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Verbal Behaviour Approach

The verbal behaviour approach, also called VBA, is derived from applied behaviour analysis and used within various interventions, such as EIBI.

VBA is designed to teach someone how to use language to make requests and communicate ideas. It does this by teaching specific components of expressive language first.

The components of expressive language (called verbal operants) include:

  • Mand: A request or demand.
  • Tact: A comment used to share an experience or draw attention to something.
  • Intraverbal: A response to what someone else is saying. For example, an answer to a question that someone else has just asked.
  • Echoic: A repeated, or echoed, word.

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The fact that an intervention is listed in this glossary does not necessarily mean that we agree with its use. Nor does it necessarily mean that there is any scientifically valid or reliable evidence behind it.