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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: November, 2022
Nov 23, 2022

Editor's Note:

I generally publish three episodes a month, but I wanted to share this bonus, fourth episode with you as I know there will be a lot of people embarking on road trips in the coming days. As such, I’ve chosen one of my earliest interviews to re-release, and it’s my first interview with Dr. Pat Friman (originally released in August of 2016!?!?), who as many of you know, went on to appear in several more Behavioral Observations Episodes.

What I will say though is that if you’re listening to this re-release of Session 10 shortly after it is published, that there is a huge CEU sale going on right now. These huge discounts that are available now through November 27th. And if you’re catching this show after the sale is over, I usually have a few different discounts going so it’s worth checking out no matter when you hear this. 

And speaking of Pat Friman, three of his later appearances on the show are indeed eligible for CEUs, so if you enjoy his message and want to hear more of it, and earn CEUs along the way, then this sounds like a win-win.

In Session 10 of The Behavioral Observations Podcast, I speak with none other than Dr. Pat Friman. Pat is the Vice President of Behavioral Health Services at Boys Town as well as a Clinical Professor of Medicine in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Nebraska School of Medicine.

In today's show, Pat tells the story of how he literally wandered into a career in Behavior Analysis as well as the remarkable story of how Boys Town was started and how it serves children and families today. We then talk about his point of view on functional assessment practices, how he interviews parents, his take on what we refer to as, "kids these days," and Behavior Analysts as parents. With regard to the latter, I accidentally broach some of my own parenting struggles, so you might have some fun at my expense (your welcome).

If you enjoyed the show, please share it with friends and colleagues!

Nov 18, 2022

In the 6th installment of the Apollo Case Study Series, I'm joined by my regular conversation partner, Dr. Jim Moore, along with Christina Nylander. Christina is a BCBA who works at Apollo's Lawrenceville, GA clinic.

In this episode, Christina opens up quite a bit and describes how she encountered Applied Behavior Analysis, her early experiences as an RBT, the mentoring and supervision she's received as a BCBA in the early stages of her career, the value of learning about typical child development, the successes she's had as a clinician, learning the PEAK curriculum, and much more. 

Christina quite vulnerably discussed juggling the immense challenges of being a working mother in our field as well. From sleep deprivation to feeling like one is never fully caught up... she candidly describes how she navigated that process. 

Throughout the podcast, Jim related Christina's points to Apollo's unique clinical and supervision models. If you are interested in learning more about what they do, you can find more information here

Here are some of the resources we discussed: 

In parting, I have two requests: 

First, if you have any questions about this episode or any other ACSS podcasts, I encourage you to hit Jim up on LinkedIn.... even if it is just to say hello. Second, please share this show with friends and colleagues. I think Christina's story is highly representative of many people in the field right now, and this podcast may be helpful to quite a few BCBAs out there. 

Nov 10, 2022

In Session 206, I spoke with Dr. Melissa Gonzalez, BCBA-D, about Pediatric Feeding Disorders, and what Applied Behavior Analysis can offer in this area. 

Melissa is the Clinical Therapy Director at the Siskin Children's Institute in Chattanooga, Tennessee, arriving there by way of Louisiana State University's Clinical Psychology program and the Kennedy Krieger Institute, amongst other waypoints. 

In this episode, we discussed how she got into working with individuals with Pediatric Feeding Disorders, what are the diagnostic criteria for this repertoire, what we know what works for PDFs, the difference between picky eaters and individuals with PFDs, the importance of taking a multidisciplinary approach to treatment, and much more!

This is a topic I'm not terribly familiar with, so I learned a ton. If you have the same reaction to this podcast, please share it with friends and colleagues!

Here are some of the resources we discussed:

This podcast is brought to you buy:

Abaspeech.org - the brainchild of Session 203 guest, Rose Griffin, is giving listeners a 30% discount on all of her courses which include, The Advanced Language Learner, Help Me Find My Voice, and Start Communicating Today. The offer is valid through December 1st, 2022. Go to abaspeech.org, check out the ‘courses’ link, and use the promo code, aba30, at checkout.

The University of Cincinnati Online. UC Online designed a Master of Education in Behavior Analysis program that is 100% online and asynchronous, meaning you log on when it works for you. Want to learn more? Go to online.uc.edu and click the “request info” button.

 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.

Nov 1, 2022

After a long hiatus, Dr. Matt Brodhead returns to Behavioral Observations. In this episode, we discuss the use of punishment in the context of creating effective, ethical behavioral interventions. 

Of course, pursuant to the Behavior Analysis Certification Board's Ethics Code for Behavior Analysts, punishment should only be considered, "only after demonstrating that desired results have not been obtained using less intrusive means, or when it is determined by an existing intervention team that the risk of harm to the client outweighs the risk associated with the behavior-change intervention" (Code Element 2.15, page 12). 

So Matt and I talked about what this means in practice, the role of coercive or aversive events in everyday life, weighing the pros and cons of treatment choices, and much more. 

As we state in the first few minutes of the show, we made the editorial decision not to discuss the ABAI Task Force report on Contingent Electric Skin Shock. It's not that we don't have opinions on this topic; rest assured, we certainly do. But we felt like it would be more helpful for practitioners to hear Matt's thoughts on things like response cost, time-out, and so forth, as these are procedures that are more likely to be used by "everyday" practitioners. 

We also meandered into a few other topics, like the necessity of teaching cooperation and compliance under certain stimulus conditions, the utility or role of descriptive assessments vs. analog functional analyses, as well as other digressions. 

On a stylistic note, because Matt and I have gotten to know each other pretty well, this is an even more conversational episode that usual (versus one that is a series of questions and answers), with the attendant joking around that we usually engage in.

If you're interested in Matt's work, go over to his website, betteraba.com, and pick up a copy of his excellent workbook, Behavioral Systems Analysis and Ethical Behavior. It's a bargain at $25 bucks... and remember, the holidays are right around the corner 😉 Matt is also available for workshops and consultations, and you can reach him through the same website

And while I'm plugging Matt's stuff, the popular text book he co-authored with Drs. David Cox and Shawn Quigley, is out in its second edition (disclosure: Amazon Associates Link).

Other resources we discussed:

This podcast is brought to you with the generous support of:

  • 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.
  • Abaspeech.org - the brainchild of Session 203 guest, Rose Griffin, is giving listeners a 30% discount on all of her courses which include, The Advanced Language Learner, Help Me Find My Voice, and Start Communicating Today. The offer is valid through December 1st, 2022. Go to abaspeech.org, check out the ‘courses’ link, and use the promo code, aba30, at checkout.
  • Behavior Development Solutions For BCBA and BCaBA candidates, they report a 98.5% pass rate for first-time exam takers… plus a money-back guarantee! They also have solutions for RBT aspirants, plus CE courses, and live webinars (most of which are free for anyone to attend). To learn more, head over to bds.com/bop for a special offer for podcast listeners! 
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