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V. Mark Durand Ph.D

V. Mark Durand Photograph V. Mark Durand is known worldwide as an authority in the area of autism spectrum disorders. He is a professor of psychology at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg, where he was the founding Dean of Arts & Sciences and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs. Dr. Durand is a fellow of the American Psychological Association and has received over $4 million in federal funding to study the behavior problems in children with disabilities.

Dr. Durand was awarded the University Award for Excellence in Teaching at SUNY–Albany in 1991 and in 2007 was given the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Research and Creative Scholarship at the USFSP. Dr. Durand is currently a member of the Professional Advisory Board for the Autism Society of America. He is the co-editor of the Journal of Positive Behavior Interventions and has written 10 books including abnormal psychology textbooks that are used at more than 1,000 universities world-wide (translated in Arabic, Greek, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Hindi and Chinese). In addition he has more than 100 research publications.

Major themes in Durand's research include the assessment and treatment of severe behavior problems for children and adults with autism, parent training and the development of treatments for child sleep problems. He developed one of the most popular functional behavioral assessment instruments used today -- the Motivation Assessment Scale -- that is now translated into 15 languages.

Dr. Durand developed a unique treatment for severe behavior problems among children and youth with autism spectrum disorders that is used worldwide. More recently he developed an innovative approach to help families work with their challenging children and published a guide for parents and caregivers of children with autism spectrum disorders (Optimistic Parenting: Hope and Help for You and Your Challenging Child. The book has won several national awards.