2020 MOABA Conference

Ronnie Detrich, PhD

Ronnie Detrich, PhD


About the Presenter

Ronnie Detrich has been providing behavior analytic services in a variety of settings and with a variety of populations for over 50 years.  His work can be characterized as thorough-going behavior analysis drawing from the conceptual, experimental, applied, and practice branches of our discipline.  He has worked primarily in practice settings with leadership roles including Clinical Director of a private, non-profit school in the San Francisco Bay Area, director of a state-wide program for children with autism in South Dakota, and director of a program serving adjudicated adolescents in West Virginia.  From 2004-2014, he was a Senior Fellow at the Wing Institute, an education policy think tank that focuses on the implementation of evidence-based practices in public schools.  Currently, he is adjunct faculty at Utah State University.

In recent years, his work has focused on the challenges of achieving adequate levels of treatment integrity in large systems, the role of the evidence-based practice movement in applied behavior analysis, and the large-scale implementation of effective practices in public schools.  He is a trustee of the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies and is an Associate Editor for the Journal of Positive Behavior Intervention.  In addition, he has served on the editorial board of Exceptional Children, Perspectives on Behavior Science, and Behavior Analysis in Practice.  He served as Coordinator of ABAI’s Practice Board.

Friday November 13, 2020

Is Better Living Through Behaviorism Achievable? Disseminating Behavior Analysis

Abstract: One of the ambitions of behavior analysis is “better living through behaviorism.”  Many scholars in behavior analysis have been concerned about the slow adoption rate of effective behavior analytic practices.  Perhaps the problem lies not in our practices but in our dissemination efforts.  A re-thinking of our dissemination strategies may be warranted. It is often the case that our dissemination efforts, such as publication in journals and presentations at conferences are passive.  We have a 60-year baseline suggesting that these approaches have been largely unsuccessful. Behavior analysis is the science of social influence and dissemination is a social rather than a technical challenge.  It involves, at a minimum, someone disseminating and someone adopting what is being disseminated.  It may be worthwhile to frame dissemination as a speaker-listener relation and more closely analyze the variables that influence both the speaker and listener.  A first step at improving our dissemination efforts requires that we move away from our topographical definition of dissemination to a functional one.  The ultimate criterion for judging dissemination is that a practice is adopted.  Without adoption, there is no dissemination.  Drawing from our own literature as well as the literature from implementation science and dissemination, an approach will be proposed that has the potential to increase the adoption rate of our practices.

Location: MOABA Virtual
CEUs: 1 hr