What is Applied Behavior Analysis?

Applied Behavior Analysis is a type of psychology that is defined as, “The study of the operation of the principles of behavior.”

Autism Spectrum Disorder & Applied Behavior Analysis Treatment

  1. How we learn new information or behaviors
  2. What motivates us to keep doing the things we do and remember various information
  3. Learning to predict what our choices will be in the future
  4. Environmental and medical factors when evaluating all types of behavior
  5. Treatment for individuals of all ages, level of cognitive and social functioning, and diagnoses (if any)

Misconceptions about Applied Behavior Analysis?

  1. Children acquire new skills only through being given unnatural rewards such as M & Ms, candy, and other food items.
  2. Children who participate in ABA programs become robotic in their language, social interactions, and learning style.
  3. ABA programs use aversive tactics or punishment to promote learning.
  4. All learning is done at a table where the same question is asked repeatedly.
  5. My child’s behaviors and difficulties in acquiring new skills are the result of a medical diagnosis. A program based on “psychology” will not help him or her.

What is Applied Behavior Analysis?

Natural Environment Training “NET”

  1. Environment is already part of the child’s everyday life, but may be contrived or altered to facilitate teaching.
  2. Reinforcers used are based on the child’s current motivation.
  3. Reinforcers used are often naturally occurring within the environment.
  4. The therapist is paired with delivery of reinforcers and has control of reinforcer delivery.
  5. Naturally occurring events are often taught.
  6. Generalization and maintenance are crucial components of intervention.
  7. Mand training (learning to request) often occurs in this context.

Incidental Teaching

  1. Location of treatment is already part of the child’s everyday life.
  2. Teaching activities are naturally occurring without emphasis on contriving the environment to input teaching.
  3. Reinforcers used are based on the child’s current motivation.
  4. Reinforcers used are naturally occurring within the environment.
  5. The therapist withholds reinforcer delivery to evoke responses.
  6. Naturally occurring events are often taught.
  7. Functional language use, taught within behavioral strategies, is emphasized.
  8. Functional language use may not be based in Skinner’s analysis of verbal behavior.

*Sundberg & Partington

Verbal Behavior Therapy

  • Uses the “discrete trial” and natural environment teaching formats. There is an equal emphasis on utilizing both treatment strategies. Incidental teaching is also used.
  • Reinforcers used are based on the child’s current motivation and may change repeatedly throughout the session.

Discrete Trial Training

  • A “discrete trial” is defined as “the opportunity for the response, the response, and the outcome for the response.”
  • Broken down into behavioral language, this is the SD, Antecedent, Behavior, Consequence format that will be used throughout this presentation.
  • It is the mechanism for which we arrange opportunities for learning and should be used in all teaching environments.
  • This instructional model is used within a variety of approaches, though many claim not to use it. Instead they discuss the use of an ABC format.
  • It is often deemed the equivalent of the Lovaas approach, as he coined the terminology, though they are different.
*Malott, Malott, and Trojan, 2000; www.youtube.com*

Other Services Provided

  1. Counseling and Mental Health Services
  2. Behavior management
  3. Center start up support
  4. IEP Advocacy
  5. BCBA Supervision

Now Accepting New Patients

We strive to meet the unique needs of each family to not only mitigate deficits, but to teach pivotal skills, language, play and other developmental milestones.

Click here to get started or call us at (734) 466-5021

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