About Dr. Michelle Pesca

Dr. Pesca is a licensed psychologist and a licensed and board certified behavior analyst (LBA, BCBA-D) who specializes in the treatment of challenging and interfering behavior through Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), and of anxiety through Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT).

Dr. Pesca received her B.A. in Psychology (Applied Behavior Analysis) from Binghamton University, and her Ph.D. in Learning Processes and Behavior Analysis from The Graduate School and University Center, CUNY.  She has been working with individuals with autism and their families for 17 years, and has provided school-based consultation for numerous districts on Long Island for 10 years.  Dr. Pesca has worked with these districts to provide staff training and professional development, program development, behavioral assessment and intervention, and parent training and counseling.

Dr. Pesca previously taught psychology at Queens College, and is currently an adjunct professor at St. Joseph’s College.  She has experience conducting both basic and applied research, and has presented her findings at local, state, and national conferences.  Dr. Pesca’s experience in basic behavioral research surrounded emergent relations in stimulus classes, as well as stimulus control in conditional discrimination development.  She has conducted applied research in response variability, prompt fading and differential reinforcement in students with autism, and classroom behavior management systems.  She currently serves on NYSABA’s Student Activities Committee.


Pesca, M. (2017). ABA in schools. 

                NYSABA Parent and Family Page, Retrieved from  http://www.nysabaparent.org/uploads/8/1/5/6/81567104/aba_in_schools.pdf

Garruto, M. (2010). The effects of prompt fading and differential reinforcement on selection of novel activities children with autism.

               Available from ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Database (UMI No. 3440380)

Fields, L., Garruto, M., & Watanabe, M. (2010). Varieties of stimulus control in matching-to-sample: A kernel analysis.

               Psychological Record, 60, 3-26.

Fields, L., & Garruto, M. (2009). Optimizing linked perceptual class formation and transfer of function.

               Journal of Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 91, 225-251.

Garruto, M. & Alvero, A. (2004). Multifaceted training programs in human service settings: Is there still hope?

               OBM Network website.