What do we do?
Extensive controlled studies have shown that the most effective treatment for autism is based on Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA). We focus on teaching these skills to parents, while also providing experienced and highly trained therapists with broad experience in the treatment of children with autism.
Therapy sessions take place at the LEARN centre in East Fremantle to help to track progress and to maintain quality and consistency of treatment.
LEARN Service Delivery Model
LEARN’s Service Delivery Model incorporates the following elements:
- Centre Based One-on-One Therapy (utilising Applied Behaviour Analysis and other Evidence Based methodologies – see Autism Research).
- Outreach Services – incorporating in-home and community based interventions to assess and design behavioural programs including sleeping, eating, toileting and other challenging behaviour problems.
- LEARN Consultancy – services provided to train teachers and adults working with children with autism, including consultancy to other service providers.
- Functional Behaviour Analysis – an assessment tool for severe and challenging behaviours such as self-injurious behaviour and aggression, which was nominated as a Finalist in the Nokia Innovation Business Category of the 2011 Telstra Business Women’s Awards.
Intervention Methods and Program
LEARN provides therapeutic interventions that are anchored in Learning Theory (Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA)).
Therapy sessions occur at LEARN’s centre in East Fremantle. Programs for children can also incorporate the following elements:
- School based consultation services.
- Home based behavioural intervention services.
- Peer based social skills programs to teach play and social skills with typical developing peers.
One of LEARN’s primary aims is to empower families to be active participants in a child’s program and to take advantage of teaching opportunities throughout a child’s day.
LEARN’s program includes monthly parent training as a critical element for parents to generalise skills taught in a therapy setting to the home environment to supplement the centre based early intervention program.
In addition, LEARN also consults to schools and other service provider to provide training on how to achieve successful outcomes for children with autism.
Experience and Expertise
LEARN employs a highly skilled team of professionals to implement its therapy programs. This team includes seven staff members qualified at the level of Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, one Occupational Therapist, two Psychologists qualified at the level of Master’s degree and one at the Doctoral level. LEARN’s Clinical Director and Clinical Case Manager are Board Certified Behaviour Analysts (BCBA). In addition, many of the therapists are currently undertaking supervision towards becoming Board Certified or Associate Board Certified Behaviour Analysts.
The title of BCBA is awarded to a practitioner who has undertaken significant study and supervision in addition to passing a comprehensive certification exam. In addition, BCBAs are required to follow stringent guidelines set forth by the Behaviour Analyst Certification Board (see www.bacb.com).
To date LEARN employs the only BCBAs in Western Australia and is the only organisation established in Perth that can provide supervision of staff through to BCBA and Associate BCBA qualification.
Unlike many early intervention providers, LEARN employs full time therapists to implement a child’s program and bears the cost and responsibility for training and continued professional advancement for those therapists. This eases the burden and cost to families of having to find or employ therapy assistants themselves, that can substantially delay the start of therapy, as well as making quality control of therapy more difficult. It also ensures that a team of therapists can be allocated to each child so that therapy can continue whilst one therapist takes leave or undertakes training.
All children are allocated a Data Manager who is responsible to the Clinical Director for maintaining graphs of achievement and consistent delivery of therapy across therapists and across settings.
All programs at LEARN are developed by our Clinical Director and delivered by highly trained Behavioural Therapists.
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