A behavior analytic supervisor reinforces skills

We have reached the point where we are ready to wrap up our discussion on behavior analytic supervision. Throughout this series, we proposed that a top-notch supervisor is a MENTOR and listed six characteristic to look for when searching for a great supervisor.  We have already discussed five of the characteristics in depth and are now ready to discuss the sixth characteristic.  That is, an excellent supervisor:

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Reinforces the skills necessary to build your clinical repertoire.

Expert behavior analysts are proficient teachers.  Our unique training equips behavior analysts with tools to teach a variety of skills to a vast client-base.  The behavior analytic client-base ranges from individuals with developmental disabilities, students in classrooms, and members of sports teams, to employees of hospitals and big business organizations.  The skills targeted among our broad client-base are equally varied, as those skills are of direct relevance to each setting.  The limitless applicability of the science of behavior change means that behavior analytic techniques are also best suited for building your behavior analytic repertoire.

We mentioned that an excellent supervisor will reinforce skills when building your behavior analytic repertoire.  However, a quality supervisor will also use other strategies, as the process of reinforcement is one of many components involved in a well-designed skill acquisition program.  Essentially, you should expect your supervisor to use the entire range of behavior analytic principles and procedures throughout your supervised experience.   Your supervisor’s use of these strategies will ensure that you competently acquire a behavior analytic skill-set.  Your supervisor’s implementation of various strategies may also serve as a model for how you might use and apply various behavior change procedures.

You are probably wondering what other behavior analytic procedures you might look for from your supervisor?  The following list includes some, but is not meant to represent an exhaustive list of relevant principles and procedures.

  • Reinforcement
  • Prompting
  • Shaping
  • Feedback
  • Modeling and imitation
  • Instructions and rules

BAM Network has guided you through all six characteristics of a quality supervisor.  You are now ready to identify a top-notch MENTOR for your supervised experience.  Stay tuned for more from BAM Network, as we continue to discuss the supervision topics of most interest to you!

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