A Verbal Approach Pediatric Therapy
Use communication and other replacement behaviors to decrease the frequency and intensity of problematic behaviors that interfere with daily life.
Verbal Behavior Therapy
Utilizing the principles of verbal behavior to target language acquisition and improvement, speech sound production, and social communication
Picky Eating Therapy
Addresses picky eating issues using desensitization and reinforcement to establish and maintain a healthy diet without every meal ending in a fight.
Do you provide this speech therapy?
No. Verbal behavior is based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) which uses a functional approach to shape and increase language while speech therapy uses a structural approach. Check here for more details.
What is Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)?
ABA is a type of therapy that focuses on increasing desired behaviors or skills and decreasing undesired behaviors by manipulating the environment. It is based on behaviorism and is a small part of the larger field of behavior analysis. ABA is an evidence-based therapy with thousands of research articles showing that it is effective at increasing communication, increasing social skills, increasing daily living skills, and decreasing problem behavior. To learn more, check out the BACB info page on ABA.
Is ABA just for kids with Autism?
ABA has been endorsed by the US Surgeon General as the most effective, evidence-based treatment for Autism, but it is not only for individuals with Autism. Behavior analysts work with companies to improve the productivity and efficiency of employees (organizational behavior management), in safety industries reducing human error and accidents, in medical compliance, in health and wellness improvement, in animal behavior, with pediatric behavior issues such as toilet training, picky eating, behavioral issues, sibling issues, sleeping issues, and more.
Who will be working with my child?
The treatment team includes a BCBA (Board Certified Behavior Analyst) and behavior technician. BCBA's have a masters degree in ABA, psychology, education, or related field, have specialized training in the science of behavior analysis, and pass a certification exam. The BCBA conducts assessments, creates and updates goals, provides parent training, and may provides some of the direct therapy. The behavior technician is trained in ABA and verbal behavior and provides the direct therapy. While a degree is not required for this position, most technicians are working on a relevant degree and there is a high level of training before providing therapy and on-going training throughout.
Do you bill my insurance company?
We are currently in-network with BCBS-Texas with others being incorporated soon, but we offer an affordable hourly rate and can offer payment plans for services. Please note that insurance will only cover services if your child has a medical autism diagnosis (not from a school).
How many hours will be recommended?
You won't be able to find out exactly how many hours are required until after the evaluation and report, typical ABA therapy programs recommend between 10-40 hours per week. A Verbal Approach also specializes in providing a very focused therapy for language and communication deficits which can be less than 10 hours per week but this focused therapy would not include working on a wide range of skill deficits or behavioral issues. Parent education meetings are also necessary alongside these sessions to make sure you are carrying over the therapy, even when we aren't there.
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Melissa Druskis, M.S., BCBA, LBA
2010: B.S. in Speech Language Pathology & Audiology
2014: M.S. Applied Cognition and Neuroscience
2015: Florida Institute of Technology
Certification in ABA
Thank you for coming to A Verbal Approach! I have 10 years clinical experience working with children and adolescents with mild to severe behavioral issues, speech and language delays and disorders, and picky eating, first as a speech language pathologist assistant, and currently as a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. I have worked with a wide range of ages and populations including typically developing children, individuals with autism, downs syndrome, and other developmental disorders. While I have a background in speech therapy, my approach to treating language and feeding deficits is based on the science of behaviorism and verbal behavior.
In addition to my clinical work, I have conducted research in the area of neural plasticity and working memory through my graduate degree in Applied Cognition and Neuroscience. I also provide supervision and training to BCBA and BCaBA students, work as a co-instructor for Florida Institute of Technology's online master's degree program, and supervise comprehensive ABA therapy programs in a home-health setting in the DFW area.
Below are the private pay rates. If your services are being submitted to insurance, check with your insurance company regarding your coverage.
Focused evaluation: $300 flat rate
The evaluation is for focused intervention for picky eating or verbal behavioral skills only. It includes around 3-5 hrs of parent interview and direct assessment as well as a focused treatment plan to guide the first 6 months of therapy.
Verbal Behavior Therapy
by BCBA $100/ 1 hr session
by ABA Therapist $80/ 1 hr session (if available)
Discounts are available for paying for 5 or 10 sessions at a time
McKinney, TX, USA
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