Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)

Applied Behavior Analysis Services at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital offers individualized assistance for children with challenging behavior, their families, and other caretakers, as well as supports professionals from various other disciplines at ACH. ABA Services are designed to identify the purposes behavior serves for a child and to develop interventions focused on preventing problems, teaching replacement skills, and responding effectively to behavior. The goals of intervention are not only to improve behavior, but also to enhance the overall quality of life for children and families.

At Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital, our highly trained behavior analysts and behavioral parent educators provide services for children from birth to 21 years of age with diagnoses that include neurological and developmental disabilities, autism, ADD/ADHD, conduct disorders, and other conditions that affect the children’s behavioral functioning.

ABA Services are appropriate for children engaging in behavior that…

  • Endangers the child, family members, or other people
  • Damages the child’s surroundings or personal property
  • Disrupts family, school, or community activities
  • Interferes with the child’s development of new skills
  • Restricts social contact or participation in integrated settings

ABA Services include:

Individualized ABA Services

When a child is referred to ABA Services, the behavior analyst will work with the family (and other professionals, as appropriate) to:

  • Identify specific behaviors of concern and goals for the child and family
  • Determine the circumstances affecting the child’s behavior and the purposes it is serving
  • Create a behavior support plan that includes strategies for families to:
    • Prevent problems by changing aspects of the environment
    • Teach skills (e.g., communication) to replace challenging behavior
    • Respond differently to encourage positive (not problem) behavior
  • Provide coaching to assist the family and other caregivers in using the plan
  • Monitor and evaluate the outcomes of the interventions

Consultation and Training

The ABA Services staff works with other professionals at Johns Hopkins All Children's and in the community to enhance behavior analytic services and other programs in which treatment outcomes for children could be impeded by behavior challenges.  We offer cross-disciplinary training and collaboration at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital, host annual conferences for local providers to share evidence-based practices and facilitate networking, and offer internship opportunities for Master’s and Doctoral-level professionals in training – guiding research to further enhance the quality of care at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital.