I. ABA procedures: ABA treatment can include any of several established teaching tools: discrete trial training, incidental teaching, pivotal response training, fluency building, and verbal behavior (VB):
1. Pivotal Response training: Pivotal response training uses ABA techniques to target crucial skills that are important (or pivotal) for many other skills. Thus, if the child improves on one of these pivotal skills, improvements are seen in a wide variety of behaviors that were not specifically trained. The idea is that this approach can help the child generalize behaviors from a therapy setting to everyday settings.
2. Fluency building: In fluency building, the practitioner helps the child build up a complex behavior by teaching each element of that behavior until it is automatic or "fluent". This is done by using the ABA approach of behavioral observation, reinforcement and prompting. As a result, the more complex behavior can be built from each of the individual fluent elements.
3. Verbal behavior: A related approach for teaching language and communication is called "verbal behavior” or VB for short. In VB, the practitioner analyzes the child's language skills, then teaches and reinforces more useful and complex language skills. VB focuses on functional communication which includes sign language, early requesting, responding to others statements, stating what they see and conversational exchanges.
4. Discrete Trial Training: In discrete trial training, an ABA practitioner gives a clear instruction about a desired behavior (e.g., "Pick up the paper"); if the child responds correctly, the behavior is reinforced (e.g., "Great job!" Have an M&M). If the child does not respond correctly, the practitioner gives a gentle prompt (e.g., places the child's hand over the paper). The goal is that the child will eventually learn to generalize the correct response. Incidental teaching uses the same ideas as discrete trial training, except the goal is to teach behaviors and concepts throughout a child's day-to-day experience.