News Archive 2015
17/12/2015 - PhD DEL studentships awards available
30/11/2015 - CBA present poster at HCBA conference, Athens
11/11/2015 - Centre for Behaviour Analysis take part in first Team meeting in Osnabrück, Germany
11/11/2015 - 4th CBA/QUART conference a great success
30/10/2015 - The first Autism Therapy and Rehabilitation conference was held in Beijing, China in Sept 2015
30/10/2015 - Stars Hope School in Beijing, China is an ABA-based school for children with autism
30/10/2015 - In China, near Mt Fuji, Prof Karola Dillenburger and a group of delegates from ABAI, BACB, and MultiABA met with the Mayor of Izu City
26/10/2015 - ABA and autism workshops in Slovakia and Czech Republic
22/10/2015 - Dr Katerina Dounavi visited Futuroschool in Paris (Vaincre L’Autisme)
14/10/2015 - Prof Karel Pančocha Vice-dean for Strategy and International Relations and Head of Institute of Special Education at Masaryk University in Brno visits
02/09/2015 - The Use of Video Self-Modeling Intervention to Toilet Train Children With Autism
02/09/2015 - Combinations of Prompt and Target Response Modalities and Their Impact on Emergent Relations and Teaching Efficiency
01/09/2015 - Why reinvent the wheel? A behaviour analyst's reflections on pedagogy for inclusion for students with intellectual and developmental disability
01/09/2015 - Brno, Czech Republic
15/07/2015- 1st Summer School organised by EABA in beautiful Rethymno, Crete
03/07/2015 - Prof. Karola Dillenburger contributed to a brief video on the benefits of writing an article for The Conversation
09/06/2015 - Yini Liao, Doctoral student at CBA had her oral presentation at the All-Ireland Conference for Doctoral Researchers
07/06/2015 - Craig Goodall, member of the CBA steering group and teacher at Loughshore Education Centre, Belfast publishes paper
07/06/2015 - Mickey Keenan -Awards for International Dissemination of Behaviour Analysis (2015)
07/06/2015 - ABA International Conference San Antonio
02/06/2015 - Autism in the Air - Practical Event a Great Success!
28/05/2015 - Workshop: Adults with autism: Teaching employment based skills. Dr Angelika Anderson, Monash University Melbourne, Australia
27/05/2015 - Poster presented by Smita Awasthi, PhD candidate at CBA at 41st ABA International Conference San Antonio. TX
27/05/2015 - Yini Liao (PhD candidate at Centre for Behaviour Analysis) poster shortlisted for Graduate School Postgraduate Research Poster Competition.
27/05/2015 - Dr Katerina Dounavi presents at the Annual International Conference in Education, May 2017. Greece.
14/05/2015 - Kids Life and Times (KLT) and Young Life and Times (YLT) surveys were launched
14/05/2015 - Science of Teaching
29/04/2015 - Doctrid IV Conference a Great Success!
13/04/2015 - Lisa Ruddy, PhD Candidate at CBA, presents at EABG 2015.
13/04/2015 - Yini Liao, PhD Candidate at CBA, presenting in China.
13/04/2015 - Cakes and Celebrations on World Autism Awareness Day.
27/03/2015 - International Postgraduate student in China
20/03/2015 - Ian Walsh to present at upcoming ASME Annual Scientific Meeting, 2015.
30/01/2015 - Autism in the Air Flying High this Weekend
26/01/2015 - The Centre for Behaviour Analysis and the School of Education hosts the International DOCTRID Conference on 27th and 28th April, 2015.
12/01/2015 - Registered Behaviour Technician (RBT) Training now enrolling for April 2015
Craig Goodall, member of the CBA steering group and teacher at Loughshore Education Centre, Belfast publishes paper arguing for the rights of children with ASD to effective education. 'The efficacy of mainstream inclusion is explored, identifying the position that a 'one size fits all' model of education is not appropriate for all children with ASD.'
For further information click here
We are delighted to announce that Mickey Keenan, has received the prestigious award of International Dissemination of Behaviour Analysis due to his unwavering effort with the STAMPP project. Dr Keenan led a project funded by the European Union to develop an online set of applied behaviour analysis resources called Simple Steps: A Multimedia Package for Parents and Professionals and then translate it into seven European languages.
Smita Awasthi represents QUB/ Centre of Behaviour Analysis with a poster of her research at the 41st Annual Convention of ABAI is taking place in Texas. Smita is presenting two posters on her research.
Yesterday a group of children and their parents visited Belfast City Airport. In collaboration with Aer Lingus, PEAT and the Centre for Behaviour Analysis the visit offered the children a full airport experience; going through security, checking in with their boarding passes, boarding the plane and even trying out life jackets and oxygen masks. Lisa Ruddy, PhD Candidate at the CBA said of the event, ‘The children got to experience every aspect of plane travel, from removing their shoes at security to fastening their seatbelts on the plane. We had lots of practice at waiting, queueing and a few inspections of the airplane toilet! It was a great success and really beneficial for families who have holidays booked for the summer’. Autism in the Air have also produced four corresponding online videos for families to access anytime. Videos can be viewed here
Adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have difficulty gaining and maintaining employment. This workshop explored the use of technology in training adults with autism to learn new skills and to manage themselves in a work environment. The project broadly consists of two parts: 1. Creating a safe and predictable context to facilitate participation and engagement; 2. Teaching job-specific skills to adults with ASD using modelling and self-prompting procedures. Results across four participants indicate that in vivo and video-modelling techniques can both be differentially effective in teaching a range of vocational (gardening, packaging, delivery and web management) and social communicative skills, while skill difficulty, task preference and participant heterogeneity all appear to play mediating roles in skill acquisition. This presentation describes the context of the project as a whole, including the vision of the not-for-profit social enterprise ‘EdAble’.
Poster of research by Smita Awasthi, with Karola Dillenburger & Sridhar Aravamudhan: Sufficient –response-exemplar training has been used successfully to typically developing children to articulate several Norwegian words with difficult blends (Eikeseth S. & Nesset 2003). The present study extends and adapts these procedures for children with autism. One girl and 3 boys aged between 7 and 16 years in the autism spectrum participated in the study. Two of the children had a co-ocurring diagnoses of apraxia. The study examined if sufficient-response-exemplar-training would improve articulation in children with autism. In addition stimulus salience, shaping, chaining and supplementary prompts were also added to the intervention. A multiple baseline across behaviors (word sets targeted) design was used. Results showed improvement in articulating words and sounds all three participants. Two word sets improved after training for one participant while for two particpants training in one set had generalization effects on other word sets and sounds.
Dr Katerina Dounavi, Deputy Director of the Centre for Behaviour Analysis, presented a paper at the ATINER conference in Athens. Entitled, Autism and ABA: The Gulf Between North America and Europe, and co-written with Karola Dillenburger and Mickey Keenan, the paper discusses the differences in treatment of autism in Europe compared to North America.
The posters received by the School of Education by the due date were independently reviewed by 3 members of staff associated with the DRC. Yini's poster was shortlisted to go forward from the School of Education.
The posters will be displayed on the 1st floor of The Graduate School for week beginning Monday 25th May and the actual competition will take place on Wednesday 27th May from 1.00pm – 3.00pm.
To see the full-size poster click here
Kids Life and Times (KLT) and Young Life and Times (YLT) surveys were launched. This is the first time that module dedicated to awareness, knowledge, and attitudes towards autism was included in these surveys. Prof Karola Dillenburger presented the key findings, that showed that 80% of 16 year-olds and 50% of 11 year-olds were aware of autism and 2.7% of the younger children and 3.1 of the young people self-declared as having autism. This confirmed findings from the secondary data analysis of the Millennium Cohort Study that found that parents of 3.5% of 11 year-olds were told that their child has autism. Download Research update here.
SCIENCE OF TEACHING offers a comprehensive guide for teachers, educators, and anyone else interested in human behavior on how learning occurs at a biological and environmental level. What shapes our behavior? How do our behaviors become reinforced? What are some useful techniques to help shape human behavior towards acquiring new skills and behaviours? How do we measure human behavior and what is the science behind teaching and learning? These are all questions which are addressed within this film. The film covers many sections ranging from the biological basis of learning, tools for educators, precision teaching and technology in the classroom. (Featuring Prof Karola Dillenburger, Director of Centre for Behaviour Analysis, QUB)
For video click here
The fourth Doctrid conference was held for the first time at Queen’s University Belfast and was attended by over 150 delegates over two days. We were delighted to welcome international speakers who travelled from the U.S, Brussels, Ireland and the U.K to share and collaborate. Parents, professionals and worldwide researchers all came together to discuss future research in autism and intellectual disability, listen to the views of service users and facilitate workshops on social inclusion and assistive technology. Two PhD candidates from the Centre of Behaviour Analysis presented posters on their current research; Caleb Coyle and Lisa Ruddy. Thank you to all who attended and helped organise this inspiring event. As one parent said, "Superb conference! - if only everyone would have such compassion, focus, desire to serve and work collaboratively.”
Lisa Ruddy recently presented at the Experimental Analysis of Behaviour Conference in London. Her paper was part of the symposium for clinical applications of behaviour analysis and was titled , Reinforcing the testing routine – why behaviour analysts should design apps for diabetes management.
Yini Liao (PhD Candidate at CBA) delivered a workshop on Early Intensive Behavioural Intervention (EIBI) and autism to a group of parents in China.
Yini is currently at an ABA school for children with Autism, to collect data for her research which is a comparison between practices in the UK and China.
The Centre for Behaviour Analysis/Quart hosted a coffee and cake morning to celebrate World Autism Awareness Day on April 2nd. Parents, professionals and children all enjoyed themselves (and ate lots of scrumptious cake!)
Yini Liao (PhD student at the Centre for Behaviour Analysis) is in China (during March and April 2015) at an ABA school for children with Autism, to collect data for her study to compare between ABA-based policies and practices in the UK and China (pictures with parental permission).
An abstract submitted by Ian Walsh and other authors from the Centre for Behaviour Analysis has been accepted as an oral presentation for the upcoming ASME conference. The ASME conference is an excellent opportunity to discuss innovations in medical and healthcare research. The paper entitled PrecisionTraining for Safe Intravenous Fluid Prescription, describes research undertaken with final year undergraduate medical students that used Precision Teaching (PT) to improve performance in safe intravenous fluid prescription.Results showed significant improvement in the fluency and accuracy in the study group who were instructed in the use of PT and SAFMEDS (Say All Fast Minute Every Day Shuffles) compared to the control group who used a standardised teaching method. The paper presentation will be part of the showcase of ‘What’s Hot in Learning and Teaching Innovations in Medical Education’.
A group of young children with autism had the chance to experience the airport this weekend with the support of the Autism in the Air project, (PEAT and CBA) . 10 children and their relatives were able to have a trial run of a holiday departure; going through security, getting on the plane and fastening their seat-belts.
Many parents of autistic children find travelling difficult and often avoid it or have to take separate holidays. The Autism in the Air team made a series of short videos that parents can show their child before a holiday, preparing them for all aspects of airport travel.
Read more here about our high fliers click Here
To view the Autism in the Air videos click Here
The 4th International DOCTRID conference will take place at Queen’s University Belfast on April 27th and 28th. The aim of the conference is to create a better understanding between researchers, caregivers, healthcare providers and people with ID and ASD to bring practical changes to people's lives, in particular through the use of Assistive Technology. This is the ideal opportunity for researchers, health care professionals, people with autism and/or intellectual disabilities and their families, to hear about current research and policy in this area.
To register for attendance please click here
Attendees can also avail of reduced cost accommodation which can be booked by clicking here
We look forward to seeing you there!
The Centre’s first RBT training course, beginning on January 19th, is now FULLY booked. Enrolment will open soon, however, for the next course, beginning in April. You can book a place here.
The Registered Behaviour Technician training covers the full 40 hours curriculum based on the RBT Task List and is delivered online. The course is part of the Open Learning Programme at the School of Education and is University accredited for 20 CATS points at Level 1. Each student will also receive a full licence for Simple Steps, the online, multi-media platform for the treatment of autism using the science of ABA.
We are happy to discuss any ABA-related ideas with you to help you develop a strong proposal. We would welcome applications from prospective PhD candidates who are interested in pursuing doctoral study in the broad area of educational enhancement through the application of behaviour analysis.
One potential project idea:
Programmed Instruction in the inclusive classroom
Prof Karola Dillenburger would like to hear from prospective students who would like to work on Programmed Instruction in the inclusive classroom. Programmed Instruction was a widely used evidence-based educational methodology that seems to have lost favour within current educational philosophies. This proposal argues that ‘the baby was thrown out with the bathwater’. Programmed Instruction is a particularly effective teaching methodology that focuses on the individual learner. Progress is entirely pupil-led and teaching can be adjusted to individual needs. This makes Programmed Instruction potentially a very useful tool in the inclusive classroom.
In addition, the rise of the use of technology in the classroom means that Programmed Instruction is making a comeback, all be it under different guises, i.e. in the form of a vast variety of apps. This proposal aims to 1) conduct a thorough systematic review of the literature around Programmed Instruction; 2) review how Programmed Instruction is used in today’s inclusive classrooms; 3) collect evidence for (or against) the use of Programmed Instruction in inclusive classrooms by using a number of single-system design studies; 4) make recommendations for teachers and school principals in the use of modern day technology for inclusive classrooms.
In designing the proposal, it is important to take account of the following: the current policy context for inclusive education; a review of current educational philosophies and how they have changed over the years; a systematic review of the literature on Programmed instruction and inclusion; a number of small single-system design studies that implement and evaluate Programmed Instruction in inclusive classrooms to develop appropriate methods for larger scale roll-out; discussion and conclusions that form the basis of recommendations for teachers and school principals. The research methodology section should outline a clear rationale for the methods selected.
Other research ideas are also welcome.
Your research proposal should not be more than 2000 words (maximum) in length (excluding references). Proposals must include references to academic literature and provide evidence of academic reading within the research field including a paragraph on any ethical issues that are likely to arise in the course of the research. All applicants must contact the relevant named project director prior to submitting their application and proposal.
Contact: Prof Karola Dillenburger (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Dr Katerina Dounavi (email@example.com) for further information about potential applications.
Notes: These studentships are available to candidates who wish to enrol on a full time basis and who meet resident’s criteria for studentships [ie funding awards].
Please note that funding is limited and the process is competitive. Applicants for DEL funding should get in touch with potential superviors before they apply for a place on the PhD programme via the University's online application system and indicate that they wish to be considered for a DEL PhD award.
For information on funded doctoral study visit the Doctoral Research Centre pages on the School of Education website
A poster entitled “The inclusion of children with ASD in mainstream school settings: Effective applications informed by behaviour analysis” was presented by María José Pujante Rodenas and Dr Katerina Dounavi (CBA) at the 2nd conference of the Hellenic Community for Behaviour Analysis held in Athens (Greece) on the 28 and 29 November.
Centre for Behaviour Analysis take part in first Team meeting in Osnabrück, Germany, of Erasmus+ Project to develop a standarised European qualification for Job Coaches for Persons with disabilities. Team members are from Germany, France, Poland, Netherlands and the UK. Most teams represent large scale employment support agencies.
Multidisciplinary work in autism was the topic of the 4th CBA/QUART conference held at the Whitla Hall, QUB on 6 Nov 2015. The conference addressed the question: How can behaviour analysis help? This all-day conference set local experience and expertise into international context. International keynote speakers demonstrated how behaviour analysis can be utilised to enhance multidisciplinary work in Autism for a range of different professions, including clinical psychology, speech and language therapy, nursing, teaching, and psychiatry. Keynote Speakers were
Professor Dr med. Hanns Rüdiger Röttgers, Psychiatrist; Uni. of Appl. Science, Germany;
Dr Javier Virues-Ortega, Clinical Psychologist, BCBA-D ; Auckland University, New Zealand;
Patrick McCormack, School’s principal/parent of child with autism.
Bethan Mair Williams, Speech and Language Therapist BCBA;
Liam McDermot, Nurse, Western Health and Social care Trust, Northern Ireland.
BACB Continued Education Units were offered free of charge.
Videos of keynote addresses are soon to be available here on the Centre for Behaviour Analysis video and resources page.
Watch the BBC1 Breakfast news https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OvNGDjDKsB4
The first Autism Therapy and Rehabilitation conference was held in Beijing, China in Sept 2015. The conference was organised by parents after they met our PhD student Yini Liao when she was in Beijing to collect data for her PhD. The parents wanted to hear more about ABA and invited Prof Prof Karola Dillenburger from CBA and other speakers to a packed conference hall of over 250 delegates. Meetings were also held with local Universities to discuss training in ABA and autism
Stars Hope School in Beijing, China is an ABA-based school for children with autism. It caters for approx 60 children, who are taught a primary school curriculum. Each child is accompanied for all lessons by a caregiver, often the parent or grandparent who is the child’s individual therapist while the teacher teaches the whole class (of 3-8 children). Parent/caregiver training is carried out on a weekly basis. Stars Hope was one of the research sites for PhD student Yini Liao, who is conducting a comparative study of early intensive behaviour analytic intervention between China and the UK.
In China, near Mt Fuji, Prof Karola Dillenburger and a group of delegates from ABAI, BACB, and MultiABA met with the Mayor of Izu City, honorable Kikuchi, who is very enthusiastic about collaborating with international organizations such as multiABA to facilitate behavior analytic services and caregiver training for the much needed populations, young and old. Mayor Kikuch spoke fluent German with two of our BCBA-Ds! He was particularly interested to hear about behavioural gerontology. The meeting was followed by a press conference. (picture of one of two newspaper articles in Japanese Newspaper)
Prof Karola Dillenburger delivered ABA workshops in Bratislava, Slovakia and Brno, Czech Republic, attend by at total of over 600 parents, professionals and government representatives who wanted to hear about the evidence for Applied Behaviour Analysis(ABA) based interventions to support individuals and families with autism. Also discussed were the need for University based internationally accredited training and collaborations were developed further BACB approved University training in ABA in both countries and to have student and staff exchanges with Slovakia and Czech Republic Universities.
Dr Katerina Dounavi visited Futuroschool in Paris (Vaincre L’Autisme) to provide training and supervision to a group of new professionals joining the team as well as to oversee children’s programming and speak with families. Futuroschool in Paris is an ABA-based centre that has pioneered education for children, teenagers and adults with ASD in France.
Prof Karel Pancocha Vice-dean for Strategy and International Relations and Head of Institute of Special Education at Masaryk University in Brno, Czeck Republic was visiting the Centre for Behaviour Analysis from 12-16 Oct 2015 to discuss collaborations in setting up ABA training and joint research at Masaryk University. He delivered a very informative workshop about autism in the Czech Republic and discussed parallels and differences in service delivery between Czech Republic and Northern Ireland. The workshop was attended by approx 30 students from the MScASD and the MScABA, professionals from early years, SENCOs and SureStart, and parents of sons/daughters with autism.
A discussion on the symposium entitled “The Use of Video Self-Modeling Intervention to Toilet Train Children With Autism” was offered by Prof Karola Dillenburger at the 8th International Conference of the Association for Behavior Analysis International that took place in Kyoto, Japan between the 27-29 September 2015.
A poster entitled “Combinations of Prompt and Target Response Modalities and Their Impact on Emergent Relations and Teaching Efficiency” was presented by Dr Katerina Dounavi, Prof Mickey Keenan and Prof Karola Dillenburger at the 8th International Conference of the Association for Behavior Analysis International that took place in Kyoto, Japan between the 27-29 September 2015.
(Abstract) The number of children identified as having intellectual or developmental disability is rising worldwide and their education has been found wanting. It has been said that “they simply need better teaching.” At the same time, there is an increasing evidence base that pedagogy that is based on the discipline of behaviour analysis offers the best prospect for individuals diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders. On the basis of this evidence, it is proposed that behaviour analysis should be applied more broadly to improve teaching for all children with intellectual or developmental disability.
Free download for first 50 copies here
Professor Karola Dillenburger has been invited to participate in the first ABA and Autism workshop for parents and professionals in October 2015. The workshop is organised by The Institute for Research in Inclusive Education, Faculty of Education, Masaryk University, Brne, in collaboration with Platform Hope for Autism. Title of the workshop: Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) - principles and possibilities for individuals with autism. Other speakers include the Czech Ministry of Education (TBC) and Ministry of Health (TBC); Professor Mickey Keenan (BCBA-D) Ulster University and Zuzana Mastenova (BCBA) from Bratislava, Slovakia
Lecture delivered by Dr Katerina Dounavi on Verbal Behaviour. An excellent group of highly motivated and knowledgeable students attended the classes!
Prof. Karola Dillenburger contributed to a brief video on the benefits of writing an article for The Conversation. The video was created by QUB Communications and External Affairs. Prof Dillenburger's recent article "Why early diagnosis of autism is a good thing" was shared about 300 times on Facebook, Twitter and linkedin, received over 40 comments, and was picked up by BBC News Northern Ireland link to BBC news article here
Link to the QUB The conversation site: The Mediator link
Yini Liao, Doctoral student at CBA had her oral presentation at the All-Ireland Conference for Doctoral Researchers in Education 2015 at University College Dublin on 5 June, 2015. The theme of the conference was 'SYNERGIES, EXPLORATIONS AND CONTESTATIONS IN EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH: PERSPECTIVES FROM DOCTORAL RESEARCH ON EDUCATION IN IRELAND.' For more about this conference, please click here