, listening to bonus patrons-only content, and more, head over to patreon.com/behavioralobservations.
Jan 5, 2021

In Session 143, I chat with John Capodilupo, co-founder of Whoop, the maker of the Whoop strap system I've been talking about for the last several episodes.

At the risk of sounding like an informercial for this neat product, I've really enjoyed using the Whoop strap for the last few months. If you aren't familiar with it, the Whoop strap is a wearable device that tracks all sorts of cool metrics, including sleep, calorie burn, heart rate, and more.

As John notes in the podcast, the folks at Whoop are using data science and machine learning to optimize personal health. And they do this through these proprietary metrics that are generated from the device. John gets into the weeds on this topic, and regardless of whether you're in the market for wearable tech, I think you'll find it quite fascinating!

We also discuss Whoop's involvement in research in detecting the early stages of both Covid-19 and Alzheimer's disease. I think this device and the data it produces, is giving us a window to the future of big data and public health research. Fascinating times we live in for sure!

If you're interested in trying out a Whoop strap for yourself, check out join.whoop.com/matt and save $30 in the process. You can also go to behavioralobservations.com/whoop, and that will take you in the right direction too.

At the request of a listener who's been a Whoop user for quite a while, I've created a Facebook group, Behavior Analysts who Whoop, so feel free to join the group, ask questions, and so on.

Here are the links to the resources we discussed:

I also wanted to let you know that I've decided to start a Patreon for Behavioral Observations. I arrived at this after much consideration. When I first heard about Patreon, it felt like a mechanism for asking for a handout... kind of like an internet tip jar, and I didn't start one because there was not enough value in it for the listener.

Fortunately, Patreon has really stepped up their game to the point where they are able to offer subscribers really cool benefits. Specifically, depending on which membership tier is chosen, subscribers can access an ad-free podcast feed, subscribers-only bonus content, discounts in the Behavioral Observations CEU store, and much more.

Earlier today, I just uploaded a great Q & A session with Greg Hanley that we recorded last spring, which is available for All Access and Institutional level subscribers.

I'm also working with a few different companies and I hope to be able to offer subscriber-only discounts for products and services from other folks in the ABA space. So if this sounds good to you, head over to patreon.com/behavioralobservations to learn more!

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