Hawai'i Association for Behavior Analysis

To educate, advocate for, and support both providers and consumers 
of Applied Behavior Analysis.


Keynote Speaker: Philip Hineline, Ph.D.

Title:  Story-Telling, Establishing Conditions, Narrative, and Behavior Analysis

Abstract: Telling and listening to stories would seem remarkable, even bizarre, if observed in some other species. Commonplace in humans, however, such behavior has not received much attention from the natural-science viewpoint of behavior analysis, which has focused on more pragmatic behavior-environment relations. The potency of stories for maintaining the behavior of reading and listening can be understood in terms of establishing stimuli that potentiate particular consequences of reading/listening as reinforcers; A special diagramming technique provides a systematic account of this while also showing how a story is organized (It is also useful for the analysis of behavior-analytic interventions). Narratives are typically more formalized stories that are commonly understood as providing coherence, with implications ranging from the clinical to the political to the cultural. This points to the discrimination of coherence, itself, as a reinforcing consequence. Behavioral interventions are well-characterized as stories that need to fit within the more extended narratives of the individuals involved, and of the surrounding culture.

Keynote Speaker: Byron Wine, Ph.D., BCBA-D

Title: Applying OBM to Human Services

Abstract: Organizational Behavior Management (OBM) has been applied successfully to numerous industries since the late 1960s. One industry that has quietly benefited from the work of a small number of OBM researchers has been human services; however, this work has not been widely disseminated. The past ten years of unprecedented growth in ABA, has resulted in many behavior analysts being confronted more and more with challenges that many mature industries have faced for decades. I believe the sudden growth of our field is largely responsible for increased interest in OBM. This lecture will present relevant research on OBM and human services, and where the research is missing, present recommendations from my practice to provide strategies for behavior analysts to incorporate sound OBM strategies into their organizations.

Invited Speaker: Justin B. Leaf, Ph.D., BCBA-D

Title:  Progressive ABA as it Relates to Individuals Diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Recent Advancements in Research and Clinical Practice

Abstract: Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is a science and, therefore, involves progressive approaches and outcomes. In this presentation we will argue that the spirit and the method of science should be maintained in order to avoid reductionist procedures, stifled innovation, and rote, unresponsive protocols that become increasingly removed from meaningful progress for individuals diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). We describe this approach as progressive. In a progressive ABA approach, the therapist employs a structured yet flexible process, which is contingent upon and responsive to child progress. We will describe progressive ABA and provide rationales for both the substance and intent of ABA as a progressive scientific method for improving conditions of social relevance for individuals with ASD. We will provide the audience with data from recent studies on how Progressive ABA can be implemented to individuals diagnosed with ASD; as well as our findings in clinical practice.

Invited Speaker: Tyra P. Sellers, JD, Ph.D., BCBA-D

Title: ETHICS Update from the Behavior Analyst Certification Board

Abstract: The content will cover several updates to the Ethics Department reporting mechanisms and resources, as well as information about common code violations. 

Invited Speaker: Ellie Kazemi, Ph.D., BCBA-D

Title: Leadership and Supervision

Abstract: The growth of behavior analysis has been remarkable. Now, it is time for us to take a step back, think of what has made us successful thus far, and consider how supervision and leadership can cultivate our continued growth.

Invited Speaker: Jonathon Tarbox Ph.D., BCBA-D

Title: Practicing Acceptance and Commitment Training inside Behavior Analysis: Foundations and Latest Developments

Abstract: B.F. Skinner always envisioned behavior analysis as a comprehensive science of all human behavior, including private events. In recent decades, behavior analysts have begun to address the complex overt and covert behaviors of typically developing adults as derived relational responding and have developed procedures for producing substantial changes in socially meaningful overt behaviors, via intervening on the clients’ verbal repertoires that interact with such overt behaviors in complex ways. Most of this work has been done under the umbrella of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). The goal of interventions based on ACT is to disrupt control of maladaptive behaviors by rigid and ineffective rules, particularly rules that describe short-term negative reinforcement contingencies and reorient behavior to be controlled to a greater degree by rules describing longer-term positive reinforcement contingencies. Although ACT was originally developed as a behavior analytic approach to treating traditional psychological disorders, it is based on a behavior analytic interpretation of the role of complex verbal behavior in overt behavior change and is therefore equally applicable to bringing about valued behavior change in any behavioral situation in which a person’s verbal behavior might be relevant to their overt behavior change. This presentation will provide a behavioral conceptual analysis of ACT procedures in terms of behavioral functional relations, will present recent data on the use of ACT inside of ABA, and will discuss issues related to scope of practice.

Accepted Speaker: Carla Schmidt, Ph.D., BCBA-D

Title: A University Based Model for Changing Outcomes for Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

Abstract:  Competency in work activities is one of the strongest predictors of mental health and life satisfaction in typically developing adults (Schulenberg et al., 2004) as well as adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD; Taylor, Smith, & Mailick, 2014). Greater vocational independence can result in improvements along a variety of axes, including: maladaptive behaviors, activities of daily living, and core features of autism spectrum disorder (ASD; Taylor, Smith, & Mailick, 2014), whereas high levels of under- or unemployment negatively impact adult development. Unfortunately, individuals with ASD/IDD are vastly under- and unemployed compared to their typically-developing peers and among other adults with disabilities (Shattuck et al., 2012; Taylor & Seltzer, 2012). Community-based programs that provide employment supports for adults with ASD/IDD can be instrumental in acquiring and maintaining employment (Nicholas, et. al., 2015) and can lead to higher job levels and increased salaries (Hillier et al., 2007; Mawhood & Howling, 1999), therefore impacting overall quality of life. The purpose of this presentation is to present the work of the Advancement and Transition Services (ATS) at the University of Cincinnati, a university-based model focused on community integration and employment for individuals with IDD. ATS consists of three programs: Transition and Access Program (TAP), Impact Innovation, and Collaboration for Employment & Education Synergy (CEES). TAP is a four-year college experience program for students with IDD. Impact Innovation is a community integration program for adults with significant communication and behavioral challenges associated with ASD. CEES is a high-school transition program focused on social communication and vocational skill development. The specific focus of this presentation will be sharing evidence-based practices implemented across ATS programming that have been central to the success for our participants.

Accepted Speakers: 

Johanna Higgins, Ph.D., BCBA 

William Higgins Ph.D., LMHP, BCBA-D

Title: Expanding the Reach of Behavior Analysis: Parent Training in Early Intervention and Primary Care

Abstract:  This symposium will include two presentations followed by a discussion on the relevance of these topics to behavioral health services across the Hawaiian islands guided by Kristen Koba-Burdt. First, Dr. Johanna Higgins will discuss key principles of delivering Early Intervention (EI) services (Infant and Toddler Programs, Part C of IDEA). She will discuss the Hawai’i Early Intervention Section (EIS), models of EI service delivery, and naturalistic-behavioral approaches behavior analysts can train parents to use in the home. Then, she will propose next steps in bridging the gap and improving collaboration between EI providers and behavior analysts. 

In the second presentation, Dr. William Higgins will describe his applications of behavior analysis within Integrated Pediatric Behavioral Health in primary care settings. He will discuss providing outpatient behavioral health services within a consultative model and describe how the Munroe-Meyer Institute at the University of Nebraska Medical Center is using this model to increase access to parent training across the state of Nebraska. He will share the benefits of working within a primary care team and the use of telehealth to connect with families in rural areas. Then, Dr. Higgins will share his research focused on training parents of children with autism via telehealth.  

Discussant: Kristen Koba-Burdt

Speaker:  Angela Broff, MSCP, BCBA, LBA

Title:  Generalization in the Home and Community Settings: Working Together to Support Meaningful Change.

Abstract:  Presidential Address