The Therapist Neurodiversity Collective does not endorse any specific commercially available therapy models or materials.

Acquired Neurological Conditions

The Therapist Neurodiversity Collective includes patients with acquired neurological conditions such as traumatic brain injury, post-stroke cognitive, swallowing and communication deficits, or patients with dementia, Alzheimer’s, Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome in the category of acquired neurodivergence.

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is the practice of applying the psychological principles of learning theory in a systematic way to alter behavior in humans or animals. The Therapist Neurodiversity Collective has strong ethical concerns and philosophical differences pertaining to the use of Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) on human beings, including ABA-derived therapy models. Link to Therapist Neurodiversity Collective position on ABA, research, and resources.

Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC)

AAC  encompasses communication methods, including aided and unaided systems, which supplement or replace spoken communication. Examples of unaided systems include gestures, body language, facial expressions, and sign language.  An aided system includes some type of tool or device, ranging from the simplicity of pen and paper to a device with a communication screen and a synthesized voice. Links to our position on AAC, research, and resources.

Behavior: Self Harm or Aggression

Therapist Neurodiversity Collective does not use ABA in our therapy practices to address aggressive behaviors, destructive behaviors, self-injurious behaviors, or melt-downs. Links to research and resources.

Evidence-Based Practices

What does Evidence-Based Practice look like with a neurodiversity model? Definition, links to recommended therapy models, resources and research.

Feeding Therapy

Sometimes clients may require feeding therapy because they are not eating enough quantity or variety to support their healthy emotional, physical, or social development. Additionally, a client may exhibit eating patterns that are a significant source of conflict or worry for their caregivers. Therapist Neurodiversity Collective members do not use ABA practices or employ any type of forced-feeding, physical restraint, and physical manipulation of the client’s body. We do not withhold food and drink as a way to manipulate behavior.

Pragmatic Language

Pragmatic language is the use of communication, including body language, and comprehension, and the use of unspoken social rules and expectations in social contexts. The therapeutic judgment of pragmatic language “appropriateness” has historically been based upon comparing a person’s social behavior with that of what resembles “correct” social behavior between neurotypical people.  What does non-ableist pragmatic language therapy look like? Links to research and resources.

Positive Behavior Support (PBS), Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS), or Positive Reinforcement

PBS, PBIS, and Positive Reinforcement are all forms of ABA (Applied Behavioral Analysis).  The Therapist Neurodiversity Collective has strong ethical concerns and philosophical differences pertaining to the use of Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) on human beings, including ABA-derived therapy models. Link to definitions of each, research and alternative (respectful and empathetic) therapy strategies and resources.

Social Skills Training

Therapist Neurodiversity Collective understands that communication is a multi-way process and that the onus should not be placed solely on Autistic people to repair communication differences. Autistic (and more broadly neurodivergent) people communicate differently than neurotypical people. And yet we therapists (and the world) often expect them to change their communication styles, to make adjustments, and to comply with often confusing spoken and unspoken rules of social interaction. We don’t’ train social skills because we know that diversity in social intelligence is natural and viable.