Developing Socially-Significant Behaviors with a Family-Centered Approach
ABA Therapy Solutions began in 2012 by Linda Peirce, a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) who has worked in schools, homes, and community settings. Her educational background includes a degree in Psychology, a Master’s in Educational Psychology, and all but her dissertation in Exceptional Student Education.
Our team of Board-Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs), Behavior Assistants, and Registered Behavior Technicians (RBTs) have years of experience working with individuals diagnosed with autism and related disabilities. Whether we are providing services in your home, in the community, or schools, our priority is your child. Our mission at ABA Therapy Solutions is to teach your child socially significant behaviors with a family-centered approach.
What is ABA?
The science of Applied Behavior Analysis has developed from a large body of evidence-based research over the last several decades. Baer, Wolf, & Risley defined this science best in 1968: “Applied Behavior Analysis is the process of systematically applying interventions based upon the principles of learning theory to improve socially significant behaviors to a meaningful degree, and to demonstrate that the interventions employed are responsible for the improvement in behavior.”
The process of Applied Behavior Analysis involves:
Where do we begin with ABA?
There is no “one-size-fits-all” program. Your child is unique and has specific strengths and weaknesses requiring a program designed to meet their individual needs. An ABA program consists of 20 to 40 hours per week of intensive one on one teaching. Bridging the gap between chronological and developmental age is the goal of a treatment program. A Board-Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) can assess your child and develop an individual behavior plan.
Determining which behaviors should be increased and which behaviors should be decreased will be assessed during your first few meetings with your Behavior Analyst. Problem behaviors such as tantrums, non-compliance, task-avoidance, property destruction, or others can occur frequently and interfere with the child’s learning and daily functioning. A treatment package will include strengthening the child’s communication and daily living skills while decreasing any inappropriate behaviors.
After a Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA), Adaptive Behavior Assessment, and/or Language Assessment is completed, a comprehensive program is developed. Goal selection is rooted in the behavioral principles and practices of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) to teach the necessary skills to improve your child’s quality of life.
Behavior Analysts plan for generalization so that behavior changes will be long-lasting. They will teach the individual and their family to understand skills across various settings and people.
ABA therapy is tailored to your family’s needs. A collaborative effort between our practitioners and your family will ensure a treatment plan and environment that will meet your family’s specific goals.
What is an ABA Treatment Plan?
Treatment plans break down the target skills into manageable steps to be taught. Treatment includes an objective measurement of the child’ss progress using various data collection methods. After your child’s assessment, the BCBA will make a recommendation on a home-based or clinic setting for treatment.
Home-based Model of Treatment
The home-based model of treatment offers an opportunity for caregivers to be closely involved in therapy. Daily living skills (e.g., toileting, brushing teeth, dressing, cleaning) can be taught in the home environment. Generalizing is the transferring of behavior from one situation to the next and is often difficult for individuals with autism. Home-based therapy has shown greater success in promoting generalization across environments (Leaf, et al., 2017).
The opportunity to practice newly acquired skills in the natural environment where the child spends most of their time is vital to skill acquisition. A typical home ABA session is 2 to 3 hours long. It consisting of short periods of time to teach skills interspersed by short breaks in which a child may engage in a preferred activity such as playing with a favorite toy or watching a short video. An ABA program will differ between clients as each child’s needs, interests, and skills will vary (Leaf, et al., 2017).
Clinic-based model of treatment
A clinic-based model has its own advantages such as providing a verbal community for a child and additional support for caregivers. Many children with autism have impaired social skills consequently, surrounding a child with ample social opportunities with peers throughout a day can be advantageous to learning new social skills. Snack time, lunchtime, and group play provide exposure to a variety of new conditions from which children can learn (Leaf, et al., 2017).
Components of an ABA Program
A behavior program will be designed and monitored by a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA). To ensure the treatment integrity, consistent supervision of treatment is provided to our clients and behavior technicians who directly work with your children.
The program will be developed after a functional behavioral assessment (FBA) is completed. The FBA will address the individual needs and a possible function of problem behaviors (why they occur).
Family involvement is one of the most important components of ABA therapy as much research has shown a more positive outcome when caregivers are involved. Caregiver training is delivered to ensure consistency in the behavior program. Review of progress is discussed on an on-going basis.
Implementation of the treatment program will be provided by a behavior therapist/technician. The behavior therapist/technician will be provided with on-going supervision from the BCBA to implement the behavior program.
Data on skill acquisition and the reduction of problem behaviors will be recorded regularly. Data is reviewed by the supervising BCBA to measure the progress of the client and to provide information for future programs or necessary changes in the current program.
Schedule of Treatment
All treatments must be pre-authorized by insurance companies and typically run for 6 months at the intensity level of 15 to 40 hours per week depending on the complexity of the plan as well as needs and age of the individual.