Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) is the science in which tactics derived from the principles of behaviour are applied to improve socially significant behaviour and experimentation is used to identify the variables responsible for the improvement in behaviour.
Cooper, Heron, and Heward (2007) Applied Behavior Analysis 2nd Edition.
WHAT IS ABA?
The principles of behaviour surround us in everyday life. One of the core principles is to have socially significant gains for the people who practice and implement these strategies.
When people hear "ABA", most people think of young children with Autism and highly intensive programs, however the applications of ABA are limitless! ABA has been used with a wide range of populations, ages, and cultures, worldwide.
WHAT CAN ABA HELP WITH?
- Crime, Delinquency, and Forensic Behaviour Analysis
- Health, Sport, and Fitness
- Organisational Behaviour Management
- Positive Behaviour Support
- Environmental Planning + Climate Change
- Government Policy
- and of course, teaching new skills!
BEHAVIOUR IS EVERYTHING!
Whether we realise it or not, the science of ABA is happening around us everyday - through our relationships with others, the work we do, influencing our decisions and choices. Many people have conducted research on various applications of ABA over the past fifty years, and continue to do so, finding more, and more ways we can apply it to, and help improve not only our lives, but society as well.
The science of behaviour involves having a clearly defined behaviour, and looking at what is happening before the behaviour, as well as what happens after the behaviour, in order to try and figure out why that behaviour is occurring. This is usually referred to as a 'Functional Behaviour Assessment' or an 'A-B-C' Chart (Antecedent-Behaviour-Consequence).
We can use this information to figure out the function of behaviour. Once we have the function figured out, we aim to find a functionally equivalent replacement behaviour, and then teach and practice this new behaviour using reinforcement to strengthen the new behaviour.
As ABA is a science, Behaviour Analysts explain behaviour in accordance with the attitudes of science:
- Philosophic Doubt
At Great Start Behaviour Services, we aim to employ the science of ABA to create socially significant, meaningful, and relevant goals and programs, for all our clients.
Verbal Behaviour (VB) is a subset of ABA, that is focused on increasing communication skills using the principles of behaviour. Given that communication is an essential skill to get our needs and wants met, our programs focus on incorporating these skills in our client's everyday lives.
There are also '7 Dimensions of ABA' that pretty much cover what the purpose of ABA is:
ABA + AUTISM
Decades of research has found ABA to be the most effective treatment for children and adolescents with autism. Research has shown significant improvements across a range of domains, including self-help skills, communication skills, social skills, school readiness, as well as reducing challenging behaviour.
QUALITY INDICATORS OF AN ABA PROGRAM/SERVICE
- An initial assessment
- Individualised, clearly defined, purposeful, socially significant goals and programs
- Interests and strengths of the individual
- Parent/carer education and training component
- Data collection & graphing of data
- Frequent monitoring, analysis, and evaluation of data collected
- Training and ongoing support and supervision for people implementing programs
- Maintenance and generalisation of skills taught
HOW WE CAN HELP
Great Start Behaviour Services provide Comprehensive Positive Behaviour Support Plan development, as well as training and education for parents and carers.