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

Event Details

Previous Page


Invited Tutorial #59
CE Offered: BACB
Using Animals to Modify Human Behaviour: Applied Behavior Analysis and Animal Facilitated Therapy
Saturday, May 26, 2012
3:00 PM–3:50 PM
6E (Convention Center)
Area: AAB/CBM; Domain: Service Delivery
BACB CE Offered. CE Instructor: E. Anne McBride, Ph.D.
Chair: Lindsay Parenti (Pet Behavior Change, LLC)
Presenting Authors: : E. ANNE MCBRIDE (University of Southampton)

The science of behaviour analysis is applied in a wide range of contexts by those working with individuals, families or at the organisational level. A related area is Clinical Animal Behaviour, where the focus is the animal's behaviour within a human context, and where both animal and human behaviour change is addressed. This latter field is the author's background. Recently, there has been a growing trend to use animals as intervention tools in human therapeutic programmes. The benefits of horse riding for those with physical disabilities, for example, are accepted, and considered to have clear scientific foundations. This is not the case where animals are used in psychological intervention programmes. Indeed, many consider such animal facilitated therapy to have little or no scientific validity and simply to provide a "feel-good" factor. This paper will consider; a. how behaviour analysis may explain much of what happens in animal facilitated therapy; b. how animals can be a specific tool in the behaviour analyst's therapeutic armoury; c. the potential for further roles of animals in human-health provision; and d. some issues to consider when planning therapeutic programmes involving animals. The talk will draw on examples of practice and critical consideration of evidence of outcome.

E. ANNE MCBRIDE (University of Southampton)
Dr. Anne McBride has a degree in Psychology and a Doctorate in animal behaviour. Anne has been a practising clinical animal behaviourist since 1987 and is a senior lecturer in the School of Psychology at the University of Southampton. She is the Director of the Applied Animal Behaviour unit and is Director for the Masters in Human-Animal Interactions. She is a member of the Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors and of the UK government advisory body The Companion Animal Welfare Council; she initiated the postgraduate Diploma / MSc in Companion Animal Behaviour Counselling which ran at the University of Southampton from 1994 � 2012, and lectured on applied behaviour analysis on that course, amongst other subjects. Her research interests cover both animal behaviour and the relationships people have with animals and how these are formed, both normal and abnormal relationships. She is particularly interested in how human interactions with animals affect animal and human welfare; be that how we talk to them, train them, feed them or allow them to behave. She has published on various aspects of human-animal interactions, and has written and lectured on this area both nationally and internationally. Her loves are cooking, walking, bonfires, friends and family and applying behaviour analysis to her dog and husband!
Keyword(s): animal-assisted therapy



Back to Top
Modifed by Eddie Soh