As an undergraduate, I supported peers with additional needs such as Asperger’s Syndrome and ADHD, as well as a range of mental health issues such as Anorexia and Anxiety Disorders that can compromise learning and make daily living tasks feel overwhelming for those living with such issues. Supporting peers with developing plans for meeting deadlines, managing academic work, time management, and self-care routines highlighted the importance of creating individualised plans for each person.
Before completing my Master’s in Applied Behaviour Analysis, I worked as a classroom assistant in a large special school in North Wales focusing mainly on supporting a pupil with complex learning disabilities and language disorder. This rich experience enabled me to understand how appropriate and timely support can offset the lifelong effects of learning disability. Here, I saw first hand the work of a Behaviour Analyst and I remember thinking to myself while watching a Behaviour Analyst train myself and the classroom staff on a new behaviour intervention plan, I want to do that job! I went to Belfast to complete my master’s degree and worked with a young girl with Autism on a home program with under the supervision of a BCBA. This experience was eye-opening, and here I fell in love with the science of ABA and how many skills we could teach this young girl by breaking them down into smaller steps. After graduating with a first class honours, I was fortunate enough to be employed as a Lead Behaviour Analyst in another special school back in North Wales, and gained my BCBA supervision hours over 2 years.
After qualifying as a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst in 2019, I went travelling with my partner Tiarnan, who is a primary school teacher. We were fortunate enough to travel South East Asia and Australia before settling to live in Melbourne for a year and a half. Here I worked in an Early Intervention Centre alongside Speech and Language Therapists and Clinical Psychologists. Due to the COVID pandemic we returned home, and in February 2021 I started my journey with Skybound Therapies. I currently work as a consultant in the South Wales and South West England area with some wonderful families and schools. I have just completed the first year of my PhD with Bangor University, researching how behaviour analysis can help individuals with learning disabilities access medical care. Since 2021, I have been a guest lecture on the primary education teaching training course in Bangor University to disseminate ABA to new teachers.