2022 Outstanding Mentor: T. V. (Joe) Layng

T. V. (Joe) Layng has over 50 years of experience in the experimental and applied analysis of behavior with a particular focus on the design of teaching/learning environments. He earned a Ph.D. in behavioral sciences (biopsychology) at the University of Chicago. At Chicago, working with pigeons, he investigated animal models of psychopathology. Also working with pigeons, Joe collaborated with Paul Andronis and Israel Goldiamond on investigating the production of untrained recombinant, complex symbolic repertoires in pigeons from simpler behavioral components, a process they described as contingency adduction. Joe has extensive clinical behavior analysis experience with a focus on ambulatory schizophrenia, especially the systemic as well as topical treatment of delusional speech and hallucinatory behavior. In 1999, he co-founded Headsprout where Joe led the scientific team that developed the technology that formed the basis of the company’s patented Early Reading and Reading Comprehension online reading programs used by millions of children, for which he was the chief architect. Joe has spent the last several years mentoring students, interested investigators, and practitioners in nonlinear contingency analysis. He coauthored the recent book Nonlinear Contingency Analysis: Going Beyond Cognition and Behavior in Clinical Practice.

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