Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

ABAC/VB-SIG Exceptional Scholars Series Presents: Dr. Francesca degli Espinosa: Early Social Responding: A Conceptual Analysis and Derived Applications Through Social Behavioural Chains


Scroll down for more information about the ABAI VB-SIG Exceptional Scholars Series and Dr. degli Espinosa’s Event.

VB-SIG MEMBERS – You are entitled to members only price. Please check your email from the SIG for your coupon code!!

STUDENTS CAN ATTEND FOR FREE! Please fill out this brief application for the student coupon code for the Exceptional Scholars Series

Out of stock

Event Information

ABAC is honored to partner with the ABAI VB-SIG to bring you the limited run Exceptional Scholars Series

Dr. Francesca degli Espinosa in August 2022

Friday, August 19, 2022 | 11:00 am- 12:30 pm Eastern Daylight Time |12:30-1:00 pm Bonus Q&A Session!!!

The recording of all ABACLive events are accessible to those that register for the live event for 2-weeks.
Continuing education credit and professional development requirements must be met within that two-week window.         
Recording opens the day after the live event. Recording closes 9/2/22 at 11:59 pm eastern (New York)

Each speaker will present for 1-hour and, following their event, will be interviewed live by a graduate student member of the ABAI VB-SIG


 Dr. Tiffany Kodak - November 4, 2022 | Dr. Martha Hübner - December 9, 2022

Dr. Francesca degli Espinosa: Early Social Responding: A Conceptual Analysis and Derived Applications Through Social Behavioural Chains


Language is typically acquired in the context of and maintained by social interaction. Given the limited sensitivity to social stimuli in autism, interventions that aim to address social responding early may result in clinically significant outcomes for this population. Early focus on establishing people as both discriminative and reinforcing stimuli may enable children to acquire verbal behavior under more environmentally valid sources of control. The current presentation will firstly briefly review the sparse literature on naturalistic, behavioural and developmentally based interventions on early social responding; secondly, it will discuss the extent to which, as a scientific community, we can contribute both a behaviour analysis and a technology to establish this crucial repertoire in young children with autism. The presentation will particularly focus on operationally defining and illustrating strategies to establish early social responses (e.g., anticipation, eye-gaze monitoring, joint attention) through social behavioural chains, patterns and routines.

Target Audience: All those directly involved in early intervention with children with intellectual disabilities and/or those with some experience with working with young children and a solid foundation in behavioural principles and procedures We welcome students and others who are also interested in the topic to join us.


At the conclusion of this event participants will be able to:

  • Identify examples of early social or indicating responses.
  • Identify the components of a four-term social contingency
  • Identify the components of a social behavioural chain


Francesca gained her undergraduate degree in Psychology from Goldsmith’s College, University of London and her Ph.D. at the University of Southampton, under Prof. Bob Remington. She was the Lead Clinician for the first UK-based EIBI outcome study (Remington et al., 2007) at the University of Southampton and within that context developed the Early Behavioural Intervention Curriculum (EBIC) an intervention framework derived from functional analyses of language to establish generative multiply controlled verbal behaviour, which subsequently formed the principal focus of her Ph.D. Currently, she runs a small diagnostic and assessment clinic in the UK, teaches advanced behaviour analysis in a number of postgraduate programs in Italy, the UK and the US, and is a member of the Board of Directors of the B.F. Skinner Foundation. Originally schooled in cognitive developmental psychology, Francesca’s academic pursuit is the translation of cognitive and developmental descriptions of key processes in language and childhood development into an analysis of controlling variables, with the aim of deriving a technology to remediate deficits in children with autism. Her clinical and research work focuses on early social responding, generative verbal behaviour and theory of mind.


Dr. degli Espinosa does not have financial or non-financial relationships or interests to disclose.


  • 1.5 BACB CEUs (Learning) 
  • 1.5 QABA  Learning Units (LUs)
  • 0.1 IACET CEU
  • SLPs:  0.1 IACET CEU = 1 PDH for SLPs - This event was not reviewed by the ABAC SLP Content Expert. Learner is responsible for determining if this event is appropriate for their professional development needs.

Interview portion is not IACET CEU eligible. Bonus Q&A Session is NOT CE eligible.

Not eligible for NBCC, AOTA, APA, or ASWB credit hours. You may download a certificate of attendance if your profession is not represented.


  • Attendance Verification and Passing Score on Post-test (80%) Required to Earn Continuing Education Credit
  • Participants are provided multiple opportunities to pass the post-test and provide attendance verification.
  • For ABAC's continuing education approvals statements please view our Continuing Education page.
  • If the abovementioned continuing education credit requirements are not met, participants will not receive continuing education credit. Partial credit will not be awarded. Refunds and transfers are not granted if requirements are not met. In the event additional support is necessary to achieve the expected outcomes (see below) please reach out to to request assistance.

Attendees who meet the continuing education credit requirements must also fill out a confidential evaluation. Once the evaluation is complete, the certificate can be found in the "My Certificates" tab in an attendee's personal dashboard.

Post-test: Multiple choice questions| Total anticipated time to complete: Approximately 10-15 minutes (CE eligible for some professions) | Passing score: 80%

Attendance Verification: Attendance Code Submission Form | Total anticipated time to complete: 2 minutes


Certificate of attendance are offered to those who do not need or require continuing education credit. For those attending the live event, selecting "other" as a professional designation will produce a certificate of attendance for professional development or internal organization training purposes.


After attending this event, attendees will select the correct answer on 80% of the questions within 3 attempts of the post-test that assesses the 2 learning objectives for this 1.5 hour event.


11:00 am: Introduction and Speaker Presentation
12:00 pm: Interview 
12:30 pm: Audience QA
1:00 pm: Live Model: Submitting Continuing Education Requirements and Evaluation and Accessing your Certificate

Click on this Link for more on how to earn Continuing Education At ABAC