Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) is the science of human behaviour and learning. ABA’s scientific methodology identifies and manipulates environmental events so that significant behavioural changes can be created. ABA focuses on increasing appropriate behaviours and decreasing behaviours that challenge. ABA practitioners rely heavily on ongoing research and base decisions on systematic observations and measurement, using precise data.

Using specialised assessment procedures, a baseline of the learner’s current capabilities is undertaken. This allows for an individualised programme to be created, one that will teach the learner to acquire all of the skills that they are currently missing. This could include a functional communication system, play skills, self-help skills, social skills, as well as reducing inappropriate behaviours such as tantrums, aggression, sleep issues and self-stimulatory behaviours.

ABA principles are always strategically applied and this promotes independence through teaching functional skills that are meaningful to each individual and those around that person. There is a big focus on supporting skill acquisition that allows individuals with developmental delays to meet the milestones of their neuro-typical peers.

There are decades of evidence to substantiate ABA and its successful application for improving the life chances of individuals with Autism. It should also be noted that ABA can benefit individuals with a variety of diagnoses and individuals without any specific diagnosis.

Verbal Behaviour (VB) is a subdivision within the field of ABA, this approach specifically applies the principles of how behaviour is learnt, to the acquisition of communication skills. There is a big focus on increasing an individual’s motivation so that learning is fun, ensuring that the learner acquires skills at a fast rate.  Kelly utilises the VB approach for all of the home and school based programmes that she manages.

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