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.


48th Annual Convention; Boston, MA; 2022

Event Details

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Panel #489
Clinical Behavior Analysis: Conceptualizing and Intervening Upon "Psychopathology" from a Behavior Analytic Perspective
Monday, May 30, 2022
12:00 PM–12:50 PM
Meeting Level 1; Room 103
Area: CBM/PCH; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Michael C May (Louisiana Contextual Science Research Group; Compassionate Behavioral Healthcare, LLC)
EMILY KENNISON SANDOZ (University of Louisiana Lafayette)
ANGELA JOYCE CATHEY (Better Living Center for Behavioral Health)
LUISA F CANON (Institute for Effective Behavioral Interventions (IEBI)/ ACT to Thrive)

Early in the history of behavior analysis, Skinner (1953;1957) and Ferster (1972) began to consider the context and contingencies that might drive behaviors considered “mental illness.” Clinical Behavior Analysis (CBA) is the use of behavior analytic methodology to conceptualize and intervene upon behaviors frequently considered “mental illness.” CBA’s development was largely stalled until the turn of the century, as cognitive-behavioral interventions took hold. In recent years, Relational Frame Theory (RFT) and the implications of rule-governed behavior have allowed the subspecialty of Clinical Behavior Analysis to take root (Dougher, 2000). Clinical Behavior Analysis offers the behavior analyst ways to conceptualize and intervene on behaviors traditionally described in terms of ‘mental illness.’ Additionally, Clinical Behavior Analysis may offer psychology a way of unifying traditions and returning to its' roots within behavior analysis.

Instruction Level: Advanced
Keyword(s): ACT, Clinical Behavior, RFT



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