What's New

To view our press releases click here.

May 22 - 26, 2009

Nikia will be attending the 35th Annual Convention of the Association for Behavior Analysis International®(ABAl®) in Phoenix, AZ. This is ABAI's richest program to date: it includes 1,633 submissions, among which are 765 posters, 295 panels & symposia, 236 papers, 26 invited addresses, 12 invited tutorials, 64 business meetings, 19 reunions, 14 g special events, 109 Expo posters and 93 pre-convention workshops. This conference is considered the premier conference annually in the field of behavior analysis! Visit www.abainternational.org for more information on ABAl®

April 25, 2009

For Autism Awareness Month, Nikia and Leslie provided information about autism services and treatment options, local autism resources and the incidence of autism in Virginia at the Dower and Associates, Inc. vendor table at the 2nd Annual Loudoun County Autism Consortium sponsored by the Autism Pathway Foundation in Leesburg, VA. Autism Pathway Foundation is an nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of familes in Loudoun County affected by Autism by providing consultative training, educating about advocacy and parental rights, financial and supportive resources, informing families about effective treatment plans, and helping with guides to IEP and ISP planning. Autism Pathway Foundation strives to set families on the pathway to effective intervention strategies with an emphasis on early detection and aggressive therapies. For more information on Autism Pathway Foundation, please visit www.autismpathway.org.

March 1, 2009

Kyra Saling, BS joined Dower and Associates, Inc. as our Computer Network and Operations Manager. Bringing a vast variety of expertise to the practice, Kyra has for the past 25 years, held positions in private industries as a Senior Computer Network Consultant, Assistive Technology Specialist, Technology Specialist, and as an elementary public school classroom teacher.

January 16, 2009

Nikia, Cheri, Lily, Ellyn, Jessica, Tina, Leslie and Ellen attended "Motivating Children With Autism To Speak: Incorporating ABA Principles To Build Functional Communication" Workshop in Timonium, MD. The workshop was presented by Tammy Kasper, MS, CCC-SLP, BCBA® a Speech-Language Pathologist who is also a Board Certified Behavior Analyst®. Nikia and Cheri earned ASHA CEUs and Nikia earned BACB CEUs for attending the workshop.

Building on current treatment methods from the field of Speech-Language Pathology as viewed through the eyes of a dually certified Speech/Language Pathologist and Board Certified Behavior Analyst®, this workshop provided real world examples of practical and easily implemented interventions that can be applied across contexts. Emphasis was placed on the use of Skinner's behavioral classification of language, which refocuses and refines the teaching of functional communication. Methods for effective transfer of skills from imitative to spontaneous requesting were presented. Procedures to systematically shape functional verbal and/or manual communication were also be addressed, including utilization of the "K & K Sign to Say" teaching tool and Nancy Kaufman's (www.kidspeech.com) system of a hierarchy of vocalizations (wordshells). For more information on Tammy Kasper, please visit www.centerautismtreatment.org.

November 11, 2008

Nikia and Cheri attended "Asperger's Syndrome" conference in Frederick, MD for ASHA CEUs. The conference speaker was Timothy P. Kowalski, MA,CCC-SLP, a licensed speech-language pathologist and nationally known expert on Asperger's Syndrome and high-functioning Autism.

Nikia and Cheri learned how to recognize and identify behavioral symptoms of Asperger's Syndrome; techniques used in pragmatic language assessment; frequent misdiagnoses and diagnostic progression; the social and emotional issues associated with Asperger's Syndrome; specific techniques to improve successful outcomes; intervention methods to combat social inappropriateness; current research concerning Asperger's Syndrome; the unique difficulties present in Asperger's Syndrome; and intervention techniques for fine motor, gross motor and academic issues.

Due to the unique nature of Asperger's Syndrome, an appropriate diagnosis is frequently not made until a child is an adolescent. By this time, well-intentioned diagnosticians have provided many different diagnostic labels such as ADHD, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, Conduct Disorder, Learning Disabled, Auditory Processing and Emotionally Handicapped. An accurate diagnosis is highly impacted by the experience the diagnostician has with this population. Speech-Language Pathologists benefit from knowing the diagnostic criteria and symptoms of the syndrome when searching for effective interventions. For more information on Mr. Kowalski, visit his website: www.socialpragmatics.com

November 8, 2008

Walk Now Photo
Team Dower and Associates "Walk Now For Autism" Participants

Dower and Associates, Inc. Staff Families, Colleagues and Friends participated in Autism Speaks "Walk Now For Autism" in Washington, DC. Our team raised over $3000.00! "Walk Now for Autism," the nation's largest grassroots autism walk program, is Autism Speaks' signature fundraising and awareness event, taking place in communities across the United States, as well as in Canada and the United Kingdom. Powered by volunteers and families with loved ones on the autism spectrum, this successful grassroots fundraising effort not only generates vital funds for autism research but also raises awareness about the increasing prevalence of autism and the need for increased research funding to combat this complex disorder. For more information, visit www.autismspeaks.org or www.walknowforautism.org or http://tinyurl.com/DowerAutismSpeaksWalk2008

November 3-4, 2008

Tina, Lily, Amber and Ellyn attended "Managing Problem Behaviors in School and Home Settings" presented by Tom Caffrey, MEd, BCBA in Annandale, VA. This two-day workshop was sponsored by POAC-NOVA and illustrated applying the science of ABA to common problem behavior scenarios for children with autism. Mr. Caffrey co-authored with Dr. Vincent J. Carbone (www.carboneclinic.com) an 8-hour professional development training CD series The Verbal Behavior Approach to Teaching Children with Autism (www.abatoolchest.com). In addition, he developed for Parents of Children with Autism (POAC) an eight-part workshop series Teaching Children with Autism in Public School Settings (www.poac.net) and presents numerous workshops in conjunction with FATE (www.thefate.org) and VBN Training (www.vbntraining.com)

October 29, 2008

Cheri attended Practical Therapy Techniques For Challenging Articulation Cases: Frontal Lisp, Lateral Lisp and Disorted "R'" in Harrisburg, PA presented by Char Boshart, MA, CCC-SLP. Cheri learned dozens of practical and effective therapy techniques, timesaving strategies, carryover activities and methods to motivate learners. Cheri earned .5 ASHA CEUs for attending this workshop. For more information about Char Boshart, please visit http://www.speechdynamics.com/aboutus.html

October 25, 2008

Group Photo with Dr Sundberg Nikia, Ellyn and Leslie attended the 4th Annual Walk for Autism - Virginia

The Autism Walk helps raise awareness about the increasing frequency of autism, fund educational scholarships and is sponsored by the Autism Society of America's Northern Virginia Chapter. For more information on ASA-NV or Walk for Autism - Virginia, go to www.asanv.org or www.walkforautismva.org.

October 8-9, 2008

Group Photo with Dr Sundberg Amber Mentzer, BS, Dr Mark Sundberg, BCBA, Ellyn Sanguedolce, BS and Tina Emory.

Amber, Ellyn and Tina attended Dr Mark Sundberg's Verbal Behavior Milestones Assessment and Placement (VB-MAPP) workshop hosted by Tidewater ASA in Virginia Beach, VA. The Verbal Behavior Milestones Assessment and Placement Program is is a criterion-referenced assessment tool, curriculum guide, and skill tracking system that is designed for children with autism, and other individuals who demonstrate language delays. The VB-MAPP is based on B.F. Skinner’s (1957) analysis of verbal behavior, established developmental milestones, and research from the field of behavior analysis. For more information, visit www.marksundberg.com or www.tidewaterasa.org.

October 5, 2008

Nikia, Ellyn and Amber attended Survival Strategies for Everyday Living presented by Amy McGinnis, MS, OTR/L, BCBA® in Alexandria, VA. The workshop was sponsored by the Autism Advocacy Coalition of Virginia. Ms. McGinnis spoke about behavior management strategies that parents can use in everyday life.

September 23, 2008

We are excited to announce the addition of Amber Mentzer to our ABA staff.

Amber received her BS in Psychology from Troy University in 2005. From 2001-2005, she was the recipient of the Florida Bright Futures Academic Scholarship. She is currently finalizing her MEd in Special Education at GMU and maintains a 4.0 GPA. Additionally, she is pursuing her certification as a BCBA®.

She has worked as an ABA Therapist at Autism Learning Center and an assistant teacher at Ivymount School. While at Autism Learning Center, she implemented skill acquisition and behavior reduction programs for children ages 2—9. At Ivymount, she taught daily living, social, community, vocational, adaptive behavior as well as recreation and leisure skills. She was additionally responsible for daily data collection, daily graphing and daily analysis of the data for the students she case managed.

September 6-7, 2008

Nikia attended The Association for Behavior Analysis International 2008 Education Conference, "Evidence-Based Practice, Scientifically Based Instruction, and Educational Effectiveness" in Reston, Virginia with colleague, Cindy Onder, MA, CCC-SLP/L, BCBA® of ICAN of Washington, Inc. For more information on ABAI, visit www.abainternational.org