Applied Behavior Analysis
Applied Behavior Analysis is the design, implementation, and evaluation of systematic environmental modifications for the purpose of producing socially significant improvements in and understanding of human behavior based on the principles of behavior identified through the experimental analysis of behavior. It includes the identification of functional relationships between behavior and environments
- 1 Definition
- 2 ABA Methodologies
- 3 ABA and Autism
- 4 Maintaining parental and professional relationships in the ABA approach
- 5 References
- 6 See also
- 7 External links
The State of Florida, where ABA is widely used, defines the field as follows:
The design, implementation, and evaluation of systematic environmental modifications for the purpose of producing socially significant improvements in and understanding of human behavior based on the principles of behavior identified through the experimental analysis of behavior. It includes the identification of functional relationships between behavior and environments. It uses direct observation and measurement of behavior and environment. Contextual factors, establishing operations, antecedent stimuli, positive reinforcers, and other consequences are used, based on identified functional relationships with the environment, in order to produce practical behavior change.
Applied Behavior Analysis is primarily used to reduce problem behaviors. The main difference between applied behavior analysis and other approaches based on behaviorist principals is that behavior analysis is based on tailoring interventions to individual learners. Functional Behavioral Assessments (FBA's) are performed to examine the effects of the environment on behavior, and the effects of behavior on the environment. FBA's can be conducted using interviews, rating scales or direct observation and manipulation of consequences for behavior. Behavior Analysts are interested in examining the effects of antecedents (what happens before behaviors) and consequences (what happens after behaviors). Applied behavior analysis is also associated with instructional interventions such as discrete trials instruction, Precision Teaching, Direct Instruction, and Personalized Systems of Instruction. Finally, many educators now recognize that behavioral issues are interferring with successful student outcomes at the school level. Applied behavior analysis is also used to examine oganizational behavior in businesses and animal behavior. Pracitioners may be licensed psychologists, or may be certified through the association for applied behavior analysis.
ABA and Autism
Applied Behavior Analysis has been shown to be an effective means of intervention for individuals with autism and is widely used with this population. A substantial (and increasing) amount of research in the field of ABA is concerned with autism; however, it is a common misconception among the general public that Applied Behavior Analysts work almost exclusively with individuals with autism and that ABA is synonymous with Discrete Trials teaching.
Discrete Trials were originally used by B.F. Skinnerin his experimental studies with rats and pigeons to demonstrate how learning was influenced by rates of reinforcement. The discrete trials method was adapted as a therapy for developmentally delayed children and children with autism. For example, Ivar Lovaasdeveloped a form of applied behavior analysis using discrete trials to help children with autismand Asperger's syndrome.
Maintaining parental and professional relationships in the ABA approach
An adequate communication and a supportive relationship between educational systems and families allow children to receive a beneficial education. This pertains to typical learners as well as to children who need additional services. It was not until the 1960s that researchers began exploring Applied Behavior Analysis as a method to educate those children who fall somewhere on the autism spectrum. Behavioral analysts agree that consistency in and out of the school classroom is key in order for autistic children to maintain proper standing in school and continue to develop to their greatest potential.
Applied behavior analysis involves an entire team working together to address a child's needs. This team includes professionals such as speech therapists as well as the children's primary caregivers, who are treated as key to the implementation of successful therapy in the ABA model. The ABA method relies on behavior principles and a recommended curriculum that reflects an individual child's needs and abilities. As such, regular meetings with professionals to discuss programming are one way to establish a successful working relationship between a child's family and their school. When a caregiver can be the outlet source for the generalization of skills outside of school, it helps the child's therapy process by catering to the child's individual needs. In the ABA framework, developing and maintaining a structured working relationship between parents and professionals is essential to ensure consistency of thought and practice of behavioral methods.
- Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services, Developmental Services Program. (1996). Chapter 10F-4, service delivery practice and procedure. Tallahassee, FL: Author.
- Moran, D.J., & Malott, R.W. (2004). Evidence-Based Educational Methods. San Diego, CA: Elsevier Academic Press
- Ascribe.org- 'Cal State University StanislausProfessors Publish Revealing Report on Methods for Treating Autism' (August 5, 2005)
- BACB.com- 'Defining the Field of Behavior Analysis', Behavior Analyst Certification Board
- Behavior.org- Cambridge Center for Behavioral Studies
- Sentex.net- 'The Misbehaviour of Behaviourists: EthicalChallenges to the Autism-ABA Industry', Michelle Dawson(2004)de:Applied Behavior Analysis
Categories: Human behavior| Autism| Educational psychology
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It uses material from the http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Applied+Behavior+Analysis Wikipedia article Applied Behavior Analysis.