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with Heather Gilmore, MSW, LLMSW, BCBA

Relational Frame Theory and ABA Practice

Denis O’hora and Kristen Maglieri published an article on goal statements and goal-directed behavior in the Journal of Organizational Behavior Management.
Their abstract is the following:
Goal setting has consistently been shown to increase performance under specific conditions. These goal setting effects have previously been explored from both a cognitive perspective and in terms of traditional behavioral concepts. We highlight limitations of these approaches and propose a novel account based on Relational Frame Theory. This account focuses on both the content of goal statements and the contingencies that maintain goal-directed behavior. The content of goal statements is analyzed in terms of relational networks established for employees. We then detail how the current account explains the major effects noted in previous empirical studies. Two broad types of rule following contingencies that support goal-directed behavior, pliance and tracking, are then described. We then outline how these different types of contingencies results in the variety of goal-directed behavior observed in organizations. Throughout we relate this two-part approach to goal setting to specific recommendations for practice and future basic research.
Using relational frame theory in your business can help you to advance your overall business health and success.
Relational frame theory can help businesses to improve their efforts at business development and achieving success according to their goals. By better understanding language and how people relate and make meaning of things, such as through an RFT perspective, businesses can develop goals and strategies based upon how they want potential customers, current customers, potential employees, and current employees to view them as an organization.
For instance, in marketing practices, whether to advertise a job opening or to promote your company to bring in clients, businesses can present their organization in particular ways to relate to others.
Consider using the online directory at: Local Autism Services to personalize the message that you want to send to potential clients.
Denis O’hora & Kristen A. Maglieri (2006) Goal Statements and Goal-Directed Behavior, Journal of Organizational Behavior Management, 26:1-2, 131-170, DOI: 10.1300/J075v26n01_06
Roche, B., Barnes-Holmes, Y., Barnes-Holmes, D., Stewart, I., & O’Hora, D. (2002). Relational frame theory: A new paradigm for the analysis of social behavior. The Behavior analyst, 25(1), 75–91. doi:10.1007/bf03392046
Relational Frame Theory and ABA Practice

Heather Gilmore, MSW, BCBA

Heather is a freelance writer, Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA), and social worker. Heather takes interest in topics related to parenting, children, families, personal development, health and wellness, applied behavior analysis, as well as Autism, ADHD, Depression and Anxiety. Contact Heather if you would like to inquire about obtaining her freelance writing services. You can view more articles and resources from Heather at and email her at [email protected] You can also advertise your autism services at one of Heather's websites: Heather is the developer of the "One-Year ABA Parent Training Curriculum."


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APA Reference
Gilmore, H. (2019). Relational Frame Theory and ABA Practice. Psych Central. Retrieved on July 9, 2020, from