Autism Treatment | Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)
ABA Myths & Facts
Myth or Fact? Apart from understanding What is ABA, you may also have heard a lot about what may or may not be ABA. This includes the common myths of: ‘ABA turns children into robots’, ‘ABA uses bribery’ and etc. In this article, we cover the common misconceptions about Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA).
Myth: ABA is only for young children with Autism (ASD)
Fact: ABA can be used to help everyone regardless of age, gender and diagnosis. You may have heard of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) for autism treatment but in fact, the scope of ABA is not that narrow.
Behavior analysis has been studied and used for decades. Thousands of learners have benefited from good teaching involving ABA principles - such as learning to live healthier lifestyles to learning new languages. Organizational Behavior Management (OBM) is a sub-discipline of ABA which uses the application of behavior analytic principles to change behavior in organizational settings across various industries.
Myth: ABA uses bribery
Fact: Reinforcement is a core aspect of ABA. They are used as motivators to learn. When reinforcement is used correctly, it is NOT bribery.
A good ABA programme also works towards systematically fading the use of external reinforcement in the long run.
Myth: ABA only occurs in a 1:1 setting at a work table
Fact: A good ABA program allows skills to be generalized, meaning children will be able to demonstrate learned skills in various environments. ABA can also occur in a group setting.
For example, our student, Jamie attends a group class as part of his 1:1 ABA program at AP Singapore. This is part of his and many other AP students' programs, building on their social skills, etc.
Myth: ABA is experimental and not scientifically proven
Fact: Of all treatments available for children with Autism (ASD), ABA is considered an evidence-based treatment and has the most scientific data and research to back up its efficacy.It is recommended as the most effective treatment method for individuals with ASD by the National Research Council and the American Academy of Pediatrics in the United States.
In Singapore, the Ministry of Health (MOH) also stated that Early Intensive Behavior Intervention using ABA is rated as the highest grade of recommendation compared to other methods.
Myth: ABA address “behaviors” only, it does not help with language and communication
Fact: Good ABA programs are comprehensive and holistic, which means that an ABA program will address all aspects of a child’s life including behaviors, language and communication skills, self-help skills, play skills, and social skills.
Myth: All ABA programs are the same
Fact: ABA focuses on individual behavior; therefore, a good ABA program for one person is different from another person’s program.
Myth: ABA will turn children into “robots”
Fact: This misconception is common. Not all ABA is the same. Quality ABA programs are conducted naturally with flexibility and good clinical judgment.
For example, at Autism Partnership, our unique method, the APM, includes teaching in a fun and natural way, builds on your child's critical foundation skills and design programs according to individual's needs and goals.
About Autism Partnership Method (APM)
Our method is derived based over 45 years of clinical findings including the key elements that contributes to the best outcome for children with ASD. At AP, our programs are highly clinically driven and utilize procedures that have been developed out of working with children and from our research center. We aim not solely to maximize each child’s progress under our care but also to provide guidance and support to the family.
Our curriculum is all-inclusive focusing on critical foundation skills including managing behaviors, communication, social, learning-how-learn, and self-help skills. We teach in a fun and innovative way with natural reinforcements that motivate children to learn and make rapid progress.
With a multi-tier supervision system and a team of qualified and highly trained staff, we constantly evaluate the learning objectives of your child’s program to ensure progress. Additionally, we conduct regular training to ensure active learning and provide the best quality of ABA therapy based on our Autism Partnership Method (APM).