What Parent’s Should Know
What is Autism?
Autism is a complex developmental disorder that is more prevalent in boys than girls at a 4 to 1 ratio. While every child with autism is different, areas affected often include; communication, social interaction and sensory sensitivities. Children with autism may engage in repetitive movements such as rocking and hand flapping. They may also prefer to have objects in certain locations and/or have things done a certain way. Children with autism may also have trouble with changes in routine.
What are ABA and IBI?
Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA)
Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) is the scientific study of behaviour that focuses on identifying the environmental factors that contribute to behaviour. Behaviour Analysts use this knowledge to create systematic approaches to change behaviour.
Intensive Behavioural Intervention (IBI)
Intensive Behavioural Intervention (IBI) involves systematically applying the principles of Applied Behaviour Analysis to develop the skills of children with autism. Methods include; breaking tasks down into smaller steps, reinforcing responses, using appropriate prompting strategies and appropriately fading out prompting as skills are acquired.
Who Can Provide Intensive Behavioural Intervention (IBI)?
In the USA, several states have already made it law that individuals offering Intensive Behavioural Intervention (IBI) service must be licenced. Unfortunately in Canada, we do not yet have any regulations or restrictions on who can offer Intensive Behavioural Intervention (IBI) service. Therefore it becomes the responsibility of the parents to try to determine who is qualified to work with their child. This can be a difficult task. One of the few standards we have in Canada is that Canadians can become a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst (BCBA) or a Board Certified Assistant Behaviour Analyst (BCaBA).
Is Data Collection Important?
Yes! At Reaching Beyond Autism all the Intensive Behavioural Intervention (IBI) programs have several different data collection systems in place. Reliable data provides valuable information as to whether skills are being achieved and when revisions are needed. The Instructor Therapists are taught the importance of data collection and are trained on how to record useful, consistent and dependable data.
What are BCBA and BCaBA?
Board Certified Behaviour Analyst (BCBA) – individuals with these credentials must have a minimum of a Master’s Degree in behaviour analysis or a related field which must include specific course work. Individuals must apply and be approved to write the BCBA exam. Once certified, Board Certified Behaviour Analyst’s must maintain their certification by completing continuing education credits every year.
Board Certified Assistant Behaviour Analyst (BCaBA) – individuals with these credentials must have a minimum of a Bachelor’s Degree in behaviour analysis or a related field. Like a BCBA, individuals must apply and be approved to write the BCaBA exam and once certified Board Certified Assistant Behaviour Analyst must maintain their certification by completing continuing education credits every year. BCaBA’s must also be supervised monthly by a BCBA. BCBA’s and BCaBA’s are overseen by The Behavior Analyst Certification Board®, (BACB®). For more information and to see a list of certified individuals in Canada visit: www.bacb.com.
Parent participation is a very important component in a child’s Intensive Behavioural Intervention (IBI) program. Parent meetings are held to review their child’s progress and discuss goals. Parents are called upon regularly to help with the final steps of skill acquisition programs to ensure the new skills are being generalized to people other than the therapists. Parents play a vital role in the implementation of behaviour protocols and many self-help skills as they are often implemented by the family and the Instructor Therapists simultaneously. Consistency is very important.