Quarterly Meeting, March 13th – Supporting School and ABA Provider Collaboration

March 13th, 3:00 pm

Fishers Library

5 Municipal Dr, Fishers, IN 

Increasingly school districts and ABA providers are working together to address the behaviors and skill acquisition of students on the autism spectrum.    Unfortunately, this partnership can be difficult to navigate at times.    When given the chance to discuss the realities of these two settings, it becomes clear that at the heart of this difficulty is the reality that these two entities are functioning within a different culture, and with different language, regulations and funding.  The goal of this session is to have a conversation about the realities of school and to continue to investigate ways to enhance collaboration.


Megan Ahlers, MS
Director of Exceptional Learners, MSD Pike Township
President Elect, ICASE (Indiana Council of Administrators of Special Education)


Dr. Cathy Pratt, BCBA-D
Director, Indiana Resource Center for Autism
Indiana Institute on Disability and Community
Indiana University

8 Things You Should Know About Medicaid and Autism

Autism Speaks has posted a helpful resource regarding the current status of Medicaid and Autism coverage. The Federal government has mandated state coverage for all medically necessary treatment, but what constitutes as “medically necessary” may vary from state to state. Check out the link below!


Quarterly Meeting: December 12th, Hamilton East Public Library: Fishers

We would like to inform everyone that nominations for student representative, member at large, secretary, treasurer, and vice-president are open! We will be voting for the 2015 executive committee at the December quarterly meeting. The meeting will be held at the Hamilton Public Library in Fishers on December 12th from 1:00 to 3:00. If you are voted in as part of the executive board you will receive free HABA membership and free registration to the 2015 HABA conference. You will also have a mentor from the previous executive board for the first 3 months to assist with getting adjusted to the position. Please submit nominations to
During the December meeting we will have 2 presentations. The first will be discussing CPT codes and licensure for BCBA’s in Indiana by Vince LaMarca.  There will be no CEUs available for this presentation. There will be a CEU available for the following presentation by Vince LaMarca.
We hope to see you all at the December Meeting!

Clarification: RBT Ethics Training

We are extremely excited about the number of people already registered for the Annual Conference! This will likely be our highest attendance to date!

We are also pleased to be offering the ethics and professional conduct portion of the BACB’s Registered Behavior Technician credential. To clarify: this training is being provided for behavior technicians (paraprofessionals who work under the supervision of a BCBA or BCaBA) as part of the RBT credential. The session is not a “train-the-trainer” sessions and is not targeted for Board Certified Behavior Analysts seeking CEUs to provide RBT training. Thank you, and as always, feel free to contact us via our Contact page with questions.


Last Day to Register Online!

A quick reminder: online registration deadline has been extended to today! Visit our event page to register now!

Forget or unable to register online? No problem. There are designated registration times each morning of the conference. Registering online simply means less paperwork when you arrive, and is the easiest way to claim your spot at the Saturday morning breakfast roundtable discussion with our speakers and colleagues. Remember, attendance at the roundtable discussion is limited to the first 54 guests that RSVP and seats are filling quickly!

Keynote Speaker- Dr. Bruce Thyer

Photo Jan 2014“The Contributions of Behavior Analysis to Social Work”

Dr. Bruce A. Thyer

Professional social workers are the largest providers of mental health services in the United States. They are also strongly involved in the evaluation and treatment of persons with intellectual disabilities and substance abuse problems. These fields are also within the scope of practice of behavior analysts. Like behavior analysis, social work subscribes to a person-in-environment orientation in assessing and treating client problems, and claims to be a science-based discipline. An overview will be provided of the current scope of practice of clinical social work, the training and educational requirements for masters-level (MSW) social work practitioners, and the landscape pertaining to the legal regulation and insurance reimbursement of licensed clinical social workers (LCSW). This will be contrasted with parallel developments within the practice of behavior analysis. Illustrations will be provided of how behavior analysis has contributed to the practice of clinical social work, and of how clinical social workers have contributed to the promotion and science of behavior analysis. Ways in which these two fields can be better integrated will be presented.

Bruce A. Thyer is Professor and former Dean with the College of Social Work at Florida State University. He is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst. Dr. Thyer has served on the editorial board of the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis and other behavioral journals, and on the board of directors of the Association of Professional Behavior Analysts and of Division 25 (Behavior Analysis) of the American Psychological Association (APA). He is a Fellow of the APA, the Association for Psychological Science, and of the Society for Social Work and Research. For the past 25 years he has edited the journal Research on Social Work Practice, a social work journal which explicitly welcomes behavior analytic research submissions. Dr. Thyer has been a continuous member of the Association for Behavior Analysis-International for over 30 years.

Invited Speaker- Dr. Richard Spates

“Empirically-based Interventions: Achieving Greater Target Population Reach– Why? and How?”

Dr. C. Richard Spates

In recent years a number of thought leaders, policy makers, and members of the consuming public have recognized the need for wider distribution of empirically supported behavioral practices. Alan Kazdin ( points out “the dominant model of in-person therapy for the treatment of psychological problems has inherent limitations in reaching the large majority of individuals in need . .” It has been persuasively argued that our most well-studied interventions cannot reach people at the scale needed if they are provided on a one-to-one, in-person basis. Kazdin admonishes that “At this point research ought to begin with consideration of the model of delivery and specifically with a model that could be broad in its reach . . . to intended groups.” Arguing in a similar vein, Barlow adds that “to achieve reach, social marketing of minimal contact, self-administered interventions, direct to consumer, might help achieve this goal.” Essential to this perspective is the notion that while we, behavior analysts, correctly laud the availability of behavior analytic interventions for their efficacy, if only a small part of the population who needs them have access to them, much more is required. Whether dealing with Autism Spectrum Disorders, trauma-based disorders, or clinical depression, (among others in a growing list that contribute heavily to the global burden of disease), we must be concerned from the outset with successful access and uptake of our interventions. The model to be proposed here strongly suggest that we produce disruptive innovations in delivery models, that provide affordable (least expensive), easily accessed formats that are both scalable and sustainable. It is further argued that we begin such innovative delivery models with existing evidence-based approaches, and that our evaluation of such models address impact more broadly defined that historically characteristic and narrowly defined. As a point of departure from this overall theme, this presentation will illustrate, using three existing examples, of how innovations in delivery can positively impact targeted behavior problems or symptoms, but achieve greater and more sustainable reach to consumers in need. The models include direct interventions for depression, PTSD, and training in the treatment of Autism Spectrum disorder.

C. Richard Spates, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist and Professor of Psychology at Western Michigan University. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Urbana, and holds a Masters Degree in Applied Behavior Analysis from Western Michigan University. He worked for 12 years with the Michigan Department of Mental Health as a Senior Mental Health Executive. Among the roles at MDMH he was Director of Program Evaluation Design & Analysis, and Director of Clinical Policy, Standards, & Behavioral Services. He spent the last 27 years as Professor of Psychology at Western Michigan University where he has additionally served as Director of Clinical Training for 20 of those years and Department Chairperson for 3 years. He engaged in private practice for approximately 8 years, and as a legal expert witness for the past 30 years. He has served as the principal advisor for 27 Ph.D. Clinical Psychology graduates over the past 25 years and is widely published in the areas of anxiety, depression and PTSD interventions. Dr. Spates was the Project Director and Principal Investigator for the development team of Building a Meaningful Life through Behavioral Activation (BAML)©; an interactive computer-based intervention for clinical depression, and serves regularly as a consultant, supervisor, and trainer in evidence-based interventions for Anxiety, PTSD and Depression. He is Board Chairman and Chief Science Officer of CompTherapeutics, Inc. a Michigan Therapeutic Software Development company.

Invited Speaker- Dr. Susan Schneider


“The Science of Consequences: How They Affect Genes, Change the Brain, and Impact Our World.”

Dr. Susan M. Schneider

Actions have consequences–and being able to learn from them revolutionized life on earth. Consequences are everywhere, influencing everything from the humblest flatworms to our most impressive human accomplishments. The science of consequences–operant learning, that is–has incorporated their important role in nature-and-nurture while producing applications across the board, from everyday life to our biggest societal challenges. Taking an inclusive interdisciplinary “systems approach,” this talk will summarize how something so deceptively simple can help make sense of so much. The potpourri of topics will include the generality of these operant principles, their evolution and biological context, their role in language development, and a representative sampling of their applications.

Behavior analyst and biopsychologist Susan Schneider recently published a book for the public:  The Science of Consequences: How They Affect Genes, Change the Brain, and Impact Our World (  Authorunnamed in addition of numerous research and theoretical articles and book chapters, she was an Ivy League fellowship winner in engineering (Brown M.S.) who became a friend of B. F. Skinner, served in the Peace Corps, and then transitioned into psychology
(University of Kansas Ph.D.).  A research pioneer, she was the first to apply the generalized matching law to sequences and to demonstrate operant generalization and matching in neonates.  She’s proposed a mathematical model for sequence choice, and her publications also cover the history and philosophy of behavior analysis and the neglected method of sequential analysis.  Schneider has championed the inclusive “systems” approach to nature nurture relations, culminating in reviews in the Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior and The Behavior Analyst, and she has served on the editorial boards for both of those journals.  Her book summarizes the field of operant behavior, its larger nature-nurture context, and its broad range of applications, and it was a selection of the Scientific American Book Club.