Keynote Speakers 2018


Presentation: Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB): Updates, Developments, Challenges and Opportunities around the World


Abstract: This presentation will discuss the BACB and BACB certification, including the Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) credential. Data will be presented for numbers of certificants and approved course sequences. The most recent updates, developments and changes to standards will also be outlined. A general overview of certification will be presented along with specific aspects of international growth and development, with a focus on the establishment and support of BACB credentials around the world. Some challenges, along with opportunities, regarding international development and growth will also be highlighted.


Credentialing Behaviour Analysts: History, Evolution and Data-based Decision Making


This presentation will discuss the history and evolution of credentialing behaviour analysts and the necessity to use data-based decision making to maintain a robust, accredited and legally defensible set of qualifications for those working as applied behaviour analysts. Since the establishment of the BACB in 1998, the growth in the number of certificants and associated activities of the BACB – establishment of degree, coursework and experience requirements; processing examination applications, renewals, and appeals; establishing and overseeing disciplinary processes etc.; customer services etc. – has meant concomitant growth in the demands placed on the organization and the importance of Organizational Behavioral Management to meet these challenges.

Dr. Martin has been working as a behaviour analyst (as a clinician, academic, supervisor and researcher), since 1990. He received his PhD from the University of Reading (UK) in 1998 and became a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) in 2002. He was among the first handful of BCBAs in the UK and he was one of the ‘ABA Lecturer’s Co-operative’ that developed the first BACB-verified course sequence in the UK. Dr. Martin has worked independently for many years teaching on a number of BACB verified course sequences, helping to establish others around the world, supervising students and consulting to numerous organisations and families both in the UK and internationally.
Dr. Martin has published research in journals such as the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, The Behavior Analyst, Research in Developmental Disabilities and the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, and he has special interests in the use of technology, media and software related to teaching and research. Dr. Martin was one of the international subject matter experts that last reviewed the BACB Task List and he was also one of the subject matter experts that generated the BACB Autism Task List and the BACB Professional and Ethical Compliance Code for Behavior Analysts. In April 2015, Dr. Martin became the BACB’s Director of International Development to help advance the BACB’s global vision to expand the number of behaviour analysts and training courses worldwide. He lives in London in the UK.

Presentation: Applied Behavioral Economics in Persons with Neurodevelopmental Disorders
 Behavioral economics blends behavior analysis with microeconomic theory. Research in this area reveals that concepts, principles, and measures that economists use to examine choice at the population level have important and useful parallels at the individual level. Armed with this understanding, behavior analysts gain a variety of analytic tools with potential for enhancing instructional and therapeutic arrangements. In this presentation, I will describe some basic tenets of behavioral economics, what one needs minimally to grasp its relevance for practice. I will then discuss studies, from my lab and others, that show how these tools can enhance our understanding of functional relations and improve outcomes in work with persons with neurodevelopmental disorders.

Presentation: Social Motivation Theories of Autism: Is Insensitivity to Social Reward Really the Problem?
 Some theories of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) implicate a neurobiologically driven insensitivity to social reward as the basis for social deficits, and less directly, other core diagnostic symptoms of ASD. This is sometimes referred to as the Social Motivation Theory of Autism and has, on occasion, been used as a basis for avoiding social reinforcers when working with children with ASD. In this talk, I will review and discuss evidence for and against this insensitivity. I will specifically consider: (a) studies on identifying or verifying socially-mediated reinforcers in ASD; (b) studies that compare social and non-social reinforcers in ASD; and (c) studies that compare social reward in persons with and without ASD. I will conclude with alternative interpretations and questions that need to be answered to make sense of these theories.

Iser DeLeon earned his Ph.D. at the University of Florida, where he is now Professor in the Department of Psychology. Recent prior positions include Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Director of Research Development for the Department of Behavioral Psychology at the Kennedy Krieger Institute. Dr. DeLeon is also the current President of the Board of Directors of the Behavior Analyst Certification Board and has served as Associate Editor for both the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis and the Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior. His research has focused on assessment and treatment of aberrant behavior in persons with neurodevelopmental disorders, identification of preferences and determinants of choice, and translation of basic behavioral processes towards enhancing therapeutic and instructional outcomes.