Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


38th Annual Convention; Seattle, WA; 2012

Workshop Details

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Workshop #W69
CE Offered: PSY/BACB
Solving Ethical Dilemmas in the Practice of Applied Behavior Analysis
Saturday, May 26, 2012
8:00 AM–11:00 AM
211 (Convention Center)
Area: CSE/PRA; Domain: Service Delivery
CE Instructor: Weihe Huang, Ph.D.
WEIHE HUANG (Regional Center of the East Bay)
Description: In making decisions about behavioral interventions and services, many behavior analysts encounter ethical dilemmas when societal values, including those of service recipients and behavior analysts, conflict with each other. This workshop is designed to help enhance participants' ability to practice applied behavior analysis in an ethically responsible way by describing the characteristics of ethical dilemmas, discussing the Behavior Analyst Certification Board's Guidelines for Responsible Conduct, and introducing an ethical decision making model. In many situations where ethical dilemmas exist, the guidelines are useful in helping behavior analysts solve problems. In some cases, however, real ethical dilemmas cannot be resolved by appealing to the existing guidelines or regulations. Part of this workshop is aimed at providing applied behavior analysts with an ethical decision making model in the event that the guidelines alone are insufficient. Strategies included in this model are based on the relevant experience of the workshop instructor and the available literature in the field of behavior analysis and related areas. The emphasis of the discussion will be on the application of this model as well as the guidelines to various clinical settings, including natural homes, residential facilities, day programs, and educational programs.
Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of this workshop, participants should be able to:

Identify ethical issues in the field and their importance to the general public as well as to behavior analysts

Describe primary ethical principles that underlie the content of the Guidelines for Responsible Conduct

Identify and analyze ethical dilemmas that are often encountered by behavior analysts and other service providers

Assess and realize the usefulness of the Guidelines for Responsible Conduct as a tool in making ethical decisions

Use the six steps delineated in the ethical decision making model to resolve ethical dilemmas that are likely to occur in the service delivery process

Activities: This workshop will use real life cases both provided by the instructor and generated by participants to illustrate the implementation of the Guidelines for Responsible Conduct and the steps in the ethical decision making model. Participants in this workshop will be encouraged to a) identify their values and associate these values with primary ethical principles, b) recognize the characteristics of ethical dilemmas in the field of ABA, and c) apply codes in the Guidelines for Responsible Conduct and the six steps specified in the ethical decision making model to cases that involve ethical dilemmas.
Audience: This workshop is appropriate for behavior analysts working in various clinical settings, including natural homes, residential facilities, day programs, and educational programs, as well as psychologists working in these settings.
Content Area: Practice
Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): decision making, ethical dilemmas, societal values



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