Focused ABA Treatment
The goal of focused ABA treatment is to address a limited number of areas of targeted behaviors, such as reducing dangerous behavior or improving social skills. Focused treatments can range from 5 to 25 hours per week of direct therapy. Focused therapy is sometimes part of a step-down or discharge plan from a comprehensive ABA treatment program. Focused therapy can also be appropriate for children who are reaching most age-appropriate milestones but need help in one or two areas.
Focused ABA treatment may be appropriate to help your child acquire or strengthen developmentally appropriate social skills, self-help skills, and advanced language and communication skills. These skills are often fundamental to maintaining health, social inclusion and increased independence. For instance, focused therapy can help to teach your child:
• Daily living skills, such as toileting, dressing and feeding
• Social skills, such as initiating conversations, responding to peer questions and playing with peers
• Academic remediation
• Leisure skills
When the goal of treatment is to introduce a desired behavior, particularly relating to social skills, treatment may be delivered in a small-group format consisting of peers with similar diagnoses. Together, we will practice the behavioral targets and work toward generalization of the desired skills in multiple environments.
Additionally, if a goal of treatment is to reduce inappropriate behavior, the BCBA will determine which situations are most likely to create a problem behavior, so we can begin to understand the “purpose” of the behavior (also known as the function of behavior). This allows the BCBA to develop a treatment plan that alters the environment to reduce your child’s motivation for the problem behavior and/or establish a new and more appropriate behavior to replace the problem behavior.