Mitchell Fryling

Mitch Fryling, Ph.D.
Charter College of Education
Department of Special Education & Counseling
Office Location: KH C1033
Phone: 323-343-4419 Email:


I received my B.S. and M.A. in Psychology from Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, MI, and my Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Nevada, Reno. My primary scholarly interests are in the area of behavioral theory and philosophy, especially interbehaviorism and interbehavioral psychology, and the implications of both for continued growth and development in behavior analysis. I am also interested in social issues (e.g., lying, relationships) and complex human behavior (e.g., thinking, feeling). I am currently co-editing a textbook Applied Behavior Analysis of Language and Cognition (with Ruth Anne Rehfeldt, Linda Hayes, and Jonathan Tarbox). 

I have published my work in a variety of journals, and serve as an editorial board member, ad-hoc reviewer, and associate editor for several behavioral journals. I am currently serving a term as Editor-in-Chief of The Psychological Record and am Associate Professor and Associate Chair in the Division of Special Education & Counseling at California State University, Los Angeles.


My main goals as a teacher are to promote the behavioral perspective in general, especially its philosophical assumptions, and to then guide students to use those assumptions to develop conceptually coherent, ethically sound, and effective applications. I strongly believe that training effective clinicians requires more than an orientation to the applications of behavior analysis. In other words, I do not believe Applied Behavior Analysis is a "bag of tricks" that can be applied effectively without an understanding of the underlying philosophy and context for the science of behavior. 


The majority of my scholarly work centers around theory and philosophy, especially interbehaviorism and interbehavioral psychology. This has informed my work on a wide range of topics, including thinking, feeling, remembering, perspective-taking, lying, and more. 

I also do more traditional behavior analytic research, most often with graduate students in the M.S. Counseling program option in Applied Behavior Analysis at California State University, Los Angeles. I have developed some expertise in various areas of ABA as a result of this work over the years (e.g., feeding problems). 

POTENTIAL THESIS STUDENTS: There are many benefits to conducting a thesis project. In addition to the potential for contributing to the research literature and improving practice, it is my experience that students learn many skills while conducting research (e.g., how to follow very specific instructions, collect data, analyze data, graph data, describe results, etc.). A thesis is also a very good option for those who may be interested in a Ph.D. in the future. Students interested in doing research with me should contact me at   


Sample of recent publications Date

Fryling, M. J., Rosales, R., & Baires, N. Observational Learning (in press). In R. A. Rehfeldt, J. Tarbox, M. Fryling, and L. Hayes (Eds.), Applied behavior analysis of language and cognition: Concepts and principles for practitioners. Oakland, CA: New Harbinger.

In Press

Hayes, L. J., & Fryling, M. J. (2018) Psychological events as integrated fields. The Psychological Record, 68, 273-277DOI:


Vazquez, M.,Fryling, M. J., & Hernandez, A. (2018) Assessing the treatment acceptability of  behavioral interventions for food selectivity. Behavior Modification. DOI: 10.1177/0145445517751435


Fernand, J., Saksena, K., Penrod, B., &Fryling, M. J. (2018). Feeding disorders: In J. Matson (Ed.), Handbook of Child Psychopathology & Developmental Disabilities: Treatment. New York, NY: Springer. 


Kawarai, S., Symon, J., Hernández, A., & Fryling, M. J. (2017). Assessing the treatment preferences of Japanese parents of children with developmental disabilities. Child & Family Behavior Therapy, 39(3), 191-199.





Ph.D. Psychology, University of Nevada, Reno

M.A. Psychology, Western Michigan University

B.S. Psychology, Western Michigan University