Archive for November, 2007

What determines a good pay rate for a good Behavior Analyst ?

November 26, 2007

Lots of people inquire as to what the average pay rate is for a Board Certified Behavior Analyst.  Note: Currently, there are under 3500 Ph.D /Masters level BCBA professionals in the world. 

I can tell you that pay rates / fees varies according to the Behavior Analyst practitioner’s level and areas of expertise, number of years of experience, type of job requirements,  level of analytic and application skills, level of common sense etc… 

Though what also comes to mind is this: 

I have a high respect for Dr Temple Grandin- she has Asperger’s Syndrome which is a form of Autism and a part of the Autistic Spectrum. Dr Grandin shares her personal wisdom about her disability for others ( non-disability and disabilities) to learn from her. Here is an important statement made by Temple Grandin during an interview:

Interviewer SE: What seemed to help you the most while growing up?

Temple Grandin: There were a variety of things. People are always looking for the single magic bullet that will totally change everything. There is no single magic bullet. I was very lucky to receive very good early intervention with very good teachers, starting at age  2  1/2 years.   I cannot emphasize enough the importance of a good teacher. A good teacher is worth his or her weight in gold. Some teachers just have a knack for working with autistic children. Other teachers do not have it. If you find a good teacher, hang on to him or her tight. My mother worked on teaching me how to read. I was on the right track by third grade, and I did quite well for about 3 years.


Actually, substitute the words  ‘Behavior Analyst’ for ‘teacher’ in the forementioned quote, because a very good  Behavior Analyst  also has to be a good teacher too.   

From what Temple Grandin shared in her statement,  one could gather that having a professional of   ‘quality’  and who is a ‘good fit’ could make a  positive difference.  

So be aware ABA shopper –

Cheap pay rates do not guarantee = Quality and effective ABA expertise  


November 22, 2007


Thanksgiving prayer 


“O God, when I have food,
help me to remember the hungry;

When I have work,
help me to remember the jobless;

When I have a home,
help me to remember those who have no home at all;

When I am without pain,
help me to remember those who suffer,

And remembering,
help me to destroy my complacency;

Bestir my compassion,
and be concerned enough to help;

By word and deed,
those who cry out for what we take for granted.



Quote by Samuel F Pugh

Parenting Teenagers

November 18, 2007

I was sitting in church at mass today when the Deacon stated that he wanted to share something special with the congregation during his homily. 

I thought, okay, hope it is something interesting. It actually was since this is why I am going to share it with you today. 

As a Behavior Analyst, I watch and assess behaviors a lot. Many parents ask for advice on what to teach and do with their kids. With the teenagers, it kinda gets more complicated. 

I remember, growing up as a teenager was not an easy thing. Though in today’s world I am quite concerned about what today’s generation of teenagers will grow up to be one day. 

I always believe in giving back to the community – it teaches great lessons. 

The Deacon began to tell us about our church’s Teenager Youth group. They had been very busy this past week. Truly, they were extra busy. 

During this past week, this group of teenagers rallied together to help humanity: 

          organized and conducted a Blood Drive ( because there has been a blood shortage in our area and there was a need)

          purchased and filled out 350 Christmas cards to be sent to our American troops in Iraq ( because our troops deserve to know that our youth cares about them)

          organized and made up 600 bag lunches with sandwiches, snacks and drinks for the homeless ( because we have homeless people who are hungry and in need of food)

          the Youth group went to Trenton, NJ to work at a Soup kitchen. They gave out the bagged lunches to those in need ( because there is a need for our youth to give of themselves to those who are less fortunate)  

These teenagers had been very busy. They were busy doing good deeds, quite indeed. These humanitarian experiences will shape the teenagers to grow up to hopefully become good adults.  

So what has your teenager been doing lately ?

So what are you doing for World Kindness Week ?

November 11, 2007

No act of kindness however small, is  ever wasted.” – quote by Aesop

The scriptures in the Proverbs say,

“What is desirable in a man (/woman) is kindness“.

World Kindness Week kicks off this     


November 12 – 18, 2007.

As a Behavior Analyst, I like this concept, though I think we should do random acts of kindness everyday.

Yeah, we are always teaching others about behavior contingencies and the importance to reinforce behaviors that we want to maintain/improve. Though, there is just something really special about the action ( behavior) to GIVE another some kindness.

For Jesus did say, ” Give and to expect nothing in return.”

It builds (shapes) our character to ( selflessly) give without expecting special reinforcements back in return.

 So to all of those who read this blog –


Think about it, more acts of kindness and light can make a better world. (improved environment)

Here are some related links to hopefully encourage(increase/maintain) your acts of kindness towards others and the world.

  • The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation
  • Free Hugs Campaign
  • Extreme Kindness
  • Staged Kindness
  • Purple Acts of Kindness
  • Disability Rights: And the result of the Nov 6, 2007 NJ Ballot question # 4 is …

    November 8, 2007

    Well, the good news is : 

    Question # 4- NJ Voting Rights – Ballot Issue 

    NJ Precincts             


    YES                                          NO

    740,158                        501,860                  

    60%                                           40%                                                

    Though this tally concerns me some because the NJ voter approval rate for this amendment was only 60 %. I had hoped for a higher percentage, perhaps 80 % to remove the inappropriate references in our NJ state constitution regarding people with disabilities as “idiots” and “insane”.  

    Lets revisit the ballot question: 

    Shall the amendment of Article II, Section I, paragraph 6 of the Constitution, agreed to by the Legislature, revising the current constitutional language concerning denial of the right to vote by deleting the phrase “idiot or insane person” and providing instead that a “person who has been adjudicated by a court of competent jurisdiction to lack the capacity to understand the act of voting” shall not enjoy the right of suffrage, be adopted?

    There will be an Interpretive Statement underneath that will read:
    Approval of this amendment concerning the denial of the right to vote would delete the phrase “idiot or insane person” and replace that phrase with “person who has been adjudicated by a court of competent jurisdiction to lack the capacity to understand the act of voting” in describing those persons who shall be denied the right to vote. The phrase “idiot or insane person” is outdated, vague, offensive to many, and may be subject to misinterpretation. This constitutional amendment acknowledges that individuals with cognitive or emotional disabilities may otherwise be capable of making decisions in the voting booth and that their right of self-determination should be respected and protected in this regard. The amendment only denies the right of suffrage ( voting privaledge) to those individuals determined by a court, on a case-by-case basis, to lack the capacity to understand the act of voting. 

    resource :

    Lets analyze this particular NJ voting outcome. Perhaps the 40 % who voted NO ;

              did not fully understand the question and its purpose?

              believe that people with disabilities should be referred to as “idiots and insane”?

              thought that people with disabilities who were deemed not to have the capacity to understand the act to vote would get the right to vote?

              believe that all people with disabilities “ who are labeled as ‘idiots and insane” should not be able to vote?

              this is a big stretch but … Maybe some thought that those with disabilities who do not have the capacity to understand should have the right to vote ? 

    I wonder what thoughts supported and influenced 40 % to vote NO?

    The question clearly states that the specific words “idiot and insane” were going to be replaced by “ person who has been adjudicated by a court of competent jurisdiction to lack the capacity to understand the act of voting” in describing those persons who shall be denied the right to vote.” That is it ! This question was NOT asking for a change in voting rights. It was only addressing a change in descriptive words.

    Now, in my opinion, I had hoped for a stronger support base for people with disabilities – ie developmentally disabled, mentally ill, brain injured etc. We need to remove the words “idiot and insane” since it is the right thing to do.  They should be referred to as people with disabilities instead.

    Sadly, I received 2 comments on my blog stating that the words     ” idiots and insane” were appropriate and they should not be allowed to vote either. Well this is my blog, I control its content. Both negative comments were quickly disallowed and deleted.

    Attention Disability and Special Needs Advocates–( this includes me as well)  there is much more work to be done.  We need to keep improving disability awareness/sensitivity and increasing support for people with various types of disabilities.

              Thank goodness, due to the majority vote, those offensive words will be taken out of our NJ Constitution.

    THANK YOU NJ Voters!