ABA therapy and autism

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Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is based on the idea that a response can be influenced and the ensuing behavior can be shaped and controlled. Positive reinforcement is a good example. A reward for desired behavior will (mostly) produce the desired behavior. ABA is a mixture of techniques created for individual need. They can be provided by a professional or adapted by parents for use at home. For autistic kids and kids on the spectrum it is a way to measure behavior, teach functional skills, and evaluate progress.

There are many kinds of ABA which have been proved effective through many studies: discrete
trial training (DTT), Pivotal Response Training (PRT), Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS), Self-Management, and a range of social skills training techniques are all critical in teaching children with autism. A professional will find a way of combing these strategies to make a session enjoyable and useful.

The goal is usually to to increase skills in language, play and socialization, while decreasing behaviors that interfere with learning. For some children the results can be immediate and profound. Many children who have ritualistic or self-injurious behaviors reduce or eliminate these behaviors with time.

The ABA approach can helps these kids learn to make eye contact. The strategies can help them stay on task. Finally the children acquire the ability and the desire to learn and to do well often in a classroom setting when teachers are willing to adapt the techniques. Even if a child doesn’t meet the optimal goal, ABA is quite effective in making improvements which will change the child’s and the family’s life.

Source: Bright Tots, WebMD


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