NZABA is please to host a great range of paper and poster presentations at the University of Canterbury this year. Authors, affiliations and titles of all accepted presentations are listed below. Stay tuned for a complete programme with presentation times and abstracts. We are not able to accept any more presentation submissions at this time.

Paper Presentations

Amarie Carnett Victoria University of Wellington Using behavior chain interruption to teach mands for actions for children with autism who communicate using an iPad-based speech-generating device
Anastasia Marie Sawchak Victoria University at Wellington A Comparison of Outcomes from Descriptive and Experimental Analyses of Verbal Behavior
Anne Macaskill Victoria University of Wellington The multiple effects of slot machine “off-line” wins
Anthony McLean University of Canterbury Do they stay or do they go?
Bartlomiej Swebodzinski University of Social Science and Humanities Warsaw Delay discounting in humans with neurological diseases
Brett Furlonger Monash University Are the third-generation counselling approaches promoted by Acceptance and commitment therapy, Mindfulness therapy and Dialectical behaviour therapy changing behavioural counselling so much as to make it unrecognisable to Skinner?
Doug Elliffe University of Auckland Milk lipid supplementation may partially counteract age-related memory deficits in rats
Edward K. Morris University of Kansas, Kansas, US Childrearing as the Behaviorist Viewed It: John B. Watson’s Advice in Perspective (co-authored with Katheryn M. Bigelow)
Emma Baker University of Auckland The treatment of vocal stereotypy using response interruption and redirection
Joanne Wong University of Auckland Using video modelling to teach social skills to children with autism
John Bai University of Auckland Sunk time: Effects of absolute and relative delays to reinforcement
John Church Ajunct Senior Fellow An analysis of the contingencies operating during teacher education programmes
Jonas Chan The University of Sydney Reinforcer rates and the role of trials in the acquisition of conditioned responding
Joseph Graddy Waikato University A study of the relationship between experiential avoidance, delaying of aversive outcomes, and brief, immediate relational responding.
Joshua Benseman University of Auckland The Monty Hall Dilemma: Pigeons, Probabilities, and Prizes
Karen Sluter University of Waikato Persistence of Behaviour during Differential Reinforcement
Kate Southcombe University of Auckland Target training as an intervention for horses with float-loading problem behaviour.
Katrina Phillips University of Auckalnd IOA: What is it good for?
Lorance Taylor Victoria University of Wellington Free is not enough
Ludmila Miranda-Dukoski The University of Auckland Contingency instead of context might aid our understanding of the processes underlying relapse
Mary Foster University of Waikato Effects of Reinforcer Duration on the Previous and Upcoming Ratios on Between-Ratio Pausing in Fixed-Ratio Schedules
Neville Blampied University of Canterbury To average or not to average? – that is the question
Patrícia Luque Carreiro University of Brasilia – Brazil A Functional Analysis of Corruption from a Behavioral-Economic Perspective
Randolph Grace University of Canterbury Amazing Title to Come
Rebecca Olsen Victoria University of Wellington Discounting of reinforcer value and student success
Sarah Cowie University of Auckland Reinforcers and stimuli in adaptation and performance
Stephanie Gomes-Ng University of Auckland To switch or not to switch?: The effects of changeover delays on choice
Stuart Michael McGill University of Auckland Analysing the Effect of Acquisition Context on Human Choice Behaviour by combining EAB with EEG
Surrey Jackson University of Waikato A microanalysis of body weight as a Motivating Operation
Timothy Edwards University of Waikato Using Giant African Pouched Rats and Behaviour Analysis in Humanitarian Applications
Vikki Bland University of Auckland Impact of signalled alternative reinforcement on persistence of target responding
Yadan Liu Monash University Improving Social Skills in a Child with Autism Spectrum Disorder through Self-management Training (Authors: Yadan Liu, Dennis W. Moore, & Angelika Anderson)

Poster Presentations

Amanda Fernandez Monash University Direct assessment of mild challenging behaviours with typically developing Australian primary school-age students
Ariel Yang University of Waikato Suboptimal Choice Behaviour across Different Reinforcement Probabilities
Bartłomiej Swebodziński Polish Society for Behavioral Psychology Polish Society for Behavioral Psychology – yesterday, today and tomorrow
Celia Lie University of Otago Effects of an Online Learning Platform on Exam Performance and Student Satisfaction
Derek English Monash University An intervention package comprising of video modelling, video feedback and peer mediation to teach adults with ASD social and work skills in a vocational context.
Grace Walker Victoria University of Wellington Increase minority students use of support services through metaphors
Hannah Waddington Victoria University of Wellington Teaching an 8-year-old boy with autism spectrum disorder to approach communication partners in order to request preferred items using an iPad®-based speech generating device.
Jessica Barton Victoria University of Wellington Are tones reinforcers for rats?
jessica cameron victoria university of wellington Slot machines: colour change signalling increased reinforcement rate
Kate Pennell Victoria University of Wellington Delay discounting of video: Effects of reward quality and order of experienced outcomes
Katrina Clarke University of Waikato Brushtail Possums (Trichosurus vulpecula) Counting Using Response Sequences under Ratio Reinforcement
Kim van der Toorn University of Waikato The effect of economy type (open vs closed) on the demand for foods by hens
Lauren Colls Victoria University of Wellington The near win effect in simulated slot machine gambling: the role of conditioned reinforcement
Matthew Westbury Victoria University of Wellington Studying gene – environment interactions in a rat model of depression
Melissa Janson University of Waikato Making Recycling Positive Immediate and Certain, Using a Recycling ‘Arcade’ in a Public Place.
Rana Asgarova Victoria University of Wellington Experiential probability discounting of gains and losses
Renee L Cachia Monash University Mindfulness, Stress and Well-being in Parents of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Systematic Review
Richard Dagher Monash University An intervention package comprising of video-modelling, video feedback and peer mediation to teach adults with ASD social and work skills in a vocational context.
Sadhana Gounden Monash University An intervention package comprising of video modelling, video feedback and peer mediation to teach adults with ASD social and work skills in a vocational context.
Shu Fen Chan Monash University An intervention package comprising of video modelling, video feedback and peer mediation to teach adults with ASD social and work skills in a vocational context.
Sinead Bicknell The Univeristy of Waikato The Relation Between Preference and Price of Different Amounts of food with Hens (Preference and Price)
Stacey ter Veer-Burke University of Waikato Judgement Bias in Hens
Steph Bremner University of Waikato Performance of Brushtail Possums (Trichosurus Vulpeca) on Concurrent DRL VI Schedules of Reinforcement
Stuart Michael Mcgill Unversity of Auckland Within-session reinforcer differentials in a free-operant psychophysical procedure
Victoria Hancox University of Waikato Replication of Zentall & Stagner’s (2010) procedure of Sub-optimal choice behaviour
Vincent Thor Allen University of Waikato Automated Technology Based Behavioural Intervention to Promote Exercise Adherence: A Pilot Study to Ascertain Efficacy


Call for Papers for NZABA 2015

NZABA 2015 will be hosted at the University of Canterbury

21-23 August 2015

To register your intention to attend the conference, and enter details about your presentation or poster, please use the survey:

15 July is the deadline to submit your abstract and to indicate that you are seeking student travel assistance

The conference schedule will be as follows:

Evening Friday 21st of August: meet and greet, registration, and poster session

Saturday 22nd of August: presentations, conference dinner

Sunday 23rd of August: presentations, business meeting, and Awards

New Zealand Association for Behaviour Analysis Business Meeting 2014

Saturday30th August, University of Otago

NZABA 2015

The 2015 conference will be hosted by the University of Canterbury in Christchurch. The University of Waikato to host in 2016 unless we identify a new location (see below).

Committee Roles

  • Randy Grace (Canterbury) to be the president of NZABA.
  • Anne Macaskill (Victoria) to remain as secretary.
  • Brent Alsop remains treasurer until he has organised with someone from the University of Canterbury to take over.

Treasurer’s report

  • We have approximately $12,000 in the NZABA bank account. Anticipated that we will have approximately $7,500 following payment of all conference expenses
  • Discussion of the fact that we have been carrying a large bank balance given that the goal of conference fees is to cover our conference costs rather than to make a profit.
  • Suggested that we investigate the idea of holding the conference somewhere new, perhaps outside NZ. As we have had many attendees from Australia recently, holding it there is one possibility.
  • Action: Investigate the possibility of holding NZABA in Australia in the future, perhaps 2016.

Funding for students and travel costs

  • Agreement that the conference itself should remain free to students
  • Agreement to try moving the decision making about student travel grants earlier next year to provide students with some surety about how much they will receive. Money will be given to them at the end of the conference.
    • Action: Anne Macaskill to organise a trial of this in 2015
  • Only students who present are eligible for funding, and preference will also be given to those who have looked for alternative funding.

NZABA will continue not to accept credit card payments?

  • Increasing attendance from Australia. Australian attendees would find it easier to pay if they could do so with credit cards. Possibility of running through a service like PayPal
  • Discussion of the complex issues involved in accepting credit cards.
  • Decided to maintain current options: internet banking, payment with a cheque, payment with cash.

Life memberships

  • Discussion of awarding NZABA membership to a small number of long-time members who have now retired.
  • Geoff White, Bill Temple, and Michael Davison identified as NZABA members who have made a substantial contribution to the organisation and to NZ Behaviour Analysis over many years.
  • Action: Geoff, Bill, and Michael will receive certificates.

Thank yous

  • Thank you to Oliver Mudford for nine years of BCBA CEU coordinating. Welcome Katrina Philips to this role.
  • Thank you to Celia Lie and her organising committee for a great 2014 conference and to Celia for several years serving as an excellent secretary or president of NZABA



This year NZABA celebrated its 10th annual conference at the University of Auckland with its biggest attendance to date with 88 delegates, with a number traveling from outside New Zealand. The standard of the 34 presentations and 9 posters were excellent, as usual, and sparked a lot of interesting discussions. An informal gathering was held at SPE bar on Friday. The conference was held in the Copthorne Hotel on Anzac Avenue on Saturday and in the Human Sciences Building on Sunday.

NZABA once again offered Continuing Education Units to practitioners in applied behaviour analysis, administered by Oliver Mudford.

Student presentations always feature in NZABA’s programme but the bar continues to be set higher each year. For the second year in a row, Sarah Cowie won the best basic-research presentation with a paper entitled, “A step in time from 1 to 9: Discriminating local food ratio reversals that occur a fixed time after the last reinforcer”. This was the first time NZABA awarded the same student two years in a row, indicating the outstanding quality of Sarah’s presentation. Elin Engstrom won the best applied presentation with her talk entitled, “Applied behaviour analysis in a dementia care facility”. A number of high-quality Honours and Master’s presentations inspired the nomination of an award to Jonas Chan for his paper entitled, “Stimulus control and resistance to extinction in combined stimulus contexts”. Congratulations to these students on their awards and thank you to all student presenters for contributing to an excellent programme.

Previous winner, James McEwan, awarded Brett Furlonger the Bullroarer for pulling the cloth from our eyes and asking us to examine our effectiveness as teachers. After naming practically every word spoken at the conference, as previous winner, Dave Harper awarded Katrina Phillips the venerable Spear for her claims to play God.

Chris Podlesnik handed the position of President/Chair to Celia Lie, Celia Lie handed Secretary over to Anne Macaskill, and Doug Elliffe provisionally handed Treasurer to Brent Alsop pending Brent’s approval.

Thank you to everyone who helped organise NZABA 2013 and we look forward to NZABA 2014 at the University of Otago in Dunedin.

Chris Podlesnik – 2013 NZABA President/Chair


New Zealand Association for Behaviour Analysis Annual General Meeting

 Saturday 31st August, University of Auckland

 NZABA 2014

As per last year’s decision, the 2014 conference will be hosted by the University of Otago in Dunedin.

Committee Roles

Celia Lie (Otago) to be the next Chair/President, taking over from Chris Podlesnik (Auckland).

Anne Macaskill (VUW) to be Secretary, taking over from Celia Lie (Otago).

Brent Alsop (Otago) nominated to take over the Treasurer’s role from Doug Elliffe (Auckland).

Action: Celia to check with Brent if he is willing to be Treasurer.

Treasurer’s Report

Doug Elliffe (Auckland) reports that we had around $7200 in the NZABA account prior to the conference.

The current account with ANZ cannot be closed down without Nathalie Boutros’s signature (location currently unknown). One solution is to set up a new account, then withdraw all the money from the current account to place into a new account. The new account needs to be set up for a non-profit organisation, and preferably requiring only one signature for such activities as writing out cheques and closing the account down.

Action: Celia/Brent/Doug to organise this after all expenses for NZABA 2013 are taken care of.

Other Costs

Annual costs of renewal for the NZABA website (around $15). Doug has been paying this out of his own pocket.

Action: James McEwen volunteered to pay for the next year.

BACB fee for CE credits also needs to be paid once a year (around $150).

Action: New Treasurer to arrange to cheque to be sent.

Code of Ethics

Following an email to Chris earlier in the year regarding whether NZABA has a code of ethics, a brief discussion took place about whether we needed one. It was agreed that the code for ABAI would suffice, and that the NZ Psychological Board’s ethics code also covers research. No Code of Ethics would be adopted by NZABA specifically.

Student Travel Fund & Prizes

Because NZABA is in a good financial situation at the moment, it was suggested that we use some of this money to pay for student travel.

Doug also suggested that the student prizes be raised slightly (since they have been $100 for a long time and haven’t been adjusted for inflation). All in favour.

Action: Doug to email one person per University to see whether students have paid money out of their own pocket for travel expenses.

Action: Doug to send out cheques student prizes to the winners.

Thank You

Thanks to the University of Auckland Psychology Department for paying for most of the costs of the conference.

Thanks to Doug Elliffe for holding the Treasurer’s role for a number of years.

Thanks to Celia Lie for holding the Secretary’s role for a number of years.

Thanks to Chris Podlesnik for being the Chairperson for the past year.

Thanks to the organising team of NZABA 2013 for a well-run (and very well-attended) conference.

Meeting closed at 5:50pm.


Good afternoon everyone,

 To give us an indication of numbers of likely attendees at the NZABA Conference next month, could all attendees please answer the two questions (a) whether you are planning on attending the conference, and b) whether you (and your partner/family) are planning on attending the conference dinner on Saturday) on the “Attendance Poll” at the link below:

Please forward this link on to students (or any others who are not on the mailing list) who are planning on attending also. We would like your replies to this poll ASAP.

Please note that conference registration for NZABA 2013 will occur on the morning of Saturday 31st August. All conference attendees must register their attendance. Conference fees are $140 for waged (payable upon registration), and free for students. Please note that although students pay no fees, they still need to register on the day. (Voting on the “attendance polls” does not mean that you have “registered” – you still need to register your actual attendance on Saturday morning.)

Further conference details (including details about Friday’s drinks and Saturday’s dinner) are now available on the NZABA website here:

To all those who are presenting, can you please submit your abstracts to Chris by 19th August (although ASAP is preferred to lessen the administration workload). Please include all authors and affiliations when you do so. Email abstracts to Please note that talks will be 15 minutes each, plus a few minutes for questions.


A final reminder that today is the last day to send in your title submissions for the 2013 NZABA Conference, to be held in Auckland from 30 August – 1 September. Please submit your titles today to Chris Podlesnik at

For all those planning on presenting, the abstract deadline is the 19th August. Please send your abstracts to Chris Podlesnik at

Talks will be 15 minutes each + a few minutes for questions.

Finally, here are some more details from Chris about venues and accommodation for NZABA 2013:


The conference will be held at the Copthorne Hotel on Saturday and on the University of Auckland campus on Sunday (10 Symonds Street). Both are within a 5 min walk from one another.

If anyone wants to stay at the Copthorne Hotel, they must book directly with them and quote the conference booking ID: #79283 to receive the special rate of $110 (includes GST) per night. The booking will be confirmed subject to availability.

Here is the hotel contact info:

150 Anzac Avenue

P.O. Box 3272

Auckland, 1010

New Zealand

T. +64 9 379 8509

F. +64 9 379 8582

We are working toward coming up with a place to meet informally on Friday night and for the Saturday night dinner. Hopefully, both will be quite close.

Thanks, let me know if you have any questions.