Keynote Presentations

2017 Michigan Autism Conference will be held on the October 11–October 13, 2017 and will take place at the Radisson Plaza Hotel in downtown Kalamazoo, MI.

Conference Archives

Thursday, October 12

Catherine Lord

Catherine Lord

Title

What can we learn about appropriate services in children with ASD from our longitudinal study from 2 to 22?

Abstract

As the number of preschool children identified with ASD increases each year, so too will the number of children with ASD moving into adolescence.The aims of the research are to determine predictors of adolescent and adult outcome measured in adaptive skills, quality of life, positive mood, behavior problems and symptoms of anxiety and depression. The project represents a shift in emphasis from attention primarily on negative outcomes to consideration of coping strategies for individuals and families and their impact on well-being and independence.The natural history of behavioral, cognitive, language and social development from ages 2 to 22 are examined in two well-described samples of children from North Carolina and Chicago originally referred for possible ASD, and a group of non-spectrum developmentally delayed controls. One hundred eighty seven out of 213 original children currently remain in the Early Diagnosis study initially funded by NIMH and NICHD.These children were seen at ages 2, 3, 5 and 9.Their families have participated in phone interviews and completed packets of questionnaires when the children were between 11 and 18 years with a focus on relationships among adaptive skills, behavior problems, pubertal development and adolescent onset of seizures.Face to face interviews and assessments from age 10 to 26 have been conducted so we have new results about what adults are now doing and experiencing.We hope these studies can provide important information about individual differences in developmental trajectories in ASD and the factors that contribute to positive and negative aspects of outcome in adolescents and young adults.

Bio

Catherine Lord, Ph.D. Professor of Psychology, Weill Cornell Medical College & Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and Director of the Center for Autism and the Developing Brain. Dr. Lord is an international expert in the diagnosis, social and communication development and intervention in autism spectrum disorders (ASD). She is renowned for her work in longitudinal studies of children with autism as well as for her role in developing the autism diagnostic instruments used in both practice and in research worldwide today. She has also been involved in the development of standardized diagnostic instruments for ASD with colleagues from the United Kingdom and the United States (the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) an observational scale; and the Autism Diagnostic Interview – Revised (ADI-R) a parent interview), now considered the gold standard for research diagnoses all over the world. Dr. Lord’s work at the Center for Autism and the Developing Brain involves continued research in validity and longitudinal studies, early diagnosis of children with autism, and regression in children with autism and clinical evaluation and diagnosis of children and adults who may have autism. Child psychiatry fellows have an opportunity to observe Dr. Lord in her clinical assessments during their first year rotation at the Center for Autism and the Developing Brain. Additionally Dr. Lord teaches child and adolescent psychiatry fellows in their didactic curriculum. Finally, Dr. Lord was recently elected to The National Academy of Medicine.

Website

https://weillcornell.org/clord

James Partington

James Partington

Title

Programming for Success: Critical Elements of an Effective Intervention for Individuals with Autism

Abstract

Professionals who provided services to individuals with a diagnosis of autism strive to help these learners reach their fullest potential. However, many instructional programs for individuals with autism fail to devote sufficient instructional time on those skills that will result in the greatest overall rate of acquisition. In order to facilitate the rapid acquisition of critical language and learning skills it is important to prioritize both the selection of specific learning objectives and the teaching activities. When selecting learning objectives, it is important to select developmentally appropriate skills to teach based on the learner’s age and skills in relation to development as demonstrated by typically-developing individuals. The actual development of skills requires active participation in teaching activities throughout the day by a motivated learner in a wide variety of situations. Most importantly, parents and other caregivers need to develop and consistently implement effective teaching strategies, and track the development of the learner’s skills over time so that timely adjustments can be made and new learning targets can be identified.

Bio

James W. Partington, PhD, BCBA-D is the director of Behavior Analysts, Inc., and provides services to children and their families at the STARS Clinics in Walnut Creek, California. He is a licensed psychologist and a board certified behavior analyst, doctoral level (BCBA-D), and has more than 45 years experience working with children with developmental disabilities. His expertise is in language-based intervention with children who are experiencing language delays as a result of autism and other related developmental disorders. Dr. Partington is the co-founder of a school that specialized in language-based instruction for children with autism (STARS School) and has helped several public school systems establish similar classrooms within their own districts. He has been a faculty member of several universities including West Virginia University, University of San Francisco and St. Mary’s College. Dr. Partington is a former President of the Northern California Association for Behavior Analysis and has served as a member of the Behavior Analyst Certification Board. Dr. Partington has received several professional awards including the Public Service Award for the Advancement of Behavior Analysis in Florida, presented by the Florida Association for Behavior Analysis. He has co-authored the book, Teaching Language to Children with Autism or Other Developmental Disabilities, and The Assessment of Functional Living Skills (The AFLS®). He is the author of several books including The Assessment of Language and Learning Skills-Revised (The ABLLS-R®), Capturing the Motivation of Children with Autism, and Getting Started: Developing Critical Learning Skills for Children on the Autism Spectrum.

Website

https://partingtonbehavioranalysts.com/about-us/james-w-partington-phd-b…

Bridget Taylor

Bridget Taylor

Title

Behavior Analysis and Autism Treatment: A Rich History and a Promising Future

Abstract

Thirty years ago, Ivar Lovaas published his landmark study documenting the benefits of early intensive behavioral intervention for autism. Together with a number of other seminal works, Lovaas’ publication brought about a paradigm shift in the delivery of autism services, and impacted outcomes for an inestimable number of children affected by autism. As is inevitable, the field of applied behavior analysis and autism
treatment has evolved in the years since, producing a wide array of applications and procedures to enhance increasingly complex skills of individuals with autism. At core, however, the fundamental principles of behavior analysis endure. This presentation will assess the progressive arc of autism treatment, with an eye toward anticipating how the enduring fundamentals of applied behavior analysis provide not only a connection to an esteemed history, but a path forward into a promising future.

Bio

Dr. Bridget A. Taylor is Co-founder and Executive Director of Alpine Learning Group and is Senior Clinical Advisor for Rethink. Dr. Taylor has specialized in the education and treatment of children with autism for nearly 30 years. She holds a Doctorate of Psychology from Rutgers University, and received her Master’s degree in Early Childhood Special Education from Columbia University. She is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst and a Licensed Psychologist. She was past Associate Editor for the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis and currently serves on the editorial board. She also serves on the editorial board of Behavioral Interventions. She is a member of the
Behavior Analyst Certification Board and serves on the Autism Advisory Group for the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies. Dr. Taylor is active in the autism research community and has published numerous articles and book chapters on effective interventions for autism. She is a national and international presenter and serves in an advisory capacity for autism education and treatment programs both locally and abroad. Dr. Taylor’s current research interests are in identifying innovative procedures to increase the observational learning repertoires of children with autism.

Website

http://www.alpinelearninggroup.org/about-us/staff-and-leadership.php


Friday, October 13

Marjorie Charlop

Marjorie Charlop

Title

Creating Evidence-Based Treatment Procedures for Children with Autism Spectrum
Disorder with Everyday Technology

Abstract

Many forms of technology are now a mainstay of families, such as smartphones, iPads, computers and the like. Easy to use procedures that can be implemented on these devices in naturalistic settings are being developed. These treatment procedures are less stigmatizing, easy to use, do not require apps, and can be used with any of these technologies available in the classroom, home, and community. This presentation will focus on a series of studies using smartphones and iPads to increase the social speech of children with autism spectrum disorder in naturalistic settings.

Bio

Marjorie H. Charlop, Ph.D., BCBA, has dedicated her life’s work to helping children with ASD and their families. She is Professor of Psychology at Claremont McKenna College and Director of The Claremont Autism Center, her renowned research and treatment center for children with ASD and their families. As a Licensed Psychologist, she also maintains a private practice and consultation services. Dr. Charlop has hundreds of professional conference presentations and publications in the field of autism and has done workshops and lectures around the globe. Her book, “How to Do Naturalistic Teaching Strategies with a Focus on Incidental Teaching with Autism Spectrum Disorders” is in its second edition. Her latest book, “Play and Social Skills for Children with ASD” will also be out soon. Dr. Charlop’s research areas focus on the treatment of communication, motivation, social skills, and behavior problems. Using technology is among her newer research interests. Parent collaboration and education is among her primary areas of practice.

Website

https://www.cmc.edu/news/marjorie-charlop-christy-joins-national-autism-…

Wayne Fuqua

Wayne Fuqua

Title

Detecting and Troubleshooting Treatment Failures: A Crucial Component of Evidence-Based Practice of ABA

Abstract

Evidence-based practice (EBP) is a multi-component decision making process in which practitioners select, refine and deliver clinical services based on a) the best available scientific evidence, b) unique client and contextual features, c) training and competence of the practitioner, d) ongoing clinical progress monitoring and decision making and e) early detection and trouble shooting of treatment “failures.” Developed initially in medicine, EBP has been extended to the delivery of applied behavior analysis (ABA) services and is considered an essential feature of ethical and high quality ABA service delivery. This presentation will emphasize clinical progress monitoring as a tool for detecting treatment failures and describe a checklist for trouble shooting treatment failures.

Bio

Dr. Wayne Fuqua is a Professor of Psychology and the former Chair of the Psychology Department at Western Michigan University (1999-2013). He currently teaches courses and mentors graduate students in Clinical Psychology and Behavior Analysis at WMU. Fuqua also conducts research across a range of areas including health psychology, ethics, dissemination and developmental disabilities. A Fellow of the Association for Behavior Analysis, Dr. Fuqua has published numerous peer-reviewed articles and given numerous presentations and workshops at national and regional conferences. He has collaborated with researchers from WMU’s Sociology and Philosophy Departments on two NSF-funded projects on research ethics. He is actively involved with a number of community-based agencies that provide services to individuals diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders and other developmental and physical disabilities. In his role as a member of the Michigan Autism Council (2013-2016), he was involved in developing, implementing and evaluating a state-wide plan to improve the quality and availability of autism services in the state of Michigan. He was recently honored with a Distinguished Service Award from Western Michigan University. He has developed a series of ABA training videos for BCBA practitioners that are available, free of charge, at http://wmich.edu/autism/resources.

Website

https://wmich.edu/psychology/directory/fuqua

Rick Kubina

Rick Kubina

Topic

Educational Assessment and Effective Educational Programming

Bio

Dr. Kubina (B.A., Youngstown State University; M.A., The Ohio State University; and Ph.D., The Ohio State University) is a Professor of Special Education. After completion of his Masters program, Kubina taught special education in a private schools specializing in post acute brain trauma rehabilitation for three years. During his doctoral program, Kubina worked as a graduate teaching assistant for the Great Lakes Regional Resource Center, a federally funded information dissemination and training center serving the Great Lake states. Currently, Kubina teaches courses on methods for teaching reading, informal assessment, behavior analysis, and single case design. Kubina conducts wide-ranging research in the area of Applied Behavior Analysis and Precision Teaching. Kubina is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst, Doctoral level and serves on a number of editorial boards for behavioral and special education journals. He was the editor of the Journal of Precision Teaching and Celeration.

Website

https://ed.psu.edu/directory/rmk11