2012: Amanda Mahoney

Western Michigan University

Amanda Mahoney studied applied behavior analysis (ABA) at Western Michigan University with Dr. Alan Poling. While working toward her master's in ABA at Northeastern University, she implemented behavioral programs for teenagers with severe behavior problems at the New England Center for Children. After graduation, Amanda acted as a behavioral coordinator at two other residential schools in Massachusetts and as a behavioral consultant for Esch Behavior Consultants and privately for families in Michigan. In this capacity, she specialized in developing speech and language curricula and programs to reduce problem behavior. She has also worked at APOPO, a Belgian NGO based in Tanzania. APOPO trains giant African pouched rats in scent-detection tasks. The rats are used operationally in Tanzania and Mozambique to identify patients with tuberculosis from sputum samples and in Mozambique and Angola to search out landmines. (Don't worry—the rats are too light to detonate the mines!) Her main research interests include early language acquisition, stimulus control in scent-detection tasks, and the application of behavior analysis.


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