Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is ABA?

    • ABA stands for Applied Behavioral Analysis. ABA analyzes individual child behaviors and skills in order to determine why a child may be exhibiting maladaptive behaviors or struggling to perform a particular skill. The Lead Therapist and Clinical Coordinator then use this analysis to develop a treatment plan that teaches more appropriate behaviors and skills.

  • Who will work with my child?

    • Outpatient ABA Therapy – is conducted by either Dr. Wegner, Licensed Clinical Psychologist or Master Level Licensed Clinicians.

    • Group Therapy (Kids Klub) is led by Dr. Wegner or Senior Level Staff supervised by Dr. Wegner

    • 1:1 ABA Therapy - The bulk of each child’s therapy is completed by Autism Service Providers, who are typically college students or recent college graduates. Some Autism Service Providers have a bachelor’s degree or are working toward a degree in the fields of psychology, education, or other human services careers.  Autism Service Providers are supervised by a Behavior Therapist who is a college graduate with significant experience in facilitating ABA programs for children with autism.  This is the person who will decide which programs will be run and what skills will be taught to the child by staff.  Senior staff must have over 2000 hours of ABA experience and have completed intensive training with Autism and Behavior Center.  Our Behavior Therapists are supervised by our Licensed Clinical Psychologist, Dr. Wegner, whose education and experience is in the field of Applied Behavioral Analysis.  Dr. Wegner oversees all matters relating to the program and meeting each child’s needs.  All members of the child’s team are hired by Autism and Behavior Center and must undergo training and weekly supervision.

  • What are the requirements to become an Autism Service Provider and what kind of training and supervision are staff given?

    • The requirements set by the state are that all Autism Service Providers must be 18 years of age and have a clean police record.  We do complete caregiver background checks for all therapy staff.  Once hired, staff are provided with 40 hours of training by the Clinical Coordinator and the Clinical Psychologist as mandated by the state for all providers.  The first 20 hours of training covers the basic theories of Applied Behavioral Analysis, data collection, confidentiality, and professionalism.  The second 20 hours of training consists of 1:1 direct training with the child/children the staff will be working with.  Once trained, every Autism Service Provider is supervised by either the child's Behavior Therapist or Dr. Wegner on a weekly basis.

  • How often will my child receive therapy?

    • The number of therapy hours and type of therapy each specific child needs is prescribed by our clinical psychologist based on their initial evaluation on each individual’s challenges and strengths.

      •  Intensive ABA Therapy: 20-35 hours per week

      • Outpatient ABA therapy: 1-5 hours per week

      •  Group Therapy (Kids Klub): one 2-3 hour group per week

  • Where does therapy take place?

    • 1:1 ABA Therapy – Clinic, home, and community

    • Outpatient ABA Therapy – Clinic

    • Group Therapy – Clinic

  • How long is each session?

    • Sessions are generally 2-4 hours in duration.

  • What does a 1:1 ABA session look like?

    • Sessions vary depending on an individual child’s needs but a typical session will combine social activities, table work, behavioral programs, independent play, fine and gross motor skills, language development, and self-help skills. These programs vary significantly based on a child’s individual age and developmental level. Here are some examples for a 3-4 year old child with autism:

      • Social Skills: Social Skills are taught within a natural context; meaning that rather than sit at a table and talk about rules for social engagement, staff and children engage in social activities. Staff provide scaffolding and prompts to help the child recognize his/her role as a social partner.

      • Table Work: Isolated skills (names of objects, facts, etc) are taught using DTT (Discrete Trial Training). DTT isolates specific skills and targets just this skill until the child obtains mastery.

      • Language Development: If possible, language skills are taught within a natural environment. This means that rather than sit at a table and teach a child to say "cracker" when shown a picture of cracker; staff wait until the child is hungry and then teach the child not just the label for cracker but how to communicate that he or she wants a cracker. Language is taught as a typical child learns language. This means that rather than teach a memorized scrip "I want cracker please"; the child first just has to say "cracker". then a verb may be added ("eat cracker" or "open cracker").

      • Behavioral Programs: behavioral regulation (accepting/tolerating changes in routine, losing, being told “No”, waiting, sharing)

      • Independent Play: building blocks,

      • Dramatic & Pretend Play:

      • Fine Motor: stringing beads, cutting, drawing

      • Gross Motor: throwing/catching ball, balancing

  • Who pays for therapy?

    • If you have private insurance, you should first contact your insurance company to determine what benefits will be covered.

    • If you do not have private insurance available to you, or if your insurance policy does not cover ABA, Medicaid covers ABA therapy under the Behavioral Treatment Benefit. The Behavioral Treatment Benefit through Medicaid is available to children who receive Badger Care as well as those children who qualify for Medicaid through Katie Beckett or SSI.

    • Some parents whose children do not have insurance and do not qualify for medicaid choose to privately pay for services.

  • What is the parent/caregiver’s job in Therapy?

    • We encourage parents and caregivers to be very involved in their child’s programs.  We have experience working with a very wide variety of families and can individualize our interactions to make it successful for everyone.  Ways that parents should be involved include:
      • Communicating on a regular basis with the Behavior Therapist or lead about and priorities or concerns they may be having regarding programming.
      • By practicing the skills their child is learning and applying in daily life.
      • Attending team meetings and parent training sessions
      • Ensuring that their child is available to take advantage of the full amount of therapy hours recommended by the psychologist.
      • Ensuring that children are well rested and ready for each therapy session
  • Does a parent have to be home during therapy sessions?  Are there alternate options available?

    • We require a parent or caregiver at least 18 years of age to be in the home when our staff are conducting session
  • What if my child attends school?

    • If a child is already in school, our teams can work with parents and school staff to determine appropriateness of the educational setting for the child based on their level of functioning and individual needs.
    • Our staff can assist parents and schools in making any modifications necessary to increase success of the child’s programs both at school and at home
    • Our senior staff have experience working with school teams to ensure that goals and behavior plans are consistent at school and home.