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Simple Steps Autism

The Online Teaching Platform for the treatment of Autism Simple but effective tools based on the proven science of ABA



Throughout its development, hundreds of parents have used earlier versions of this tool. Their feedback allowed us to develop our thinking and methods.

Find out what they have to say…

  • Lyn McKerr - Parent Story

    "Our experience of using ABA began about 15 years ago. Our youngest son Cillian - then aged 3 ½ - had been diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome and ADHD. These conditions were almost unheard of then, and the future seemed very bleak and frightening. Cillian slept very little, was extremely active and became very distressed at changes in routine.

    His communication skills were very poor (he had the language level of a child of 18 months when assessed for starting school, and no eye-contact) and we could not take him visiting or to shops as he was constantly trying to run away. Holidays and eating out were impossible. He did not respond to his name, sit still, play with toys appropriately, sing or even watch television except for short adverts or fragments of children’s programmes; he was by now diagnosed as also having moderate learning difficulties.

    We were offered no constructive advice by the psychiatrist, the paediatrician or the educational psychologist involved on how to deal with his very difficult behaviours. By whatever good chance, through his friendship with our GP we met Dr Mickey Keenan, and began our own education as 'autism therapists’; our initial target behaviours - Cillian’s communication, eye-contact and time on tasks - all improved quickly. ABA turned all our lives around- against the initial advice of the educational psychologist, Cillian went to the same mainstream primary school as his brother and sisters.

    He was academically very able (despite the initial assessment of learning difficulties) and became increasingly articulate. By then PEAT had formed, and staff at his school (particularly Maire, his classroom assistant) were very involved with the ABA training offered. This support from PEAT has continued through secondary level education and now to university, where ABA is helping him make the transition to independent learning and the wider social world, with assistance from the student disability service. We don’t anticipate this will be problem free, but ABA teaches you not to be afraid of challenges. I cannot imagine where Cillian would be now if we hadn’t met Mickey and with his help made those first ‘simple steps’."

  • Marie McCrory - Parent Story

    Knowledge of ABA has empowered me to help my son overcome challenges and acquire new skills. Our relationship is now strong and we have a much improved quality of life since we communicate well and socialise more.

    My son is now at grammar school and has friends which is something I once never thought possible. ABA allows you to hope!

  • Karen Gallagher - Parent Story

    "It was before Patrick’s second birthday that I first suspected that there might be a problem. My little boy was clearly having difficultieswith speech and general communication. In addition, he also seemed to be reluctant to play with other children.

     When he went to mainstream nursery we realised that there were pretty big problems. Things like taking turns with the other children could lead to some pretty big tantrums. By this stage, I suspected that Patrick, the second youngest of my five children, had autism, anidea which left us devastated.  The diagnosis was finally confirmed by specialists in May 2005. To find out more about ABA, I contacted Dr Mickey Keenan from the University of Ulster, someone whom Ihad frequently seen mentioned as an expert on autism.

     He had plenty of time to speak to me, I remember. He asked me whatthe other professionals I’d spoken to had told me, which was basicallythat I’d have to accept it. However, Dr Keenan was so optimistic and positive.

     Shortly afterwards, we embarked on an intensive home-based programme, funded by ourselves, and with the help of the PEAT charity.For some 30 to 35 hours a week we worked with our son, teaching him such basics as how to put a couple of words together to make a sentence and how to recognise different colours. So quick was the progress in these fields that within three or four months Patrick had started on more academic based subjects such as arithmetic and writing. His IQ, previously assessed at 75, jumped to 99.5, an average score, within just five months.

     Patrick is now in mainstream school and continuing to make great strides in every aspect of his life.  He is doing well in his studies andmaking friends with his fellow pupils."