Timeline: The Politics & Marketing Behind The Autism Epidemic
Note: The timeline is still in the process of being updated. [Last updated September 1, 2022]
Autism Politics & Initiatives
The Autism Market
Grants , Funded Projects & Money Raised
Marketing & Media Attention
Organizations & Companies
Autistic Community & Allies
The beginnings of ABA can be traced back to Teodoro Ayllon and Jack Michael’s study “The psychiatric nurse as a behavioral engineer” (1959) that they published in the Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior (JEAB).
Ayllon and Michael were training the staff and nurses at a psychiatric hospital how to use a token economy based on the principles of operant conditioning for patients with schizophrenia and intellectual disability, which led to researchers at the University of Kansas to start the Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis (JABA) in 1968.
Lovaas published articles for his behavior system.
In 1965, Lovaas published a series of articles that outlined his system for coding observed behaviors, described a pioneering investigation of the antecedents and consequences that maintained a problem behavior. and relied upon the methods of errorless learning that was initially devised by Charles Ferster to teach nonverbal children to speak.
Lovaas also described how to use social (secondary) reinforcers, teach children to imitate, and what interventions (including electric shocks) may be used to reduce aggression and life-threatening self-injury.
Notable graduate students from the University of Washington include Robert Wahler, James Sherman, and Ivar Lovaas. Lovaas established the UCLA Young Autism Project while teaching at the University of California, Los Angeles.