Clinical Development

The Right Foundation

Ongoing , Clinical Development

We are committed to all we can to provide the best services possible to children with autism. The foundation of this commitment is our staff training. Clinical Development is our effort to continuously improve all aspects of our clinical approach. This is tied to our core value, to ‘never sit still, and raise the bar…’ The foundation of our commitment to provide the best services for children with autism, is our ongoing training system. We’ve created our own interactive curriculum to ensure mastery of ABA best practices and teaching methods across our entire staff.

The Skill Development System (SDS) is implemented monthly to guide training of all clinical training components. This training system ensures consistency of both the demonstration of therapy skills, while also ensuring consistency of observations and feedback.

Semi-annual evaluations are utilized to positively reinforce progress within the Skill Development System as well as commitment to a positive, team-based approach.

Technology Driven Online Training Systems

With a demand for services on the rise, many insurance companies are now requiring direct intervention be delivered by a Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) credentialed by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB). The BACB requires a 40-hour training course as part of a requirement for RBT training. While many companies purchase a pre-made video course to teach employees, Bierman ABA Autism Center created nearly 50 hours of original content for our RBT course. Our course covers all behavior analysis related topics covered by the BACB RBT checklist, covers additional concepts to deepen understanding of ABA, and teaches the concept in a way that ensures mastery of the concepts similar to that of a graduate level course.

Our RBT content is delivered via an online training platform that allows us to create original content, evolve and add to content, and provide a personalized learning process.

Skills Development System (SDS)

Our Skill Development System (SDS) is an objective, data driven training system that teaches all clinical training components. Content for training is first delivered via our online training platform, skills are then practiced within fluency-based instruction where the SDS utilizes in situ feedback tools to ensure consistency of demonstration, as well as concept mastery across several learners.

The SDS differs from ordinary check box or scale-based evaluation systems, as the data driven measures not only ensure consistency across all staff, but are constructed to constantly raise the bar on clinical skill development and performance.

Consultant in Training Program (CiT) for Behavior Analysts

Much of our therapy staff has invested in making a meaningful impact for children with autism by investing in masters-level degree or post-bachelor course series in Behavior Analysis in order to become a BCBA/BCaBA with a caseload. We have designed a Consultant in Training (CIT) program for individuals who have excelled in their roles and are ready to learn the consulting process. The standout feature of our CIT program is the systematic training involving hands-on training, overlapping, in situ practice and feedback.

The Missing 'A' in ABA

By: Laura Grant, MA BCBA & Liz Lefebre, MA BCBA

What truly sets us apart from most other providers is much simpler than one would expect- that is, a developed team of Behavior Analysts whose sole, full-time responsibility is to ensure clinical programs are designed to the highest quality.

The increased rate of autism diagnosis has led to a concurrent increase in providers claiming to provide efficacious treatment. One way of keeping up with demand has been by creating a model of provision in which application can be easily replicated, from one client to the next. The model looks something like this: 1) Assessment (typically a behavior analytic assessment such as the VB-MAPP); 2) Language and behavior programming 3) Application of the program through therapy and 4) Data collection. What results is a set of rules, and providers develop only the skills necessary to follow those rules. Unfortunately, throughout this process, and particularly after data collection, not much “analysis” is done at all. What is lost when services take on these characteristics is the 2nd “A” in ABA, …the most important part of what makes ABA effective in first place.

Within the community of behavior analysts, we identify these services as “Applied Behavior”. And most providers do not even realize they are doing it. In our October newsletter, we discussed the movement within our organization towards a more systematic and thorough system of measurement. Measurement is the key to effective behavior analysis, as it allows our BCBA’s to identify patterns of behavior change, or trends, and to make decisions about our kids learning. Through these data sets, and the patterns identified, Consultants and BCBA’s learn from their clients, and the analysis and effectiveness of programming grows exponentially.

We are taking this focus on Analysis a step further. Our entire team will receive will receive extensive training in the upcoming year on how to analyze data and behavior as it occurs throughout a session. This includes everyone from the Consultants to the Behavior Technicians. We will be trained to analyze client’s learning, minute by minute, and make decisions about what to do differently to ensure that learning does not have to “sit and wait” for our consultants to see change is needed. All behavior technicians will receive intense training on their own decision-making, and data will show that our behavior technician’s decisions are in line with our highest skilled BCBA’s. We look forward to striving to be the BEST!