Uncomfortable? How Provocation can Lead to Supportive Community Development | Megan Sullivan Kirby, M.Ed., BCBA, LBA

Megan Sullivan Kirby, M.Ed., BCBA, LBA

Megan Sullivan Kirby, M.Ed., BCBA, LBA

We asked Megan (and Barbara, her partner on the talk - she has her own blog post) a few questions about the event and our aim of bringing together behavior analysis, entrepreneurship, technology and clinical applications. Check out her answers and a clear description of her talk at NextGen Las Vegas!

We livestream and record the event. So you have access to all of the content for 30-days after the event regardless of the ticket type you choose!

We livestream and record the event. So you have access to all of the content for 30-days after the event regardless of the ticket type you choose!

Brief statement on why you’re excited to speak at this conference and/or how you feel you can inspire people to innovate their profession with technology.

We are excited to engage with new and existing members, and share our knowledge of online community development for behavior analysts and students that will hopefully be replicated by attendees. We will present ideas for extension beyond this presentation, to include projects such as the 500 Women Scientists voter registration collaboration, and call to action to create in-person, local Uncomfortable meet-ups around the world!

What interests you, or fascinates you about technology?

Global reach and accessibility of our technology is what is helping our field of behavior science grow rapidly and across multiple domains, it should include social justice and human rights. It is becoming increasingly affordable to take online coursework and participate in behavior analytic discussions through social media, which is—in turn—improving representation and diversity among both practitioners and consumers.

What interests you, or fascinates you about entrepreneurship?

See Barb's response (personally, I am scared of entrepreneurship, but someone had to start Uncomfortable X!)

What are you most known for? We want to make sure novel attendees have as much time to prepare as possible to maximize their learning with you.

In June 2017, we created the Uncomfortable BCBA website, and in turn providing a community of students, practitioners and academics with a place to engage in meaningful, respectful conversation about uncomfortable questions and issues that confront us through a closed Facebook group. Discussions have ranged from being uncomfortable about being a U.S. citizen and wanting to be politically active in our personal and professional lives, to questioning the role of culture and diversity in both our field and in our individual practice of behavior analysis.

If you can give words of encouragement to attendees who wish to explore these areas, what would you say?

As behavior scientists, we must question our history and knowledge of behavior analysis if we want to advance. Without being uncomfortable, we have no need to conduct research to answer questions-and science itself would cease to advance. We are excited by the growth of the Uncomfortable family, because it means that so many are eager to learn and grow through diverse interactions and engagement in sensitive but necessary conversations that will only improve our relation to one another on a human level.

Megan Kirby, M. Ed., BCBA, LBA & Barbara Kaminski, PhD, BCBA-D

Affiliation: Uncomfortable X

Title of Talk: Uncomfortable? How Provocation can Lead to Supportive Community Development

Description: Uncomfortable X began in 2017 as a response to perceived limitations to action by the behavior analytic community to political and social events. Using social media, a forum was developed to disseminate information and provide support to those in the behavior analytic community who face uncomfortable situations, inspire action in the behavior analytic community, and reach other communities who have common goals for positive social and behavior change. This presentation will discuss recent events that have been catalysts for the growth of our community, review data related to engagement both within the community and other groups (both within and outside of behavior analysis), and discuss plans for future work and advancement to help the next generation of behavior analysts.


  1. Discuss history Uncomfortable X as it pertains to confronting events in our field related to discrimination, harassment, racism and the barriers to expanding one’s limits of professional competence, without having communities such as Uncomfortable X

  2. Promote advancement of our field through engagement in the Uncomfortable communities, supporting professional development and personal growth as citizens in line with B.F. Skinner’s definition of the Uncommitted, in order to expand the impact behavior analysis has in other fields and to support those already engaging in social justice, equality and human rights activities

Bio: Barbara Kaminski received a Ph.D. in Psychology from the Behavior Analysis Training Program at West Virginia University and postdoctoral training at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (JHUSOM). Subsequently, during her time on the faculty at JHUSOM, she was involved in grant funded research in behavioral pharmacology, exploring the behavioral factors in drug use and abuse. She is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA-D) and a Virginia Licensed Behavior Analyst (LBA).  Currently, she is Clinical Director and co-owner of an agency providing ABA therapy services and teaches graduate level courses in applied behavior analysis for both George Mason University and The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. A proponent of the impact that behavior analysis can and should have on public policy, she is is co-founder (along with Megan Sullivan Kirby) of "Uncomfortable X," which is devoted to providing a forum for sharing information and providing support to individuals in the behavior analysis community who find themselves in "uncomfortable" situations, both on the job and at the intersection of profession and society.

Bio: Megan Sullivan Kirby is the co-founder of Uncomfortable BCBA. She completed her undergraduate degree at Flagler College in St. Augustine, FL and graduate degree in special education at The University of Virginia. Ms. Kirby is currently a Ph.D. student and a Graduate Research Assistant at the University of South Florida’s Rightpath Research and Innovation Center in Tampa, FL. She has been the Secretary of Virginia Association for Behavior Analysis (VABA) since 2013.

Track: Behavior Analysis & Clinical Applications

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The Revolution Summit

Behavior analysis is in a unique position to inform just about every problem in the world. Saving the world with behavior analysis has always been in the dreams of behavior analysts. There's plenty of success stories to praise, but there's still an immense number of possibilities for the science of behavior to contribute to meaningful and real-world solutions. This two-day event is designed to empower behavior analysts and like-minded professionals to create and begin working towards their vision of a novel and need service, tool, or product informed by the leading practice and research in Behavior Analysis, Technology, Entrepreneurship and Clinical Applications! NextGen Revolution Summit Las Vegas and Online is ALL SET.  

The Details

Want to push behavior analysis beyond it's current boundaries? This event is for you. Check out last year's highlight real and snag early bird tickets below. Included in the ticket price are 15 BACB Continuing Education Units (CEUs), including 2 ethics and 13 Type-II.


Las Vegas, NV


Work in Progress

317 6th Street

Las Vegas, NV 89101


Friday, November 9th, 2018: Optional Meet 'n' Greet and Networking Event for all registered attendees (separate TBD location)

Saturday, November 10th, 2018: 8am-6pm - Day 1: Design Thinking for Behavior Analysts

Sunday, November 11th, 2018: 8am-6pm - Day 2: Applications for Expanding Behavioral Science


Check out the full NextGen Rev program and buy tickets below.


That's right. You don't have to be in Miami to experience the awesomeness and you can watch it on your own time afterward.

Direct Questions to info@nextgenrevolutionsummit.com | 775.639.8436