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.


49th Annual Convention; Denver, CO; 2023

Event Details

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Symposium #226
CE Offered: BACB
Improving Supervision Practices With Observational Learning: Lessons Learned From Behavior Analysis and Related Fields
Sunday, May 28, 2023
3:00 PM–4:50 PM
Convention Center 406/407
Area: TBA/DDA; Domain: Theory
Chair: Yelba Yelitza Vallecillo (Western Michigan University )
Discussant: Lisa N. Britton (Britton Behavioral Consulting)
CE Instructor: Lisa N. Britton, M.S.

The Behavior Analyst Certification Board established additional accountability for supervisors with recent guidelines (BACB, 2021). In particular, newly certified behavior analysts (i.e., less than a year) are required to meet with a consulting supervisor if they wish to supervise trainees’ fieldwork experience. These guidelines aim to support newer supervisors and spotlight the critical role of supervision in safeguarding quality training and service delivery. This symposium will present four papers that offer recommendations, resources, and tools which are derived from training and supervision from the behavior analytic literature and related fields. The first presentation will discuss the positive supervision movement in clinical psychology and translate the model into specific behaviors for behavior-analytic supervision. The second presentation will discuss the use of peer feedback in medical training and offer recommendations and tools for supervisors. The third presentation will focus on a responsibility for which supervisors are commonly held accountable: training behavior analysts and stakeholders to conduct functional behavior assessments (FBAs) and discuss the current state of FBA training. The final presentation will share recommendations and resources for new supervisors, including ways to practice feedback delivery and reception, incorporate ethics into supervision, and a model for teaching FBAs.

Instruction Level: Basic
Keyword(s): FBA, PBS, Peer Feedback, Supervision
Target Audience:

The symposium is geared toward new and veteran BCBA supervisors. As such, the attendee should possess basic competence in supervision practices.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) describe the positive supervision model; (2) identify ways to use peer feedback with trainees; (3) describe how training behavior analysts can address barriers with conducting functional behavior assessments, and (4) locate resources that can be used to establish and maintain an effective relationship with a consulting supervisor.
Guiding Supervisees to Greater Competence: The Case for Positive Supervision in Behavior Analysis
AMBER VALENTINO (Trumpet Behavioral Health ), Meaghan Kantrowitz (Trumpet Behavioral Health)
Abstract: The quality of behavior analytic supervision influences many important aspects of our profession, including the quality of clinical care our clients receive, workplace satisfaction for our employees, and the impression we make on society about our science and its impact. To address the quality of supervision, behavior analysts have produced many high-quality pieces of supervision literature over the past decade. This literature has propelled our profession toward a comprehensive conceptualization of supervision and has begun to give supervisors and supervisees tools to ensure supervision is high quality and effective. However, more is needed. In this presentation, we propose that “something more” is the adoption of positive supervision. We inform the audience of the roots of the positive supervision movement in clinical psychology and translate the positive supervision model into specific supervisory behaviors. We will describe the use of a self-assessment, provide specific behavioral recommendations, and a supervisor task analysis to fully facilitate adoption of a positive supervision approach.
Peer Feedback: Recommendations for Behavior Analysts’ Training and Supervision
ELIAN ALJADEFF (Kinneret College on the Sea of Galilee), Avner Fraidlin (Kinneret College, David Yellin College, Western Michigan University, ), Jessica E. Van Stratton (Western Michigan University), Alyssa R McElroy (Western Michigan University)
Abstract: Although performance feedback has been established as a critical supervisory skill, Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) supervisors report receiving little to no explicit feedback training (Sellers et al., 2019). To provide trainees with routine practice opportunities, which trainees may require to develop proficiency, graduate training course instructors and fieldwork supervisors can use peer feedback as an instructional method. The utility of peer feedback has been recognized in the organizational behavior management (OBM) literature (e.g., behavior-based safety interventions; Lebbon et al., 2012; Wirth & Sigurdsson, 2008), and has been used successfully in medical student training for several decades. However, in the context of behavior analytic training and supervision, peer feedback has yet to be established as a training method. Similarities in the behavioral and medical fields (e.g., significance of interpersonal skills) make the medical field a good model from which behavior analysts can learn. This presentation will highlight review findings on the use of peer feedback with medical students, discuss recommendations, and share tools supervisors can use to promote trainees’ technical and nontechnical feedback skills. A discussion of the strengths and drawbacks of different strategies for shaping trainees’ feedback skills will be highlighted.

Review of Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA) Training Procedures – The How, the Who, and Future Directions

NATALIE ROLIDER (Kinneret Academic college), Elian Aljadeff (Kinneret College on the Sea of Galilee)

Functional behavior assessments (FBAs) are a set of procedures aimed to determine the function of a behavior and are considered the gold standard in the practice of behavior analysis (Germansky et al., 2020.; Lambert et al., 2014). FBA procedures can be categorized by method of implementation into three types: indirect assessments, descriptive assessments, and functional analyses (FA; Germansky et al., 2020). While it is widely agreed that conducting FBAs prior to the development of a behavioral intervention is crucial for the success of the behavior analytic service, many behavior analysts skip this step due to lack of time and/or lack of training (Iwata & Dozier, 2008). One way to overcome barriers to the implementation of FBAs is to train behavior analysts and other people involved in the behavioral treatment to conduct the assessments. The purpose of this paper is to review the literature concerning the training of FBA procedures and to summarize the types of FBA procedures that are trained, the characteristics of trainees, and the training methods used. At the conclusion of the presentation implications for training faculty and supervisors will be discussed and future research will be suggested.

Designing a Successful Supervision Journey: Recommendations for New Supervisors
AVNER FRAIDLIN (Kinneret College, David Yellin College, Western Michigan University, ), Jessica E. Van Stratton (Western Michigan University), Alyssa R McElroy (Western Michigan University), Ky'Aria Moses (Western Michigan University), Kayla Jenssen (Western Michigan University)
Abstract: As of 2022, Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) who are certified for less than one year and have met the qualifications to serve in a supervisory capacity are required to meet with a consulting supervisor if they wish to supervise trainees’ fieldwork experience (BACB, 2021). Recommendations that are uniquely tailored for new supervisors, adapted from Sellers, Valentino, and LeBlanc’s (2016), will be provided along with resources new supervisors can use to design a successful supervision journey with a consulting supervisor. Recommendations will discuss variables new supervisors should consider when searching for a consulting supervisor, steps new and consulting supervisors should take when establishing a relationship, strategies for identifying goals and skills from which new supervisors may benefit from targeting during the consultative relationship, and effective ways for incorporating ethical skills and maintaining professional development throughout and following the consultative relationship with a consulting supervisor will be discussed. Tools and resources new and consulting supervisors can use will be provided (e.g., resources for practicing ethical problem-solving, time management resources, a model for teaching case conceptualization).



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