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Episode #119: The Importance of Joy In Therapy with Jennifer Posey

Have you ever met a provider, with a “Sit down! Do your work! Kids need to listen!” mentality? Jennifer Posey is a BCBA and adjunct professor at Endicott College. In this episode, she shares about her new tool, the Joy Index, which is currently in the research and peer review process.

The Joy Index is a tool that measures assent, autonomy, embedded choice, and relationship building. It involves 32 indicators with yes or no answers that can be used by parents and professionals. As providers, our goal is to have a positive impact, but there are those who have raised concerns about the practice of ABA. This tool is to keep those concerns in check and ensure we are creating a joyful experience in therapy. 

Honor the learner, follow their lead, provide choice in play materials and instruction, these are all parts of the dance between instructor and child to create a meaningful interaction. 

The Joy Index is currently under peer review, so stay tuned for future information on this incredible tool. Contact Jennifer Posey via email and look out for her at upcoming conferences this year.

#autism #speechtherapy

Today’s Guest:

Jennifer Posey, MA, BCBA, is a doctoral student in Applied Behavior Analysis at Endicott College, where she is interested in the acquisition and advancement of language skills with early learners, and producing joy-filled meaningful outcomes for children with autism. She studies under the advisory of Mark Dixon, Ph.D. She received her master’s degree in Special Education and subsequently pursued certification in Applied Behavior Analysis. Jennifer has worked with individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities across the lifespan since 1999. She has a special interest in establishing foundational repertoires in early childhood to include language and play skills so that more complex language and social repertoires emerge. This is considered her primary area of expertise, and she seeks to promote the acquisition of these complex skills embedded in ABA sessions that promote joy. Jennifer currently oversees clinical services at Holdsambeck Behavioral Health located in California. Additionally, she is an adjunct professor at Endicott College.

What’s Inside:

  • What is the Joy index?
  • Honoring the learner in every therapy session.
  • A field with a goal to create positive change.
  • Active strategies to create joy in therapy.
  • What does joy in therapy look like?
  • What is assent and what does it mean?

Mentioned In This Episode
ABA Speech: Learn About Current ASHA and ACE CEUs
—Thank you to our sponsor LINGGO. For more information, visit or contact 

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