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This paper investigates the empirical evidence and discourse surrounding a popular therapy for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) known as Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). While studies over the past 60 years have shown ABA to be a highly effective therapy for decreasing unwanted behaviors and increasing compliance in people with autism, many autistic adults have expressed that the therapy had long-term harmful effects on their mental health and wellbeing. Using a combination of works written by autistic voices and psychological studies, I argue for a reconsideration of the benefits and costs of ABA, and emphasize the importance of including actual autistic people in the development of further research and treatments.
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Kurlander, Campbell K.C., "Don't Make Me Say "I Love You": A Dive into the Complicated Discourse Surrounding Applied Behavior Analysis" (2022). Senior Projects Spring 2022. 235.
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