ACT for Behavior Analysts - Houston

Printer-friendly version
Apr 28 2018 - 8:30am - Apr 29 2018 - 5:00pm
World Region: 
North America
United States
Tom Szabo, PhD, BCBA-D, and Adel Najdowski, PhD, BCBA-D

Have you ever wondered how applied behavior analysts might respond to an individual’s private events while staying within our scope of practice and maintaining the highest levels of scientific rigor? Consider these snapshots:

Jules comes to you and says, “I feel so terribly wounded every minute of the day, and I can’t talk to anyone.” What do you say? How do you assess the function of this utterance and reach across the human divide to evoke socially important behavior that you might characterize as resilient or agile?

Frank pouts when kids try to change the rules of his favorite games and reports that others are laughing at him behind his back. You address the pouting and rule rigidity, but Frank tells you they’re still laughing at him behind his back. You observe, and you don’t see what Frank is reporting. How do you address the matter with Frank in a way that is validating but not encouraging of his self-pitying and defensive behaviors? How do you pinpoint and bring Frank’s behavior under the influence of important variables that might change his overall experience of others?

Now on a broader scale: has it ever bugged you that people are always telling us to “Save the world with behavior analysis,” but no one is asking behavior analysts to help solve problems of deep social significance? For example, how many times have clients come to you to help them deal with bigoted behavior, traumatic events, sexual violence, or bullying? And if they did, do you have the professional skills to handle such conversations with compassion and caringly bring your client’s focus under the control of relevant contingencies of reinforcement?

Applied behavior analysts have developed potent technologies for igniting socially significant behavioral change in a variety of settings. This workshop brings to behavior analysts new tools with which to establish the need for, occasion, and reinforce responding that is sensitive to changes in the prevailing contingencies of reinforcement. We will examine the practical tools and basic science undergirding acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) and how you might be able to make use of ACT strategies in your practice, while staying close to the BACB Task List 4th edition and our scope of practice as outlined by Baer, Wolf, and Risley (1968).

Specifically, we provide:
Practical training on how to use ACT procedures to help people spend less time struggling with private events and more time engaging in behavior that accomplishes important outcomes. This applies to higher functioning children with autism, their parents, teachers, to yourself, and to the staff that you work with.
In depth, accessible coverage of the major lines of basic human operant research that led to the development of relational frame theory and ACT: rule insensitivity, delay discounting, equivalence, and relational framing.
Clear definitions of the focuses of ACT that are appropriate for behavior analysts versus those that are better left to those in psychotherapy and counseling fields.
Note: this workshop is not about treating psychological disorders. It is about helping behavior analysts address a fuller range of human behavior and, in doing so, help clients, clients’ parents, and behavior analysts themselves, to be more effective in achieving their daily goals.