What is Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy?
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is a well-developed scientific discipline among the helping professions that focuses on the analysis, design, implementation, and evaluation of social and other environmental modifications to produce meaningful changes in human behavior. Applied Behavior Analysis is used across many areas and interests including autism, sports, weight loss, music, education, substance abuse, counseling, business management, pediatric feeding disorders, dementia, traumatic brain injury, among others. ABA is used with learners of all ages and backgrounds.
ABA therapy includes the use of direct observation, measurement, and functional analysis of the relations between environment and behavior. ABA uses changes in environmental events to produce practical and significant changes in behavior. These relevant environmental events are usually identified through a variety of specialized assessment methods. ABA is based on the fact that an individual’s behavior is determined by past and current environmental events in conjunction with organic variables such as their genetics and physiology. When applied to ASD, ABA focuses on altering the individual’s social and learning environments.
ABA is the standard of care for ASD and has been documented in hundreds of peer-reviewed studies that have been published over the past 50 years.
FAQ Quick Links
What skills are taught in ABA, and why is it an effective teaching method for learners with autism?
Skills that are commonly taught in ABA therapy include components from the following areas:
Adaptive and self-care skills
Coping and tolerance skills
Language and communication
Play and leisure skills
Learning to Learn skills to promote school readiness
Reduction of interfering or inappropriate behaviors
Self-advocacy and independence
Social skills and friendship skills
ABA therapy is an effective teaching method for learners with autism, because teaching is individualized and skills are broken down into components that make progress and independence possible. ABA therapy for children with autism focuses on teaching communication skills and reducing challenging behavior. Families are involved in ABA therapy through regular observation of sessions and one-on-one caregiver coaching sessions, in which they learn hands-on and practical skills to effectively support the learner. There is no age cap for ABA. ABA is the science of learning and behavior, and skills are taught continuously throughout the lifespan. BACK
What is the best age to start an ABA program?
ABA treatment should be provided as soon as possible after diagnosis, and in some cases services are warranted prior to diagnosis. There is evidence that the earlier treatment begins, the greater the likelihood of positive long-term outcomes. Additionally, ABA is effective across the life span. Research has not established an age limit beyond which ABA is ineffective. Treatment should be based on the clinical needs of the individual and not constrained by age. BACK
My child is young, won’t he get tired?
ABA is most successful when children are immersed completely and fully in a supportive and engaging environment for as long of the day as possible. Our staff at One of the Kids are given the resources to enhance their expertise towards providing treatment sessions that are energetic, playful, and full of reinforcing activities. With each intervention, our clinicians remain mindful of the stamina, age, and unique needs of the child, while creating natural and fun instructions to help them stay engaged. If a child is young and is still napping, we can gradually increase services over time as they fade naps to include afternoon services. BACK
How many hours of treatment should my child receive?
Our treatment programs are designed and created with the utmost attention to the specific needs of your child. That means there's no one size fits all on the number of hours needed. That said, it is common for the recommended hours of treatment to fall between 20-40 hours per week to address needs in a comprehensive manner. More focused programs fall between 15-25 hours per week and address priority areas only; these are more common for older children, or during transition planning to fade services as children become ready for school or other settings. Our staff will continue to evaluate and adjust your child’s treatment plan, ensuring they make appropriate and successful transitions throughout their time at One of the Kids. BACK
Will my child receive speech and occupational therapy at One of the Kids?
Speech and occupational therapy evaluations and services are offered at One of the Kids campus based on medical necessity and in conjunction with receiving our ABA services. We understand it takes time to find providers you trust, and we will collaborate with your outside team to ensure continuation of care upon your request. We currently partner with Capital Area Speech and OT and SOL Speech and Language for services provided to our current patients in the One of the Kids clinic. BACK
What are the benefits of a multidisciplinary and collaborative approach to
Using a multidisciplinary and collaborative approach can be a key factor in creating an effective and beneficial treatment plan for your family. Autism is a complex diagnosis and navigating the vast number of valid and appropriate services available can be overwhelming. Our team at One of the Kids believes your family deserves the best care possible, which for us means communication and collaboration with key providers and specialists in the field of autism. We communicate regularly with your child’s treatment team to ensure we are all working from the same treatment plan and toward common goals. We collaborate with each other to support your child and your family in a comprehensive and compassionate manner for the best possible outcomes. BACK
Does One of the Kids provide services in my home?
Each family at One of the Kids will have a program individualized and designed specifically for their child’s needs. Our services are primarily based on-site in our clinic setting, and our campus allows for:
Greater opportunity for clinical impact with our providers and consistency in treatment styles
Opportunities for social interaction and inclusion with appropriate peers
Access to all of our amenities, including our indoor pool and outdoor playground,
and programs BACK
Does One of the Kids provide services at pre-school?
A growing amount of research supports the value of educating students with autism in inclusive settings, even as young as preschool age. For children with autism, the benefits of inclusive education include improved social acceptance and social communication; peers play a critical role in these outcomes. Inclusion may reduce stigma, allow for social learning, increase social acceptance, and improve the social standing of students with autism. We are proud to collaborate with our neighbor, Cadence Academy Preschool, to provide evidence-based interventions to benefit children on the autism spectrum, as well as their neurotypical peers, with thoughtful planning and appropriate support. BACK
What is your transition plan for my child?
Transition planning is an essential and unique process for each family, and a foundational piece of our treatment care model at One of the Kids. Aligned with the growing amount of research supporting the value of educating students with autism in inclusive settings, our program is structured to allow for as many social and inclusive settings as possible. Our partnership with neighboring Cadence Academy Preschool means our learners can make a gradual transition towards a fully inclusive setting with a fully supportive staff by their side. BACK
Do you offer parent training and support?
At One of the Kids we understand that an autism diagnosis affects the whole family and we are committing to supporting each and every individual. What’s more, participation and parent involvement is an essential component of effective ABA care. Because no one knows your child better than you, your participation in parent training and observation will only further enhance your relationship and growth with your child. We require weekly or bi-weekly parent meetings to discuss progress and treatment goals and to provide training and resources for parents to develop skills to help generalize gains and provide behavior supports in home and other settings. BACK
Do you offer swimming lessons and swim therapy?
Yes, and with our indoor pool, your child can swim all year round. Our founder’s son has benefited tremendously from swimming every day and wishes for other children on the spectrum to have the same experience without all the hassles parents have to go through. Treatment is hard work, which is why we’ve partnered with Amy Linkous, amazing coach and owner of Swim for All, to offer lessons to our clients as a part of their treatment plan. In addition, our behavior therapists and swim instructors work 2:1 with the child to offer an individualized and goal driven swim therapy program. By utilizing activities that are engaging, developmentally beneficial, and fun, One of the Kids can create meaningful treatment goals to help your child learn and grow. BACK
What other fun activities do you offer?
Learning doesn’t just happen at a desk, which is why we collaborate with incredible companies in our community to provide engaging and fun activities that create meaningful opportunities for our children to practice their treatment goals. Making the commitment to place your child in intensive therapy shouldn’t mean they miss out on being a kid. Along with swim lessons in our indoor pool conducted by Amy Linkous with Swim for All, we also offer music, dance, and martial arts, making the opportunity to learn in fun and adventurous ways accessible to all! BACK
What kind of progress can I expect?
The progress and length of treatment will vary greatly for each family. A number of factors contribute to a child’s long-term success, and we are honored to support our families as they embark on this sometimes challenging, but meaningful road to an improved quality of life for the entire family. We can’t guarantee with absolute certainty the amount or speed of progress your child will make, but we are committed to providing your family evidence-based treatment with careful consideration to the unique needs of your child and family in mind. We will provide comprehensive Progress Reports and updated Treatment Plans and Goals every 6 months to assess your child’s progress and make recommendations for the next 6 months of therapy. BACK
What are the qualifications of your staff?
When working with One of the Kids, your team is composed of a team of highly trained and skilled individuals in the field of autism and ABA. Our Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBAs) have Master’s Degrees in behavior analysis, autism, special education, or a related field and over 1800 hours of supervised fieldwork experience in ABA. They are certified through the Behavior Analyst Certification Board and are also licensed Behavior Analysts with the State of Texas. Our Registered Behavior Technicians (RBTs) have Bachelor’s Degrees in related fields, or equivalent experience, and are certified through the Behavior Analyst Certification Board. Some of our RBTS are working toward their Master’s Degrees and gaining their supervised fieldwork experience. Not only does our team exceed the minimum standards for their profession, they also provide a unique and individualized experience for each child. We believe that happy therapists will deliver the best service for our little learners. We are inspired to provide the best working environment and employee culture for our employees to thrive. With their passion, experience, and continued collaboration with other professionals in the field, your child’s team is well above the standards for the ABA industry. BACK
Is ABA therapy covered by insurance?
ABA therapy is mostly covered by insurance. The amount and type of coverage will vary greatly on your insurance plan. Private insurers in Texas are required to cover ABA as specified by the individual’s physician for children aged two to eighteen. Insurance policies under the state’s Marketplace Exchange are required to cover ABA therapy up to age ten. We will work with you during our intake process to verify your coverage with your insurer and provide you with the details of your coverage. BACK
What insurance do you accept?
We are currently in-network with BCBS, Aetna, and United Behavioral Health/Optum. We do accept other insurance carriers as an out of network provider, on a case by case basis. Our team at One of the Kids are happy to check eligibility and verify benefits with your insurance company. Complete the application https://www.ootks.com/enroll and we will contact you within 24 hours with your insurance coverage information. BACK