Richard W. Serna, Ph.D.

Richard W. Serna, Ph.D.Associate Professor of Psychology
University of Massachusetts Lowell

Adjunct Associate Professor of Psychiatry
Research Director, University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities
University of Massachusetts Medical School

Dr. Serna’s research and development efforts are directed primarily at addressing two areas of concern for children with autism spectrum disorder and other developmental disabilities. The first concerns the limited and impaired auditory learning skills often seen in children with autism. The second concerns training for parents and paraprofessionals on treatment methods — with a focus on the success of early behavioral intervention as a means to teaching skills to young children with autism and reducing restricted and maladaptive behavior. Dr. Serna is also focusing efforts on geographically expanding training programs by developing online distance-learning education, and initiating efforts to bring training to the Spanish-speaking Latino community.

Dr. Serna has a B.A. in psychology from the University of New Mexico and a Ph.D. in psychology from Utah State University.  Grant-funded projects include Behavioral and Sensory Evaluation of Auditory Discrimination in Autism (PI, NICHD) and Behavioral Technology for Teaching Symbolic Relations (PI, NIH, 2003-2010). He is on the Board of Editors of The Psychological Record and the Brazilian Journal of Behavior Analytics