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.

  • AAB: Applied Animal Behavior

    AUT: Autism

    CBM: Clinical/Family/Behavioral Medicine

    CSS: Community, Social, and Sustainability Issues

    DDA: Developmental Disabilities

    EAB: Experimental Analysis of Behavior

    EDC: Education

    OBM: Organizational Behavior Management

    PCH: Philosophical, Conceptual, and Historical Issues

    TBA: Teaching Behavior Analysis

    VRB: Verbal Behavior

14th Annual Autism Conference; Miami, FL; 2020

Workshop Details

Previous Page


Workshop #W2
Practical Functional Assessment of Severe Problem Behavior: A Process Primer and Update
Sunday, February 23, 2020
2:00 PM–4:50 PM
Regency Ballroom
Area: AUT; Domain: Service Delivery
CE Instructor: Gregory Hanley, Ph.D.
GREGORY HANLEY (Western New England University)

Dr. Hanley has been applying the principles of learning to improve socially important behaviors of children and adults with and without disabilities just under 30 years. He worked and trained at the Kennedy Krieger Institute, was degreed at the University of Florida, was tenured at the University of Kansas, and directed the Behavior Analysis Doctoral Program and Life Skills Clinic at Western New England University (WNEU).


Dr. Hanley has published over 100 book chapters and articles in peer-reviewed journals in areas such as the assessment and prevention of problem behavior, teaching tactics for young children, and evidence-based values. Dr. Hanley is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association (Div. 25), past Associate Editor of The Behavior Analyst, and past Editor of the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis and of Behavior Analysis in Practice.


He currently serves as a Research Professor at WNEU, an Adjunct Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, and CEO of FTF Behavioral, an international training and consulting group based in Worcester Massachusetts. This group of researcher-practitioners supports professionals attempting to create meaningful outcomes with practical functional assessment processes and skill-based treatments for addressing emerging and severe problem behavior, intractable stereotypy, food selectivity and mealtime problem behavior, and sleep problems.

Description: Through lecture and interactive discussion, attendees will be introduced to the latest iteration of the practical functional assessment process that allows for the development of skill-based treatments capable of producing socially valid outcomes. The procedures for maximizing the safety and efficiency of the analysis will be emphasized. The effective and parent-validated treatment process for problem behavior will also be described, but with an emphasis on the generally applicable process for teaching contextually appropriate behavior following the shaping of a communication and toleration repertoire. The relevance of an “enhanced choice” model for further minimizing risks and expanding practitioner’s scope of practice will also be reviewed.
Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants should be able to: (1) defend the practice of relying on synthesized reinforcement contingencies when functionally analyzing problem behavior and articulate the advantages of functional control over functional classification; (2) describe the tactics for improving the safety and efficiency of the functional analysis part of the process; (3) describe strategies for implementing the PFA process within an open-door model that obviates the use of physical management and minimizes the possibly of escalated problem behavior; (4) articulate a generally applicable process for teaching contextually appropriate behavior following the shaping of a communication and toleration repertoire.
Activities: Workshop objectives will be met through a balanced presentation of lecture, video observation, and group discussion. Supplemental handout materials for implementing the assessment and treatment processes will be provided.
Audience: Board certified behavior analysts; licensed psychologists; graduate students.
Content Area: Practice
Instruction Level: Intermediate



Back to Top
Modifed by Eddie Soh