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How to choose ABA consultant?

(4 Posts)
nibsy Mon 18-Jul-11 20:48:33

Hi,

Having undertaken research into ABA, we have taken the decision to start an ABA programme for our 3 year old DS (dx ASD). I'm now meeting with a consultant and would be grateful for views on what we should be looking for and how to ensure we have the right person designing the programme. Are there key questions we should be asking? Clearly finding the right consultant will be crucial to our success and I'm anxious that we make good decisions from the outset.

Thanks for any help!

Nibsy

BialystockandBloom Mon 18-Jul-11 22:45:46

Hmm hard question.

The difficulty is that none of us have anything to compare a consultant to, particularly at the start. It is easy to compare tutors if you have two or three (as is usual). But unless you've used different consultants it's harder to know if what you're getting is good enough iykwim.

There is obviously the usual stuff about making sure you are not tied in to a contract, do not pay money up front, and if you can, talk to other families using the same consultant to get feedback.

I think a lot of the success of a programme, and how happy you are with it, also depends on (not in any order):

1. the direction the consultant gives you at workshops
2. the input and direction between workshops
3. input from superviser
4. programme progressing and not stalling
5. tutors feeling they are having adequate supervision and direction, from both consultant and supervisor
6. feeling that they understand your ds adequtely and can therefore analyse behaviour accurately to direct tutors' approach (particuarly important when it comes to working on behaviours - it is crucial they do not misread the function of behaviour if they want to work on it successfully). If you have a gut feeling that the consultant doesn't really understand your ds as you see him, listen to that feeling.
7. the programme itself has to be suitable to what you think are ds's greatest difficulties & impairments. eg no point in spending 80% of the programme on, say, interaction, if his biggest immediate challenge is behavioural. Obviously everything goes together (communication, interaction, behaviour, language) but you must be confident that the consultant has read the situation right - if they are halfway-decent they will do so immediately.

Ask clearly how often you will see the consultant. What is the input between workshops? Can you call them whenever you need to? Will they provide the supervisor and/or tutors or do you recruit your own?

Well done for taking this step. smile You will certainly not regret it - starting a programme for my ds was the best thing I could have ever done.

Is it ABA or VB?

sickofsocalledexperts Tue 19-Jul-11 11:08:02

I would second all that Bialy says - there are some consultants out there who are full of waffle and bullshit and never want to roll their sleeves up and work with the kid, to show the tutors best practice. If you want to PM me the names, I might know some of them?

Starchart Tue 19-Jul-11 17:50:38

Lol. I agree.

Don't assume just because they are a consultant they are any good. ABA is unregulated and I can tell you with certainty that Sickof, Baily or I are better qualified than many who go around parading themselves

Ask pertinent questions. Ask if they are BCAB qualified. It isn't essential, but their explanation of why not can give you an idea about them.

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