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Cumulative Record In ABA: Definition & Examples

In ABA, a cumulative record is a method of displaying graphic data.

steven zauderer
Steven Zauderer
September 15, 2023
min read

Cumulative Record Definition

In ABA, a cumulative record is a method of displaying graphic data. It's used for keeping records of the number of targets someone leads within a scale. As a child continues to learn, they continue to acquire new skills.

Cumulative records provide a representation of a client's behavior. It allows therapists to better understand schedules of reinforcement.

Cumulative records also show the results of various assessments and summaries made at different points in time of a child's time spent learning or studying.

It has important information about all the details of a child's life and their physical, mental, and moral well-being.

Cumulative records help provide an easy-to-understand picture of all the personality traits in a child. It's essentially a child's profile and can be used to help provide therapy counseling and other services to children.

Being documents that are recorded cumulatively, cumulative records also give good info on individual students and clients wherever they're relied upon. This can also be at one single place, such as a school, therapy center, or even at home.

They help present a picture of a child in their entirety, or at least one that's being understood as more time is spent with them. In a school setting, they could be permanent records that are kept in special files, with additional information added to the file as time progresses.

It served as the students' history of their entire time spent in school. As such, it can show test scores, health data, rate of attendance, and educational achievements.

Sometimes, cumulative records are kept in envelopes. In this situation, they're sometimes called a cumulative record envelope. If it's placed in the fold, it's simply called a cumulative record folder. Alternatively, they're sometimes stored in cards, which are called cumulative record cards.

Cumulative Record ABA Examples

When a child waves hello, a therapist makes note of this by writing it down. In the second wave, the therapist continues to write down the behavior. 

After a while, the graph shows a cumulative history of waving by the child. This is a record of how much behavior the child is being engaged in. ABA therapists use it to understand response rates.

When To Use Cumulative Record In ABA

The best time to use cumulative records in an ABA setting is when a child is exhibiting behavior that requires some form of reinforcement. It shows patterns in behaviors and how long they last, especially in children with autism.

steven zauderer

CEO of CrossRiverTherapy - a national ABA therapy company based in the USA.

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