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Episode #110: The Ethics of Collaboration with Dr. Dana Battaglia and Dr. Mary McDonald

Dr. Dana Battaglia, SLP, and Dr. Mary McDonald, BCBA, have been working together and collaborating throughout their career. Collaboration in the two fields is slowly making progress but there is still a lot of polarity for a lot of professionals. 

They rely on their strong commitment to science and evidence-based practice to guide their collaboration.

Dr. McDonald references the Ethics Code of Behavior Analysis codes, 2.10, 3.01, and 3.06.

2.10 Collaborating with Colleagues
Behavior analysts collaborate with colleagues from their own and other professions in the best interests of clients and stakeholders. Behavior analysts address conflicts by compromising when possible and always prioritizing the best interests of the client. Behavior analysts document all actions taken in these circumstances and their eventual outcomes.

3.01 Responsibility to Clients
Behavior analysts act in the best interest of clients, taking appropriate steps to support clients’ rights, maximize benefits, and do no harm. They are also knowledgeable about and comply with applicable laws and regulations related to mandated reporting requirements.

3.06 Consulting with Other Providers
Behavior analysts arrange for appropriate consultation with and referrals to other providers in the best interests of their clients, with appropriate informed consent, and in compliance with applicable requirements (e.g., laws, regulations, contracts, organization, and funder policies).

The bottom line is to ask yourself, what is in the best interest of the client. When you don’t know what you don’t know and you have access to a professional with the knowledge and skills needed for your case, it is important to have humility, stick to the science, and consult them.

Dr. Battaglia and Dr. McDonald’s collaboration across their professions maximize their outcomes and increase the benefit of the client. They share some strategies and tips to help other SLPs and BCBAs open to collaboration and see the same great results.

#autism #speechtherapy

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Today’s Guest:

Dr. Dana Battaglia
Dr. Battaglia is inspired every day by the power of communication, how it interfaces with behavior and effective leadership. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology from C.W. Post/Long Island University, and a Master’s degree in Speech-Language Pathology from St. John’s University in Queens, New York.  And subsequently earned a Ph.D. in the Speech-Language-Hearing Sciences from the City University of New York.  Dr. Battaglia is a licensed Speech-Language Pathologist and Teacher of the Speech and Hearing Handicapped in New York State.  She holds the Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCCs) from the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association (ASHA). Dr. Battaglia has conducted presentations on autism spectrum disorders and speech-language-related topics at the local, state, national, and international levels. She has worked in a variety of settings, including private and public schools, private practice, Early Intervention, and higher education. Her clinical and research areas focus on language and autism spectrum disorders (ASD) across the lifespan. She is a retired Associate Professor and Clinical Coordinator at the Genesis/Eden II Programs. Additionally, Dr. Battaglia is the Chair of the Committee on Special Education at the Westbury Union Free School District. Prior service includes but is not limited to past Presidents of the Long Island Speech Language Hearing Association(LISHA). 

Dr. Mary McDonald
McDonald is a Professor in the Special Education Department at Hofstra University. She directs an online Masters in Applied Behavior Analysis and the Advanced Certificate Programs including the advanced certificate in ABA and the Advanced Certificate in Severe and Multiple Disabilities. She currently teaches courses related to autism spectrum disorders, applied behavior analysis, and single-subject research. Dr. McDonald serves as Associate Executive Director of Long Island Programs for Eden II/Genesis. She has over 30 years of experience directing programs for students with autism from early intervention through adulthood. Dr. McDonald completed her Ph.D. in Learning Theory at the CUNY Graduate Center and is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst – Doctoral Level and a licensed behavior analyst in NY and Connecticut. Dr. McDonald serves on the editorial board of Special Education, Research, Policy and Practice and The Journal of the Academy of Special Education Professionals as well as a number of advisory boards. She presents at local, national, and international conferences on the topics of autism and applied behavior analysis. She has received awards from the New York State Association for Behavior Analysis and The Association for Behavior Analysis International. She has published a book on including students with ASD as well as chapters on speech and ABA collaboration, technology, and evidence-based interventions. She has published peer-reviewed and popular articles on topics such as self-management, social reciprocity, PECS, scripts and semantic mapping, creativity, and universal design for learning.

What’s Inside:

  • The ethics of collaborating.
  • Case studies featuring verbal imitation and PECS.
  • Collaborating with SLPS and BCBAS.
  • Strategies for collaboration to use in your practice.

Mentioned In This Episode

Dr. Mary McDonald
Dana Battaglia on Twitter
Eden II Programs
ABA Speech: Learn About Current ASHA and ACE CEUs

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