Amanda Thornton, B.S.

          Amanda received a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology with a minor in speech and hearing processes from Western Michigan University.  Amanda is currently a master’s student in the Learning About Behavior lab at WMU. While completing her undergraduate studies, Amanda gained experience as a behavior tutor in a Discrete Trial Setting working with children diagnosed with autism. Through this practicum experience, Amanda provided 1:1 intervention to teach new skills and behaviors while completing extensive data collection to track progress. Amanda also worked as a classroom aide at Woodsedge Learning Center for two years. Amanda gained experience working with children diagnosed with a variety of developmental disabilities across a broad age range. This job included working with children on their life skills, task goals, and behaviors. From this position Amanda also gained experience working in collaboration with a team of professionals to fit the specific needs of the children. 

          During her graduate studies, Amanda has been working as a classroom consultant within the Van Buren Intermediate School District. Through her work in the schools, she has been involved in various assessments, classroom management strategies, staff training, implementing behavior plans, conducting functional behavior assessments, and direct instruction and precision teaching techniques. Amanda has also had the opportunity to provide supervision for several undergraduate students out in the field as they get to experience working in a classroom as their undergraduate practicum.

          Amanda's current research interests involve examining the effects of a MotivAider on staff praise rates and extending that further by looking at how increased praise may effect student on-task and off-task classroom behaviors. Amanda’s career goal is to make a positive impact on children who have been diagnosed with special needs that range from minor to severe. Amanda is interested in serving as a classroom consultant to design and implement behavior and academic strategies for students and classrooms in need.

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Luke Lubbers, B.S.


          Luke received his undergraduate education at Central Michigan University. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology with a minor in statistics. During his undergraduate career, Luke took several courses in behavior analysis. Luke also worked at the Central Autism Assessment and Treatment Center, gaining hands on experience practicing ABA in an early intervention setting. Luke spent 2 years at the center working as a clinician and then transitioned to a lead clinician role.

          Luke is a first year master’s student in the Learning About Behavior (LAB) Lab. He is currently working as a behavior specialist on the Intensive Child and Youth team at Summit Pointe, serving children with severe problem behaviors. His responsibilities with this team include assessment and treatment of problem behaviors, data collection and analysis, staff training, coordinating with other providers, and monitoring behaviors across environments. Luke has also had the opportunity to assist several doctoral students in his lab on various research projects.

          Luke’s current research interests include the use of video models as training tools for adolescents and adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other developmental disabilities, use of technology in different aspects of training and treatment, treatment of problem behaviors, communication and social skills training, and early intervention strategies in children diagnosed with ASD and other developmental disabilities.

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Erin sorenson, B.s.

Erin Sorenson received a Bachelor of Science degree in Behavioral Science with a minor in Literature Studies at Western Michigan University. Erin is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Behavior Analysis under the advisement of Dr. Jessica Frieder in the Learning About Behavior Lab (LAB). Erin has used her background in education and child care administration while gaining a variety of experience in applied behavior analysis (ABA) through her involvement in diverse practicum and employment settings. Her experience in behavior analysis includes serving as an Applied Behavior Analysis Tutor in a clinic-based autism treatment center implementing individualized interventions for children with developmental disabilities. Furthermore, she served as a job coach on the PROMOTES Employment Project team working with young adults transitioning into employment settings. Her primary focus as a job coach was working with clients to develop vocational and employment-related social skills.

As a first-year master’s student, Erin has had the opportunity to serve as a graduate assistant in the Autism Services Center (ASC) Summer Transition Program working as the lead job coach for high school students with autism. In this role, she helped to identify employment and independent living skill deficits, implement need-based interventions, and provided supervision to undergraduate job coaches. Additionally, she assisted with transition services consultation as a behavior technician transitioning a client from clinic-based autism services back into a classroom setting.

She is currently a member of the Van Buren Intermediate School District practicum working in a middle school setting providing behavioral consultation services to middle school staff and students. Her primary activities include implementing scheduled teaching lessons for social skills development, assessing school wide positive behavior support systems, facilitating teacher trainings in universal support strategies, and developing function-based interventions for students demonstrating the need for additional supports.

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Delanie LOmbardo, B.A.

          Delanie received a Bachelor's of Arts degree in Psychology with an emphasis in Behavior Analysis from California State University Sacramento. Delanie gained experience both in the classroom, as well as working directly with students in the field. She is currently a masters student under the advisement of Dr. Jessica Frieder in the learning about behavior lab.

          While completing her undergraduate degree, Delanie gained knowledge on a variety of behavior analytic procedures both experimental and applied. Delanie had the opportunity to be an undergraduate research assistant. During her time as a research assistant, she worked as a project manager to train research assistants, implement the protocol with participants, and collect data in vivo. During her undergraduate studies, Delanie obtained experience on skill acquisition and behavior reduction procedures while working with students with a wide variety of disabilities including Autism Spectrum Disorder, selective mutism, Down Syndrome, and Anglemans syndrome. Int his role, Delanie provided one-to-one, in-home behavioral therapy using discrete-trial training and naturalistic teaching, and implemented behavior intervention plans to reduce aberrant behavior. Delanie also had the opportunity to gain experience instructing social groups and teaching children with selective mutism to speak across multiple settings. To complement her professional experience, Delanie volunteered in an elementary and high school special education classroom. She helped to implement the positive intervention support plan and recorded data on the teacher's performance.

          In her current role, Delanie will be working as a classroom consultant within the Van Buren Intermediate School District. Some of her responsibilities will include the implementation of behavior plans, conducting various assessments, and being involved with classroom management strategies as well as staff training. Delanie's current research interest include training teachers and staff on behavioral analytic procedures in the classroom. She is interest in using the science to effectively teach both children with and without disabilities to increase their academic performance. Her other interests include generalization procedures for effective social skill instruction, parent training, and acquisition and behavior reduction techniques as it relates to a classroom setting.

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