Sigrid Glenn

Sigrid Glenn
Regents Professor Emeritus, University of North Texas

Dr. Sigrid Glenn is Regents Professor Emeritus at the University of North Texas. She has been an active contributor to behavior analysis for over 40 years. Her publications include four books and over 50 articles and book chapters, and include basic and applied research as well as conceptual and philosophical work. Dr. Glenn was editor of The Behavior Analyst and served on editorial boards of many other journals.

As founding chair of the Department of Behavior Analysis at the University of North Texas, Dr. Glenn established master’s and bachelor’s degree programs in behavior analysis, leading the faculty in becoming the first graduate program accredited by ABAI. In 2012, the program received ABAI’s Award for Enduring Programmatic Contributions to Behavior Analysis. Dr. Glenn, a charter certificant of the Behavior Analysis Certification Board, established the first internet sequence of behavior analysis courses approved by the BACB.

Dr. Glenn is a founding fellow of the Association for Behavior Analysis and a fellow of the American Psychological Association. Honors especially meaningful to her include ABAI’s Award for Distinguished Service, TxABA’s Award for Career Contributions to Behavior Analysis in Texas, CalABA’s Award for Outstanding Contributions to Behavior Analysis, the Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies Ellen P. Reese Award in Recognition for Significant Contributions to Communication of Behavioral Concepts, and the BACB’s Michael Hemingway Award for Advancement of Behavior Analysis. Perhaps most meaningful of all were awards received from students: ABAI’s Student Committee Award for Outstanding Mentorship and UNT’s Honor Professor.


Concept of Metacontingency: What It Is, What It Is Not, and Who Needs It?


The concept of metacontingency extends the world view of selection-by-consequences to some of the phenomena characteristic of complex cultures. The concept is designed to help us understand the origin and evolution of organized entities (e.g. hospitals, factories, foundations, co-ops, professional societies) that exist over extended time periods. I will review the fundamental features of metacontingencies, drawing a parallel to operant contingency relations, and explain why I think the concept is useful in understanding the evolution of cultures. Because organizations are not the only phenomena that characterize cultures, I will point out cultural phenomena that metacontingencies do not address. Finally, I will suggest professional areas where the concept may be useful and others where it is probably not directly relevant.