What is ABA Therapy?
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is the application of the principles of behavior.
ABA focuses on improving positive behaviors and eliminating negative behaviors in order to teach a variety of skills (e.g., communication, adaptive skills, feeding, and toilet training). Interventions using applied behavior analytic principles have long been established as effective approaches to increase appropriate behaviors and decrease problem behaviors for individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD; National Autism Center, 2009; Wong et al., 2014).
Why Does ABA Work?
Over 30 years of research has demonstrated the effectiveness of ABA for individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Children who receive early, intensive behavioral intervention (EIBI) have demonstrated positive improvements in their development. Areas of improvement include: communication, socialization, following instructions, daily living skills, etc.
What are the ABC’s of ABA?
- Antecedents: Antecedents are things or events that precede a behavior.
- Behavior: Behavior is an observable and measurable action. Behavior does not refer to challenging behavior only. For example, eating, yelling, reading are all behaviors.
- Consequences: Consequences are events that follow a behavior. Consequences are not always negative, they can be positive. For example, a child may receive an ice cream after standing in line quietly at the ice cream shop.