Tristram H. Smith– Early Intensive Behavioral Intervention: Past, Present, and Future

1.0 Type II CE Credit

About the presentation:

This presentation will offer an inside view on the rise of early intensive behavioral intervention (EIBI) at Ivar Lovaas’s UCLA Young Autism Project and the subsequent initiatives to replicate and disseminate EIBI. It will also examine how well this work holds up, considering that EIBI has evolved over time, standards of scientific evidence have become more stringent, and an increasing number of other interventions now have empirical support. It will conclude by examining current research and possible future directions to expand the evidence base on EIBI and to produce the next generation of interventions for children with autism.

Upon completion of this presentation attendees will be able to:

  • Describe what Lovaas considered to be high-quality discrete trial training.
  • Describe two events that spurred demand for early intensive behavioral intervention and two steps that behavior analysts took to meet the demand.
  • Summarize conclusions in recent systematic reviews on the strength of evidence for early intensive behavioral intervention


About the presenter:

Tristram Smith, Ph.D., is the Haggerty-Friedman Professor of Developmental/Behavioral Pediatric Research at the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC), where he leads federally funded studies comparing the efficacy of different interventions for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). He is also a clinician in URMC’s Community Consultation Program, serving students with ASD and other intellectual disabilities in schools and other agencies. His commitment to the study and treatment of children with ASD began in 1982, when he had the opportunity to volunteer as a buddy for an adult with autism who lived near his college. This 1 experience inspired him to apply to graduate school at the University of California, Los Angeles, where he studied clinical psychology and worked as a therapist and researcher with O. Ivar Lovaas, Ph.D., in the UCLA Young Autism Project. Before moving to Rochester in 2000, he directed clinics for children with autism and their families in the states of California, Iowa, and Washington. He has authored or coauthored several of the most widely-cited studies on treatment outcomes for children with ASD.

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