Students win multiple awards at BABAT, prestigious behavior analysis conference
This semester, nine Salve Regina students from the undergraduate psychology program and graduate behavior analysis program attended the Berkshire Association for Behavior Analysis and Therapy (BABAT) annual conference. While there, three students won awards for their posters and presentations.
BABAT is New England’s oldest, largest and most prestigious conference for behavior analysis. The 2022 conference was BABAT’s 44th annual, a demonstration of the conference’s longevity, dependability and popularity.
“Every year, BABAT attracts presentations from prominent researchers from around the world,” said Dr. Cody Morris, assistant professor and graduate program director for behavior analysis. “Students attending the conference get a chance to meet and learn from leaders in the field of behavior analysis, and students who present at BABAT get an opportunity to share and discuss their research with these leaders.”
Although Morris has attended the conference previously, this was the first BABAT experience for his students. Although this was their first time, Salve Regina represented 35% of the overall poster presentations that students submitted. Hannah Grey ’21, ’22 (M) and Jacob Oliveira, a current graduate student, won first place in the poster competition. Tatiana Pullar ’22 (M) won the only honorable mention of the event.
“Several conference attendees approached me during the poster session to rave about the quality of the students’ research and the professionalism of their presentations,” Morris said. “I was delighted by how well all of the students presented and felt very honored to be involved with each of their presentations. The students deserve to feel gratified in their collective accomplishment – not only did they represent Salve exceptionally well, but they also shared important research that can help improve the treatment for highly vulnerable populations, such as individuals with severe developmental disabilities.”
The topics that the students presented included strategies related to teaching sight words to children with developmental disabilities, assessing and treating problematic behavior, data collection integrity, and state licensing laws for behavior analysis.
Gray and Oliveira’s poster was titled “The Effects of Using Compound Stimuli to Train Sight Words,” and they investigated effective stimulus presentation methods for teaching students to identify sight words.
“The basis of the project is adhere caution when teaching sight words using compound stimuli and to assess it before wasting time teaching a skill with faulty stimulus control,” described Oliveira.
“Participating in BABAT was a fantastic professional development opportunity to network and get feedback from other professionals in the field as I begin my journey as a professional in the field of behavior analysis,” Gray concluded. “It is always an honor to attend these conferences and represent Salve and the BA program.”
This experience was made possible through the Sister Jane Gerety Experiential Learning Fund.