This course provides working Behavior Interventionists opportunities to deepen their knowledge of and ability to apply the principles and procedures of applied behaviour analysis utilized with children with autism. An emphasis is placed on promoting reflective Behavioural Intervention practitioners.
The following global ideas guide the design and delivery of this course:
- Applied behaviour analysis is an evidence-based methodology for enhancing quality of life.
- Students benefit when practicing a variety of key Behavioural Intervention skills (e.g., instructional strategies, behaviour management, and data collection) through guided observation of fluent practitioners and criterion-based skill rehearsals with fellow students.
- Learning from experience is a characteristic of exemplary practitioners. Work settings create opportunities for students to refine their skills of reflection and adaptation in response to their practice experiences.
- Learning in a work setting provides opportunities to examine assumptions and to explore creative modes of inquiry that are not available in classroom settings.
- Field settings provide opportunities to synthesize personal and classroom experiences and create openings for new learning. Learners gain both insight and practice knowledge from field experiences.
- Observing, participating with, and receiving guidance from experienced practitioners is crucial for effective practice.
- Practitioners who regularly and accurately assess their performance and who set goals for their ongoing professional development are effective in their work.
- A well-developed professional philosophy of practice is a cornerstone of competent human service practice.
- Experience in the field setting allows learners to demonstrate and enhance their abilities to problem solve, be flexible, think creatively and take responsibility for their actions.
- Reflecting on and evaluating practice with peers and mentors maximizes field-based learning experiences.
Means of Assessment
The course will be graded through the mastery grading system and will conform to Douglas College policy regarding the number and weighting of evaluations. Typical means of evaluation would include a combination of:
- Tests / Quizzes
- Reflection assignments
- Participation and engagement, e.g. group discussion and completion of individual assignments
- Criteria-based video evaluations
Upon completion of this course the student will demonstrate skills and knowledge in the following domains:
1. Personal Accountability
- Practice ethically and accurately, assessing the quality of own performance using a skill-based assessment tool
- Compare and contrast personal and professional values of clients and others with the professional values of behaviour analysts
2. Interpersonal Effectiveness and Leadership
- Communicate in a caring, respectful and clear manner
- Effectively communicate for various purposes and audiences
- Facilitate caring and respectful interpersonal relationships
- Demonstrate individual leadership as a team member
3. Theoretical Reasoning
- Think critically to construct plausible explanations (i.e. functions) for individual and family behaviour patterns
- Apply elements of critical thinking when problem solving (e.g. brainstorm function-based teaching strategies to increase or decrease behaviours)
- Use theory to explain behaviour and guide actions (i.e. explain theoretical foundations to behaviour change procedures)
- Think creatively in response to individual needs
- Compare and contrast a number of applied behaviour analysis approaches, including discrete trial training, natural environment teaching, verbal behaviour, etc.
4. Technical Competence
- Strategically facilitate learning (i.e., implements behaviour change programs with fidelity) involving the use of reinforcement, task analysis, discrete trial training, and natural environment training strategies
- Demonstrate data management skills which include recording, graphing, communication logs, etc.
- Arrange environment and materials to facilitate learning
- Use visual supports in a way that facilitates learning
- Advocate for individual rights and self determination
- Promote the safety of self and others