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What is ABA?

 Unfortunately there are a lot of misconceptions about ABA. Some of these misconceptions are warranted because there are service providers who erroneously claim that they are following an ABA approach, when in fact, they are not.

The most common misconceptions about ABA are:

  1. That ABA is just for young children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs), and

  2. That ABA is synonymous with Discrete Trial Training (DTT) 

Nothing could be further from the truth.

First, ABA is not just an approach for individuals diagnosed with ASD. Behavior analysis is a domain of psychology that focuses on understanding behavior (both "good" and "bad") and how it is affected by the environment. Applied behavior analysis is the use of scientifically-validated teaching techniques to bring about positive changes in behavior (regardless of age or diagnosis).

Second, ABA does not equal Discrete Trial Training (DTT). Quality ABA services involve a range of teaching techniques (e.g. structured, play-based, incidental, etc.) all designed to improve skill deficits in an individual’s natural setting to help them become more independent. The focus is on identifying an individual’s developmental age (i.e. how old they are), versus their functional age (i.e. how they behave), and helping to resolve any gaps in development.

At CABA we focus on reinforcement-based approaches to decrease challenging behaviors by increasing more appropriate communication and self-regulation skills for individuals with and without autism across the lifespan. Please see below to learn more.

Check out Dr. Taylor's
latest publications


"An Essential Service Decision Model for Applied Behavior Analytic Providers During Crisis"

Co-written by CABA clinical team members Dr. Richard A. Colombo, (Senior Behavior Analyst), Dr. Michele Wallace (Director of Research) & Dr. Rachel Taylor (CEO & Founder) to help those who are providing ABA services during this unprecedented time.

Click HERE to read the article.

Visit our Publications page to read more from Dr. Rachel Taylor

"The Importance of Training Before Entering the World of ABA"

by Pasha Bahsoun, MA, BCBA, featured on

When it comes to lines of work, the realm of the Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) practitioner, specifically when helping people with special needs, is unlike any other. It often entails working with children, teens and adults in a variety of settings, from their homes to their classrooms to residential facilities to the community, with sessions lasting anywhere from an hour to full days.

Read More

"Early Behavior Therapy Effective In Treating ADHD Prior To Medication"

by Pasha Bahsoun, MA, BCBA, featured on

According to new research, early intervention, behavior therapy is more effective at treating the symptoms of ADHD, prior to the use of prescription medication, such as Ritalin or Adderall

Read More

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