Goal Update – June 2017

goals-2017

Halfway through the year… how are things looking? Time to check in and see how /i am doing!

  1. Obtain my BCaBA.
    By the end of December 2017, I will have obtained my certification to call myself a BCaBA.
    I’ve just finished the last subject. Despite some very recent changes from the Board, I have applied for the August testing period, and am waiting to hear back about being able to test! Either way, almost there. I’m also really enjoying the courses, and finding so many new ways to enhance my current programs and plans.
  2. Maintain Client Case Load
    By the end of December 2017, I will have at least 15 clients.
    Still holding strong at 15 clients, an still looking to reduce the load further, with some clients exiting, some moving away, or transitioning to different services.
  3. Have 75 newsletter subscribers.
    By the end of December 2017, I will have at least 75 people subscribed to my monthly newsletters.
    Still at 66 subscribers!
  4. Have 750 “likes” on Facebook.
    By the end of December 2017, I will have 750 ‘likes’ on Facebook.
    Currently reaching 635 people, so getting there!
  5. Have at least 1 poster/presentation at a conference.
    By the end of December 2017, I will have had either a presentation, or a poster, at at least one conference.
    Information about ABAA has come out, so I will be having a think about what I want to put together. I have a few things that are extensions of previous research that I should probably put together. Trying to find time, while planning to study, is a bit tricky! (But I think putting a research project together will be a great way TO study, so… :D)
  6. Attend at least 2 conferences – 1 ABA, and 1 non-ABA.
    By the end of December 2017, I will have attended at least two conferences – 1 ABA specific, and 1 not ABA specific (Autism, Special Ed etc).
    Not sure if I will get there! With the additional study, I may not be able to make it to another conference this year. I will most definitely be able to go to at least 1 ABA specific conference. I’ll have to have a look for something.
  7. Participate in 4 journal clubs.
    By the end of December 2017, I will have participated in at least 4 online journal clubs, by responding to at least 3 questions about each article.
    2 down, 2 to go!
  8. Create fact sheets about common ABA terms/strategies for families, educators etc
    By the end of December 2017, I will have created at least 6 face sheets about common ABA terms/strategies for use by families, therapists, educators etc.
    Haven’t done anything formal. I’ve definitely created individualised ones, but am working on what are the main ideas/pieces of information, that would be handy for people to know, about any clients/students of theirs, who are receiving ABA services.
Goal Update – June 2017

Study Time!

I have recently completed another subject at Florida Institute of Technology in my Graduate Certificate of ABA. So preparing for the final exam involved utilising my knowledge and understanding of ABA principles, to help.

The course involves a lot of video-lecture watching, and reading, so I use the Premack Principle, which is essentially a ‘first / then’.

I would set myself up with the ‘first (less preferred)’ task of watching hours of video lectures, and this would lead to the ‘then (highly preferred task)’ of something reinforcing (usually food, or playing with my puppy) 🙂

I also went a little crazy at Officeworks, purchasing Post It notes of various sizes. I used these to jot down guided notes (of sorts), from the lectures, and from class meeting notes.

Post its

Post It Notes from Office Works in various colours, with study notes on them.

Another of my favourite stores, Kikki K, has a handy A5 study guide sheet, which breaks down the tasks that need to be done, with upcoming assignments, and even a little box, to write in your reinforcer!

All of this study did pay off, as I passed the course! One more to go, before I can sit for my first exam!

If you want to find out more about FIT’s ABA Course, follow the link.

Study Time!

3/4 of the year done – how am I doing?

September is finishing up, and that takes us to 3/4 of the year gone! Time for another goals update! Original Goals Post can be found here. The goals are on this page in the blue colour

Goals for 2016

1. Obtain my Behaviour qualification.

By the end of June 2016, I will have completed two more subjects through Florida Institute of Institute.

By the end of June 2016, I will have completed my 50 supervised hours of experience.

By the end of August 2016, I will have sat the required exam, and eagerly be awaiting my results!

Unfortunately, I have been unsuccessful in reaching this goal. A few different things have cropped up throughout the year, and this will not be happening in 2016. However, lots of changes happening in 2017, which will hopefully open up the possibility to continue.

The good news is, a sub-goal of this (50 hours supervision) has been completed!

2. Become a registered provider under NDIS services.

By the end of December 2016, Great Start Behaviour Services will be registered through the NDIS to provide at least one service support.

Done! (Well, it was completed last time I checked in), but I now am working with a few NDIS clients.

3. Attend and participate in at least two ABA conferences.

By the end of December 2016, I will have attended two different ABA based conferences, and participated either by: presenting a poster, presenting a paper, or asking a question, at each conference.

Done! I attended ABAI in Chicago in May, and presented a poster, and just this past weekend, attended AABA in Melbourne, and presented information about our parent training section of our programs.

While this is a wonderful goal to have, I think, I will need to limit it in future years. It takes a lot of extra time to plan, prepare, and evaluate research, and can be a bit overwhelming, but I’m glad I did it!

4. Continue on with my supervision through my BCBA Supervisor.

By the end of December 2016, I will have completed the required 75 hours of supervision for my behaviour qualification, as well as the 1500 hours required field work experience.

On track, not sure if I will have the 75 hours completed, but still plugging away!

5. Continue to read at least two journal articles a month, in the field of ABA, but not specifically Autism related.

By the end of December 2016, I will read at least two journal articles a month, and comment about each article on Twitter.

By February 2016, I will subscribe to JABA, to find relevant articles.

I have subscribed to JABA, and actually read a few articles from there, but have not commented on twitter. I did however, start an online journal club, with a reasonably interested start!

6. Continue to disseminate information about ABA, to non-behaviour people.

By the end of December 2016, I will have presented at least two workshops for people interested in learning about behaviour.

By the end of December 2016, I will have shared at least 12 posts about ABA on GSBS Facebook page.

By the end of December 2016, I will have used the hashtag #EverydayABA, at least twelve times, to promote and inform how behaviour occurs in our daily lives.

As stated in a previous blog, I will not be able to present any workshops this year, but I am currently at 11 posts with the hashtag #EverydayABA.

7. Attend and participate in online ABA chats.

By the end of December 2016, I will have attended at least two online chats, and made at last 5 comments on Twitter.

As I am writing this, I realised #ABAChat is happening on twitter now! But it is a slow response chat, where we can contribute over time! So I will need to get onto that.

8. Volunteer my time to at least two different organisations (not necessarily ABA/behaviour).

By the end of December 2016, I will have volunteered with two different organisations, including at least 10 hours a month, towards these organisations.

By the end of January 2016, I will volunteer with at least one organisation. (A Global Voice for Autism).

By the end of June 2016, I will have volunteered with at least two organisations. (As above, and The Pyjama Foundation or The Association for Science in Autism Treatment).

As mentioned in a previous post, I overestimated myself here, and will only be able to volunteer at one additional organisation at this stage, and have done so, with A Global Voice for Autism.

9. Provide services to more clients in Sydney/Central Coast.

By the end of December 2016, I will have provided services through GSBS, to at least five new clients.

Definitely met this goal! I currently am working with 11 families across Sydney and Newcastle. (9 new ones!)

10. Meet new behaviour analyst people!

By the end of December 2016, I will have met and discussed behaviour analytical discussions, with at least 3 behaviour analysts, around the world 😉

I am not sure exactly how to measure this (probably needs to be written as a behavioural objective, with much more detail!) but I have definitely had discussions with at least 2 specific people who are interested in understanding more about ABA. Plus, the numerous discussions with colleagues about the science of ABA, and dissemination.


So there we go, not too bad for 3/4 of the way through the year. I don’t think I will meet some of the additional goals, but it is good food for thought for 2017 goals! 

3/4 of the year done – how am I doing?

While I’m killing more time in an airport…

I figured I’d sum up my experience at the ABAI 2016 Convention.

Convention is the right word, it’s much bigger than a conference! I took away so much, met so many people, had some new ideas, and came to the general conclusion that, while ABA is more used and understood in the US, people working in the field can still face the same difficulties we do in Australia – misunderstanding/misrepresentation, lack of funding, lack of collaboration and teamwork. On the whole, it is most likely more accepted, and used in the a States, but in a sad sort of way, that was nice to hear.
On the other hand, there were a few things that stood out to me that seemed a bit backwards, but I can possibly try to understand them. One in particular was the talk on fads and fallacies in autism intervention – what to watch out for. I would have thought that any good, qualified BCBA, would be aware of how to think critically about the latest “cures” for autism intervention, but apparently not. This kind of ties into when I was discussing with my supervisor the pass rates for the BCBA exam, and how people who fail, multiple times, can keep re-sitting it. Firstly, universities advertising their courses as “75% pass rate” is not actually that encouraging! (And I think that’s pretty average!) But I know the higher education system is a little different over here, so I can understand why that is important to people. (For the record, I plan on sitting the exam only once, and passing first go. 😳) There also seemed to be a lot of people discussing the notion of collaboration, teamwork, and working with the families. This is completely opposite of what we (try) to do in Australia. I think the systems here traditionally have been set up very differently.

It was good to catch up with, and meet a few Aussies. I like the fact there are other individuals in Australia, willing to travel half way round the world for a convention, to learn a little bit more about what is happening in the world of ABA. I like like-minded, committed professionals. (It doesn’t hurt that you can turn it into a holiday at the same time 😊)

It was also great to be able to share some work that I am doing in little old Sydney, with people from all over the world. I feel like this was a nice introduction, but it made me think a bit more about where my specific research interests lie (hint – it’s not activity schedules!) So this convention has been good because it has given me a bit more specific direction. Watch this space… 🎓

On the whole, I’m very glad I came! I heard so many great presentations, and had some good chats. I probably won’t be back for another few years, but do plan to go to the Interbational conference in Paris at the end of next year. And of course, the inaugural Australian ABA Conference, in Melbourne, September this year.

While I’m killing more time in an airport…

Checking in!

I can’t believe it is already April! 3 months in to 2016, and where are we?

Well, somewhere I thought I’d be, but also didn’t think I’d be. As of this week, I am dedicating 100% of my working time to GSBS! A bit of a daunting task, but an exciting one, and the timing could not have been better.

I thought I’d start with checking in with my goals. I had a reminder come up on my phone (visual prompts :D) so I figured I’d better do this today.

goals review

So I’m a few days late with posting this, but things have been so busy! This is in relation to the goals I developed at the beginning of the year.

1. Obtain my Behaviour qualification.

I am registering for the next subject at FIT next week, so I’m moving towards it!

2. Become a registered provider under NDIS services.

I have one more piece to add to more registration before I send it off, and we will see how we go. I aim to do this by the end of April. That doesn’t necessarily mean I’ll be registered, but I’ll be on my way.

3. Attend and participate in at least two ABA conferences.

I’m headed to the ABAI Conference in Chicago in May, and am planning to go to the AABA conference in Melbourne in September!

4. Continue on with my supervision through my BCBA Supervisor.

I’m currently a little more than halfway (42 hours of out 75 hours)!

5. Continue to read at least two journal articles a month, in the field of ABA, but not specifically Autism related.

I haven’t really been up to date with this. I have been reading the articles, but not commenting on them.

I did subscribe to JABA though, and am starting a journal club, so I will aim to comment on one this month, on Twitter/Facebook.

6. Continue to disseminate information about ABA, to non-behaviour people.

While I haven’t done any workshops specifically related to this. I have managed to explain the idea that ABA is much more than teaching children with autism, in intensive home programs, at two of the workshops I have done this year.

7. Attend and participate in online ABA chats.

I haven’t participated in an online ABA chats. There is a journal club with Hawaii Association for Behavior Analysis, but I think it is on at a bad time for me with the time difference!

8. Volunteer my time to at least two different organisations (not necessarily ABA/behaviour).

I may have to revisit this goal, as I am finding myself very busy. I have been volunteering with A Global Voice for Autism since October 2015, and am continuing to do so.

I want to do the Association for Science in Autism Treatment Externship Program, but I don’t think I have time for it this year.

9. Provide services to more clients in Sydney/Central Coast.

Well this one is almost done! I am providing services to 4 new clients. I am pretty sure I will be adding 1 more shortly!

10. Meet new behaviour analyst people!

Not yet, but hopefully when I am in Chicago, I will be able to meet up with a few people!

So, I think I’m doing pretty well. I have a bit more time now to ensure I am able to do all the things I want to do, and spend time doing these things.

Having the specific goals makes it much easier to track my progress! I should really be graphing my progress as well 😛

 

Checking in!

Welcome 2016!

Welcome to 2016! It’s already here, and I thought I should start the year off by listing some goals to keep me going for the year.

There have been lots of changes already, with the name change, and focus on services, so goals will help keep me on track. I have reminders in my calendar to help me check in as I go.

This is a good way to think about what I want to achieve over the year!

Goals for 2016

1. Obtain my Behaviour qualification.

By the end of June 2016, I will have completed two more subjects through Florida Institute of Institute.

By the end of June 2016, I will have completed my 50 supervised hours of experience.

By the end of August 2016, I will have sat the required exam, and eagerly be awaiting my results!

2. Become a registered provider under NDIS services.

By the end of December 2016, Great Start Behaviour Services will be registered through the NDIS to provide at least one service support.

3. Attend and participate in at least two ABA conferences.

By the end of December 2016, I will have attended two different ABA based conferences, and participated either by: presenting a poster, presenting a paper, or asking a question, at each conference.

4. Continue on with my supervision through my BCBA Supervisor.

By the end of December 2016, I will have completed the required 75 hours of supervision for my behaviour qualification, as well as the 1500 hours required field work experience.

5. Continue to read at least two journal articles a month, in the field of ABA, but not specifically Autism related.

By the end of December 2016, I will read at least two journal articles a month, and comment about each article on Twitter.

By February 2016, I will subscribe to JABA, to find relevant articles.

6. Continue to disseminate information about ABA, to non-behaviour people.

By the end of December 2016, I will have presented at least two workshops for people interested in learning about behaviour.

By the end of December 2016, I will have shared at least 12 posts about ABA on GSBS Facebook page.

By the end of December 2016, I will have used the hashtag #EverydayABA, at least twelve times, to promote and inform how behaviour occurs in our daily lives.

7. Attend and participate in online ABA chats.

By the end of December 2016, I will have attended at least two online chats, and made at last 5 comments on Twitter.

8. Volunteer my time to at least two different organisations (not necessarily ABA/behaviour).

By the end of December 2016, I will have volunteered with two different organisations, including at least 10 hours a month, towards these organisations.

By the end of January 2016, I will volunteer with at least one organisation. (A Global Voice for Autism).

By the end of June 2016, I will have volunteered with at least two organisations. (As above, and The Pyjama Foundation or The Association for Science in Autism Treatment).

9. Provide services to more clients in Sydney/Central Coast.

By the end of December 2016, I will have provided services through GSBS, to at least five new clients.

10. Meet new behaviour analyst people!

By the end of December 2016, I will have met and discussed behaviour analytical discussions, with at least 3 behaviour analysts, around the world 😉

So lots to do there. 10 goals, with a few sub goals. I believe they’re achievable. Especially if I am checking in frequently. And a nice, well rounded set of goals too.

2016 is shaping up to be a very great year!

Welcome 2016!

Book Review: The Nurture Effect – Anthony Biglan

 

new biglan

This was one book I was very keen to read. A lot of people had been talking about it online, and it seemed very much in line with the type of book I like to read.

I think it would be good to go back and re-read, maybe in a few months. Overall, it was a good book to read, mainly about society, and the world at large, very much in line with a behaviourist’s thinking. However I did feel it was very specifically aimed more so at American audiences, than anywhere else in the world, and feel like it could have investigated different things, different countries are doing around the world, to help with social issues, such as poverty, homelessness, domestic violence, education, and health.

In saying that, I think it is a text that can very easily be understood by anyone that picks up the book, and relay the principles of applied behaviour analysis, and how we can use those principles to make positive changes in everyday life.

I particularly like how at the end of each chapter, there were points to help explain what the reader could do, at an individual level, at the local community level, and at the national level. These were pretty straightforward, practical ideas, that anyone could do, to help start the change.

I also like how there were a few chapters related to things I am very fond of. Particularly the chapter on Direct Instruction, and how implementing evidence-based practices in classrooms can make a huge difference in children’s lives.

I did also like the part about the Triple P Positive Parenting Program, which has come out of Queensland, Australia. The way it has been delivered and used by families around the country, and the world, is highly impressive. This dissemination of information (effective, evidence-based information) is what we need to focus on and figure out ways to get the correct information across to people, and teach them how to look beyond the initial flashy introduction, and think critically about what information is being presented to them.

Some other parts of the book which fit into this particular theme include the part about families overthrowing the tobacco industry and its advertising campaigns. Very inspiring read, and gave me lots of ideas about pseudo-science and how we could potentially approach it in a more successful way.

I think it is definitely well worth a read, not just for behaviour analysts, but people who are interested in social welfare.

_____________________________________________________

References

Biglan, A. (2015). The Nurture Effect

 

Book Review: The Nurture Effect – Anthony Biglan