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.


50th Annual Convention; Philadelphia, PA; 2024

Event Details

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Symposium #110
Diversity submission Working Through the Lens of Cultural Responsiveness in Applied Settings
Saturday, May 25, 2024
3:00 PM–3:50 PM
Marriott Downtown, Level 5, Grand Ballroom Salon G
Area: EDC; Domain: Translational
Chair: Khadija McCarthy (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology)

The topics of cultural responsiveness and cultural humility in behavior analysis have garnered increased attention over recent years. Despite all that has been published and discussed, it can be challenging to translate into skills that can be easily employed by practitioners. Thus, identifying ways in which practitioners can embed behaviors aligned with cultural responsiveness and humility in their repertoire is of great value. The presentations in this symposium highlight ways in which cultural humility, cultural responsiveness, trauma-informed care, and consideration of linguistic differences can improve behavior analytic clinical practice. Presentations will include a conceptual review of culture and how to be a culturally humble clinician with clear examples and non-examples. Presentations will evaluate the efficacy of the use of checklists and goal setting to promote culturally responsive behavior. Additionally, presentations will review bilingual communication training using picture exchange communication. The presentation supports Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) efforts for individuals in clinical practice.

Instruction Level: Basic
Keyword(s): Bilingual Communication, Cultural Humility, Cultural Responsiveness
Diversity submission Cultural Humility in Clinical Practice
KHADIJA MCCARTHY (The Chicago School of Professional Psychology), Somchart Sakulkoo (TrueNorth Educational Cooperative 804; The Chicago School of Professional Psychology)
Abstract: As behavior analytic practitioners look to increase diversity equity and inclusion (DEI) efforts, it is important for practitioners to understand the distinction between cultural competency and cultural humility. Cultural humility refers to continuous learning, being self-aware and increasing self-reflection when interacting with individuals from various demographics or identities (Foronda et al., 2016; Tervalon & Murray-Garcia, 1998). Cultural humility may allow for more equitable outcomes for practitioners as well as service delivery recipients, as some identities may be historically marginalized. Individuals who engage in culturally humble behavior will have ongoing contact with additional culturally responsive information and persist with lifelong self-reflection (Benuto et al., 2018). Culturally humble behavior in clinical practice may reduce discomforting conditions for all parties involved, including practitioners at various levels (i.e., board certified behavior analyst [BCBA], board certified assistant behavior analyst [BCaBA], and registered behavior technician [RBT]), and ultimate stake holders, the recipients of behavior analytic service delivery. Learning Objectives: 1. Attendees will review and discuss culture conceptually. 2. Attendees will receive a conceptual review of cultural humility and how this can be applied at the individual and organizational level. 3. Attendees will receive multiple exemplar training including both examples and non-examples of culturally humble behavior.
Diversity submission Checklist and Goal Setting to Promote Culturally Responsive and Trauma-Informed Practices in Schools
(Applied Research)
CORINA JIMENEZ-GOMEZ (University of Florida), Lauren Beaulieu (Newton Public Schools), Daniel Kwak (Kennedy Krieger Institute), Gabrielle Morgan (Bay Path University)
Abstract: The recent emphasis on culturally responsive service delivery and trauma-informed care in behavior analysis is limited by the lack of training in these areas. There is a need for behavior analysts to develop new skill sets in order to adjust their practices accordingly. We evaluated a treatment package that included in-person training, a checklist, and weekly goal setting. The content of the treatment package focused on the inclusion of culturally responsive and trauma-informed practices in behavior support plans designed for students in a public school. The treatment package was effective at increasing culturally responsive and trauma-informed practices in behavior support plans with both participants, and participants’ weekly goals corresponded with the observed changes in their behavior plans. Further, the social validity assessment suggests participants strongly agreed the training and checklist were valuable and easy to use and reported increases in their perceived abilities to implement culturally responsive trauma-informed care post training. Learning Objectives: 1. Attendees will learn about culturally responsive and trauma-informed care in applied behavior analysis settings. 2. Attendees will learn about components of culturally responsive and trauma-informed care behavior plans.
Diversity submission 

Teaching Bilingual Communication and Language Discrimination Using a Bilingual Picture Exchange (PE) Communication System for Children With Autism From Spanish Speaking Families

(Applied Research)
RIVER WAITS (Louisiana State University), Shawn Patrick Gilroy (Louisiana State University)

The prevalence of non-English speaking individuals in the United States has been steadily growing, with over one-fifth of the current population using a non-English language in the home (Dietrich & Hernandez, 2022). This provides a challenge to the field of Applied Behavior Analysis: providing effective bilingual services to culturally and linguistically diverse clients. Though evaluation of non-English behavioral services has increased in recent years, no studies to date have addressed the added skill of discriminating between two languages (e.g., using Spanish with a Spanish communicator and vice versa). The current studies addressed these gaps by 1) evaluating the effects of a bilingual picture exchange (PE) communication system on manding behaviors in English and Spanish and 2) examining at what point, if at all, language discrimination arises during communication training. If language discrimination did not spontaneously arise, 2a) the effects of a discrimination training procedure for language discrimination between English and Spanish were evaluated. Results revealed the bilingual PE communication system effectively increased manding behaviors for both participants across targets. Additionally, accurate language discrimination spontaneously arose during communication training for both participants across targets with the exception of one target. For this target, discrimination training procedures effectively increased language discrimination accuracy. Learning Objectives: 1. Attendees will learn about linguistic diversity and review the current literature on bilingualism in individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder. 2. Attendees will learn about culturally-adapted communication and discrimination training.




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