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Assessment of Adult Core Competencies

Assessment of Adult Core Competencies

Recorded December 1, 2021


This training will cover comprehensive assessment protocols as they apply to serving adults and adolescents with autism and other intellectual disabilities (ID). The information will go beyond basic functional assessment tools and methodology to cover environmental assessment measures as well as the ability of the person with ID to fully pursue the values and goals that they have set for themselves. This training will also cover the vast influence that a capable staff can have in the successful management of aggressive responses in residential settings.

The module will present the nationwide issues of turnover and burnout that are experienced by direct support professionals (DSPs). The national staff crisis will also be presented and the barriers that our current reimbursement structure places on the DSP profession. This context will then be utilized to outline key areas in which DSP staff can be trained to provide the safety and security that are required in residential settings. Crucial skill sets such as a characteristically positive interaction style and successful data collection skill sets will also be covered.


  1. Participants will identify the design of environmental assessments in residential settings where clients display severe depression.
  2. Participants will select how to better quantify aggressive behavior in terms of its impact on the environment and those that serve them.
  3. Participants will be trained on specific aspects of operationally defined self-esteem behaviors and will select the best options for those that they serve.
  4. Participants will identify the nature of and the need for more in-depth functional assessment as it relates to severe aggressive behavior.


John Guercio

Dr. Guercio has spent much of his career researching effective staff training protocols and behavior intervention strategies for staff and clients in settings where severe aggression is present. Since obtaining his master’s and doctoral degrees in behavior analysis and therapy from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, Dr. Guercio has worked in settings serving as Director of Behavioral Services for the Missouri Department of Mental Health and as Vice President of Clinical Services and Research at the Judevine Center for Autism/TouchPoint Autism Services in St. Louis. He also serves as adjunct faculty in the behavior analysis department at Washington University, St. Louis University, and Central Missouri University. He has also given more than 500 presentations at behavioral conferences and authored and/or co-authored over 50 articles in peer-reviewed journals as well as written several book chapters related to the treatment of intensive behavioral issues. He has authored or co-authored two books; Assessment of Adult Core Competencies: Teaching Skills to Adults with Autism and Severe Behavioral Challenges; and Behavioral Relaxation Training Clinical Applications with Diverse Populations.

Dr. Guercio serves on the Board of Editors of Behavior Analysis Research and Practice and is a guest reviewer for the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis. In his career, Dr. Guercio has helped design and run a program for individuals with sexually deviant behavior and substance abuse issues and has developed an entire treatment protocol based on that program. In his current role at Benchmark Human Services, Dr. Guercio serves as the Clinical Director. He develops and delivers behavioral services for clients with significant aggression and high-risk behavioral needs, many of whom have been institutionalized for more than 15 years, often under restraints and heavy medication. Through Dr. Guercio’s leadership, many clients’ medication dosages have decreased, and they have developed positive compensatory behaviors and are being integrated into the community. Dr. Guercio currently serves on the ABAI Licensing Committee and is a board member of the Missouri Association for Behavior Analysis.

Download Slides

If you already paid for the live event and would like to re-watch the recording, please email for a direct link. 

Please note:  If you would like to receive CEU credit, please do not complete this transaction. In order to receive CEU credit, this recording must be viewed on the CASP Online CEU Center.

Non-Member Price: $20
Member Price: $0