About Ryan

In 2008 Ryan began a career as a transcriptionist, providing communication access for Deaf and Hard of Hearing students from High School to Graduate School. Passionate about technology since childhood he began programming as a teenager.
In 2018, Patrick approached him with an idea that became aba|tools combining a desire to help others access communication and his passion for programming. This same year Ryan’s son was also evaluated as Non-Catagorical Early Childhood and is currently awaiting further evaluation.
So, along with Patrick, in 2019 he co-founded aba|tools, to provide himself, his son, other parents, and professionals access to digital ABA materials.

About Patrick

Patrick has been working with children on the autism spectrum since the mid ‘90s when he was hired as an undergraduate student ABA therapist to work with a newly diagnosed 4-year-old.  While continuing his studies and in-home therapy, he began working in Ohio’s first Community Schools Pilot Program at a school exclusively for children on the autism spectrum as a para-professional, and later as a classroom teacher.
Through the early 2000’s he broadened his experience to include working with adults diagnosed with intellectual and developmental disabilities and challenging behavior while continuing to serve children and families in residential, school, and camp settings. Since earning his Master’s degree in Applied Behavior Analysis and subsequent BCBA® certification in 2014, he has focused exclusively on improving the lives of children with autism through ABA.
In 2019, along with Ryan, he co-founded aba|tools, to provide parents and professionals digital access to ABA materials.

Building Speech in the Digital Age

a mother and child learning about aba therapy

Communication is our connection to the outside world. Our ability to communicate effectively helps us lead happy, meaningful, connected lives. We learn the bulk of our communication skills during childhood, but some children need extra help learning to communicate effectively. Parents who offer their children help at an early age can watch their child reap the benefits–especially when they start school. aba|tools offers a modern arsenal of organized, relevant, customizable language acquisition apps. We are becoming a staple many parents and professionals, including:

  • BCBA®s needing a variety of easily-accessible photos across function, feature, and class
  • RBTs who teach verbal behavior skills
  • Speech-language pathologists who want thousands of organized images on their mobile devices
  • Early elementary and pre-k teachers laying the foundational language skills required by the Common Core State Standards
  • Parents who see the value in helping children improve their communication skills at home
  • Anyone looking to benefit from VB-MAPP®and ABLLS-R®compatible materials

aba|tools for Teaching Verbal Behavior

aba|tools provides access to relevant images that augment or replace the traditional stimuli used in applied behavior analysis (ABA). It started as a response to the limitations of traditional verbal behavior materials. The photos displayed on ABA flashcards found in virtually every clinic and in-home program are notoriously dated; they offer little in the way of generalization. Language is continuously evolving; it is impossible to effectively teach modern language using outdated materials. We have spent years finding the most unique, diverse, relevant catalog of images available.

Our database currently contains 12,000 images of 1,000 items sorted by function feature and class providing for more generalization and specific exemplars than ever before in the ABA world. Our goal is to help learners acquire the skills they need to build the foundation for verbal behavior. As parents and professionals ourselves, we understand the importance of streamlining the process; we can’t spend our lives organizing piles of flashcards. Filling in particular gaps in verbal behavior, receptive identification, labeling, and vocabulary can play a crucial role in helping children acquire and improve communication. Receptive language work can also be helpful for children without developmental delays. aba|tools is a professional and easy-to-use tool for improving your verbal behavior program.

Socially Distanced ABA Therapy

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, children who struggle with language skills are at an unprecedented disadvantage–they are missing out on the ability to connect with others in both academic and social settings. Since parents usually understand their child’s communication styles better than anyone else, children who are only around their immediate family members miss out on the opportunities and challenges of communicating with others. Digital images can be used by multiple learners simultaneously and do not require reorganization, cleanup, or sanitization.


Why Isn’t my Child Talking?

Many parents worry about their child’s language development. Parental missteps do not cause gaps in a child’s receptive language skills. When a child has trouble communicating, it can affect their relationships, self-esteem, and learning. There are many reasons for language delays. Online ABA therapy tools can help therapists, teachers, and parents teach and track the learner’s acquisition of receptive language skills, laying the foundation for communication.

Verbal Behavior Apps

Learners who struggle with verbal behavior develop a multitude of creative coping mechanisms to avoid dealing with communication themes they aren’t comfortable with. These include memorization, mirroring, recognizing unintentional cues from the therapist, and focusing on characteristics of a stimulus that have nothing to do with the target. Language apps on computers, iPads, tablets, and smartphones can help children practice the skills they learn in therapy, but in order to communicate with humans, learners need to interact with humans. Gaps in receptive language skills can be confusing to parents because other children seem to grasp these concepts so effortlessly, but–just like with a visual impairment or food allergy–early intervention can have a profoundly positive impact on a child’s verbal behavior skills.

We believe that every parent, teacher, and therapist deserves access to a clinician-developed, modern, organized library of language development content, so we decided to share our programs with the world.