How would you resolve these issues. All you need to do is provide how you would resolve each case.


CASE STUDY Number:  16


Ethical Guidelines addressed in this case:

2.13 Fees, Financial Arrangements, and Terms of Consultation

a) As early as feasible in a professional or scientific relationship, the behavior analyst and the client or other appropriate recipient of behavior analytic services reach an agreement specifying compensation and billing analystents.

c) Prior to the implementation of services the behavior analyst will provide in writing the terms of consultation with regard to specific requirements for providing services and the responsibility of all parties (a contract or Declaration of Professional Services) (pg 303).


2.16 Interrupting or Terminating Services

b) When entering into employment or contractual relatiagreementehavior analysts provide for orderly and appropriate resolution of responsibility for client care in the event that the employment or contractual relationship ends, with paramount consideration given to the welfare of the client.

c) Behavior analysts do not abandon clients. Behavior analysts terminate a professional relationship when it becomes reasonably clear that the client no longer needs the service, is not benefitting, or is being harmed by continued service.


6.06 Conflicts with Organizations

If the demands of an organization with which behavior analysts are affiliated conflict with these Guidelines, behavior analysts clarify the nature of the conflict, make known their commitment to these Guidelines, and to the extent feasible, seek to resolve the conflict in a way that permits the fullest adherence to these Guidelines.


Resolve the issue:

According to Guideline 2.16, a behavior analyst should not abandon clients; services should only be terminated if the client no longer needs the service, the client is not benefitting, or the client is being harmed. In this specific case, it would be unethical for the behavior analyst to abandon clients on the basis of pay. Before discontinuing services, the provider should set up a meeting to negotiate compensation and billing arrangements, as noted in Guideline 2.13 regarding Fees, Financial Arrangements and Terms of Consultation (Bailey & Burch 2011).The school district and the service provider should compose a written contract regarding payment. In this case the service provider is faced with conflict with her employer, the school district. As noted in guideline 6.06, the behavior analyst is ethically obligated to attempt to resolve the conflict adhering to the guidelines (Bailey & Burch, 2011). To resolve this issue, the service provider should confront the school district regarding her pay, arrange a meeting, and compose a written contract regarding paymen


Case Study #18:


Primary Ethical Issue: A behavior analyst is asked to follow a designed intervention of a point-sheet by a clinical psychologist for a 10 year old regarding her noncompliance at school (said psychologist has not observed the child at school). The behavior analyst noticed the point-sheet intervention is not working and wonders if she should bring this to the parent’s attention. The parents are adamant about the behavior analyst following the point-sheet since they have been with the clinical psychologist for a long time. The behavior analyst is a fairly new BCBA and doesn’t want to make the wrong impression on the family.



Ethical Guideline(s) Addressed in this Case:


1.04: Integrity

(a) “Behavior analysts are truthful and honest. The behavior analyst follows through on obligations and professional commitments with high quality work and refrains from making professional commitments that he/she cannot keep” (p. 60).


2.10: Treatment Efficacy

(a) “The behavior analyst always had the responsibility to recommend scientifically supported most effective treatment procedures. Effective treatment procedures have been validated as having both long-term and short-term benefits to clients and society” (p. 87).

(b) “Clients have a right to effective treatment (i.e., based on the research literature and adapted to the individual client)” (p. 87).

(c) “Behavior analyst are responsible for review and appraisal of likely effects of all alternative treatments, including those provided by other disciplines and no intervention” (p. 87).

(d) “In those instances where more than one scientifically supported treatment has been established, additional factors may be considered in selecting interventions, including, but not limited to, efficiency and cost-effectiveness, risks and side-effects of the interventions, client preference, and practitioner experience and training” (p. 88).

3.05: Describing Program Objectives

“The behavior analyst describes, in writing, the objectives of the behavior change program to the client or client-surrogate before attempting to implement the program. And to the

Team Discussion: Lesson 3                                                                                                    2



extent possible, a risk-benefit analysis should be conducted on the procedure to be implemented to reach the objective” (p. 114-115).


4.0: The Behavior Analyst and the Individual Behavior Change Program

“The behavior analyst (a) designs programs that are based on behavior analytic principles, including assessments of effect of other intervention methods, (b) involves the client or the client-surrogate in the planning of such programs, (c) obtains the consent of the client, and (d) respects the right of the client to terminate services at any time” (p. 120).


4.04: ApprovingInterventions

“The behavior analyst must obtain the client’s or client-surrogate’s approval in writing of the behavior intervention procedures before implementing them” (p. 122-123).


4.08: Program Modifications

“The behavior analyst modifies the program on the basis of data” (p. 126).


4.09: Program Modification Consent

“The behavior analyst explains program modification and the reasons for the modifications to the client or client-surrogate and obtains consent to implement the modifications” (p. 126).


7.0 The Behavior Analyst’s Ethical Responsibility to the Field of Behavior Analysis.

“The behavior analyst has a responsibility to support the values of the field, to disseminate knowledge to the public, to be familiar with these guidelines, and to discourage misrepresentation by non-certified individuals” (p. 159).


9.01 Promotion in Society

“The behavior analyst should promote the application of behavior principles in society by presenting a behavioral alternative to other procedures or methods” (p. 175).



Resolve the issue:

The behavior analyst should take data on her observation in the classroom so he/she is able to support her thoughts about the point-sheet not working. After she has gathered enough data she should meet with the parents and discuss her findings. He/She could also meet with both parents and clinical psychologist to discuss her findings on the point-sheet not being effective and the reasons she thinks it might not be working (maybe its not reinforcing anymore). He/She can also suggest a new intervention plan, based on evidence based methods and  adapt the point sheet to it if the parents are adamant about having an intervention based on it.



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