Applied Behavioral Analysis
ASC offers Applied Behavior Analysis, a scientific approach to understanding behavior, how it is affected by environment, and how learning takes place. Scientific studies have proven ABA techniques to be one of the most effective methods of treating the behaviors of individuals diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Unlike typically developing children whose learning process comes naturally, children diagnosed with autism frequently experience language, social, and/or behavioral difficulties. Regardless of their challenges, many of these individuals can make significant gains in each of these areas when participating in intensive Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) services.
Although individuals with autism have the potential to learn, it frequently takes a very structured and controlled environment to acquire the same skills as those of the typically developing child. ABA is a method of establishing the structured environment to provide that learning experience.
What is Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)?
Applied Behavior Analysis is a scientific approach to understanding behavior, how it is affected by the environment and how learning takes place. It is a mixture of psychological and educational techniques tailored to meet the needs of each individual. ABA methods are used to measure behavior, teach functional skills, and evaluate progress. Various techniques have been developed over the years for increasing constructive behaviors and reducing those that may be harmful or that interfere with learning. Applied Behavior Analysis encompasses using those techniques and principles to discourage socially inappropriate or problematic behaviors and replacing them with more acceptable ones.
Scientific studies have proven ABA techniques to be one of the most effective methods of treating the behaviors of individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). ABA uses a variety of approaches to find a way of motivating the child/individual and ensuring that the sessions are both enjoyable and productive.
Who can benefit from ABA programs?
ABA programs can prove extremely beneficial in teaching or improving an individual’s language, eye contact, social skills, peer interactions and behavioral issues. It has also been shown to improve the skills necessary to stay on task and encourages the desire to learn. Most individuals with autism can benefit from intensive ABA programs because even if an individual does not achieve the “best result,” it generally improves normal functioning levels in most areas.
Who is qualified to oversee ABA programs?
The ABA program at Autism Services Center is supervised by our on-staff Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) and implemented by our Residential and Community Behavior Support Professionals (BSPs) who are trained in techniques that meet the national standard for positive behavior support. See www.apbs.org for further information on the national standards and guidelines.
Behavior analysts are dedicated to the advancement of positive practices and the provision of non-aversive, person-centered services to support individuals with challenging behaviors. Candidates for certification as BCBA are professionals who hold a minimum of a master’s degree in psychology, education, or speech and hearing sciences or related fields from accredited universities.
Behavior analysts design, implement, and monitor programs that provide an abundance of positive reinforcement for useful skills and positive social interactions with an emphasis on socially appropriate behaviors. They objectively observe, analyze behaviors, and review the accumulated data to determine the effectiveness of programs and make adjustments to improve or adapt the programs as the child grows and changes.
Behavior analysts train parents and individuals who interact with children with autism and other severe handicaps so they can teach and support the necessary skills during family activities and daily routines. They can provide a detailed assessment of each child’s progress and fine tune a program to assist in meeting the designated goals that will enable the child to be independent and successful in both the short and long term.
ABA Services offered at Autism Services Center
ASC also offers a variety of services that are available to families, students, agencies and schools. They include workshops, seminars and presentations on topics including:
- Principles of Applied Behavior Analysis
- Developing Behavior Intervention Plans/Managing Disruptive Behaviors
- Conducting functional behavior assessments and analyses
- How to teach children with autism
- Parenting skills
- Follow-up monitoring and plan evaluations
- Staff training
- Discrete Trial Training (DTT)
- Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS)
- Self-Management Training
For additional information on ABA therapy, please contact Jimmie Beirne at (304) 525-8014, extension 232.