Tom Kitchen
Assistant Professor
Hirt 300

During his career, Mr. Kitchen has served as a direct care therapist, public school special education teacher, behavior analyst, staff trainer, educational/behavioral consultant, program coordinator, graduate program teaching faculty, and agency administrator. As a consultant and provider of graduate education, he has worked with families, graduate students, and professionals from around the globe. 

Mr. Kitchen received BA in Elementary and Special Education from Mercyhurst University, an MS in Special Education from Mercyhurst, and a post-graduate Certificate in Applied Behavior Analysis from Penn State University. He is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst.

Immediately prior to his current position at Mercyhurst University, Mr. Kitchen was co-founder and co-director of the Lake Erie Autism Diagnostic, Education, and Research Services (LEADERS) program at the Achievement Center, where he provided direction, consultation and supervision to board certified behavior analysts and educators working with children 4 PA counties and 2 states. Prior to that, he was principal designer, developer, and coordinator of an intensive school program for children with autism.In both of these roles, he had supervisory duties as well as clinical duties, which included staff hiring, staff performance management, and budgetary oversight.

Mr. Kitchen remains an active consultant in behavior analysis, autism, and education, hired by school districts, agencies, and families to provide programming, staff training, and systems development. Mr. Kitchen is also a faculty member of The Pennsylvania State University World Campus "Graduate Certificate in Autism" Program, where he teaches students participating  from around the nation and world each summer. He has also been a collaborator with the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center to provide autism-specific trainings throughout Pennsylvania. He has frequently been interviewed in print, television, and radio media about his work in autism, and he has served as an expert witness in educational due process proceedings regarding children with autism and behavioral issues, representing both school districts and families.

Mr. Kitchen’s areas of interest within the field lie primarily with effective instructional techniques across populations, data-based programming, curriculum development for language and social skills, reduction of problem behaviors including severe aggression and self-injury, systems development, staff performance management, and parent/staff training.



  • EDSP 640          Basic Principles of Behavior
  • EDSP 501          Classroom Management and Applied Behavior Analysis
  • EDSP 660          Advanced Seminar in Applied Behavior Analysis
  • EDSP 533          Curriculum and Instruction: Low-Incidence Disabilities
  • SPLED 464       Autism – Assessment and Curriculum (Penn State University World Campus)


  •       PSYC 282           Basic Concepts of Behavior


  • EDSP 534          Supervised Field Experience - Curriculum and Instruction: Low-Incidence Disabilities
  • EDSP 672          Intensive Practicum: Applied Behavior Analysis (BCBA)
  • PSYC 482-4       Intensive Practicum: Applied Behavior Analysis (BCaBA)

Selected Publications:

Kitchen, T., and Belfiore, P. (2012) Increasing outcomes for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities through data-based mechanisms for staff training and performance feedback. In Intellectual Disabilities: Management, Causes, and Social Perceptions. Haupphauge, NY: Nova Science Publishers.

Kitchen, T., Belfiore, P., and Kitchen, H. (2010) The necessity of measures of procedural integrity to ensure effective delivery of evidence-based interventions for children with autism spectrum disorders. In Special Education in the 21st Century.  Mary Burton, Ed. Haupphauge, NY: Nova Science Publishers.

Gulick, R. & Kitchen, T. (2007) Effective Instruction for Children with Autism. Erie, PA: Dr. Gertrude A. Barber National Institute.  [Textbook product of grant awarded by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - “Preventing Secondary Conditions Associated with Autism Spectrum Disorders” (E111ccu324061-01)]

Kitchen, T.P., Barber-Carey, M., & Kownacki, A.  (2003). Coordination of home and school-based early, intensive behavioral intervention programs for children with autism. The Early Childhood Report, 14, 4.

Submitted by mmarsh on Mon, 12/24/2018 - 04:39