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Association for Behavior Analysis International
The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.
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Tuesday, May 29, 2018
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Acceptance and Commitment Therapy Seminar; San Diego, CA; 2018
Invited Paper Session #6
CE Offered: PSY/BACB/QABA/NASP
An Expansive View of Behavior Analysis
Tuesday, May 29, 2018
3:00 PM–3:50 PM
Manchester Grand Hyatt, Harbor Ballroom ABC
Anthony Biglan, Ph.D.
Alyssa N. Wilson (Saint Louis University)
ANTHONY BIGLAN (Oregon Research Institute)
Anthony Biglan, Ph.D., is a Senior Scientist at Oregon Research Institute. He is the author of The Nurture Effect: How the Science of Human Behavior Can Improve our Lives and Our World. Dr. Biglan has been conducting research on the development and prevention of child and adolescent problem behavior for the past 30 years. His work has included studies of the risk and protective factors associated with tobacco, alcohol, and other drug use; high-risk sexual behavior; and antisocial behavior. He has conducted numerous experimental evaluations of interventions to prevent tobacco use both through school-based programs and community-wide interventions. And, he has evaluated interventions to prevent high-risk sexual behavior, antisocial behavior, and reading failure. In recent years, his work has shifted to more comprehensive interventions that have the potential to prevent the entire range of child and adolescent problems. He and colleagues at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences published a book summarizing the epidemiology, cost, etiology, prevention, and treatment of youth with multiple problems (Biglan et al., 2004). He is a former president of the Society for Prevention Research. He was a member of the Institute of Medicine Committee on Prevention, which released its report in 2009 documenting numerous evidence-based preventive interventions that can prevent multiple problems. As a member of Oregon’s Alcohol and Drug Policy Commission, he is helping to develop a strategic plan for implementing comprehensive evidence-based interventions throughout Oregon. Information about Dr. Biglan’s publications can be found at http://www.ori.org/scientists/anthony_biglan.
If our ultimate goal is contributing to the wellbeing of humans, we must achieve a behavioral science that is adequate to addressing the many important problems that threaten human wellbeing in the 21st Century. For this reason, we need a more expansive vision of behavior analysis. Skinner’s original vision argued that a science of human behavior could account for and indeed, enable us to influence every aspect of human behavior. However, to an extent, behavior analysts have tended to restrict their attention to theoretical and methodological principles that are clearly derived from behavior analysis. Research and practice that was not clearly labeled as “behavior analytic” has tended to be excluded from the repertoire of behavior analysts. Although behavior analysis has made great contributions in some areas, other areas have had little attention until recently. In this talk I will argue that the stance that would be most in keeping with Skinner’s vision of a science of human behavior that is adequate to addressing every aspect of human behavior, would be one in which behavior analysts embrace any empirical evidence about human behavior that is reliable and replicable, while at the same time focusing on how that evidence contributes to the goal of prediction and influence. Our question should be “Does it work?” not whether it is behavior analytic. This stance would bring into the purview of behavior analysts many areas of behavioral science that ironically would not exist without the seminal contribution of Skinner and other behavior analysts. Among these are clinical interventions, research on relational framing, behavioral medicine, and prevention science.
Board certified behavior analysts; licensed psychologists; graduate students.
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