ABA vs IBI – Difference and Comparison

What is ABA?

ABA, which stands for Applied Behaviour Analysis, is a light behavioural analysis and improvement approach or technique applicable to kids with social disorders, especially autism, yet this technique can treat the same social constraints like ADHD, substance abuse that applies to lads up to the age of 18 years.

Here, kids are taught valuable skills like brushing and more to control the physical aggression and make them prepared for studying with the normally able children. To teach kids, the tasks are divided into small parts and working on a single topic can take up to 6 months yet the improvement is focus centric which means, working on specific skill till it is mastered.

It is possible to win a new skill through the ABA approach. The process involves sitting and working for two to four hours per day for the next 2-6 months, and to add, this approach also involves both the reinforcement styles namely being negative and positive reinforcements.

This approach gradually targets the personal life of the client and make changes according to the call. It uses scientific principles on a variety of behaviours to teach the sufferers how to develop socially.

This procedure also helps to find the valuable skills hidden in the kid and enhance them by working on a lot of things. The last thing about it is that it is applicable and can be practised by and around the people in the personal life of the autistic kid.

This makes it more natural for kids to grow over the syndrome while improving their social skills.

What is IBI?

IBI, which stands for Intensive Behaviour Intervention, is also a Behaviour improvement technique to improve and make better the social disorder status of the autistic kid.

It is the same as ABA but with some major updates involving an increase of time taken to work upon the kid with the disorder, which is 20-40 hours for 2-3 years, when a trained professional assists kids in the field. This approach is, in fact, pretty intense and takes a gradual process where kids may be taught in one on one basis or in small groups.

A thing to note is that this approach is not applicable after the kid turns 5 because the mind of kids are volatile, while the kid can be taught in the centre or home. This approach uses behavioural concepts to make the autistic kids even more prepared to study along with normal able kids.

Difference Between ABA and IBI

  1. The biggest difference between both is the stint, where the course for ABA is short which counts across 2-4 hours per week training for 2 to 6 months whereas IBI has a longer length which counts across 20-40 hours of intense training till one skill is mastered for next 2-3 years.
  2. ABA is a lighter approach as compared to IBI whereas IBI is a far more tiring and lengthy process for kids along being tough.
  3. Where ABA focuses on both verbal and non-verbal cues for improvement, IBI focuses only on physical cues and tasks to make a heavy impact on kids behaviour and mind.
  4. ABA is also applicable for other social disorders like ADHD and substance abuse whereas IBI is only autism centric.
  5. ABA is a more reliable process where it is valid up to kids till the age of 18 years but IBI is a shorter span process with validation only up to 5 years with going completely void for kids elder than 5 years which is a big drawback for IBI.

Comparison Between ABA and IBI

Parameters of ComparisonABAIBI
Duration2-6 months2-3 years
TargetSocially challenged kidsKids with autism
CuesVerbal and non-verbalphysical
Other BenefitsImproves social skillsnone
ApplicableBy home residents alsoBy trained professional
EffectivenessTill the age of 18 yearsmostly non-applicable for above 5 years.


  1. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/108835760101600202
  2. https://muse.jhu.edu/article/426530/summary