Probing: How Is It Used Pediatric ABA Therapy


Background on ABA therapy
While ABA therapy is often utilized with children on the autism spectrum, it can also be used with other children who are not on the spectrum, but may exhibit problematic behaviors. ABA therapy is widely used for several reasons, the first being that it is a scientific study and evidence-based. Applied behavior analysis can also be customized to fit a wide range of abilities and needs. This aspect is especially important, because every child is a unique learner, particularly when it comes to the autism spectrum.

Introduction to probing
Probing occurs at the onset of ABA therapy and any time a new skill is introduced by the ABA therapist. Probing means measuring the skill level of a particular skill, such as responding to the therapist saying their name.

Why is probing important in ABA therapy?
This is an important component of the ABA therapy process, as probing allows the therapist to devise a treatment plan, based on the initial skill level of the child and plan future sessions accordingly. After probing several skill areas, the therapist will determine the skills that the child still needs to acquire throughout the course of therapy. All of this data is recorded (on a form called a “data probe”) and referenced throughout the course of ABA therapy, in order to effectively track the progress of the child.

Who completes probing?
Probing is completed by the ABA therapist. An ABA therapist may hold one of the following credentials: RBT (Registered Behavior Technician), BCBA (Board Certified Behavior Analyst), or CAS (Certified Autism Specialist). It is possible for an ABA therapist to hold another credential, as well.

What skills are targeted in probing?
Because ABA therapy looks different for every child, there is a range of skills that may be targeted in probing. Some of this skills may include receptive communication or imitating speech or other behaviors that are pivotal in childhood development.

Are you interested in ABA services for your child in the Chicago area? Contact us or call (773) 630-4400 to learn more about the range of services we provide for children who are on the autism spectrum at Chicago ABA Therapy, including applied behavior analysis therapy, occupational therapy, and speech-language pathology.