ABA Alumni Spotlight - Chelsea Burdette
June 3, 2022 | Heather Fletcher
Chelsea Burdette is a recent BCBA who provides support for kids in navigating their environments. She has a passion for working with children and seeing improvements through the concrete data ABA provides. Chelsea also recently presented research on her experience implementing learning interventions in a remote setting at the Standard Celeration Conference in 2021.
Tell me about how you first discovered the field of ABA? How did earning your BCBA lead you to where you are now?
I previously worked with 2-year-olds on sensory integration and fine and gross motor skills. I later went into the Public sector of education working with an elementary school that needed assistance with decreasing unwanted behaviors. About a year after getting my master's in education, I decided I wanted to learn more about why people do what they do and how to better help the kids that I was working with.
In what ways has your ABA experience had an impact on your career and who you are today?
The knowledge that I have gained through studying ABA has fundamentally changed the way I see the world around me. I immediately fell in love with ABA as an option to help people navigate daily life, especially kids. It also helped me understand myself more.
What do you enjoy most about what you do?
I am super fresh to being a BCBA, but I have always loved working with kids and teaching them to read. Aside from that, I love seeing the physical evidence of improvement through data. For example, seeing hard data from kids who have gone from knowing no letter sound correspondence and not being able to distinguish letters, to being in a place where they can read multi-syllable sentences at the end of the year is one of the best experiences you could ever have as a “data junkie.”
Can you tell me more about your experience presenting at the Standard Celeration Conference?
Last summer I was taking a subject design course on how to write a manuscript. It was a topic that I had done extensive research on before the course started and I was fully intent on conducting the study. When I found out that it was only meant to be a manuscript, I went to the Center for Behavior Analysis in search of guidance to move forward. I was connected with Sal Ruiz, who helped me tremendously throughout the whole process of conducting the research and finalizing the manuscript. He was truly a great mentor to have along the journey. I presented my final research on The Impact of Precision Teaching on Sight Word Acquisition in Remote Settings at the Standard Celeration Conference in 2021. It was an exciting and eye-opening experience to be able to disseminate information about a study that you conducted and get to share the results that came from it.
Is there anything else you would like to share about your experience in the field of ABA?
I just want to say thank you to my instructors at UWF, all of my professors were amazing. I am grateful for instructors with diverse outlooks, who are active in the field and knowledgeable about the world around them. I feel like I was able to soak up so much knowledge during my time at UWF. I also loved my online experience. Although I attended online Universities for my associate, bachelor's and master's degrees and enjoyed the online environment at each of them, my UWF ABA courses offered a unique sense of connection and engagement during weekly lectures that I really loved.