News at the University of New Brunswick

Autism leader helps UNB remain at forefront of autism intervention training

Author: Communications

Posted on Feb 9, 2012

Category: UNB Fredericton

The University of New Brunswick has engaged a renowned expert to examine best practices in autism treatment.

Dr. David Celiberti is president of the Association for Science and Autism Treatment. His report, commissioned by UNB’s College of Extended Learning (CEL), examines program quality indicators already in place in other jurisdictions. The findings will be used to provide quality assurance for UNB’s program and to help UNB remain a leader with its Autism Intervention Training program.  

“At UNB’s College of Extended Learning, we have great programs in place,” said CEL Executive Director Lloyd Henderson. “The methodology taught in our program is an Established Treatment as per National Autism Centre’s (NAC) standards.”

The NAC published a National Standards Report which classifies autism intervention treatments in a range from Established (known to be effective) and Emerging (some evidence of effectiveness), to Un-established (no sound evidence of effectiveness) and Ineffective (having no beneficial effects).  

“We want to continue to lead in this area by taking a global approach, examining best practices, and making sure we continuously improve to offer the best intervention training possible. We monitor emerging treatments and will incorporate them into our programs if and when they are deemed established,” said Henderson.

“Autism treatment providers and program administrators should be required to report and justify why they are bypassing establishedtreatment,” Celiberti said, in his report. “Parents should be educated and fully informed about which aspects of their child’s treatment are comprised of established treatment and which are not.”  

The findings in the report will be used to establish a protocol for the CEL’s training program. It will also be made available to those involved in the administration and support of autism programs across the province and throughout Atlantic Canada.

“In light of the overwhelming body of growing intervention methods that parents and professionals are presented with on a daily basis,UNB’s intentions in undertaking this research project were to identify evidence-based proof of the support methods being used to treat children with autism,” Henderson said. “Thanks to Dr. Celiberti, we now have the information we need and are examining our programs to see if there are areas we can continue toimprove.”  

For more information on UNB’s program, visit: //

For media inquiries, contact: 

Jennifer Gavin
UNB Communications & Marketing

About the Autism Intervention Training programs:

UNB's College of Extended Learning offers Autism Intervention Training (AIT) for paraprofessionals and professionals (i.e. teachers, nurses, day-care workers and directors, afterschool program leaders and directors, etc.) who work with individuals diagnosed with autism.

The AIT Program is comprised of both theoretical and practical components, and is offered at core and advanced levels to sponsored groups. The core program is designed for paraprofessionals who work with the children everyday, executing the intervention first hand. The advanced program is designed for professionals who work in a supervisory capacity, writing programs and designing interventions for the individuals with autism.  This Programming is delivered in both official languages.

The Core AIT Program is available for public enrolment in Fall 2012. The theory components are delivered online, and practicum is coordinated by UNB at locations throughout the province. For more information, please visit or contact Trisha Fournier-Hoyt at 506 458-7616 or

About Dr. David Celiberti:

Dr. Celiberti is in private practice and provides consultation to public and private schools and agencies in the U.S. and Canada. He has authored several articles in professional journals and presents frequently at regional, national, and international conferences. He has taught courses related to Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, supervised individuals pursuing their BCBA and BCaBA, and conducted research in the areas of applied behavior analysis, family intervention, and autism.

He received his PhD in clinical psychology from Rutgers University in 1993, and is the president of the Association for Science andAutism Treatment.  He founded the Parent-Professional Partnership Special Interest Group in 2000 and is currently serving as its president. He has served as president of the Autism Special Interest Group (SIG) for the Association for Behavior Analysis from 1998 to2006. He currently serves on a number of Advisory Boards in the areas of autism, as well as early childhood education.

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