As a human, autistic adult, and board certified behavior analyst (BCBA) dedicated to ethical and humane treatment of others, this research is a high priority to me. I am highly interested in ensuring that the data taken is accurate to the experiences of those who have received formal ABA services. As such, I would love for the dissemination of this study’s research to be far reaching.
Certainly there is a part of me that is concerned about the information this research will present. But what is more concerning to me is that there is so little research which has been conducted in this area, and what has been conducted has largely been disregarded by behavior analytic practitioners with some notable exceptions.
For all that read this, I encourage you to disseminate this study to those who have experienced ABA services within the criteria listed. For those that participate, I encourage you to be honest and direct. Regardless of the results of the research, I look forward to being able to learn how my field, the field of Applied Behavior Analysis, can improve.
Brian Middleton, M.Ed., BCBA, LBA, the “Bearded Behaviorist”
Disclosure of relationships: Brian is friends with one of the researchers in this study. His friend, Louis Stay, is autistic and is a senior psychology undergrad student with an interest in autism counseling. Louis has worked as an RBT and has a desire to improve outcomes for all learners, but especially individuals receiving services for ASD.
Brian does not have a relationship with any other member of the research team nor has he received payment for advertising this study.
The Story Behind The Name
Puns and sayings are among the Bearded Behaviorist’s favorite things. Since Brian has a beard, the name makes a certain amount of sense, but when you add in an old saying, “to beard the lion in its den” the pun and story come together better. The term means to face an issue or problem head-on. It’s origin comes form the Old Testament about King David when he was a shepherd, before he gained his fame. The story goes that when a lion took one of his lambs, he followed the lion into it’s den, grabbed it by the mane or “beard” smote it, thus rescuing his lamb. So, while the name Bearded Behaviorist does refer to the creator’s beard (a mighty fine one it is too), it also refers to the practice of address the challenges we face directly and with evidence-based approaches.
Brian Middleton started Bearded Behaviorist as an effort to make understanding behavior fun and interesting. Dedicated to open-source education, Brian is a founding member of the Open-Source Educational Resources special interest group of ABAI. His social media pages and website are dedicated to dissemination of behavior science as well as pushing for inclusion of trauma-informed care standards in Applied Behavior Analysis and other human services. He is the host of the Oh Behave! Podcast, and open-source licensed podcast. Brian is a proud autistic adult, loving husband, avid lover of sci-fi/fantasy, a “nerd” with something better to do, enjoys the great outdoors, cooking, musicals, puns, spending time with friends and dogs, and making up silly songs. He is also the Chief Creative Officer for Legend Masters LLC, a print and design company. He holds a Masters of Education and a Post-Master Certificate in Applied Behavior Analysis. He also does not enjoy writing in the third-person and really wants to stop now…