Therapies 4 Kids


Five Questions about ABA

About the Author

Victoria Sanchez, BCBA
Victoria Sobrino-Sanchez MS BCBA
Vice President of Behavioral Services at Therapies 4 Kids

Mrs. Sobrino-Sanchez has obtained a Master degree in Special Education and Speech-Language Pathology with specialization in the Mentally Handicapped from Moscow State Pedagogical University. She has completed her second Master of Science degree in Mental Health Counseling with advanced concentration in Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) from Nova Southeastern University in 2007.

Mrs. Sobrino-Sanchez has worked with a wide variety of individuals including young children and adults with autism spectrum disorder, dual diagnoses, mental handicaps, as well as typically developing children for over 27 years. Her extensive work experience consists of a variety of settings: university, schools, developmental centers, and private homes. Mrs. Sobrino-Sanchez has conducted trainings for parents, paraprofessionals and teachers in behavior management. She also has vast experiences ranging from extensive training in Early intervention, Social skills, Functional daily living skills, along with skills from the VB-MAPP, Direct Instruction, use of PECS and other Augmentative devices.

Mrs. Sobrino-Sanchez presented a poster at the Applied Behavior Analysis Convention in Atlanta, May 2006 and was published in the International Journal of Special Education.

1. What is Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)?

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) or Autism is a developmental disorder that affects a person's communication and social interaction. Individuals with ASD also have restricted and repetitive behavior, interests and activities. These characteristics fall across a "spectrum" ranging from mild to severe. While one person may have symptoms that impair his or her ability to perform daily activities, another may have only mildly noticeable differences and have few, if any, functional impairments.

Typically, children with autism do not learn in the same way as others and do not necessarily learn from observing their peers. They benefit from being taught in systematic way that may include repetition, reinforcement, natural environment training and social skills.

2. Why Choose ABA?

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is an evidence-based intervention supported by decades of research demonstrating its effectiveness for learners with and without special needs. ABA is considered the gold standard for working with individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Hundreds of autism-specific studies have proven the effectiveness of ABA for both teaching skills and reducing challenging behavior. Research also indicates that many learners in ABA programs achieve more progress than those in programs involving several different methods.

3. What Does ABA Involve?

The goal of ABA intervention is two-fold: to increase useful and desired behaviors that can improve the individual's quality of life (communication, social, academic, self-help, and leisure skills) and to decrease behaviors that interfere with learning, relationships, or may be harmful.

Each objective or "target behavior" in an ABA program must have meaningful social significance for the person. This means that goals are individualized and prioritized to promote their independence and quality of life.

4. Who Should Provide ABA Services?

The credential to look for is Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA). Obtaining this certification requires graduate coursework, extensive supervised experience, a national exam, and ongoing continuing education. There are various levels of registration/certification from technician to masters and doctoral-level behavior analysts (see www.bacb.com).

5. More Questions?

If you need more information about our ABA program, please contact us by phone at (954) 828-0425, or by e-mail at info@therapies4kids.com.

Adapted from Buchanan, S.M., & Weiss, M.J. (2006). Applied behavior analysis and autism: An introduction. Ewing, NJ: COSAC.