What Is The Difference Between ABA And A Developmental Approach To Early Autism Intervention?

Dr. McGee answers the question: 'ABA vs. Developmental Approach?'

ByGail Mcgee, Ph.d., Director, Emory Autism Center, Emory University School Of Medicine
October 07, 2008, 12:47 PM

Oct. 23, 2008 -- Question: What is the difference between ABA and a Developmental approach to early autism intervention?

Answer: ABA, which refers to Applied Behavior Analysis, was derived from learning theories. Whereas a developmental approach to intervention for children with autism was derived more from developmental theory, such as Piaget's cognitive development, theory cognitive development. So they come from different theoretical backgrounds. And in practical terms, often the ABA procedures tend to emphasize the value of use of rewards and tangible rewards in the learning process. Whereas from developmental approaches there may be more emphasis on just trying to facilitate the normal developmental processes.

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