with Heather Gilmore, MSW, LLMSW, BCBA


Self-Management: How to Change Your Own Behavior

What is Self-Management?
Self-management is when a person applies behavior change strategies in a way that promotes a predetermined change in their behavior (Cooper, Heron, & Heward, 2014).

Self-management can involve very small actions by the person or it can involve much more complex plans and actions.

Self-management assumes that a person is influenced by their environment but that the person himself can change the environment to then change his own behavior.
Purpose of Self-Management
There are four different ways that...


Considering the Biological and Medical Variables that Affect the Client

One of the ethical guidelines for behavior analysts is to "consider biological/medical variables that may be affecting the client" (as identified in item G-02 in the BACB Professional and Ethical Compliance Code for Behavior Analysts).

This can be a challenging task to accomplish in the context of everyday clinical practice. Sometimes its hard to know what behaviors are due to biological or medical variables and what behaviors are solely due to antecedent and consequence variables.
Consult with doctors...


Benefits of Optimism (and its Relevance to ABA)

Optimism has been studied throughout research for many years. Optimism is known to impact a person's mental health, physical health, and quality of life.
How a person views their current and future experiences plays a role in whether they develop mental health disorders or even physical illness.
People who are more optimistic are more likely to see the positive side of a challenging or stressful situation. So, for more optimistic people, conflicts and stress in...


Hierarchy of Needs: Considering Basic Needs in Order to Promote Greater Learning and Development

It is important to consider a person's basic needs, whether you are a parent taking care of a child or a therapist providing services to a client, or a teacher teaching a class of students. Everyone has a set of basic needs that must be successfully addressed before more advanced learning and development can take place.

The most common theory on the basic needs of human beings was developed by Abraham Maslow in 1943. Let's review the...


Client Choice: Use Client Preferences to Increase Satisfaction and Improve Outcomes

Using client preferences in applied behavior analysis is beneficial to the client's satisfaction with treatment as well as to the possibility of the client experiencing positive outcomes from the treatment.
Gain Consent to Increase Client Satisfaction
It is important to gain consent for services which includes obtaining assent from a child if you work with youth. Youth are legally required to have a guardian or caregiver who offers consent for their services. However, the minor child can give...


Strengths-Based Intervention: Identify and Use Strengths with Your Clients to Improve Well-Being

Improve Quality of Life
The ultimate goal of applied behavior analysis is to improve the quality of life and overall well-being of the clients that are receiving services. With this end in mind, there are a variety of methods that can be utilized to help you work toward this objective.

ABA is a fairly new field compared to other areas of the service industry such as education or psychology. Within ABA, there are specific principles and strategies that can be used to help a client improve their well-being and reach personal goals.


Using Resiliency Theory to Promote Positive Development in Youth

Alternative to Addressing Maladaptive Behaviors
When working with youth of all ages, clinicians often focus on what is going wrong and what problem behaviors the child is displaying. Clinicians may look at what distress the child is experiencing themselves or what distress they are causing for others.

While it is important to address maladaptive behaviors when working with youth, especially since this is often the primary cause of why a parent would bring the child in...


RBT Study Topics Collection from Reflections on Applied Behavior Analysis

To help you organize your study efforts or to help you review ABA concepts and task list items, here is the collection of articles published by Reflections on Applied Behavior Analysis that are designed specifically as guidance for registered behavior technicians or those who are studying to become an RBT.

How to Become a Registered Behavior Technician
Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) Study Topics:...


Highlights from 2019: Reflections on Applied Behavior Analysis Blog

This post will be a collection of articles published in the blog: Reflections on Applied Behavior Analysis, specifically articles that were featured throughout 2019.
ABA Concepts and Application

Offering Choices: Benefits of Choice-Making for Children
Using the Matching Law in a Home Setting: An Alternative Strategy to Simply Ignoring a Behavior
Building Rapport: A Way of Looking at Strengthening Relationships
Differential Reinforcement: Using Differential Reinforcement...


What is Applied Behavior Analysis: Definition and Scientific Principles of ABA

What is Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)?
Let's review a basic explanation of what applied behavior analysis means.

One of the most popular and most widely accepted definitions of applied behavior analysis comes from the writings of Cooper, Heron, and Heward (2014). These authors state the following definition of applied behavior analysis in their book: Applied Behavior Analysis:
Applied behavior analysis (ABA): The science in which tactics derived from the principles of behavior are applied to improve socially significant behavior...