The Northwest Arkansas Center for Autism & Developmental Disabilities offers therapeutic programs, educational programs, and family support for area children with autism spectrum disorder.
Our programs range from pre-school through secondary, in both individual and small group settings, depending on each child's needs.
Applied Behavior Analysis
Both the Grace School and the Center use the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). What is ABA?
"ABA is an intensive, structured teaching program. Lessons to be taught are broken down into their simplest elements. These elements are taught using repeated trials where the child is presented with a stimulus (like "do this" or "touch object" or "look at me"). Correct responses and behaviors are rewarded with LOTS of positive reinforcement. When incorrect responses occur, they are ignored and appropriate responses are prompted and rewarded. Undesirable behaviors are approached in the same manner. At first, the child may be rewarded for doing something close to the desired response. Over time, as the child masters the lesson, expectations are raised and primary reinforcers (like bits of food) are replaced with social reinforcers (hugs, praise, etc.). As the child masters the skill and generalizes it, it becomes self-reinforcing." CTFEAT.ORG
"Although there are many therapies, teaching programs, dietary regimens, and other interventions available to families of children with Autism and other Pervasive Developmental Disorders (PDD), only one has been documented to have produced significant and comprehensive improvements, up to and including recovery. That method is a program of intervention based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)."
The Grace School Story
The Grace School was established May 2011, Northwest Arkansas Center for Autism recognized the need for an alternative special education placement for those learners who were struggling in their current placements. The Grace School utilizes the priniciples of Applied Behavior Analysis.