OBJECTIVE: Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is an evidence-based approach for the treatment of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Erroneous beliefs deriving from a reductive conception of ABA partly explain the delay in the spread of ABA treatments in Italy. Nevertheless, an increasing number of parents have been choosing this treatment. The purpose of this survey is to investigate beliefs about ABA, the degree of satisfaction regarding ABA treatments, and the sources of information used to choose the treatment. DESIGN: The sample included 109 Italian participants: 67 parents of children with ASD, 19 parents of healthy children and 23 adults without children. Participants have been invited to complete an online questionnaire. Socio-demographic data was also collected, along with information on the sources consulted to choose a treatment and on the satisfaction for ABA treatments. RESULTS: Participants agree that ABA is an approach of choice that intervenes on socially significant skills, while they do not agree with several reductive and stereotypical statements related to it. Regarding the sources, most parents with children with ASD choose the consultation with other parents who live or have lived the same experience. Finally, although the majority of participants rate ABA treatments positively, findings proved that parents of children with ASD appreciate ABA treatments more than the other two groups. CONCLUSION: There is a broad agreement among participants in correctly identifying the distinctive features of ABA. This data indicates a certain diffusion of correct knowledge and a lower adherence to reductive concepts. The direct experience of applying ABA treatments emerges as an important variable for their positive evaluation. Even though treatment information is more accessible compared to the past, the tendency to seek advice from other parents of children with ASD remains. The results of the survey enable us to give concrete indications for training and dissemination activities.

Analysis of the knowledge and satisfaction with applied behavior analysis as treatment for autism spectrum disorder in parents with affected, with healthy children and childless adults

Stella Conte;
2020

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is an evidence-based approach for the treatment of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Erroneous beliefs deriving from a reductive conception of ABA partly explain the delay in the spread of ABA treatments in Italy. Nevertheless, an increasing number of parents have been choosing this treatment. The purpose of this survey is to investigate beliefs about ABA, the degree of satisfaction regarding ABA treatments, and the sources of information used to choose the treatment. DESIGN: The sample included 109 Italian participants: 67 parents of children with ASD, 19 parents of healthy children and 23 adults without children. Participants have been invited to complete an online questionnaire. Socio-demographic data was also collected, along with information on the sources consulted to choose a treatment and on the satisfaction for ABA treatments. RESULTS: Participants agree that ABA is an approach of choice that intervenes on socially significant skills, while they do not agree with several reductive and stereotypical statements related to it. Regarding the sources, most parents with children with ASD choose the consultation with other parents who live or have lived the same experience. Finally, although the majority of participants rate ABA treatments positively, findings proved that parents of children with ASD appreciate ABA treatments more than the other two groups. CONCLUSION: There is a broad agreement among participants in correctly identifying the distinctive features of ABA. This data indicates a certain diffusion of correct knowledge and a lower adherence to reductive concepts. The direct experience of applying ABA treatments emerges as an important variable for their positive evaluation. Even though treatment information is more accessible compared to the past, the tendency to seek advice from other parents of children with ASD remains. The results of the survey enable us to give concrete indications for training and dissemination activities.
Autism Spectrum Disorder; Applied Behavior Analysis; Parents; Beliefs; Questionnaire; Satisfaction
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11584/302133
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