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What is ABA/VB?

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Applied Behavior Analysis or ABA is the scientific study of behavior. ABA is the application of the principles of learning and motivation from Behavior Analysis, and the procedures and technology derived from those principles, to the solution of problems of social significance.

Applied behavior analysis is the process of systematically applying interventions based upon the principles of learning theory to improve socially significant behaviors to a meaningful degree, and to demonstrate that the interventions employed are responsible for the improvement in behavior. (Baer, Wolf & Risley, 1968; Sulzer-Azaroff & Mayer, 1991).

What is DTT?

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Discrete trial training (DTT) is a particular ABA teaching strategy which enables the learner to acquire complex skills and behaviors by first mastering the subcomponents of the targeted skill. For example, if one wishes to teach a child to request a desired interaction, as in "I want to play," one might first teach subcomponents of this skill, such as the individual sounds comprising each word of the request, or labeling enjoyable leisure activities as "play." By utilizing teaching techniques based on the principles of behavior analysis, the learner is gradually able to complete all subcomponent skills independently. Once the individual components are acquired, they are linked together to enable mastery of the targeted complex and functional skill. This methodology is highly effective in teaching basic communication, play, motor, and daily living skills.

What is NET?

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Natural Environment Teaching (NET) is loosely structured, and uses or contrives a learner’s motivation and activities and not an exclusively teacher-selected set of materials as the basis for the lesson. NET is not only important when teaching mands, but also in transferring skills from DTT to the natural environment.

What is VB?

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In 1957 Skinner published Verbal Behavior, which detailed a functional analysis of verbal behavior. In Verbal Behavior, Skinner describes a group of verbal operants, or functional units of language. Skinner explained that language could be analyzed into a set of functional units, with each type of operant serving a different function. He coined terms that didn't exist (to separate these operants from anything described by traditional linguistics) for these operants. VB is ABA with a focus on Skinner's analysis of verbal behavior; it is the application of the science of behavior analysis to teaching verbal behavior.

What is the ABLLS?

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The ABLLS is the Assessment of Basic Language and Learning Skills. The ABLLS is an educational tool used frequently with ABA to measure the basic linguistic and functional skills of an individual with developmental delays or disabilities. The ABLLS was developed based on principles from B. F. Skinner's book Verbal Behavior. Verbal behavior states that language can be treated as a behavior like any other. Therefore, this behavior can be broken down into smaller and smaller components, which can be used to track deficits and strengths in a child's language or social abilities. The ABLLS was originally developed by Mark L. Sundberg, Ph.D., BCBA and published as the 1990 book "Teaching verbal behavior to the developmentally disabled". The assessment program was later rewritten with the help of James W. Partington, Ph.D., BCBA and published as the 1998 ABLLS. The new, ABLLS-R (revised), was updated by Dr. Partington alone.

What is the VB Mapp?

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Mark L. Sundberg developed a new version of a verbal behavior assessment program titled the "Verbal Behavior Milestones Assessment and Placement Program”. The VB-MAPP is a criterion-referenced assessment tool, curriculum guide, and skill tracking system that is designed for children with autism, and other individuals who demonstrate language delays. The VB-MAPP is based on B.F. Skinner’s (1957) analysis of verbal behavior, established developmental milestones, and research from the field of behavior analysis.

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