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Consultants

 

Katja Volkmer, B.A. Soziale Arbeit, BCaBA (Certificant 0-15-6878, Voluntary Inactive)Katja Volkmer

Katja earned her degree from the "Fachakademie für Sozialpädagogik" in Bamberg in 2004. As a certified Kindergarten teacher, she gained several experiences working with children with and without special needs. Katja's introduction to the world of autism intervention began in August of 2004 when she spent time in the U.S. as an au pair for a family with a young girl with the autism diagnosis. To better support the family, Katja began working herself through much of the available ABA literature and American VB training manuals. She immediately became a valuable therapist for the family working under the supervision of Michelle Hurst from Autism Outreach Inc. In addition to this training, Katja attended a three day Verbal Behavior workshop presented by Dr. Vincent Carbone in New York during October of 2005. After returning to Germany in 2006 Katja began working at an integrative kindergarten for a year while also working on the weekends as a tutor for a child supported by Knospe-ABA. In August of 2007, Katja paid her own way to Savannah, Georgia to participate in the "Teaching Verbal Behavior - Hands on Training for Tutors and Therapists" workshop presented by Jenn Godwin, BCBA and Tamara Kasper, BCBA. Katja's dedicated work as a therapist and obvious desire to learn all she could about autism and ABA/VB quickly caught the attention of the staff at Knospe-ABA who invited Katja to begin consultant training in September of 2007. Katja completed the intensive training under the supervision of Robert Schramm and began working as a Knospe-ABA consultant in the spring of 2008. Additionally, in November of 2008, Katja participated in a one-day Motor Speech Workshop by Elizabeth Kuegeler, MA, CCC-SLP, PROMPT Certified Instructor. In October of 2009, Katja attended the advanced workshop #3 "Guiding the Development and Implemantation of an Intensive Behavioral Program for Teaching Language and Basic Learner Skills" at the Carbone Clinic in New York. In November 2014 Katja participated in the workshop "Using Applied Behavior Analysis and Verbal Behavior Strategies to Improve Autism Programming for both Toddlers and Teens with Autism", presented by Mary Barbera, PhD, RN, BCBA-D in Cologne. In 2017 Katja attended Laura Ferguson's workshop "Teaching Communication and Social Skills to Children with Autism and Developmental Disabilities". In 2018 Katja participated in the European Association for Behavior Analysis Conference in Würzburg. Her bachelor degree in social work got Katja at the Hochschule in Munich. Since spring of 2008 Katja is supporting the education of children in southern Germany. In addition Katja is also supervising the trainees of Knospe-ABA. From 2013 till 2015 Katja completed the BACB approved coursework on ABA from the IFKV (www.ifkv.de) in Bad Dürkheim in cooperation with the University of North Texas (UNT). Katja passed her BCaBA (Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst) exam in December of 2015. Katja is currently in parent time.

 


 

 

Julia Kröger, M.A. Clinical CaseworkJulia Siekmann

coming soon!

















Elif Chorengel, B.A. PsychologieJulia Siekmann


Elif, born in Turkey and raised in the United States, graduated with a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Psychology from Montclair State University in Montclair, New Jersey in January 2012. Shortly after her studies, she started working as an ABA instructor at an early intervention center in New York for 14 months with young children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and PDD-NOS ages 1-4. She gained an extensive experience implementing ABA strategies, assisted in developing behavior plans, task analyses, creating social stories, instructional programs collecting and recording data. After 6 months of starting her position, she was promoted to be an ABA staff trainer and started training incoming staff on ABA methodologies and general knowledge on developmental disabilities. She is competent with conducting, scoring and evaluating assessments such as VB-MAPP, ABLLS, Bayley-III, CARS2, PSI and PNM. Alongside her work as an ABA instructor and staff trainer, Elif also worked as a research analyst at a non-profit research organization in New York. She conducted ongoing assessments on children through classroom observations. She used different psychological and statistical data analysis software as well as techniques to create reports, graph results and identify trends in the research. In addition, she analyzed research articles and developed literature reviews. After moving to Europe to expand her professional horizons, she discovered Knospe-ABA GmbH and participated in the workshops presented by Robert Schramm, M.A., BCBA. In fall of 2016, Elif started her intensive training as an ABA/VB consultant with Knospe-ABA, traveling with many consultants, supporting a number of families across Germany. Elif completed her coursework to be a BCaBA from Florida Institute of Technology ABA Online Program and was awarded a certificate of Achievement. She is currently completing the supervision hours to take the BACB examination. Elif is supporting the education of children with autism spectrum and related disorders in middle and southern Germany.



Stephen Buckley, M.Sc., BCBA Stephen Buckley


After finishing his Bachelor in Applied Psychology in Ireland in 2005 Stephen began supporting children, teenagers and adults with Intellectual Disabilities, Developmental Disorders and Autism. Living alongside the people he cared for, Stephen spent several years working in the life-sharing Camphill Community. He found his passion helping those with disabilities meet their potential and integrate into their social environments. In 2011 Stephen returned to school to earn his Masters in Applied Psychology from University College Cork. Upon completing his advanced degree he took a position in a residential care facility supporting adults with disabilities. He found that the people he worked with grew and became much happier when they experienced encouragement from carers who showed interest, compassion and empathy for them. However, Stephen also saw that many people he worked with were unable to acquire any meaningful progress, despite patient, enthusiastic and committed support. After researching various areas of therapeutic interest that offered to increase the self-help and social skills of people with disabilities, Stephen then learned of Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA). In 2015 he started his work on a second Masters, this time in ABA while continuing to work as a Care Support Professional. In 2016, he started working in a large residential centre in North-West Ireland implementing ABA-based strategies in order to cultivate a culture of Positive Behavioural Support. In 2017, he moved to the South-West of the UK to begin working with a residential care provider as a Behaviour Analyst in a role that involved writing support plans, presenting workshops on Autism and ABA, supervising teams on the application of ABA and directly supporting individuals with intense challenging behaviours. In 2019, he successfully passed the exam to become a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst. The following year, Stephen came to work with Knospe-ABA as he now chooses to focus on providing direct support to children with autism and their families in their home environments with the goal of being able to stop the flow of people with disabilities into residential and home placements. Stephen is supporting children with autism and other disabilites in southern Germany.

 



Anne Langer, M.Sc. PsychologyAnne Langer

Anne graduated with a Master of Science (M.Sc.) in Psychology from the University of Frankfurt in February 2016. During her studies, she focused on child- and adolescence related mental health topics and was introduced to ABA during a class on Intervention Methods for Children with Autism-Spectrum-Disorder (ASD). She learned about different interventions such as TEACCH and PECS, but it was ABA which was presented as the most efficient and empirically supported methods for treating ASD. Her great interest in autism led her to apply for the position as a student research assistant, where she was responsible for conducting three studies investigating different neurological patterns in young adults with ASD at the Institute of Medical Psychology in Frankfurt, Germany. She additionally wrote her master’s thesis about Multisensory Integration in Autism Spectrum Disorders.
During her two years as a student research assistant in this project, she worked closely with 15 young adults with ASD. Apart from conducting cognitive tests and performing the neuroscientific measurements involved in the study, such as fMRI and EEG/MEG, she ensured that the participants were comfortable at all times during the measurements. Most importantly, it was during her work at this clinic that she realized how naturally working with children on the spectrum came to her, and she observed first-hand the impact that therapy could have on their lives. Anne was determined to find a place to work where she could combine her skills and experience as a psychologist with her passion for working with and helping children with ASD and their families. This dream became reality in May of 2018 when Anne accepted a job to begin working with Knospe-ABA. She started her intensive training as an ABA/VB consultant with Knospe-ABA, traveling with and learning from different consultants working with over 40 different children. To expand her practical experience, she additionally worked with several children supported by Knospe-ABA as a one-to-one ABA tutor. Forever the student, Anne solidified her expertise by intensely working through the ABA/VB literature and training manuals, undergoing several practice and knowledge assessments, as well as attending the ABA/VB introductory workshop presented by Robert Schramm, MA, BCBA. Anne is supporting children with ASS and other diagnoses and their families in middle & south of Germany and Austria. Anne is also working towards becoming a BCBA.

Publications:
Chan, J., Langer, A., & Kaiser, J. (2016). Temporal integration of multisensory stimuli in autism spectrum disorder: a predictive coding perspective. Journal of Neural Transmission, doi: 10.1007/s00702-016-1587-5
Brodski Guerniero, A. Naumer, M., Moliadze, V., Chan, J., Althen, H., Ferreira-Santos, F., Schlitt, S., Kitzerow, J., Schütz, M., Langer, A., Kaiser, J., Freitag, C. M., Wibral, M. (2018). Predictable information in neural signals during resting state is reduced in Autism Spectrum Disorder. Human Brain Mapping, doi: 10.1002/hbm.24072.

 



Katja Keane, M.Sc. ABAKatja Keane


Katja graduated from the Irish College for Humanities and Applied Science in Limerick, Irland, as a counsellor/psychotherapist and worked for many years in one of Ireland’s leading mental health charities. In this role, she offers psychological support, developed workshop programs for students, and delivered these workshops in schools. She has also presented a course on "Counseling Skills and Practice" at the National University of Ireland, Galway. Through raising her own child with Autism, and inspired by her love for teaching, Katja became more interested in methods designed to specifically help families who have a child with ASD. This brought her to study ABA at the National University of Ireland, Galway from which she graduated with a MSc in 2016. During her studies, Katja worked at the Red Hill School for children with Autism in Limerick, where she trained with the resident Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA). Her work in the school was mainly focused on the assessment of behavior, the development of behavior support plans, and overseeing their implementation by the teachers. There, Katja was exposed to many different children with a range of abilities and challenges, such as stereotypical behavior, social interaction, and cognitive development deficits. Katja also developed and implemented an 8-week long intervention for two classes in the school, teaching children about awareness of inner sensations, feelings, acceptance and mindfulness. Since finishing her studies Katja has worked as a home tutor in Ireland under BCBA supervision, where she learned about the ABA/VB approach of Robert Schramm. Katja has worked as a one-on-one tutor with two children in their home setting with a focus on verbal behavior. As a native German, Katja returned to Germany beginning of 2018 and joined Knospe-ABA’s team of talented consultants to continue her development in Robert’s ABA/VB approach and supports children with autism and related disorders mainly in the north and east of Germany. In addition Katja is also supervising the trainees of Knospe-ABA.

 



Jessica Webster, B.A. Psychology, RBTJessica Webster


Jessica was born in Germany and raised in Southern California. She graduated from California Lutheran University in May 2014 with two Bachelor degrees, one in Psychology and one on Theology and Christian Leadership. After living in Germany, she moved back to California and began working as a one-to-one ABA instructor for a company that provides Early Intervention ABA therapy in homes, schools, and in community settings. In 2016, Jessica completed her training as a Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) working under the supervision of multiple BCBA’s. During that time, Jessica worked with an online graphing and data system, took and analyzed program data as well as wrote progress summaries. She ran daily client sessions teaching life skills, motor skills, and cognitive learning skills. Following a promotion to lead instructor, she was responsible for facilitating team and parent communication about programming and sessions, as well as organizing materials and data needed for each client. Jessica discovered Knospe-ABA and started her intensive training as an ABA/VB consultant shortly after her return to Germany. During her training, Jessica learned to implement several different assessment protocols, attended workshops and worked with over 50 children with autism and related disorders. Jessica is supporting the education of children with autism spectrum disorders and other developmental delays in southern Germany.

 



Jessica Pengelly, M.Sc. Abnormal and Clinical PsychologyJessica Wende


Jessica graduated with a Master of Science (M.Sc.) in Abnormal and Clinical Psychology from Swansea University in Wales. Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) was one of the modules in this course, which introduced her to the basics of ABA. Alongside her studies in 2018, Jessica worked as an ABA tutor for 8 months, where she was able to put theory into practice and start developing her skills in ABA. While working on her undergraduate degree in South Africa, in 2013, Jessica volunteered at Headway, where she assisted therapists in their work with adults with brain injuries. In 2015, Jessica was employed at Eagle Springs Programs in Pennsylvania, USA, to work with mentally and physically disabled adults over the summer. Over this period, she was a “specialist”, organizing creative and fun events for the campers and assisting them in horse riding and other farm activities. Many individuals with Autism attended the camp, which has offered experience working with and for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).Jessica realized that these individuals had not been supported well in their educations and was therefore, extremely interested in finding a way to help support them better. Once she learned about ABA from her university course and saw the progress that was made with the child she worked with Jessica was hooked. Moving to Germany, Jessica applied to work at Knospe-ABA and attended the workshops that are integral to Robert Schramm´s ABA/VB program. Jessica started the intensive training to become an ABA/VB consultant with Knospe-ABA, traveling with and learning from different consultants and supervisors, working with approximately 50 different children with ASD and other developmental delays during her training. Jessica works throughout Germany to help parents to help their children, by supporting them closely with their child’s ABA/VB program.

 



Ann-Kathrin Frahm, B.A. Pädagogik und Philosophie Jessica Wende

 

Ann-Kathrin completed her studies in general pedagogy with a focus on mental and physical disabilities from Kiel University in June 2019. During her studies, she worked for people with disabilities in the education and nursing sector. Upon graduation, she began working as an educational consultant where she supported people with disabilities, who previously lived in institutions for many years. Here she focused on their integration into individual living settings and supporting them with their social skills, legal and financial needs. For her Federal Voluntary Service in 2014, she gained her first experiences with supporting the development of children on the Autism Spectrum. This work focused on job coaching and career development. Since January of 2020, she has been training her small dog Elmo (Bolonka Zwetna) to be part of the animal-supported work at the DHT-Academy in Kiel. This certification qualifies Ann-Kathrin for joint work with her dog. When agreed upon, Elmo accompanies Ann-Kathrin to the on-site consultations offering her a great partner in her work. Elmo is small, gentile and anti-allergenic, which makes him well-suited for working with humans. In addition to her studies and work, Ann-Kathrin has worked for years as a tutor for a young girl with autism targeting the development of verbal behavior as well as fine motor skills and the coordination of daily routines. This fulfilling work led her to the decision to specialize in working with people with autism and brought her to Knospe-ABA.  

 

 



Sonja Ziegler, MS, BCBA Sonja Ziegler(Certificant 1-17-28869)


Originally from Stuttgart, Sonja first began her experience in the area of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) in 2003 at Emory University’s Autism Center, in Atlanta, GA, USA. Here she worked both as an assistant therapist and researcher at the Walden Early Childhood Center in the center’s integrated laboratory Preschool led by founder, Dr. Gail McGee. Upon receiving her B.A. in Psychology from Agnes Scott College, Sonja persued her graduate education in Clinical Child Psychology in Hamburg and Saarbrücken, Germany. She received her graduate title of Diplom-Psychologin in 2007 from the University of Saarland. Subsequently, Sonja worked as a consultant psychologist together with children, adolescents, and adults with ASD and developmental disabilities in Sydney, Australia. Her work in all settings has been informed by evidence-based ABA practices. After four years in Sydney, Sonja moved to Santiago, Chile and became one of the only Clinical Psychologists to specifically work with individuals with ASD and their families in Chile. She provided ABA early intervention, and conducted research in the area of ASD. Upon returning to Atlanta in 2013, Sonja joined the Marcus Autism Center, led by Dr. Ami Klin, where she coached early childhood care providers throughout the state of Georgia. She was also an interventionist in Dr. Amy Wetherby’s “Early Social Interaction Project.” In 2014, Sonja returned to Emory University as an interventionist, researcher, and program manager of the 2-3-year-old classroom team, under the mentorship of Dr. Laurie Vismara, BCBA-D, and Dr. Michael Morrier, BCBA-D. While working at Emory University full-time, Sonja completed her BCBA course work at Georgia State University in Atlanta and received her BCBA certification in 2017. With more than 15 years of experience in early intervention and ABA, Sonja has returned to Europe carrying a torch for ABA, and for a total societal integration for individuals living with ASD. She currently resides in Kolding, Denmark and is very excited about her collaboration with Knospe-ABA as a supervising BCBA. She is overjoyed by the opportunity to provide evidence-based support to families experiencing ASD in Denmark and throughout Europe. Services can be provided in English, German or Spanish.

Sonja has published original work in peer-reviewed journals and has extensive experience presenting at international conferences. Current details of this work are as follows:

PUBLICATIONS

Morrier, M. J., & Ziegler, S. M. T. (2018). I Wanna Play Too: Factors Related to Changes in Social Behavior for Children With and Without Autism Spectrum Disorder After Implementation of a Structured Outdoor Play Curriculum. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. Advanced online publication. doi:10.1007/s10803-018-3523-z

Ziegler, S. M. T., & Morrier, M. J. (2018). Increasing Social Interactions of Preschool Children with Autism through Cooperative Outdoor Play. Manuscript submitted for publication.

Fischman, P., Ziegler, S. M. T., Han Suwalski, D., & Fischman, R. (2013). Chile and Autism. In F.R. Volkmar (Ed.). The Encylopedia of Autism Spectrum Disorders. New York: Springer.

Ziegler, S. M. T. (2007). The Perpetual Cycle: The transgenerational effect of reflective functioning. Diplom-Thesis (Master of Science Thesis) in the Faculty of Clinical Psychology of the University of Saarland. Saarbrücken, Germany.

PRESENTATIONS

Ziegler, S. M. T., & Morrier, M. J. (2018, May). “I Wanna Play Too”: Increasing Social Interactions of Preschool Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder Through Cooperative Outdoor Play. Poster presented at the annual international conference of the International Society of Autism Research, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.

Ziegler, S. M. T., & Morrier, M. J. (2018, April). Playing, Learning, and Growing Together: A Structured Outdoor Play Curriculum in an Integrated Preschool Setting. Poster presented at the annual conference of the Association of Professional Behavior Analysts, St. Louis, MO.

Ziegler, S. M. T., & Morrier, M. J. (2018, February). The Buddy Game: A Structured Outdoor Play Curriculum in an Integrated Preschool Setting. Poster presented at the annual international autism conference of the Association of Behavior Analysts International, Miami, FL.

Ziegler, S. M. T., & Morrier, M. J. (2017, November). Buddies: A Structured Outdoor Play Curriculum in an Integrated Preschool. Paper presented at the annual conference of the Georgia Association for Positive Behavior Support, Atlanta, GA.

Ziegler, S. M. T., & Morrier, M. J. (2017, September). Increasing Social Interactions of Preschool Children with Autism through Cooperative Outdoor Play. Poster presented at the annual Autism Research Symposium of the Atlanta Autism Consortium, Atlanta, GA.

Ziegler, S. M. T., Fuhrmeister, S., Brooker Lozott E., Payne, C., Ryan, T., & Stapel-Wax, J. (2015, May). Developmental Trajectories Diverted: Empowering Frontline Community Childcare Providers to Support Children’s Social Communication Development through a Coach-the-Coach Model. Poster presented at the annual conference of the International Society for Autism Research, Salt Lake City, UT.

Ziegler, S. M. T. (2015, May). Developmental Trajectories Diverted: Empowering Frontline Community Childcare Providers to Support Children’s Social Communication Development Through a Coach-the-Coach Model. Paper and poster presented at the annual Marcus Autism Center Autism Treatment Symposium, Atlanta, GA.

Fuhrmeister, S., & Ziegler, S. M. T. (2014, December). Fortifying the Front Line: The Marcus Collaborative Coaching Project. Paper presented at the annual conference of the Georgia Association for Positive Behavior Support, Atlanta, GA.

 



Nadine Schramm (maiden name Knospe)
Nadine Knospe


Nadine came to the world of Autism as a caregiver. Not as a student of ABA, but as a person who wanted to help children with autism live better lives. She found her first job working for Portia Iverson's Son, Dov. Portia and her husband founded the Group "Cure Autism Now" (now "Autism Speaks"), which is one of the largest Autism fundraising and research organizations in America. It was through working with Dov that Nadine was first introduced to ABA. She was trained as a home based therapist where she used different methods of ABA, TEACCH, and PECS. Later, Nadine began supporting the education of Garrett, a boy with autism and fraX- syndrome. Garrett was in the early stages of his Lovaas guided ABA program. Although Dr. Lovaas himself did not work directly with Garrett, it was his LIFE institute that oversaw Garrett's program and trained Nadine. Next to her work as an ABA therapist with Garrett in the home, Nadine worked with him as a one-to-one aid at the kindergarten as well as in his 1st grade elementary chool classroom in Los Angeles. She was trained after the latest Lovaas techniques from 1999-2003 and participated in a PECS workshop, presented by Lori Frost & Andy Bondy. Later in 2003 she added workshop trainings in Verbal Behavior with Dr. James Partington to her already extensive resume. In October 2006 Nadine participated in the workshop # 5 "Teaching Verbal Behavior in a Classroom Setting" of the Dr. Vince Carbone Clinic in New York and in November of the same year, she participated in the international autism congress in Buenos Aires, Argentina. In April of 2007 Nadine added a four day advanced workshop presented by Holly Kibbe, BCBA and Cherish Twigg, BCBA of Establishing Operations Inc. in London, UK and in May she went to the ABA convention in San Diego, USA, and participated in the workshop "How to Train Caregivers in Functional Behavior Assessment and Treatment Development", presented by Julia T. O'Connor of the Krieger Institute and the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, followed by a participation in the autism congress in Santa Fe, Argentina in October of 2007. Additionally, i
n November of 2008, Nadine participated in a one-day Motor Speech Workshop by Elizabeth Kuegeler, MA, CCC-SLP, PROMPT Certified Instructor. In November 2014 Nadine participated in the workshop "Using Applied Behavior Analysis and Verbal Behavior Strategies to Improve Autism Programming for both Toddlers and Teens with Autism", presented by Mary Barbera, PhD, RN, BCBA-D in Cologne. After 6 years of European wide activity as an ABA/VB Consultant, Nadine now leads the office and consultant team after the birth of her two daughters.