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Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), Applied Behavior Analysis in Special Education


Updated June 20, 2014

Applied Behavior Analysis

Applied Behavior Analysis

Applied Behavior Analysis - Getty

What is Applied Behavior Analysis - ABA?

Applied Behavior Analysis is a method of studying and managing behavior to bring about change. ABA therapists develop research-based behavior intervention plans (BIPs) to reduce problem behaviors in children.

Who Benefits from Applied Behavior Analysis?

Students with learning disabilities and behavior problems, attention deficit hyperactivity disorders (ADHD), or behavior problems who are not disabled can benefit from Applied Behavior Analysis. ABA is also well noted among researchers of autism as a method that can be effective for autistic children.

How is Applied Behavior Analysis Conducted?

Therapists collect and analyze data based on careful observation of student behavior. They make changes in the student's environment to promote change in behavior.

ABA therapists may use positive reinforcementor negative reinforcement as part of their behavior intervention plans to reduce problem behavior or teach desired behaviors.

Who Can Develop and Implement Applied Behavior Analysis?

ABA can be developed and implemented by teachers, psychologists, and other education professionals who have been trained in its use. Parents are also typically involved and encouraged to use ABA at home as well to create consistent behavioral intervention between home and school.

How Can You Find Out if Applied Behavior Analysis is Appropriate for Your Child?

Contact your child's teacher, school counselor, or school psychologist to discuss ABA and request an IEP team meeting to discuss your child's behaviors and appropriate methods to address them such as ABA or other available methods. Some learning disabled children and those with other types of disabilities may benefit from ABA or other forms of behavior management.

Back to Special Education and Learning Disability Terms

Also Known As: behavior analysis, behavior intervention plan, behavior modification plan, BIP, BMP,

Applied Behavior Analysis is may help students with disabilities who need highly structured behavior management programs.

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