Leadership & Faculty


Our professors are distinguished educators, practitioners, researchers, and authors who enrich their scholarship and teaching with practical experience. All are dedicated teachers committed to excellence and who take pride in mentoring their students.

To learn more about our leadership and faculty team, click on the images below or contact an Admission Counselor at 1-844-622-2872 or email us.

Ronald Allen

Associate Professor of Practice


BA, University of Florida
MS, University of Florida
PhD, University of Florida

Ronald Allen has worked both in the areas of the experimental analysis of behavior and applied behavior analysis. He has directed three residential schools for adolescents with behavior disorders, including serving for 18 years as the director of the Ivy Street School for adolescents with brain injury. He is an associate professor of practice and director of the doctoral program in the Department of Behavior Analysis at Simmons University. He is also the director of behavioral treatment services at a large nonprofit supporting individuals of all ages challenged by behavioral disorders. His research interests include brain injury, the management of negatively reinforced challenging behavior, adjunctive behavior, derived stimulus relations, conditioned reinforcement, and the philosophy of behaviorism. He is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst® (BCBA-D®) and is licensed as an applied behavior analyst in Massachusetts (LABA). He serves as an advisor to the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies and as a member of a Peer Review Committee for the Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services.

Return to top

Judah Axe

Associate Professor


PhD in Special Education and Applied Behavior Analysis, Ohio State University
MA, Ohio State University
BS in Biology, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Judah Axe started teaching at Simmons in the fall of 2008, after working with children with autism and other disabilities and attending graduate school at Ohio State University. He now teaches courses in his passion areas, including applied behavior analysis, the analysis of verbal behavior, single subject research design, and assessment of challenging behavior.

Axe’s research focuses on evaluating techniques for teaching students with autism and related disabilities in the areas of communication, social skills, and reducing challenging behavior. In the area of communication, he is evaluating prompting and prompt fading techniques for teaching language skills to children with disabilities. In the area of social skills, Axe found that video modeling and tactile prompts are effective in increasing eye contact and responses to facial expressions with children with autism, and he is currently studying procedures for establishing social attention as a reinforcer. In the area of challenging behavior, he is conducting studies on antecedent manipulations for reducing escape-maintained problem behavior with students with severe disabilities.

In addition to teaching and research, Axe is active in professional organizations serving behavior analysts. He serves in two positions within the Association for Behavior Analysis International: chair of the Verbal Behavior Special Interest Group and co-coordinator for the verbal behavior area of the annual convention program. He serves as the Student Relations Committee chair of the Berkshire Association for Behavior Analysis and Therapy, as well as a trustee and the continuing education coordinator of the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies. He also serves on the editorial boards of The Analysis of Verbal Behavior and the International Journal of Behavior Analysis and Autism Spectrum Disorders, and as a guest reviewer for other journals.

When he is not working, Axe enjoys walking along the Charles River with his wife and baby girl.

Return to top

Christina Barosky

Associate Professor of Practice


MA in Applied Behavior Analysis and Education; Teachers College, Columbia University
BS in Human Services, Northeastern University

Christina Barosky has spent more than 10 years practicing behavior analysis in a variety of placements. Her clinical experience includes working as a special education teacher, consulting to public schools, working in home-based settings with children diagnosed with developmental disabilities and autism, and overseeing and training other behavior analysts who work with young children diagnosed with autism in a center-based model.

Barosky’s research interests involve increasing the efficiency of skill acquisition in children with autism, particularly surrounding verbal behavior and early language acquisition.

She is currently serving as an associate professor of practice.

Return to top

Gretchen A. Dittrich

Associate Professor of Practice


PhD in Behavior Analysis, Simmons University
MS in Applied Behavior Analysis, Northeastern University
BS in Psychology and Spanish, University of Nevada, Reno

Gretchen A. Dittrich is a Licensed Applied Behavior Analyst (LABA) in the state of Massachusetts and a doctoral-level Board Certified Behavior Analyst® (BCBA-D®). She is an associate professor of practice and the director of mentoring and supervision in the Department of Behavior Analysis at Simmons University. Dittrich has a private practice dedicated to providing services to improve behavioral, academic, social, communication, health, vocational, and independent-living skills in people with special needs. She provides consultation, training, and workshops to parents, caregivers, educators, and specialized educational institutions on reducing problem behavior, increasing communication, alternative and augmentative communication methods, and behavior analysis. In addition, she has published and presented research nationally, focusing on reducing challenging behaviors, increasing social skills, and health promotion.

Dittrich has been working with individuals, families, and school systems since 1998, helping clients improve skill deficits and reduce unwanted or challenging behavior. While her work has focused on helping individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, she has also worked with individuals who have behavioral challenges, social skill deficits, and health concerns (e.g., overweight, obesity, inactivity). Dittrich’s research interests include behavioral medicine and health promotion (including the prevention and amelioration of obesity and inactivity), functional analysis of complex behaviors, social skill training, the application of behavior analytic methodologies to higher education, and verbal behavior. She is the current chair of the Behavioral Medicine Special Interest Group of the Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI).

Return to top

Christina King

Adjunct Faculty

Christina King graduated from Boston University in 2003 with a degree in communication disorders. After working with a child who had autism during her undergraduate program, King decided to change her career goal from becoming a speech language pathologist to working in the field of applied behavior analysis. Upon graduating from BU, she enrolled in the Simmons University Behavioral Analysis master’s program and earned her BCBA certification in 2004. King currently serves as the director of RCS Learning Center and is a doctoral student in the Behavior Analysis program at Simmons University where she is conducting a stimulus equivalence analysis of the emergence of novel forms of language.

Through her research, King hopes to explain how novel language develops and is displayed by the participants; she ultimately plans to use this methodology to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of language training for children with autism and other language-based developmental disabilities.

King has presented at multiple conferences, including the Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI), Simmons University Contemporary Developments in Behavior Analysis, the Massachusetts Association of Behavior Analysis (MASSABA), the Berkshire Association of Behavior Analysis and Therapy (BABAT), and the Massachusetts Association of Approved Private Schools (MAAPS).

Return to top

Russell W. Maguire

Associate Professor, Chair, Graduate Program Director


PhD in Experimental Psychology, Northeastern University
MA in Applied Behavior Analysis, Northeastern University
BA in Psychology, New York State University at Buffalo

Russell W. Maguire is a behavior analyst with more than 35 years of applied and research experience. He is currently an associate professor and chair of the Department of Behavior Analysis at Simmons University. Maguire is a doctoral-level Board Certified Behavior Analyst® (BCBA-D®).

Maguire’s professional experience can be divided into two areas. First, he has an extensive applied and successful history of working with individuals with developmental disabilities (e.g., autism spectrum disorders, mental disability, etc.) and severe challenging behaviors (e.g., serious aggression, self-injury, eating disorders, etc.). Second, he has taught at the college graduate-school level, in the fields of special education and behavior analysis, for more than 25 years. As a consequence, Maguire is able to implement the cutting edge of behavior analysis research to develop innovative and state-of-the-art applied behavior analytic treatment.

Maguire is a published researcher and frequent presenter at local, state, and national professional conferences, particularly in the areas of stimulus control and stimulus equivalence.

Return to top

Noelle Neault

Program Director


PhD in Behavior Analysis, Simmons University
MS in Applied Behavior Analysis, Northeastern University
BS in Psychology, Northeastern University

As a doctoral-level Board Certified Behavior Analyst® (BCBA-D®), Noelle B. Neault has spent more than 15 years practicing behavior analysis in a variety of placements. Her early clinical experiences include providing community-based services to children with traumatic brain injuries; working with children and young adults with developmental disabilities; and addressing mental health needs and behavior disorders in residential, public school, and home-based settings.

Dr. Neault’s clinical service delivery has focused on community inclusion and the development of independent adaptive living skills. As part of her clinical service delivery, Dr. Neault has provided training in the practical use of behavioral interventions to classroom staff, parents, educational transportation personnel, and after-school day care programs. She presently serves a senior clinical advisor for a private ABA agency.

With respect to research, Dr. Neault has conducted applied investigations on the use of positive reinforcement, vocational skill training, and the evaluation of practitioner skills. She has presented at conferences nationally.

Dr. Neault is currently serving as an associate professor of practice and the program director for BehaviorAnalysis@Simmons.

Return to top

Kylan Turner

Associate Professor of Practice


PhD in Early Intervention, University of Pittsburgh
MEd in Early Intervention with Autism Specialization, University of Pittsburgh
BPhil in Psychology and Philosophy, University of Pittsburgh

Kylan S. Turner is a doctoral-level Board Certified Behavior Analyst® (BCBA-D®) and has worked with individuals with developmental disabilities and their families since 2003. She began working clinically in the direct service field under the auspices of Pennsylvania’s Behavioral Health and Rehabilitative Services (BHRS) agencies serving individuals and their families in their homes, schools, and communities. Later, she continued providing services indirectly as a consultant and clinical researcher, designing and implementing parent training programs to address challenging behaviors through a hospital-based clinic.

The focus of Dr. Turner’s clinical service delivery has been on training families, teachers, and other caregivers to directly address children’s challenging behaviors, learn new skills, and improve independent functioning using the principles of behavior analysis. The primary goal of this work has been to focus on the maintenance and generalization of such skills while also improving the feasibility of the service delivery model.

Dr. Turner’s research interests include evaluations of behavioral interventions with the goal of identifying the most effective treatments for children with autism. Specifically, she has specialized in the development of behavioral interventions provided through parent training to address prevalent sleep and feeding behavior problems in children with autism. An additional focus of her research is assessing the efficacy and feasibility of service delivery models of ABA in developing countries, traditionally underserved, and rural areas. She has presented at conferences, delivered workshops, and taught courses internationally.

Dr. Turner is currently an associate professor of practice for BehaviorAnalysis@Simmons.

Return to top