ABA Therapy has its roots in the science of Behavior Analysis and it is recognized as the gold standard treatment for individuals with Autism.
What is ABA?
ABA stands for Applied Behavior Analysis and it's known as ABA Therapy. Behavior Analysis is the science that focuses on understanding and improving human behavior through the systematic use of evidence-based strategies to shape behaviors that are important for the individual and their family. ABA Therapy uses the principles of Behavior Analysis and has become the #1 treatment choice for individuals with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other developmental disabilities.
What is Verbal Behavior?
It is language (spoken words, typed words, written words, signs, or gestures) that we all use to communicate with others and it is reinforced and shaped by another person's behavior. It is critical to address the verbal behavior of children with an ASD as it is the most socially significant human behavior due to its involvement in almost everything a person does. Developing an effective Verbal Behavior skill set improves your child's quality of life.
Verbal Operants (Types of Verbal Behavior)
Manding: asking for things
Tact: labeling things
Echoic: repeating what others say
Intraverbal: answering questions
Textual: reading written words
Transcription: Writing words
Who can provide ABA Therapy?
ABA Therapy is typically provided by Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBA), Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analysts (BCaBA), Registered Behavior Technicians (RBT) and Behavior Technicians (BT). To learn more about the provider's credentials and requirements, visit the BACB website.
BCBAs hold at least a Master's degree and obtain certification from the Behavior Analyst Certification Board. The BCBA's role is to provide parent training, conduct assessments, write treatment plans and oversee their implementation. BCBAs supervise BCaBAs, RBTs and BTs. BCBAs may also provide direct therapy services to patients.
How does ABA Therapy help my child with autism?
Decades of research back ABA therapy as the most effective intervention for children with an Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). It is a widely recognized evidence-based practice by sources such as the American Academy of Pediatrics. ABA therapy programs are individualized for each child to address their unique needs.
Children with ASD receiving ABA therapy will:
Learn to communicate more effectively with others and express their wants and needs when appropriate.
Improve their social skills when interacting with family and friends to develop meaningful relationships.
Develop skills to adapt to different situations and settings.
Learn and improve self-help skills to become more independent.
Learn age appropriate adaptive behaviors while interfering behaviors are being reduced or eliminated.
How does ABA Therapy help my family?
One essential component of any ABA Therapy program is parent and caregiver involvement through education and training. After an ABA therapy session ends, it is critical for parents and caregivers to be able to carry out the treatment In the natural environment to aid generalization and maintenance of skills taught during therapy.
During the assessment process, BCBAs also evaluate the family's educational needs and develop appropriate goals for them. At Shaping Steps ABA we involve caregivers and families since day one and see them as part of the therapy team. During our family collaboration sessions caregivers and BCBAs will review current goals and collaborate to adjust the treatment when applicable. Caregivers will always be asked for their input and will always have a voice when developing new goals. BCBAs will provide education and training to make sure caregivers are able to implement the individualized treatment plan as well as specific strategies to use at home and in the community to address interfering behaviors.
When parents and caregivers actively collaborate in the child's treatment, significant progress in both skill acquisition and interfering behavior reduction is achieved. Our ABA therapy program gives parents and caregivers the tools and confidence they need to address the day to day challenges and to support and shape their child's progress and growth.
How does ABA Therapy work?
ABA Therapy programs can be implemented in the child's home, in therapy centers, schools, and in the community. Each setting has great benefits for the child and their family.
Regardless of the setting a typical ABA program usually involves:
Assessment of the child and family needs
Development of a treatment plan by a BCBA
1:1 or small group ABA therapy delivered in the selected setting by an RBT and sometimes a BCBA
Data is collected during therapy sessions to monitor progress
BCBA supervision of the therapists and treatment
BCBA provided parent training to carryout treatment outside of therapy time
Reassessments typically every 6 months