Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA):
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is defined as the process of systematically applying interventions based upon the principles of learning theory to improve socially significant behaviors to a meaningful degree, and to demonstrate that the interventions employed are responsible for the improvement in behavior. The National Autism Center’s National Standards Report lists ABA as an established treatment for working with children who have been diagnosed with Autism. ABA is a researched based method for teaching children with Autism, but has also been found effective in working with many other people. ABA utilizes detailed interventions to change specific behaviors. Throughout therapy, data is taken to see if the behavior is changing as a result of the intervention. ABA is most effective when interventions are used to increase appropriate behaviors, while simultaneously decreasing inappropriate behaviors. ABA teaches social skills, life skills, communication skills, fine motor skills, gross motor skills, academic skills, self-help skills, play skills, and many other skills. ABA focuses on increasing behaviors, teaching new skills, maintaining behaviors, generalizing behavior, restricting conditions for negative behaviors, and decreasing interfering/negative behaviors. A Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) is a professional who has been educated and trained to assess the child and work with the family. The BCBA writes a behavior plan to address strengths and weaknesses of the child, trains caregivers, and makes sure therapy is implemented. The BCBA oversees all aspects of therapy and makes adjustments based on the individual’s needs. ABA is most effective when it is carried out over home, school, and community. ABA is very individualized and specific to the client, no two programs look the same.
Sometimes it is not feasible for a child to come to a center for services. In cases where the child needs services, but the family lives in an area where they cannot easily access services or the parents want to run their own program at home, PACE offers consultation behavior therapy. This can occur in-person or through our remote consultation services depending on the location of the family. The BCBA and caregivers will go through the steps of assessment and writing a behavior plan. The BCBA will then train and instruct the caregivers on how to implement the behavior plan at home. The BCBA will answer questions as needed and evaluate data and update goals, on a weekly, or monthly basis, depending on the level of support that is chosen by the family.
Caregiver Support and training:
It can be overwhelming to raise a challenging child. PACE provides hands on help in teaching parents the skills necessary to be most effective in raising a child with autism, other special needs, or behavior problems. PACE provides training to learn how to better meet a child’s needs. PACE staff is available to answer specific questions, help understand current research, or to collectively work with the parents and caregivers to create a more effective approach. PACE staff can also assist parents and siblings of children with special needs in finding avenues such as support groups, related services, conferences, and online forums.
Caregiver Support/Training can occur in a variety of ways. Caregivers can use remote consultation services to work with PACE staff for information on specific issues. PACE staff can come to the home to meet with the caregivers and help them to understand the functions of behavior, as well as how to implement the behavior plan in the home. PACE staff can train caregivers to use positive behavior supports and visuals in the home. PACE staff is available to create visual schedules, behavior plan aids, and communication supports for you.
PACE staff will hold various group training sessions periodically. A parent or group of parents can choose to schedule additional group training sessions covering specific topics. Because PACE is a family centered organization, it is required that parents of our clients receive training on implementing their child’s specific behavior plan across all settings.
Supervision for BCBA/BCaBA Candidates
There is a significant shortage of qualified professionals in this field. It is not always easy to find appropriate supervision. PACE is willing to provide supervision to qualified candidates that are seeking to become a BCBA/ BCaBA. Supervision is a very individualized experience, thus candidates seeking supervision through PACE will be selected on a case by case basis to ascertain that they are a good fit with our supervisor. All regulations and ethical standards put forth by the BACB will be strictly enforced.