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The Behavioral Observations Podcast with Matt Cicoria


The Behavioral Observations Podcast with Matt Cicoria is an interview-based show that features conversations with innovative scientists and practitioners in the field of Behavior Analysis. The podcast covers topics such as Autism, Functional Behavioral Assessment, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Functional Communication Training, Verbal Behavior, and more!


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The Behavioral Observations Podcast with Matt Cicoria is an interview-based show that features conversations with innovative scientists and practitioners in the field of Behavior Analysis. The podcast covers topics such as Autism, Functional Behavioral Assessment, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Functional Communication Training, Verbal Behavior, and more!




How to Disseminate Behavior-Analytic Technologies: Inside JABA 18

In the 18th installment of the Inside JABA Series, Dr. Dorothea Lerman joins Editor-in-Chief John Borrero and I to talk about her dissemination efforts, which are described in the Winter 2024 issue of the journal. Specifically, we talk about her discussion paper, "Putting the power of behavior analysis in the hands of nonbehavioral professionals: Toward a blueprint for dissemination." This paper is definitely worth checking out. In it, Dorothy describes some common barriers to disseminating behavioral strategies and how to overcome them. We then talk about the blueprint she offers for dissemination, which is broken down into seven steps. These dissemination efforts are described in the context of Dorothy's outreach to public school educators, law enforcement personnel, and health care providers, settings where Dorothy and her colleagues have made successful inroads. Not to spoil the show's content too much, but we touch on the alarming stats regarding the percentage of individuals with disabilities who are either sedated or restrained during dental procedures, and what can be done to improve them. Even if you don't have a desire to bring behavior-analytic strategies to a novel setting, upon listening to the conversation a second time, I think there are lessons from this podcast that you can use in your daily practice. Things like gathering information about a particular culture or setting, describing concepts and principles in plain language, conducting experiments to see if what you're doing is working... you get the idea. We also spend a decent amount of time talking about sustaining behavioral practices once they've been implemented in new settings. One of the things that I forgot to mention during the podcast is that if you're really into dissemination, check out the new edited work, "Disseminating Behavioral Research," in which, coincidentally, the ABA Inside Track crew and I contributed a chapter called, "Non Traditional Options for Dissemination." I'll leave it to you to guess what medium we focused on. Lastly, the Winter 2024 issue of JABA features several moving tributes to Drs. Brian Iwata, Hank Pennypacker, and Ronnie Detrich. Dorothy and Dr. Jennifer Fritz contributed a memoriam to Brian Iwata, and it's well worth checking out. In the first few minutes of the show, Dorothy shared some poignant stories about how Brian influenced her career, and John discussed the responsibility associated with curating the various tributes for this edition of JABA. Relatedly, for the next three months, all of these In Memoriam articles will be freely available, so in the unlikely event you're not a JABA subscriber, you can still check them out. Here are the resources we discussed: Putting the power of behavior analysis in the hands of nonbehavioral professionals: Toward a blueprint for dissemination. Brian A. Iwata, PhD: A Life Well Lived. Dorothy's previous Inside JABA appearance (correction: in the podcast, I incorrectly noted that she appeared in the first Inside JABA episode. She appeared in the fourth episode of the Inside JABA Series). Southwell et al. (2005). Strategies for effective dissemination of the outcomes of teaching and learning projects. Houston, TX Police Department 2019 Annual Report (check out p. 18!). Main JABA site where you can subscribe and access selected free articles. Griffith and Ré (2023): Disseminating Behavioral Research (note: Amazon Associates link). Critchfield et al. (2017). On the social validity of behavior analytic communication: A call for research and description of one method. Previous BOP episodes covering law enforcement interventions. Kramer Davis Healthcare (company I mentioned that specializes in providing medical services to individuals with IDD). Allgood and Gravina (2021). Branching Out: Finding Success in New Areas of Practice. Normand and Kohn (2013). Don't wag the dog: extending the reach of applied behavior analysis. (hands...


AAC Use with adolescents and adults with ASD: Session 254 with Andy Bondy

Fan-favorite Dr. Andy Bondy joins me again to talk about... you guessed it... AAC! In this episode, we discuss a paper he published last year in the journal, Advances in Neurodevelopmental Disorders, that is titled, "Issues Related to AAC and SGD Use by Adolescents and Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder." We get into why he felt this paper was necessary to write, how he chose to communicate his thoughts to an audience beyond those of us in behavior analysis, why he likes the term, "under what conditions" so much, what does and does not constitute a "robust" communication repertoire, the role of teaching words like "please" and Andy's nuanced view of this practice, whether the sound from Speech Generation Devices matter, and lots more. We also got into a really interesting discussion on the distinction between pointing to pictures vs. exchanging them with communicative partners, and how that difference impacts Joint Attention. We closed the show by talking about two topics that have been receiving lots of discussion as of late: Spelling to Communicate and Gestalt Language Processing. Lastly, ended the show by taking a question from a Patreon member about Andy's thoughts regarding the use of activity schedules, and whether they qualify as prompts, or something else. Andy's previous episodes Jason Traver's episode All things PECS A critical review of Natural Language AcquisitionGLP is a Fad IG pageSLPs against pseudoscience IG page This episode is brought to you by: The University of Cincinnati Onlineonline.uc.eduHRIColorado.comBehavioral ObservationsBehavior


How to Assess Early Echoic Skills: Session 253 with Barbara Esch

If you've completed a VB-MAPP at some point in your career, you're familiar with the EESA component of the assessment protocol. In today's podcast, I had the chance to talk with Dr. Barbara Esch, who created the Early Echoic Skills Assessment, which has evolved into the stand-alone product called the Early Echoic Skills Assessment and Program Planner. In this conversation, we talk about how Barb got into Behavior Analysis, she shared some humorous stories from being mentored by Drs. Jack Michael and Jim Carr, why she created the original EESA, who the EESAPP is for and who it's not for, and some fantastic advice for newly-minted BCBAs. In addition to these topics, we spent a decent amount of time talking about some speech therapy concepts that were definitely new to me, especially the idea of co-articulation. We also talked about the order in which one should target specific skills. To me, this highlights the importance of collaboration, especially if you don't have a strong background in typical speech development. As a side note, I inadvertently used the acronyms, EESA and EESAPP, interchangeably throughout the conversation, and apologize if this confused anyone. Barb is giving not one, but two talks at this year's Verbal Behavior Conference. Are you coming? I sure hope so. If you can't make it to Austin on February 29th and March 1st, please consider joining us virtually through the magic of There's also an amazing conference workshop being taught by the incomparable Dr. Lina Slim on the 28th. There will be many other amazing speakers and talks at the VBC, so whether you join in person or virtually, I hope to see you there! Here are some helpful resources from our conversation: Where to buy the EESAPPThe VBC event scheduleBarb's other podcast appearances, research publications, and moreOther events where Barb is speaking This show is brought to you by: Behavior Observations


AAC, Science-Based Treatment, Clinical Judgement, and More: The 2023 Verbal Behavior Conference Panel Discussion

Session 252 is the recording from the 2023 Verbal Behavior Conference Panel discussion. The participants were Troy Fry, Drs. Lina Slim, Sam Bergmann, Sarah Frampton, Einar Ingvarsson, Pat McGreevy, and Andresa de Sousa; and the voice at the beginning and end of the panel is Kelle Rich, who founded and currently leads these great conferences. In this Q and A segment, the panel addressed the following topics: As you'll hear in this podcast, when you attend the Verbal Behavior Conference, you'll have numerous opportunities to ask the speakers questions. And not just in the panel itself. If you're there in person in Austin, Texas, you'll very likely have the opportunity to have direct interactions with the speakers between talks, while grabbing coffee, and so on. What strikes me as unique about these events is that they are purposely small and intimate so that one can have these types of experiences. What's in store for the 2024 VBC? First, the conference itself takes place on February 29th and March 1st, and it's preceded by a full day workshop from the incomparable Dr. Lina Slim on February 28th. This year's conference speakers include Drs. Barbara Esch, Eb Blakely, Mirela Cengher, fan-favorite Patrick McGreevy, Alice Shillingsburg, and Hank Schlinger, whom we heard from a few episodes ago. If you can't make it in person, don't worry. BehaviorLive has you covered. Nobody does virtual events like BehaviorLive, and they will broadcast the entire conference with best-in-class audio and video. Papers, resources, etc... 2024 VBCHow to registerUsing a Prerequisite Skills Assessment to Identify Optimal Modalities for Mand TrainingEnhancing Early Communication Through Infant Sign TrainingIdentifying Potential Communicative Acts in Children with Developmental and Physical DisabilitiesEssential for Living"Big Mac" buttonsThe problem of parental nonadherence in clinical behavior analysis: Effective treatment is not enoughAn Evaluation of Instructive Feedback to Teach Play Behavior to a Child with Autism Spectrum Disorder Before we get to this episode, I want to let you know that we’re brought to you today by the University of Cincinnati’s Masters in ABA program. This program is 100% online and asynchronous, so that means you log on when it works for you. Want to learn more? Go to and click the “request info” button. Also, if you want to earn BACB Approved Continuing Education Units while listening to your favorite Behavioral Observations episodes, go to to see the shows that are available for continuing education. Whether its supervision, ethics, functional assessment, or other topics, there’s something there for just about everyone.


How to Make Career Decisions as a BCBA: Apollo Case Study Series 12

In this 12th and final installment in the Apollo Case Study Series, Dr. Jim Moore joins me along with Lauren Elliott, Jeanne Ambrose, and Dr. Lyndsy Macri. In the first few minutes of the podcast, Lauren fields some follow up questions from our episode on DRO interventions. Huge thanks to Jenna Mazzillo for sending in these great questions (and by the way, be sure to follow her in Instagram at @abanaturally). We then moved into a more free flowing discussion of how to make good career decisions as a BCBA. Specifically, when looking for job opportunities, what things should candidates prioritize? From pay to caseloads to benefits and culture, there's no shortage of things to consider. Also, what about supporting career progression? Work/life balance? We talk about all of these things and more, and discuss how each of the panelists have navigated these topics in their careers at Apollo. If you are interested in learning more about Apollo or want to connect with the Founder & CEO, Kim Dean, or Chief Clinical Officer, Jim Moore, you can find them on LinkedIn here and here. To follow Apollo on Instagram, click here, and to learn more about Apollo's locations and services, click here.


2023 Year in Review: Session 250 with ABA Inside Track

Shhh! I'm not supposed to be working this week... However, I am somewhat of a traditionalist, and as such obligated to publish the annual Year in Review show with my friends at ABA Inside Track. So here's a really quick rundown. As usual, we reviewed the passings of several behavior analysts in 2023. This is always sad, but at the same time, we tried to highlight the achievements and contributions of the behavior analysts we talked about. We also recognize that Behavior Analysis, with over 60 thousand BCBAs and BCBA-Ds, is a rapidly growing field, and with these larger numbers comes the increased probability of us missing someone in this process, and we apologize if we left anyone out as a consequence of this. But the Year in Review is not just for remembering the passing of fellow Behavior Analysts. We discussed a few things happening in the field, some updates to our podcasts that we've made and are continuing to make, and talked about the book chapter we collaborated on in the edited text, Disseminating Behavioral Research (note: Amazon Associate link). Other personal highlights of mine this year include starting a new endeavor with my colleagues Paulie Gavoni and Anika Costa that we've named The Behavioral Toolbox, thanks to the huge contribution from Miguel Avila, providing BOP episodes to Spanish speaking members of the community with the BOP en Español series, invitations to speak at the Florida Association for Behavior Analysis and BABAT, revamping, and probably many more things I'm forgetting right now. In closing, it's been a great 2023 for me, despite its occasional challenges. The podcast is coming up on its 8th birthday, with almost 5 million downloads, and it nonetheless continues amaze me that people want to tune in. All of this to say that I'm incredibly grateful for your listenership, and I hope you have a happy and healthy 2024! Resources, etc... mentioned in this episode: Disseminating Behavioral Research (2023)grab some CEUs while you're there!The Behavioral ToolboxIwata, B.A., Dorsey, M.F., Slifer, K.J., Bauman, K.E., & Richman, G.S. (1982/1994). Toward a functional analysis of self-injury. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 27, 197-209. Johnston, J.M., Pennypacker, H.S., & Green, G. (2020). Strategies and tactics of behavioral research and practice. (4th ed.). Routledge.Twyman, J., Pinkelman, S., Kenyon, S., Heward, W.L., Lattal, K.A., & Critchfield, T.S. (2023). Ronnie Detrich (1946-2023): A versatile behavior analyst who demanded more of behavior analysis and education. Behavior Analysis in Practice. Griffith, A.K. & Ré, T.C. (Ed.) (2024). Disseminating Behavioral Research. Springer.Hartley, B.K., Courtney, W.T., Rosswurm, M., & LaMarca, V.J. (2016). The apprentice: An innovative approach to meet the behavior analysis certification board’s supervision standards. Behavior Analysis in Practice, 9, 329-338.Gingles, D., Watson-Thompson, J., Anderson-Carpenter, K.D., Tarbox, J., & Peterson, S.M. (2022). Leading the charge: A look inside the Behavior Analysis in Practice emergency series of publications on systemic racism and police brutality. Behavior Analysis in Practice, 15, 1015-1022.


Critical Thinking About Psychological Concepts: Session 249 with Hank Schlinger

It's kind of a podcast cliche - one that I'm certainly guilty of - to refer to an interview as, "wide-ranging." However, in this case, that description certainly fits. I had the pleasure of chatting with Dr. Hank Schlinger, who, amongst other pursuits, teaches in the Department of Psychology at Cal State Los Angeles. During this conversation we talked about the state of ABA when he entered the field; his behavioral interpretations of psychological concepts like intelligence, consciousness, object permanence, and others; books he's written on parenting and developmental psychology; Skinner 1945 and the idea of explanatory fictions; why it's easy to be a skeptic about some things and harder with others; and, as the title of this podcasts suggests, how to foster critical thinking skills. We also spent a bit of time previewing what he and Dr. Eb Blakely will be presenting on at the 2024 Verbal Behavior Conference. As always, we conclude the show with advice for the newly-minted BCBA. Lastly, Hank is an accomplished musician, and we spent a few minutes on how being a Behavior Analyst influences his approach to songwriting. In fact, Hank has given me permission to play a portion of the song, One More Invention, that was inspired by, you guessed it, behavior analytic principles. As such, you’ll hear that instead of the normal outro music as the show concludes. Here are the links to some of the things we talked about. speakers' listPrinciples of Behavior, 8th editionThe Operational Analysis of Psychological TermsConsciousness is nothing but a wordInstagramHow to build good behavior and self esteem in childrenA Behavior Analytic View of Child DevelopmentOne More Invention This show is brought to you by: HRIColorado.comBehavioral ObservationsBehavior


A Review of Autism Diagnostic Practices: Session 248: Whitney Ence and Elisabeth Sheridan

Drs. Whitney Ence and Elisabeth Sheridan joined me to talk about the diagnosis of Autism. You might be thinking that this sounds like an impossibly broad topic... and you're right. But in this show, we tried to narrow it down a bit to discuss the various routes in which people can acquire an Autism diagnosis, which of these routes represent best practice, the critical diagnostic features of Autism, severity levels in Autism (and the extent to which these terms are useful), the role of intense interests, specific assessment instruments and techniques, and the importance of working with interdisciplinary teams. We also talk about how the diagnosis has changed over the years, including the retirement of terms such as Pervasive Developmental Disorder and Asperger's Syndrome. During this part of the conversation, we also discussed self-diagnosis of Autism, and how clinics sometimes triage screening for individuals seeking diagnoses. Towards the end of the podcast, we did touch on a few terms and topics that are relatively new to the Autism discourse. Specifically, we discussed the term Neurodiversity, the social model of disability, "Severe Autism" as a separate diagnosis, and Pathological Demand Avoidance. It's important to note that his part of the podcast should not be construed as a deep exploration of these topics, as I really wanted to initially focus on what the current state of the science has to say about the diagnosis of Autism as a condition requiring medically-necessary treatment. I also want to draw your attention to what could be considered a companion podcast about the diagnostic characteristics of Autism. I’m in the middle of listening to a long episode from the Huberman Lab Podcast, in which Dr. Andrew Huberman interviews Dr. Karen Parker from Stanford University about the causes of, and treatments for Autism. This is from a more neuro-biological perspective, and thus far, quite interesting. Here are links to the topics we discussed: Does TikTok Provide Accurate Information about AutismDr. Whitney Ence's About Page Dr. Elisabeth Sheridan's About PageCEU's from The Behavioral Observations PodcastDiagnostic Criteria for 299.00 Autism Spectrum DisorderAutism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) NetworkTherapeutic Assessment Institute If you'd like to support the show or its sponsors, check out the following: Patreon subscriptioncontinuing Behavior The University of Cincinnati


How to Understand Problems with Sleep: Session 247 with Emily Varon

Behavior Analyst and sleep educator extraordinaire Emily Varon joins me in Session 247 to talk about how to understand sleep problems in children. In this episode, we cover how she first got interested in the area of sleep intervention, what research and resources she used to expand her scope of competence in this area, how sleep challenges can be met without using extinction, sleep problems specific to individuals with Autism, the impact of screentime on sleep disruption, cultural considerations for practices like co-sleeping, the importance of bedtime routines, and whether wearable devices are actually helpful. You can learn more about Emily's work in this area, get free "sleep kit," and participate in continuing education events at Emily's website, Ready Set Sleep. We mentioned numerous resources in this episode, and I have links for them below: Jin, Hanley, and Beaulieu (2013) JOMO: The Joy of Missing OutSleep Better!: A Guide to Improving Sleep for Children with Special Needs, Revised Edition Whoop Strap This episode is brought to you by: The University of Cincinnati Onlineonline.uc.eduHRIColorado.comBehavioral ObservationsBehavior


Using DRO Procedures in Clinical Settings: Apollo Case Study Series 11

Dr. Jim Moore, Chief Clinical Officer of Apollo Behavior, joins me in the 11th installment of the Apollo Case Study Series. In this podcast, Jim also brought three of his Apollo colleagues into the discussion: Lydia Lindsey, Christina Nylander, and Lauren Elliott. We started off the show with Lydia providing some background on her ABA career and how it brought her to Apollo. Spoiler alert: we managed to fit in a shout-out to Auburn University's ABA program (insert the obligatory "War Eagle" chant! (note: Christina and Lauren were guests in ACSS episodes Six and Nine, respectively). This conversation centered around the use of Differential Reinforcement of Other (DRO) behavior procedures that the Apollo team implemented with two clients. As such, we discuss the following punishment-based Treatment IntegrityThe Seven Steps to Instructional ControlLondon Cabbies Test. If you are interested in learning more about Apollo Behavior, you can follow them on Instagram, LinkedIn, or visit their website here.


BOP en Español 6: Atención integrada, apoyo a adultos con desafíos en el desarrollo, sexualidad, ABA en Brasil, certificación QABA y más con Valeria Parejo

Si no queda claro con el título, este episodio está lleno de temas que son algo esotéricos para la corriente dominante de practicantes de análisis de conducta. Sin embargo, la conversación con Valeria nos aterriza varias veces en la relevancia de la atención integrada para optimizar la colaboración e integración de esfuerzos por parte de profesionales de la salud y equipos multidisciplinarios; la necesidad de la educación proactiva de habilidades relacionadas a la sexualidad y las oportunidades para darles más y mejores apoyos a adultos con desafíos en el desarrollo. Una vez más los temas abundan pero espero que despierten curiosidad y finalmente los inspiren a recorrer caminos menos convencionales pero importantes como lo ha sido para la multifacética carrera de Valeria.


How to improve interdisciplinary meetings with Behavior Skills Training: Inside JABA 17

Frank Bird and Dr. Jill Harper join me, along with JABA Editor in Chief, Dr. John Borrero, in the 17th installment of Behavioral Observations' Inside JABA Series. Both of our guests hail from Melmark. Jill is their Senior Director of Professional Development and Training, and Frank is the Executive Vice President of Clinical Services of this storied institution. As an aside, if you're not familiar with Melmark, we spend a few minutes talking about its history, mission, current services, and more. However, we spent the majority of this podcast discussing the paper Jill and Frank published with their colleagues that you can find in the Fall 2023 issue of JABA. The paper is called, Teaching clinicians and nurses to prepare for and present at interdisciplinary meetings through behavioral skills training. If this sounds like a familiar topic, you're correct. We covered how to improve the and productivity of meetings in my first conversation with Dr. Florence DiGennaro-Reed almost two years ago. While there's something Dilbert-esque about examining the precision and efficiency of meetings, like so many things we talk about on this podcast, my guests make the case as to why this is important in their context. At the same time, reading this paper made me reflect on the various "processes" I have in place for a number of tasks that I have to do. I use quotes to underscore that fact that for so many of these activities, I don't have written procedures for, and probably should put some thought to this. Maybe you're in the same boat? Let me know either way by going to the newly revamped and leaving a comment on the shownotes page for this episode. While you're there, consider signing up for the email list. By doing so, you'll get episode show notes delivered straight to your inbox. Also, this episode, along with many, many others, is eligible for BACB Continuing Education. In fact, it's eligible for highly sought-after supervision CEUs, second only the the even-more-highly-sought-after ethics CEUs! To learn more, head to the CEUs page of the site. If you don't see this one right away, check back in a couple of days and it will be there. Thank you so much for supporting the show with your Patreon membership!


School Psychology, Social-Emotional Learning, and More: Session 243 with Casey Dupart

In Session 243, Dr. Casey Dupart joins me to talk about School Psychology, and in doing so, we touched on a range of related topics including the challenges of military families, multi-tiered systems of supports, socio-emotional learning, school refusal, educational policy, and so much more. As you'll hear in the interview, Casey has been a School Psychologist in various roles across several states. She also provides consultation and training through her company, Embracing Resilience. And while we're on that topic, she has a few webinars and workshops coming up on topics like Multidisciplinary Collaboration and Improving School Climate and Culture. You can find links to these events at the shownotes for this episode, or simply go to and click the services tab here. I believe BCBAs serving in public school settings may be an increasing area of practice. According to the BACB, about 12% of the BCBA and BCBA-D certificants work in educational settings. Also, I was invited to speak about low-tech interventions for disruptive classroom behavior at the recent BABAT conference, and I was honestly shocked to how many attendees were interested in this topic, particularly given the many other excellent talks that were going on in the same time slot. As some of you may already know, I’ve been working with Anika Costa and Dr. Paulie Gavoni on a project called to provide BCBAs and other school-based professionals trainings and tools to help them perform more successfully in these settings. Our first course, Ready, Set, Consult! is now available, and we’ve been really pleased with the feedback that we’ve gotten from our initial participants. We’re also hard at work on getting our second course ready. This one is based off of the talk I gave at the recent BABAT conference. Our working title currently is, When NOT to FBA: 5 Quick Strategies for Improving Behavior in Classroom. I mention all of this to perhaps underscore the importance of being able to work both collaboratively and effectively in school settings. And I think this conversation with Casey will be helpful for BCBAs who are new to school settings, or who simply want to be more successful with the students they serve. Here are some links to resources, etc... we discussed during the podcast: Back to School with PBIS, Session 198 PBIS, School Mental Health, and Supporting Students with Trauma: Session 78Other school-related BOP showsCASEL: Fundamentals of Social Emotional Learning Sold a Story Podcast Chronic absenteeism article More school refusal literature ABA Inside Track episode on chronic absenteeism


Is Self-Reinforcement a Thing? Session 242 with Merrill Winston

Merrill Winston returns to the podcast for what seems to be the umpteenth time (and if you didn't catch the SNL reference we discussed, see here). In this episode, we discuss a presentation he recently gave that dove into the seminal Catania paper, The Myth of Self-Reinforcement. In this episode Merrill distinguishes between procedures and processes, why what we think of as self-reinforcement is likely more attributable to negative reinforcement, and the age-old problem of the term "non-contingent reinforcement." Merrill also spends a few minutes discussing the contributions of Dr. Henry "Hank" Pennypacker, what he intends to talk about at this year's Stone Soup Conference (shameless plug: save at checkout using promo code PODCAST), and rounds out the episode with some more constructive ways to think about self-management. This was a fun episode, and if you enjoyed it, please consider sharing with friends and colleagues. This podcast is brought to you by: The Stone Soup Conference, which is taking place on October 20. Use code PODCAST to save on your registration as well. 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 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 to schedule a confidential chat right away.


Apollo Case Study Series 10: A review of two client outcomes

Dr. Jim Moore and I get back together to talk about a few specific client outcomes that we thought would be helpful for the audience to learn about. In this podcast, we talked about: Skinner's Attitudes of Science Universal Behavioral ProtocolsThe Seven Steps to Instructional ControlShillingsburg, et al., 2018PEAK trainingThe Gulf Coast ABA ConferenceJames HetfieldDave MustaineP.R.I.D.E. skills Jim closes the show by sharing that he has other cases he could discuss. Please let us know if you want more of these stories!


Personal Growth and Leadership: Session 240 with Rich Brooks

Rich Brooks returns to the podcast to talk about how he's grown as a business owner. And while he's in a different industry, there are tons of parallels to what we do in the world of Applied Behavior Analysis. Rich has historically discussed all things digital marketing (see here and here), but this is a more personal story of how he had to step out of his role as a website designer and marketer in order to effectively lead and grow his business, Flyte New Media. Also, I've finally taken my own advice and had his team tear down and rebuild it from the ground up. Yes, I finally had to invest in myself, just like Rich has done, and I couldn't be happier with the outcome! If you want to learn more about digital marketing, check out Rich's upcoming conference, The Agents of Change Digital Marketing Conference, which is going down in Portland, Maine on October 4th and 5th, and will be available virtually for those who aren't in striking distance of one of the coolest cities in the country. He also has a great podcast, which you can find at that site as well. If you have questions for Rich about anything digital marketing, or even restaurant recommendations in the greater Portland area, hit him up on LinkedIn.


Quick Wins in Public School Settings: Session 239 with Anika Costa and Paulie Gavoni

Anika Costa and Dr. Paulie Gavoni joined me in Session 239 to discuss their latest book, Quick Wins: Using Behavior Science to Accelerate and Sustain School Improvement. In our conversation we talk about why they felt this book was necessary, who represents their ideal reader, and whether we ask too much of school leaders. That last point is something I've been thinking about a lot recently, as we oftentimes ask people with no background in behavior analysis to engage in complex activities like pinpointing performance indicators, diagnosing performance problems, and so on. We also talk about the distinction between leading and lagging indicators, viewing relationships as accomplishments, their Quick Walk protocol, and what things leaders should do before providing corrective feedback to staff members. Paulie and Anika are presenting what sounds like a great talk at this year's Stone Soup Conference, which by the way, if you decide to attend, you can save on your registration by using the promo code, PODCAST. Lastly, the three of us engaged in a little shameless self-promotion by talking about the project we've been working on called The Behavioral Toolbox, which is essentially an e-learning site we built for school-based professionals who are interested in learning how to improve student behavior in educational settings. We just launched our first course, Ready, Set, Consult! and we have many more in various stages of development. If you work in these types of settings, please check it out. I should also note that the courses we're designing aren't just for Behavior Analysts. We've done our best to communicate in plain English rather than behavioral jargon so that the content is as accessible as possible. To stay up to date on all things toolbox related, be sure to sign up for The Behavioral Toolbox's newsletter on LinkedIn.


Eye Contact, Joint Attention, and Autism: Session 238 with Francesca Degli Espinosa

What exactly is Joint Attention? How does Joint Attention interact with Eye Contact? What does the literature say about these repertoires, and how does that coincide with self-reports of the aversive nature of eye contact from Autistic people? These have been a few of the questions rolling around in my head for some time. A few years ago, we briefly touched on this subject with my guest today, Dr. Francesca Degli Espinosa, but it was in the backdrop of a larger panel discussion at the 2022 Verbal Behavior Conference. Fast forward to 2023, I recently heard Francesca on Dr. Mary Barbera's show talk about Joint Attention in great detail, so I asked her to join me to extend the conversation. In this show, we cover: Stone Soup Conference Here are some of the links to the many resources we discussed: 2022 Verbal Behavior Conference Panel DiscussionMary Barbera's podcastonline courses Dube et al. (2004)Silva and Fiske (2020)Nuske et al. (2015)Clin and Kissine (2023) A sample This podcast is brought to you by: The Stone Soup Conference, which is taking place on October 20. Use code PODCAST to save on your registration as well. 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 and click the “request info” button. 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


Does TikTok Provide Accurate Information about Autism? Session 237 with Elisabeth Sheridan and Giacomo Vivanti

While I don't personally use TikTok, I am aware of the considerable influence it has across a range of topics. As many listeners can imagine, Autism is one of those topics that generates unfathomable amounts of content on the platform. Unlike other forms of medical and scientific dissemination, there are really no barriers to saying whatever one wants, not only on TikTok, but on any other internet-based media platforms, podcasts included of course. And as you might imagine, this brings with it lots of variability in terms of information accuracy. Today's guests, Drs. Elisabeth Sheridan and Giacomo Vivanti, along with their colleagues Diego Aragon-Guevara and Grace Castle, took up the challenge of analyzing the accuracy of Autism-related content on TikTok. They published their results in a recent issue of the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders in a paper titled: The Reach and Accuracy of Information on Autism on TikTok. In this interview, we discuss the audience scope on TikTok - spoiler alert: it's massive, why they decided to undertake this study, how they categorized the veracity of the TikTok videos they reviewed, what type of content creators had more and less accurate videos, what were some commonalities to the inaccurate videos they surveyed, and lots more. We also spent some time talking about the reaction to this paper, which has been considerable. Here are the links: Aragon-Guevara, et al. (2023Psychology TodayAutism Science Foundation's podcast The Parenting TranslatorSheridanVivantiA.J. Drexel Autism Institute Thanks so much for supporting the BOP on Patreon! If you have friends and colleagues who'd also enjoy getting these ad-free episodes, let them know how they can join too! This podcast is brought to you by: michiganautismconference.orgThe Stone Soup ConferenceBehavior


What is Motivational Interviewing? Session 236 with Callie Plattner

Dr. Callie Plattner joins me in Session 236 to talk about her work in the area of Motivational Interviewing. Callie is the Vice President of Clinical Operations at Mosaic Pediatric Therapy, and happens to be a fellow Auburn grad (War Eagle!). Now longtime listeners will know that we've covered MI on the podcast before. Back in Session 158, my friend Dr. Jim Murphy, who incidentally also happens to be an Auburn grad, discussed MI in the context of helping young adults reduce binge drinking and other substance-related problems. Also, my good friend and colleague, Dr. Paulie Gavoni, has been talking about MI for years. In fact, he's in the process of developing a course on this topic for the project that Paulie and I, along with our colleague Anika Costa, have been working on called The Behavioral Toolbox (brace yourselves for hearing a lot more about this coming up ;-). This background aside, in this episode, Callie gives an overview of what exactly Motivational Interviewing is, and defines the four "micro-skills" of asking Open-Ended questions, providing Affirmations, Reflecting, and Summarizing... the so-called "OARS" skills. Callie then discusses the research she's conducted with Dr. Cynthia Anderson, which will be coming out soon in Behavior Analysis in Practice, and more generally talks about how MI can be an effective tool to build rapport with stakeholders and possibly improve things like staff and parent adherence to behavior plans, therapy attendance, and so on. Links from this episode: Jim JohnstonMosaic Pediatric TherapyThe Behavioral ToolboxChristopher and Dougher, 2009Shaw and Wilson, 2021The Ineffective PhysicianEffective PhysicianDr. Carolynn Kohn The Helpful Response Questionnaire This podcast is brought to you by: The Michigan Autism Conference, which is taking place on October 11-13 in Kalamazoo, and online as well. We’ll hear more about this event later on in the show, but if you’re impatient like me, to go, and use the code MAC10 to save $10 at checkout. The Stone Soup Conference, which is taking place on October 20. Use code PODCAST to save on your registration as well. 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 and click the “request info” button. 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