Hi there, I'm Matt Cicoria. I started this podcast mainly because I couldn't find something like it to listen to on iTunes. To clarify, I wasn't looking to hear the sound of my own voice through the car's speakers. Instead, I was looking for easily accessible, behavior analytic content to listen to. Like many behavior analysts, I do quite a bit of driving during the work day, and as you can imagine, it gets kind of old to channel surf across the top-40/public radio/classic hits/sports-talk radio offerings over the course of a 100+ mile travel day. In fact, you can see what this did to the scan button in my car.

scan buttonOver the last few years, I began listening to podcasts in my car to broaden my listening options (and by the way, if you're not familiar with podcasts, here is a good synopsis of what they are). And while I found a few podcasts that talked about behavioral issues, the ones I found were not solely about Applied Behavior Analysis. So in the spring of 2015, I got this crazy idea of starting my own show, despite having zero experience in broadcasting, website development, audio recording, etc... The overall concept - to interview interesting people in the behavior analysis field - formed the basis of the Behavioral Observations Podcast.

My goal is to have a relaxed interview format rather than a regimented series of questions and answers. Basically, the aesthetic I'm shooting for something between NPR's, "Fresh Air," and Saturday Night Live's, "The Chris Farley Show." 


In addition to putting out what I hope are thought provoking interviews, my other goal is to make this platform as interactive as possible, and there are a few ways we can do this. First, each podcast episode will have its own post on the main page of behavioralobservations.com. At the bottom of each post, there is a section where you can provide feedback and comments. Second, you can check out the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/behavioralobservations. Finally, you can follow me on Twitter using @behaviorpodcast. Whatever method you use, I'd love to hear your thoughts on the shows as well as suggestions for future guests.

I also have an email list you can sign up for by filling out the mildly annoying box that pops up as you navigate around the site. I use the list to communicate with listeners regarding upcoming guests and other noteworthy happenings. If you sign up, you'll get approximately one to four emails a month. Speaking for myself, I probably get about 5-10 emails each week from Amazon, so my goal is to be slightly less obnoxious than that. In other words, you will not get inundated with emails from this website, especially when compared to others.

As you're probably starting to figure out, I like to talk about behavior. A lot. To anyone. Seriously, I do…

Because this is an “About,” page, here are some details about me:

1. As a junior Psychology major at the University of New Hampshire in the 90's, I stumbled across the class, “Applied Behavior Analysis, and its Applications.” We read Dick Malott’s book, and it turned on several lights for me. You might say that it occasioned many private events. First, the simple elegance of Behavior Analysis was appealing, and second, Dick’s book showed a clear pathway towards employment in Psychology that did not include academic or traditional clinical psychology routes. In other words, ABA provided a different, and to me, a seemingly more accessible career path. 

2. My early exposure to Behavior Analysis was in animal behavior laboratories, which I believe is increasingly uncommon for BCBA’s. At UNH, I worked in the pigeon lab as my undergraduate work-study gig, and the research for master’s thesis at Auburn University examined how dogs detect TNT (yes, we had dog-size operant chambers!).

3. In 2007, after having worked for a couple of great organizations, I started Positive Behavioral Outcomes, LLC. In my practice, I consult with schools and agencies across New Hampshire and Vermont.

4. I live in New Hampshire with my lovely and talented wife. I may be biased, but I think she would be a terrific behavior aIMG_1226 (1)nalyst; but for reasons that remain incomprehensible to me, she enjoys teaching English at our local high school. We have three awesome kids who are constant reminders that we behavior analysts do not have everything figured out!

So if you get a chance, please leave a comment to say hello, introduce yourself, or share what’s on your mind.



Comments 17

  1. I am so glad to have discovered this podcast. Thank you for this! I just met Dr. Hanley and was so inspired by his work.

    1. Post

      Thanks Kim,

      Greg and his research group are making outstanding contributions to the field. I’m glad you enjoyed his interview. I will have Part 2 of our discussion out before the end of may. In that show, we talk have some follow up on the IISCA process and then dive into function-based treatment.

  2. I just watched the Ethics for Behavior Analysts with Dr. John Bailey. I visited your site for a graduate school class assignment requirement. I have had a passion for ethics since high school and as a result, have written many papers and taken ethics courses where ever I can find them. I’m looking forward to your next podcast with Dr. Bailey!

    1. Post

      Hi Leisel, thank you so much for the feedback! Dr. Bailey’s episode is one of the most highly downloaded one. Your comment is a good reminder for me to connect with him again to plan a subsequent ethics discussion.

  3. I just listened to your interview with Pat Friman. I enjoyed it very much. Thanks for arranging it. I look forward to listening to your other podcasts.

    1. Post

      Hey Paul, I’m so psyched you enjoyed that show. Pat is the easiest person in the world to interview. By that I mean that all you need to do is ask a question and he proceeds to provide several minutes of great information! I hope you enjoy the rest of them. Also, please feel free to share this podcast with friends and co-workers.

  4. Hi Matt,

    I just started listening to the podcast a couple of weeks ago. I put it on while painting the kids playroom and binge listened for hours. I also consult to schools in VT and NH (northern) and drive a ton. Thank you for making this available. I have already learned a lot and my interest has been peaked in things I did not know much about prior to listening (specifically ACT!). I just joined as a member and look forward to more great resources.

    Thank you!


    1. Post

      Hey Courtney, I’m really glad you like the podcast. As mentioned in on this page, I created it for people like us (who think nothing of driving 1 hour for a 45 minute meeting ;-). Best, Matt

  5. Hi Matt,
    I actually stumbled on to this podcast while trying to find my husband’s interview on a different podcast! These conversations are so exciting, yet relaxed. You have reached that ‘Fresh Air’ feel. Very excited to listen to Pat Friman. I once saw him give a rousing talk at FABA, then do stand up in the same night. Thanks for all you do! Keep it coming!

    1. Post

      Hi Gina, I’ve always said that the show is somewhere between “Fresh Air,” and, SNL’s “The Chris Farley Show.” The fact that you’ve compared it to the former is really quite humbling. Pat Friman is the easiest person in the world to interview because, a) he’s so funny, and, b) he can riff off an idea or concept for several minutes and it comes out brilliantly. Thanks for taking the time to share you’re comments! All the best, Matt

  6. Great work. Keep getting this out…by any means necessary. Easy site to navigate. Would be very interested in contributing/collaborating.

    Thanks for what you are doing for our field.


    1. Post

      Hey Andrew, I’m glad you like the show. It’s been a labor of love, so receiving this kind of feedback is quite rewarding. Please feel free to email me to extend this conversation (matt@behavioralobservations.com). Best, Matt

  7. Hi Matt,

    I just discovered your podcast and I am so happy I did. I also find myself driving a lot and your podcast is keeping it interesting!

    Thanks so much,

    1. Post

      Hi Julie, that’s why I created the show. I drive a lot too, and I couldn’t find the podcast I wanted to listen to. I kept thinking to myself, “there has to be an ABA-related podcast.” When I couldn’t find what I wanted, I started planning for the show. I’m glad it helps you pass the time on your commute! Best, Matt

  8. Hi Matt,

    I too was a junior college student in the 90s studying psychology. Unfortunately, my psychology professors poked fun at behaviorism so ABA coursework there was nonexistent. Lights turned on for me and I heard angelic choirs in the background while at an open house showcasing the different graduate programs at Aurora University. I ditched the social work program intro and went to hear about ABA instead. My private event literally was, “This is why I couldn’t decide which social work specialty was a good fit. This is the field that I want to make a difference in.” I still get goosebumps when I walk past the room the group met in that night, it was just that powerful.
    I’m so glad I found this podcast. It doesn’t evoke a “stuffy” feeling. It is great to listen to as I’m to driving to school. The length of the podcasts fits with my commute time very nicely . Thanks for helping me create an SD to transition from home to academia.

    1. Post

      Esther, thanks so much for sharing this. Glad you enjoy the podcast, especially the balance of info and levity that I’ve tried to foster.

  9. Matt,
    Great podcast on Public Speaking with Pat Friman. Many of us are working in interdisciplinary settings and have opportunities to talk to individuals who know very little about our field or have misconceptions about what we do and how we do it. Dr. Friman described some very specific strategies for preparing ourselves to speak to various audiences. Thanks for continuing to provide the dissemination of behavior analysis through your podcasts.

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