Experience. Dr. Berenice de la Cruz, Ph.D., BCBA-D, LBA has worked with people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other developmental disabilities since 2001 in school, home, clinic, and community settings as a teacher, therapist, supervisor, director, and professor. Dr. de la Cruz has extensive experience providing didactic and hands-on training to caregivers, students, and professionals servicing people with disabilities. She has been an Assistant Professor and Program Coordinator of the Applied Behavior Analysis Program at A&M-SA since 2020. Prior to joining A&M-SA, Dr. de la Cruz was an Adjunct Professor at Pepperdine University’s ABA program and the CEO and owner of an ABA company. She regularly presents in English and Spanish at local, state, and national/international conferences. Dr. Berenice de la Cruz is the inaugurals Coordinator for the new Applied Behavior Analysis Program at the College of Education and Human Development.
San Antonio. Dr. de la Cruz has been an active member of the San Antonio community since 2010, along with her husband their two children. Dr. de la Cruz served as the Chief Operating Officer at Autism Community Network, a local nonprofit that serves families of children with ASD. She was part of the leadership team since the inception of Autism Lifeline Links (ALL), a coalition of nonprofits aimed at connecting families to services in the community. Dr. de la Cruz served as past chair and now as an active member of ALL’s Public Policy and Advocacy Committee. She also serves as an Executive Council Member for the Texas Association for Behavior Analysis and was recently appointed as the chair of the TxABA Promoting ABA Ad Hoc Committee. In addition, Dr. de la Cruz is the Treasurer of the Texas Association for Behavior Analysis Public Policy Group (TxABA PPG). Through the legislative work with TxABA PPG, ALL, and other agencies, licensure was granted by the state of Texas to behavior analysts in 2017. Furthermore, on July 15, 2019, ABA was added as a Medicaid benefit for persons under age 20 with a diagnosis of ASD. Dr. de la Cruz continues to work with TxABA PPG and other groups to ensure that the ABA Medicaid benefit is implemented in a way that is accessible to all families.
Focuses primarily on evaluating the application of ABA when used by parents, teachers, and other professionals to support individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and other developmental disabilities in the school, home, and community.
Ph.D. August 2009
The University of Texas at Austin (UT)
Major: Special Education
Specialization: Autism and Developmental Disabilities
Dissertation: Use of a self-monitoring treatment package to support teachers in developing and implementing self-monitoring interventions for children with developmental disabilities
Dissertation Committee: Herbert J. Rieth, Ph.D. (Co-Supervisor), Jeff Sigafoos, Ph.D. (Co-Supervisor), David P. Wacker, Ph.D., Karrie A. Shogren, Ph.D, & Mark F. O’Reilly, Ph.D.
M.A. July 2004
The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP)
Major: Clinical Psychology
Thesis: An investigation of the 5-methoxytryptamine and valproic acid rat models of autism
Thesis Advisor: Donald E. Moss, Ph.D.
B.S. May 2002
Cum Laude, University Honors Degree, & Departmental Honors
Thesis: Symbolic and realistic threats: The cognitive processes that underlie them
Thesis Advisor: Michael A. Zárate, Ph.D.
2022-Present Member, President Commission on Equity and Inclusive Excellence
2022-Present Member, A&M-SA Inclusive Excellence Certification Taskforce
2022 Member, Autism Mobile Assessment Bus and Learning Environment (AMABLE) evaluation team
2021-Present Member, A&M-SA Carnegie Community Engagement Classification Committee
2021-Present Chair, A&M-SA Measuring and Tracking Community Engagement Subcommittee
2021-Present Member, A&M-SA COEHD Policies and Procedures Taskforce
2021 Member, Autism Director Search Committee for Autism Lifeline Links
2021 Member, Associate/Full Tenure Chair Search Committee for the Department of CHK
2021-Present Executive Council Member, Texas Association for Behavior Analysis (TxABA)
2021-Present Chair, Promoting ABA AdHoc Committeee, TxABA
2021-Present President, Alamo City Behavior Analysts
2021-Present Member, Autism Lifeline Links Adult Public Policy and Advocacy Committee
2021-Present Member, Mexican Association for ABA Practitioners Founding Team
2021-Present Member, Mexican Association for ABA Practitioners Ethics Committee
2021-Present Member, Mexican Association for ABA Practitioners Education Committee
2020-Present Guest Speaker, ABA LatAM
2020-Present Ad Hoc Reviewer, Behavior Analysis in Practice
2019-Present Treasurer, TxABA Public Policy Group
2019-Present Member, TxABA Public Policy Group Medicaid Taskforce
2019-Present Member, TxABA Public Policy Group Public Education Taskforce
2019-Present Member, Autism Lifeline Links Public Policy and Advocacy Committee
2009-Present Ad Hoc Reviewer, Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
2013-Present Member, Alamo City Behavior Analysts Leadership Team
de la Cruz, B., Cannella, H., Son, S.-H., Edrisinha, C., Sigafoos, J., & Robinson, D. (2007). Author Productivity and Publication Trends in Autism-Specific Journals from 1997 to 2004. Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities, 21(4), 245-250.
Olive, M. L., de la Cruz, B., Davis, T. N., Chan, J. M., Lang, R. B., & Dickson, S. M. (2007). The Effects of Enhanced Milieu Teaching and a Voice Output Communication Aid on the Communication of Three Children with Autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disabilities, 37(8), 1505-1513.
Sigafoos, J., O’Reilly, M. F., Cannella, H., Edrisinha, C., de la Cruz, B., Upadhyaya, M., Lancioni, G. E., Hundley, A., Andrews, A., Garver, C., & Young D. (2007). Evaluation of a video prompting and fading procedure for teaching dish-washing skills to adults with developmental disabilities. Journal of Behavioral Education, 16, 93-109.
Cannella, H., Sigafoos, J., O’Reilly, M., de la Cruz, B., Edrisinha, C., & Lancioni, G. E. (2006). Comparing video prompting to video modeling for teaching daily living skills to six adults with developmental disabilities. Education and Training in Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities, 41(4).
Zárate, M., Garcia, B., Garza, A. Hitlan, R. T. (2004). Cultural threat and perceived realistic group conflict as dual predictors of prejudice. Journal of Experimental and Social Psychology, 40(1), 99-105.
Sigafoos, J., O’Reilly, M. F., & de la Cruz, B. (2006). How to Use Video Modeling and Video Prompting for Teaching Learners with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Austin, TX: Pro-Ed.
Blume, A. W., & Garcia, B. (2005). Relapse prevention among diverse populations. In G. A. Marlatt & D. M. Donovan (Eds.), Relapse Prevention: Maintenance Strategies in the Treatment of Addictive Behaviors, (2nd Ed.). New York: Guilford Press.
Blume, A. W., Morera, O. F., & Garcia, B. (2005). Assessment of addictive behaviors in ethnic-minority populations. In D. M. Donovan & G. A. Marlatt (Eds.), Assessment of Addictive Behaviors (2nd Ed.). New York: Guilford Press.
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