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Brenna M. Cavanaugh, Psy.D.

Contact Information

Phone Numbers

Appointment: (585) 276-3000

Fax: (585) 742-4217

URMFGA member of the University of Rochester Medical Faculty Group

groupAn Accountable Health Partner

assignmentAccepting New Patients

Faculty Appointments


Dr. Cavanaugh is a licensed psychologist and board certified behavior analyst. She specializes in work with children and adolescents with developmental disabilities and autism spectrum disorder. Dr. Cavanaugh's clinical care is focused on the application of evidence-based behavioral and cognitive-behavioral strategies in the assessment and treatment of challenging behaviors in children and adolescents. She provides parent training, behavioral skills training, and individual therapy within Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics' Behavior Treatment Program and Behavioral Intervention for Families Program. Her primary goal in her clinical work is to improve caregiver and child well-being by effectively adapting interventions to meet the unique needs of each patient and his or her family. Dr. Cavanaugh also provides diagnostic evaluations for children and adolescents with suspected autism spectrum disorder, and consults with schools in the community regarding evidence-based interventions for students.

Dr. Cavanaugh graduated from Nova Southeastern University with her doctorate in clinical psychology. She completed her pre-doctoral internship at the University of Nebraska Medical Center's Munroe-Meyer Institute, where she provided care to children with developmental disabilities in their pediatric feeding and severe behavior day treatment programs. Dr. Cavanaugh completed her post-doctoral training at the University of Rochester Medical Center's Division of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics.


Dr. Cavanaugh's research interest include:

• Application and dissemination of applied behavior analytic assessment and intervention for child challenging behavior

• Effectiveness of behavioral parent training interventions in clinical settings

• Early detection and prevention of behavioral disorders in children with developmental disabilities



PSYD | Nova Southeastern University-Fort Myers Campus

Post-doctoral Training & Residency

08/01/2015 - 08/31/2017
Fellowship in Psychology at University of Rochester Medical Center

07/01/2014 - 06/30/2015
Internship in Psychology at University of Nebraska Medical Center


Journal Articles

Borgen JG, Charles Mace F, Cavanaugh BM, Shamlian K, Lit KR, Wilson JB, Trauschke SL. "A method to establish stimulus control and compliance with instructions." Journal of applied behavior analysis.. 2017 Oct; 50(4):830-842. Epub 2017 Sep 20.

Shamlian KD, Fisher WW, Steege MW, Cavanaugh BM, Samour K, Querim AC. "Evaluation of multiple schedules with naturally occurring and therapist-arranged discriminative stimuli following functional communication training." Journal of applied behavior analysis.. 2016 Jun; 49(2):228-50. Epub 2016 Jan 21.