What is ABA?

Behavior Analysis is the scientific study of behavior. Applied behavior analysis (ABA) is the application of the science of behavior to the solution of practical problems, specifically problems of social significance. ABA therapy is a scientifically validated treatment for individuals with autism and developmental disabilities.

An independent body of experts evaluated thousands of reports across several decades and created the Report of the MADSEC Autism Task Force in 2000. It documented the effectiveness of ABA therapy for:

  • a wide range of populations including children with autism and developmental disabilities,
  • settings including schools, homes, and clinical settings,
  • behavior including language, academics, daily living skills, socials skills, aggression, stereotypy, self-injury, and opposition.
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Social significance: In ABA we discuss social significance. This means we change behaviors that are of importance to the client and the family. Examples include daily living skills, academics, communication, social skills, and reduction of problematic and dangerous behaviors. In addition, we change behaviors to a meaningful degree.

Data collection: in order to ensure that therapy delivered is effecting change, we write specific and objective goals and collect data during each therapy session. Data are reviewed weekly to evaluate if trends are in the desired direction. Each skill is taught to mastery over a period of time and then monitored for maintenance and generalization to confirm that new skills are consistently being used.

Parent Training: parent training is integral to your child’s therapy. You as parents spend more time with your child than anyone else. As therapy progresses, your senior team member will conduct training with you on a variety of topics including behavior reduction plans, daily living skills, and adaptive behaviors. You may be responsible for completing data collection as a part of your training. Implementing programs assigned to you ensures your child the greatest opportunity for success outside the therapy sessions.