Visual Communication Analysis™
Autism is a disorder that is characterized by difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication and repetitive behaviors. There is not one type of autism, but it is a spectrum of varying degrees of difficulties in these three areas. Visual Communication Analysis™ (VCA™) is a method for teaching students with autism that focuses on the communication deficit as the starting point. Once a child starts to learn to communicate, the other behaviors disappear and the child becomes eager to continue learning.
VCA™ is the result of ten years of research and development and four years of field testing and has proven to be much more effective than ABA in teaching children with autism especially those who are visual learners. In fact in field testing with older children who have had years of ABA therapy and made no progress, it has been shown that they have made remarkable improvements in their communication, their behaviors and 75% of them even started talking. Testing with three to five year olds with severe autism shows that after three fifteen minute session for ten weeks, most of their behaviors had subsided. One four year old test subject who was evaluated as unteachable even started talking and counting.
Our research shows that once you teach these children to communicate, the non-acceptable behaviors subside as they are able to express their needs and wants and thereby avoid the associated frustrations. Where VCA™ differs from ABA is in the approach to the repetitive behaviors of autism. Our research as well as independent research shows that these behaviors are required for proper brain functioning. If you allow the child to continue with the rhythmic behavior, you have an 80 - 100% chance of them simultaneously succeeding on the presented task. If you focus on extinguishing the rhythmic behavior then you have a 0 -20% chance of them succeeding on a any task.
VCA™ utilizes a multi-dimensional approach to teaching communication. For example, children who are still struggling with the basic words to express their needs and wants are exposed to more complicated tasks as a means of engaging them and teaching them how to read. Students are taught about their personal identification and family members as a way of engaging them to learn the basics of typing and thus communication.