Children go through many different assessments throughout their childhood. It is not uncommon for a child to be assessed in the classroom, at the doctor's office, or at a therapy session. In Applied Behavior Analysis, an assessment is one of the most essential parts of getting started with therapy for a child who has been diagnosed with Autism.
What is an ABA assessment?
An ABA assessment is the starting point of ABA therapy. It helps determine where the child stands with specific tasks, behaviors, attention span, social skills, and language, to name a few. Once an assessment is conducted, a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) can put together an ABA therapy plan for the child.
How is an ABA assessment conducted?
A BCBA must do an ABA assessment. BCBA's have the knowledge and certifications needed to perform an assessment. The most common forms of an assessment analyze things such as basic living skills, community engagement, independent living skills, and school skills. There are different ways to conduct an assessment, but here are a few of the most common ways.
Caregiver Interview – The BCBA will sit with the child's caregiver and ask specific questions to try and understand the child's behavior at home or in social situations. During this time, it is important that the caregiver gives the BCBA detailed information about challenges, observations, and future goals for the child.
Direct Observation in the home – Often, a BCBA will go into the child's home and observe how they interact with other family members. They will also observe what the child does during their downtime and their skill level for daily activities such as bathing, brushing their teeth, or making a small meal.
Direct Observation at School – With proper preparations, BCBAs will often observe a child who may need ABA therapy in a school setting. This allows the BCBA therapist to observe how the child behaves in more of a social environment.
Direct Observation at an ABA Center – Sometimes, bringing a child into an ABA center and interacting with them can be beneficial. The BCBA will play or talk with the child to analyze their interactions, communication, and behaviors.
ABA assessments are critical when determining how a BCBA should implement an individualized ABA therapy plan. The best way to prepare your child for an assessment is to ensure they are well rested the night before and feel supported and comfortable during the assessment.
If your child's doctor has diagnosed them with Autism and recommends an ABA assessment and you live in the Dallas, Texas area, book one with LEAP Autism Therapy online so we can get your child the therapy they may need.