Using ABA to
Teach Children
with Autism
CARD Austin
January 16, 2005
Rachel S. F. Tarbox, PhD
Center for Autism & Related Disorders, Inc.
Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc.
Overall Objectives
• Review of “What is Autism?”
• Introduction to ABA
• Some basic applications
 How to teach skills to children with autism
• 3-step training
• Task Analyses
What
is
Autism?
What is Autism?
Diagnostic Criteria for Autistic Disorder
DSM-IV, 1994
1. Social Interaction



Failure to develop peer relationships
Impairment in use of non-verbal behaviors (e.g., gestures, eye
contact)
Lack of seeking to share enjoyment
2. Communication




Delay or lack of spoken language
If have language, deficient conversational skills
Repetitive use of language
Impaired make-believe play
3. Restricted repetitive & stereotypic behavior patterns


Routines / rituals
Repetitive motor mannerisms
What is Autism?
From a behavioral perspective, what can
we observe?
• Deficits
 Language
 Play Skills
 Social Skills
 Perspective Taking /



Theory of Mind
Executive Function
Motor Skills & Self
Help
School Skills
• Excesses
 Stereotypy / Self



Stimulatory Behavior
Non-compliance
Tantrums
Aggression
Self-Injury
What
is
ABA?
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)
• Definition
 The application of the principles of behavior to issues
that are socially important to produce practical
change
• Some applications
 Special Education
 Regular Education
 Pediatric Medicine
 Treatment of troubled teens
 Sports Psychology
 Business & service

organizations
Early intensive
treatment for
children with
autism
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)
Core Principle
• The consequences that follow a behavior
influence whether that behavior will increase
or decrease
 Why do we go to work?
 Why do we stop at red lights?
 Why do we use oven mits?
 Why do our children do what we ask them to do?
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)
Core Principle Continued
• The Law of Effect: Behavior that is rewarded will
•
•
•
be strengthened
Behavior is Lawful, Observable, Measurable
We can change behavior by manipulating its
antecedents and consequences
ABC Model (Antecedent-Behavior-Consequence)
Using the
Principles
of
Behavior
Analysis
Applications of ABA
•
Over the past 30 years, several thousand published
research studies have documented the effectiveness
of ABA across a wide range of:




•
populations (children and adults with mental illness,
developmental disabilities and learning disorders)
interventionists (parents, teachers and staff)
settings (schools, homes, institutions, group homes,
hospitals and business offices), and
behaviors (language; social, academic, leisure and
functional life skills, self-injury, and stereotyped behaviors)
Application to individuals with autism is only one
aspect with it’s own set of techniques based on the
same principles used with other individuals in other
settings
3-Step
Compliance
(TELL-SHOW-DO)
3-Step Compliance
•
•
•
Three step-guided compliance is a prompting
strategy that teaches your child what you want
him/her to do by providing a model and physical
guidance if he/she does not do what you asked them
to do.
This procedure does not allow your child to avoid
requests
If you use this procedure consistently, you should
find that your child becomes more compliant and
requires less assistance to complete tasks over time
3-Step Compliance
• TELL-SHOW-DO
• Demands: first prompt given for a particular
•
task
Prompts: all additional statements, gestures,
or physical guidance displayed by the
caregiver during demands
3-Step Compliance
State your child’s name.
Tell your child what to do. Never ask.
State the request clearly so that your child knows exactly what he/she is
supposed to do; keep requests as brief and as specific as possible.
4. Wait 5 to 10 seconds for your child to carry out the request. Do not repeat
the request.
5. If your child complies provide them with praise. State exactly what they did
that you liked.
6. If your child does not comply, repeat the request with a demonstration.
7. Wait 5 to 10 seconds for your child to carry out the request. Do not repeat
the request.
8. If your child complies, provide a small amount of praise.
9. If your child does not comply, physically guide them but do not provide
praise. Always use the minimum amount of physical contact necessary for
the request to be completed.
10. Never “give in” or complete the request yourself. Once you give your child
a request, they must follow through.
1.
2.
3.
3-Step Compliance
Back to our A-B-C’s
• How does 3-step fit the A B C model?
• What is the A?
• What is the B?
• What is the C?
• Why will it work?
• What are some potential problems with it?
Task Analysis
Back to our Core Principle
• Behavior is Lawful, Observable, Measurable
• We can change behavior by controlling its
•
antecedents and consequences
Easier said than done, what about complex
behaviors that require a number of steps
(and as such a number of antecedents and
consequences)?
Task Analysis
What is a Task Analysis
•
•
Task Analysis: Break down a complex behavior
into a sequence of identifiable single
components
We need to use chaining
Task Analysis Example:
Teaching Self-Help Skills
• Chaining must be used to
teach self-help skills
Why do we use chaining?

To combine simple behaviors or
responses into a more complex
sequence
• For example:
– Getting dressed
– Washing hands
– Brushing teeth
– Taking a bath
Eating
Dressing
Toileting
Self Help
Skills
Hand
Washing
Brushing
Hair
Brushing
Teeth
Question?
• What is the most important pre-requisite skill
for teaching self-help skills?
 Answer:
COMPLIANCE
• What have we learned about increasing
compliance?
 Answer: 3-STEP! So we are ready to learn about
TA’s
Chaining: Step 1
Perform a Task Analysis
Example: Hannah needs a shirt
A
B
Shirt flat on bed
Shirt in hands
Scrunched shirt in hands
Shirt on over head
Head & arms in shirt
Pick up shirt
Scrunch shirt
Put head through collar
Put arms in sleeves
Pull shirt down
Chaining: Step 1
Perform a Task Analysis
Example: Thomas washes his hands
A
B
Dirty hands
Faucet on
Wet hands
Soap on hands
Foamy hands
Clean wet hands
Water off
Turns on faucet
Wets hands
Gets soap
Rubs hands together
Rinse hands
Turn off water
Dry hands on towel
Chaining: Step 2
Build the chain
• Once a task analysis is performed and the
•
•
required steps of the sequence are identified,
the chain can be taught
The chain can be constructed of behaviors
already in the child’s repertoire
New behaviors can also be taught within the
process of the chain
Task Analyses: Methods of
Chaining
Forward Chaining
• In a sequence of A’s and B’s the 1st B is
•
•
taught, then the 2nd , then the two are
performed independently in order
Then the 3rd B is taught & performed in
sequence with the previous 2 B’s
The behaviors in the chain continue to be
taught sequentially until they are performed
independently
Chaining: Step 1
Perform a Task Analysis
Example: Thomas washes his hands
A
B
Dirty hands
Faucet on
Wet hands
Soap on hands
Foamy hands
Clean wet hands
Water off
Turns on faucet
Wets hands
Gets soap
Rubs hands together
Rinse hands
Turn off water
Dry hands on towel
Forward Chaining
Forward Chaining Example
Thomas washes his hands….
• Use 3-STEP to teach Thomas to
1.) Turn on the faucet
2.) Wet his hands
• Guide all the succeeding B’s in the chain
• When Thomas can perform the first 2 B’s independently
in order, begin to teach 3rd B & so on…
Forward Chaining
Example: Thomas washes his hands
A
B
Dirty hands
Turns on faucet
C = REINFORCE
Forward Chaining
Example: Thomas washes his hands
A
B
Dirty hands
Faucet on
Turns on faucet
Wets hands
C = REINFORCE
Forward Chaining
Example: Thomas washes his hands
A
B
Dirty hands
Faucet on
Wet hands
Turns on faucet
Wets hands
Gets soap
C = REINFORCE
Forward Chaining
Example: Thomas washes his hands
A
B
Dirty hands
Faucet on
Wet hands
Turns on faucet
Wets hands
Gets soap
Rubs hands together
Soap on hands
C = REINFORCE
Forward Chaining
Example: Thomas washes his hands
A
B
Dirty hands
Faucet on
Wet hands
Soap on hands
Foamy hands
Turns on faucet
Wets hands
Gets soap
Rubs hands together
Rinse hands
C = REINFORCE
Forward Chaining
Example: Thomas washes his hands
A
B
Dirty hands
Faucet on
Wet hands
Soap on hands
Foamy hands
Clean wet hands
Turns on faucet
Wets hands
Gets soap
Rubs hands together
Rinse hands
Turn off water
C = REINFORCE
Forward Chaining
Example: Thomas washes his hands
A
B
Dirty hands
Faucet on
Wet hands
Soap on hands
Foamy hands
Clean wet hands
Water off
Turns on faucet
Wets hands
Gets soap
Rubs hands together
Rinse hands
Turn off water
Dry hands on towel
C = REINFORCE
Conclusion
• Remember the CORE PRINCIPLE
• Think about the A B C’s
• Reinforce the good stuff and do not reinforce
•
•
•
•
•
the bad stuff
Use 3-STEP as a tool
Break down complex activities into steps (do
a Task Analysis!)
BE CONSISTENT
HAVE FUN!!!!!!!!!
Questions???
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