Ethics and Anxiety – Best Practice and Ethical Considerations in ABA Service for Learners with Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities Who Have Anxiety

Dr. Daniel W. Mruzek, BCBA-D

Connections Behavior Planning and Intervention welcomes Dr. Daniel Mruzek, PhD, BCBA-D, for a webinar on Ethical considerations for treating Anxiety!



Behavior analysts who serve persons with autism and other developmental disabilities regularly encounter clients who have been diagnosed with one or more anxiety disorders, and this circumstance requires specialized consideration of best professional practices and ethical hazards that may arise. In this workshop, we will: (1) review common anxiety diagnoses; (2) relate these diagnoses and related behavior to functional assessment, (3) consider barriers to effective treatment of challenging behaviors related to anxiety; and (4) consider how we can integrate our efforts with other helping professionals (e.g., healthcare providers). A special emphasis will be placed on consideration of potential ethical pitfalls and our related responsibilities as behavior analysts.

About the Presenter:

Dr. Daniel W. Mruzek, BCBA-D, received his doctoral training in Psychology at the Ohio State University and is a former Program Director at the Groden Center in Providence, Rhode Island. He has been a researcher on several externally funded intervention studies, including controlled trials of an innovative toilet training method for children with autism that employs an Apple OS – based app and manualized intervention that he and colleagues developed. Dan has authored and co-authored more than twenty peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on autism and other developmental disabilities, including chapters in the popular text, Making Inclusion Work for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder: An Evidence-Based Guideand the APA Parent Training for Autism Spectrum Disorder. He has been a longtime member of the faculty in the Applied Behavior Analysis program at the University of Rochester Warner School of Education. He has also served on the editorial board for the journals Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities, Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, and Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, and is a “Top Ten” contributor to the Autism Speaks Got Questions? blog site for families and practitioners. Dan is a coauthor of two instruments published by Pro-Ed Publishers, Inc., the Developmental Assessment for Individuals with Severe Disabilities and the Adaptive Behavior Diagnostic Scale. He is a popular community presenter and has provided staff trainings with agencies internationally for more than two decades.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Participants will demonstrate knowledge of different types of anxiety diagnoses, discuss case conceptualization from an ABA framework, and identify specific ethical problems that may arise in the process.
  2. Participants will identify a model for the functional assessment of “anxiety-related” behavior and relate this to ethical practice, including safeguards and principles of ethical conduct.
  3. Participants will identify a model for linking functional assessment results to function-based intervention strategies, including discussion of the ethical implications of graduated exposure to noxious circumstances and related skill-building.
  4. Participants will recognize the most common barriers to treatment of challenging behaviors related to anxiety, as well as strategies that aid in overcoming these barriers.
  5. Participants will demonstrate a working knowledge of how to ethically integrate ABA-based intervention efforts with the practice of other helping professionals (e.g., healthcare professionals), in supporting a child described experiencing maladaptive levels of anxiety.

CEU’s included, and Cost to Attend:

  • 2.0 Learning BACB CEU’s (Ethics)
    • $39.99 (CEU’s included in price)

For questions, challenges with registration, or any other needed information, please contact Dusty, Director of Continuing Education and ACE Coordinator for CBPI, LLC, at continuingeducation@connections-behavior.com.

Connections Behavior Planning & Intervention, LLC, is a BACB-Approved ACE Provider (Provider # OP-17-2781). The BACB does not directly sponsor or endorse this event, its speakers, or its content.

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