What is ABA?

ABA Center International (ACI) makes sure that the treatment is specifically focused to the learner. This is also a very important component of ABA: individualized care. Namely, every individual is different.

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is a form of intensive behavioral therapy.

The following below are important pillars in ABA:

  • We work from the motivation of the learner, to (playfully) learn as many skills as possible in the field of language, play and behavior 
  • ACI and ABA focuses on individual treatment, so a Behavior Analyst doesn’t work with more than 1-2 learners (mostly 1). This, and more, makes ACI unique in the Netherlands.  The specialized ABA parent training courses aimed at making parents/carers independent is also a unique spearhead within ACI 
  • This method is very suitable for learners diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder, but also for learners diagnosed with ADHD, Down Syndrome or other behavioral or learning difficulties. ABA care can be used for individuals up to 80 years of age 
  • ABA distinguishes itself from other treatment methods because it focuses exclusively on observable behavior 
  • An experienced and trained Behavior Analyst writes the treatment plan and ensures that it is properly performed by the Behavior Technician  
  • The Behavior Analyst or BCBA sets the goals from a detailed assessment, testing the learner’s skills and preferences. In addition, parents/caregiver’s goals are also taken into account  
  • Treatment goals are based on the learner’s age. Various goals can be addressed, such as communication, self-reliance, play and social skills, motor development and community skills
  • The goals focus on teaching the learner skills to become as independent and successful as possible in a short time, but also in the long term  
  • To learn a skill, instruction plans are created that include small steps. This can involve simple skills, such as imitating 2 letters and also complex skills, such as having a conversation  
  • Within ABA, we offer the learner the help it needs (Prompts), allowing him/her to learn flawlessly (Errorless Learning). 
  • Skills we want to teach the learner are divided into smaller skills that are then repeatedly practiced 
  • Because the desired behavior of the learner is rewarded, the learner will show this more often in the future.  
  • There is constantly an objective measurement of the learner’s progress, which allows the goals to be constantly adjusted. So you won’t see we work on a goal for weeks or months without progress. We are constantly analyzing progress and adjusting the approach and goals so that it continues to work 
  • The Behavior Analyst communicates regularly with family members and Behavior Technicians to discuss progress, analyze data, and make adjustments 
  • The treatment is carried out by ABA-trained professionals.

Within ABA we can focus our attention on various components, such as:

  • Promoting language development: A great emphasis is placed on learning how to mand (asking for what you want), because being able to express your needs properly can reduce or prevent many problem behaviors. To stimulate language development, we work from Skinner’s Verbal Behavior
  • Learning skills in areas such as play, social skills, self-help skills, self-management, and task-oriented behavior
  • Reducing problem behavior: By analyzing when the behavior occurs and what the function of the behavior is, a plan can be drawn up to reduce problem behavior and learn a desired alternative.

There are various forms of teaching formats that can be used, such as Discrete Trial Training (DTT), and Natural Environment Training (NET). DTT includes dividing a skill into smaller steps, and teaching one sub-skill at a time. NET focuses on teaching skills in a natural environment, using natural reinforcers. At ACI, we focus on NET, as the learner is very motivated by this teaching format.