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START Coaching Focus Group - Verbal Behavior Milestones Assessment and Placement Program (VB-MAPP)

The VB-MAPP is a criterion-referenced assessment tool, curriculum guide, and skill tracking system that is designed for children with autism, and other individuals who demonstrate language delays. It is based on verbal behavior, established developmental milestones, and research from the field of behavior analysis. Verbal Behavior teaches communication by connecting words with
their purposes by looking at the conditions under which a person will use language (functional analysis of language). With the focus on the meaning of words being found in their function, verbal behavior is based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). Verbal behavior is classified using the following verbal operants: mand, tact, intraverbal, echoic, imitation, and listener responding (B.F. Skinner, 1957).

The components of the VB-MAPP collectively provide a baseline level of performance, a direction for intervention, a system for tracking skill acquisition, a tool for outcome measures and other language research projects, and a framework for curriculum planning. For more information, visit:

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