Dr. Michelle Ficcaglia
Dr. Michelle Ficcaglia is the founder of Thoughtful Parenting. She has been working with children and families for more than 25 years. Michelle holds a BA in psychology from Claremont McKenna College, a PhD in Special Education from UC Berkeley, and is also a doctoral level Board Certified Behavior Analyst.
Michelle specializes in helping parents understand their young child’s behavior and development. Her style of parent coaching is practical and solution focused. Parents who use Michelle’s consultative services come away feeling more confident and being more effective in their parenting skills.
As a behavior analyst, Michelle specializes in understanding why children engage in unwanted behaviors and teaching caregivers to address those challenges with effective strategies that fit into everyday life and match family values. Michelle is a frequent lecturer for both parents and professionals on topics ranging from best practice intervention strategies to parenting techniques. She has provided consultation to students and districts throughout the San Francisco Bay Area including San Francisco Unified School District, San Jose Unified School District, and Redwood City School District. She has also presented at statewide conferences on parent education.
Michelle has an extensive background working with children diagnosed with autism and related challenges. Michelle has received training as an Early Start Denver Model (ESDM) therapist. In 2008 while working at University of California San Francisco, Michelle designed the curriculum and directed an intensive parent education program for children with autism spectrum disorders. She has also managed teams specializing in early education for children with developmental disabilities at organizations including Easter Seals and Community Gatepath. Michelle has co-authored scholarly articles on the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders in leading psychiatry textbooks and written articles for Autism Bay Area Magazine. She has also contributed to articles in Bay Area Parent Magazine.