Effectiveness of Programs Used for Children with Autism

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Stacey Pivovarnik & Alisa Shaffer

With a ten-fold increase in diagnosis of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) in the past forty years, families and teachers are increasingly required to decide what educational programming is best for children diagnosed with autism.

Two commonly used programs are:

  • Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)
  • Applied Verbal Behavior (AVB)

The purpose of the study was to describe each program and show the effectiveness of each with school-aged children who have been diagnosed with ASD.

The Research

Research indicates that both programs are effective; however, research does not indicate the extent of effectiveness. More research is required to identify who would most likely benefit from either program. In addition to the program research, surveys were given to local school district teachers of autistic support programs. The purpose of the survey was to gather information about what programs are used in Northeast Pennsylvania schools, both public and private, and to help determine the effectiveness of those programs.