aba|tools is for...

BCBAs who need a variety of easily accessible photos across Function, Feature, and Class

Behavior therapists who work with children acquiring verbal behavior skills

Parents who desire their child to learn to use language effectively

Teachers who want to use digital tools to improve student’s linguistic competency

Anyone requiring a portable and lower-cost alternative to easily lost, destroyed, or overly familiar physical images

Try the Verbal Matrix and Receptive Identification tools.

Our Story

Where we started and where we're going.


Sign up to use aba|tools Verbal Matrix and other resources

Register »


Subscriptions vary depending on number of learners

View details »


Features, tutorials, upcoming projects, and the latest release information

Learn more »

aba|tools provides access to relevant images that augment or replace physical materials for Applied Behavior Analysis

With our Receptive Identification tools, you can teach listener responding skills by asking your learner to “Show me…”, “Point to…”, or “Touch…” or asking “Where is…”. Once they have mastered the ability to indicate named items, parts of items, categories of items, or actions done to or with those items, through our Verbal Matrix you can teach labeling those items as well as their associated functions, features, and classes. Finally, through a technique known as intraverbal webbing, teach conversation skills by asking open ended, fill in the blank, or direct WH-questions with the images hidden from the learner’s view, only to be revealed as a prompt or reward. With aba|tools, your learner has access to all the materials necessary to achieve fluent conversational skills.

Receptive Identification

Teach receptive / listener responding skills in fields of 2-10 including selection of single or multiple targets.

With aba|tools, you have access to two Receptive Identification Tools:

  • RISE – Receptive Identification Single Exemplar
  • RIME – Receptive Identification Multiple Exemplar

Receptive ID Example

Before your learner can be reasonably expected to say the name of something, they should be able to point to it, give it, touch it, or in some way indicate that yes, they know what that thing is. Use our RISE and RIME tools to teach listener responding skills to your learner.

Field size is important! Early learners may only be able to differentiate between two items, so using an array (or field) of two is usually the starting point for many learners. (If you only want to display one image, use the Verbal Matrix) By increasing the field size over time, you improve the scanning skills of the learner.

Additionally, distractors, or images that are not the target image, can either be very similar by displaying other four legged furry animals when the target is “dog”, the distractors are the same color or shape, or the functions are nearly alike. Distractors can also be dissimilar such as by using images from classes that are not associated with the target image, such as using animals, food, and furniture, when the target is a vehicle. Having distractors become more and more similar over time will challenge the learner to make conditional discriminations based on what was said and what is presented, rather than on listening for one key word and making a selection based on that.

The RIME tool is identical to the single-example version, however you are able to present more than one of the same target. In this way you can teach your learner skills such as identifying multiple examples of an item (“Show me all the cars”) or non-examples (“Which ones are not apples?”). Large field sizes and multiple exemplars will challenge your learner to demonstrate advanced listener responding skills.

In the RISE and RIME tools when images are selected, target image(s) have a green border, distractor image(s) are bordered in red. This will highlight the correct answer if you need to prompt, and may even serve as a reinforcer for some learners. In RIME, this is feature also works in reverse for negation (“Which one is not a….”) tasks. In the future this will be a customizable feature with choice or absence of border color.

Verbal Matrix

Develop fluent conversational skills using the Verbal Matrix

Verbal Matrix Example

The Verbal Matrix was created to provide learners with images of the things common in their environment, and their parents and professionals to have the ability to navigate through those items easily. With more than 1000 (and growing!) items you can teach not just by name, but by the relationships between those items, you now have unprecedented access to an interconnected web of things common to young children organized by relationships. When sitting with a learner and scrolling through the pictures, a simple conversation could be started. What is that? A dog. What does it have? A tail. What can you do with a dog? Hug it. The Verbal Matrix makes these kinds of simple conversations, the building blocks for more complex and fluent dialogue, possible. With a robust tacting program in which the labels of items as well as their associated features, functions, and classes are taught, a learner will have the foundation to begin learning conversation skills with the Verbal Matrix.

Intraverbals are the responses we give to others’ verbal behavior. If you were to ask “What says woof-woof?” the response, dog, would be an intraverbal. To fill in a song lyric such as “Twinkle twinkle little…”, provide the answer to a yes/no question, or say your name when asked are all intraverbals. In order to gain fluency, or the ability to respond to an ever-changing conversation filled with intraverbal behavior, many factors need to be present, including accuracy, speed of response, and in many cases the variety of the response. It is one thing to ask “What are your parent’s names?” or when your birthday is. Those answers don’t change. Speed and accuracy are the only important considerations. If you were to change the task to “Name three animals.” and get the response “Dog, cat, bird” and those are the only three accurate and speedy responses the learner can state, those answers are scripted, not fluent. With aba|tools and the Verbal Matrix you have access to teach to fluency through nearly 10,000 relationships and multiple image examples and avoid scripted, rote responses.

When using the Verbal Matrix, you may be required to point at parts of images, enlarge or isolate the image, or use a different example when using the assessment prompts. This would be no different than when using physical image cards or from books. The acquisition of Verbal Behavior is meant to be interactive, so please do so when using aba|tools! This should be a back and forth conversation between you and your learner. At times you will hold the tablet out as you present a task, other times keep the image out of view and bring up new pictures as your learner states the item, only showing a picture when an error occurs. This can be done at a table, on the couch, in bed, in the car, or anywhere you have WiFi. The ability to take ABA wherever the learner is and continue the conversation has never been easier.

Tell us what you think

How did you hear about aba|tools?

Who do/would you use aba|tools with directly?

If you haven't subscribed to aba|tools, why not?

What would you like to see improved with aba|tools?

Recent Updates


  • “Tagged” nearly 3000 images for all relevant functions and features, allowing for images of these specific item:feature and item:function relationships to be displayed in the Verbal Matrix.


  • In the RISE and RIME tools when images are selected, target image(s) have a green border, distractor image(s) are bordered in red. This will highlight the correct answer if you need to prompt, and may even serve as a reinforcer for some learners. In RIME, this is feature also works in reverse for negation (“Which one is not a….”) tasks. In the future this will be a customizable feature with choice or absence of border color.


  • Added Discriminative Stimuli (Sd’s), or target prompts, to the Verbal Matrix based on skills needed for the VB-MAPP and ABLLS-R assessments. These tabs above the Function, Feature, Class, and Item buttons allow the user to see the relevant questions and statements tothe image displayed for a variety of assessment areas. While we are very happy with how these turned out, English is a complex language andsometimes the question or statement we’ve provided is…clunky. We promise we don’t talk like cavemen and don’t want you to teach your learnerto sound like a caveman. When you see a prompt that is odd (“Is the backpack zipper?”) please use your verbal behavior skills to provide amore natural sounding prompt (“Does the backpack have a zipper?”). We promise, we’re working on improving this, but did not want to depriveour users of something in the interim.
  • Unique images based on relationships with the Item are being added to the Verbal Matrix daily. These new images will be displayed when you select a relationship with the Item, such as when clicking on Eating from Item: Pizza vs. clicking Eating from Item: Dog. If a unique image has not yet been selected by our team, you will continue to have access to up to five images of the Item.