ABA therapy is provided under the direction of a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA). BCBA’s are qualified and trained to design a specialized and individualized program for your child.
The BCBA will complete an assessment of your child’s skills and preferences and use this to write specific treatment goals for both your child and your family. Your child’s treatment program will be individualized to address their unique needs, skills, interests, as well as the situation in your family. A Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) will work directly with your child to apply the principles of ABA to teach language, social skills, self-care, play and learning. Every program is overseen and supervised by a BCBA.
The BCBA and your child’s RBT will collect data and measure progress so they can continue to help your child move toward goals and benchmarks. Your team will meet regularly with you and your family to review progress with specific goals and objectives and adjust the treatment plan as necessary.
An ABA instruction plan will break down skills into small, concrete steps—taught one-by-one. Your child’s RBT will start with simple activities (like imitating single sounds) to learning more complex skills like carrying on a conversation. Most programs strive to make teaching sessions fun and use Natural Environmental Teaching (NET) as much as possible. NET involves embedding treatment goals into your child’s natural environment, so often looks like play but is in fact targeting specific program goals. Sometimes children may need a more structured approach to teaching which involves sitting with your child and working on more targeted skills, this is called Discrete Trial Teaching (DTT). ABA also includes utilizing positive reinforcement as much as possible which can look different for every child, but often includes praise, high fives, stickers, fun and occasionally small edibles that are gradually faded.
The most important components of an ABA program are you and your family!
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