Helping Parents Understand Applied Behavior Analysis: Creating a Parent Guide in 10 Steps

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Authors: Maria R. Helton and  Sheila R. Alber-Morgan


Interventions based on applied behavior analysis (ABA) have been shown to be effective for children with a wide range of cognitive, adaptive, and functional abilities. Many special education teachers understand the principles of ABA and are adept at implementing ABA interventions for students. However, as the principles of ABA can be complex, communicating with parents about ABA interventions can be challenging. Providing parents with clear and succinct information in the form of a brief customized reference guide can be instrumental for facilitating and extending communication about their child’s behavioral interventions. This article provides school personnel with guidelines and resources for helping parents understand and use interventions that are based on ABA. Specifically, this article presents 10 steps for creating an information guide for parents and provides recommendations for explaining the guide to parents.

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