What is ABA?

Cassidy and BlakeApplied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) is a field of psychology that focuses on applying learning theories to different people and situations. One specific application of these techniques is intensive behavioural intervention for children with autism.

Three decades of research have demonstrated the effectiveness of ABA principles. Teaching techniques based on ABA have been shown to significantly improve the abilities of children with autism to learn and develop.

The techniques of ABA are grounded in science. Some of its hallmarks include:

The Effectiveness of ABA

Research has shown ABA to be effective in reducing disruptive behaviours that are typically observed in people with autism, such as self-injury, tantrums, non-compliance and self-stimulation. ABA has also been shown to be effective in teaching commonly deficient skills, such as complex communication, social, play and self-help skills. Two seminal studies by Lovaas (1987), and McEachin, Smith and Lovaas (1993), have proven the efficacy of ABA. Many further studies have replicated their findings and provide additional support for the techniques.