The Important Components in ABA

The Important Components in ABA

From Minaimran Aliseo

ABA is a very effective tool when it comes to behavioral modification. However, all of the above components have to be present for the strategies to become successful, should you expect them to be so.

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The use of ABA (applied behavior analysis) proved to be pretty successful in encouraging or discouraging targeted social behaviors. You must still be aware of the components involved in an excellent program to grasp how ABA therapy can be the most effective. A behavioral modification strategy implemented in therapeutic programs, ABA is used to help not just train the use of some desirable behaviors, but it is also used to extinguish problematic responses. Applied behavior analysis is one of the popular modalities used when dealing with autistic people. There are some essential components in applied behavior analysis and each one contributes to the success of an ABA program. Keep reading to know what these components are and how each plays a part in the program’s success.

Program Book

An ABA program book should be there for each member or child involved in this program. The Individual Education Plan, also known as IEP, which lists objectives for that client’s requirements, should be in the book. It should also include any assessments having been administered to the person, because these could give valuable treatment insights.

Curriculum pages containing accompanying data has to be in it so that the whole treatment team, who work with each person, can view the work which has been done and what has to be addressed. Also of benefit is a section listing what goals and behaviors have been mastered. When applicable, accompanying therapy treatments and their activities have to be noted. For instance, many people also take part in speech therapy, physical therapy, or occupational therapy. Finally, any measurable or observable behavioral information gathered on the person has to be recorded in its section of the book.


This is a therapeutic approach where guidance and encouragement are given to help the clients learn skills appropriately. A prompt serves as a nudge or reminder, which keeps the person on track towards behavioral goals. Getting prompts will help them avoid frustration in the process of learning, which will cause them to move forward with a positive mindset and a higher rate of success. Allowing clients to be frustrated without giving prompts can make negative behaviors to come back and can bring about setbacks. For this reason, that is a no-no in ABA therapy.

Prompt Fading

This is another essential componentin applied behavior analysis. Prompting should be balanced with sufficient prompt fading, to ensure clients are not dependent on the prompts to maintain the right behavior. Fading involves having a plan in place to systematically reduce the prompts until these are not needed any longer. Taking time to gradually reduce the prompts provided in ABA therapy allows the client to work towards independently learning the target behavior. Improving socially appropriate behaviors is the ultimate objective of ABA therapy. These can include academic, communication and social behaviors as well as everyday living skills. This treatment aims to increase the independence of a person, or improve his or her quality of life.


For an ABA program to work fine, there should also be shaping. This involves giving positive reinforcement to the client whenever he or she tries to learn a fresh skill. However, to keep receiving the reinforcement, they should continue to show improvement in attempts. Because keeping the status quo does not motivate them to reach their behavior goals, this performance level should not bring out positive reinforcement in them.

ABA is a very effective tool when it comes to behavioral modification. However, all of the above components have to be present for the strategies to become successful, should you expect them to be so.

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