Behaviour Analysis is the science of behaviour in which each individuals’ actions or skills are influenced by environmental stimuli such as physical (and emotional) events. Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) is using the science to benefit the specific needs of an individual or organisation and bring about meaningful changes in behaviour. This can range from helping someone lead a healthier lifestyle or learn a new language. In recent years, the science of behaviour has been applied to teaching children with autism. There is a large body of research to support the evidence of ABA as an effective means of autism therapy.
One element of using the science is through the application of reinforcement based procedures. Fun! The science tells us that if a behaviour is immediately followed by some sort of ‘reward’, we engage in that behaviour more frequently in future. This is applied to how we learn in which the child demonstrates a new skill, this is ‘rewarded’ so occurs more frequently until the child can readily use that skill. There are a wide variety of ABA techniques used to teach children with autism. Often the child leads learning in which their motivation for an event or item is used to teach skills around that. Sometimes children learn in a more structured way. Teaching can take place anywhere. Typically session are held at home, in the community, and in schools. Although there is no cure for autism, often children can be taught adaptive behaviours and skills so they can go on to engage with the world and be an individual of the community. There is much research that has supported Early Years Intervention in which programs aimed children around 4 years have seen marked improvements in a range of developmental skills. A number of studies have evidenced ABA as an effective technique to help adults with autism transition from residential settings to the community and assisted these individuals with employment.
At WAS we are able to put you into contact with the right people certified to help you and your family get onto an ABA program. Please do not hesitate in contacting us for contact details or for more information on how to get started.