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Introduction to Applied Behavior Analysis

presented by Ilene Schwartz, PhD, BCBA-D

Accrediting Body:

Target Audience:

Disclosure Statement:

Financial: Ilene Schwartz receives compensation from MedBridge for this course. There is no financial interest beyond the production of this course.

Non-Financial: Ilene Schwartz has no competing non-financial interests or relationships with regard to the content presented in this course.

Satisfactory completion requirements: All disciplines must complete learning assessments to be awarded credit, no minimum score required unless otherwise specified within the course.

MedBridge is committed to accessibility for all of our subscribers. If you are in need of a disability-related accommodation, please contact [email protected]. We will process requests for reasonable accommodation and will provide reasonable accommodations where appropriate, in a prompt and efficient manner.

Accreditation Check:

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is the most evidence-based approach to providing treatment to clients with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). As the prevalence of ASD continues to increase (current prevalence rate is 1 in 68), almost all therapists will have at least some clients with ASD on their caseload. Therefore, basic knowledge about the principles of ABA is becoming required content for SLPs, OTs, and PTs. This course will provide a basic primer about what ABA is and how the principles of ABA can be used in conjunction with therapy practices to enhance outcomes for clients with ASD.

Meet Your Instructor

Ilene Schwartz, PhD, BCBA-D

Dr. Ilene Schwartz is a professor in the Area of Special Education at the University of Washington and the Director of the Haring Center for Research and Training in Education at UW. She earned her Ph.D. in child and developmental psychology from the University of Kansas and is a board certified behavior analyst (BCBA-D). Dr.…

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

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1. What is Applied Behavior Analysis?

Applied behavior analysis (ABA) is the application of behavioral principles to the solve socially important problems. It has been used successfully to work with clients with ASD and is the instructional approach with the most evidence supporting its use. This chapter will provide information about the basic definition of ABA, provide a brief history of the use of ABA with clients with ASD, and describe how ABA is used in multiple contexts across therapy, education, and in general society.

2. Using ABA with Clients with ASD

ABA has a long history of successful application with clients with ASD. Behavioral strategies have been used to teach communication, motor, cognitive, and social behaviors to clients with ASD. This chapter will provide learners with examples of how ABA has been used with clients with ASD and provide examples across developmental domains of how simple implementation of behavior principles into therapy sessions can help clients with ASD be more successful.

3. Basic Principles

ABA studies behavior and the effect that the environment has on behavior. Understanding the relationship of what happens before a behavior (e.g., the antecedent) and what happens after a behavior (e.g., the consequence) is essential to effective use of behavioral strategies.

4. Using Positive Reinforcement

Positive reinforcement is the presentation of a stimulus that increases the likelihood of that behavior happening again. Contingent use of positive reinforcement is the most powerful of all behavior principles and the cornerstone of behavioral intervention for clients with ASD.

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