Task analysis (TA) is the process of breaking a skill into smaller, more manageable steps in order to teach the skill.
Task analysis (TA) is the process of breaking a skill into smaller, more manageable steps in order to teach the skill. The learner can be taught to perform individual steps of the chain until the entire skill is mastered (also called “chaining”). Other practices, such as reinforcement, video modeling, or time delay, should also be used to facilitate learning the smaller steps. As the smaller steps are mastered, the learner becomes more and more independent in his or her ability to perform the larger skill.
TA meets evidence-based criteria with 8 single-case design studies. According to the evidence-based studies, this intervention has been effective for preschoolers (age 3–5 years) to middle school-age learners (12–14 years) with ASD. TA can be used effectively to address social, communication, joint attention, academic, motor, and adaptive skills.
Brief adapted from
Fleury,V. P. (2013). Task analysis (TA) fact sheet. Chapel Hill, NC: The University of North Carolina, Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, The National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Franzone, E. (2009). Overview of task analysis. Madison, WI: National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders, Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin.
|3-18||Academic, social, communication, self-help, behavior||Home, school, clinic|
|The information found in the Research Summary table is updated yearly following a literature review of new research and this age range reflects information from this review.|
Outcomes: Evidence-based Emerging No evidence Comprehensive
Step 1. Identifying the Target Skill
A. Identify the target skill that the learner with ASD should acquire.
Step 2. Identifying the Prerequisite Skills of the Learner and the Materials Needed to Teach the Task
A. Determine whether the learner has the required prerequisite skills needed to learn the task.
B. Define the necessary materials needed to teach the task.
Step 3. Breaking the Skill into Components
A. Segment the target skill into more manageable components by:
i. completing the skill personally and recording each step or
ii. observing another person (in real time or via video) complete the activity and recording the steps.
B. Confirm that each component consists of a discrete skill.
Step 4. Confirming that the Task is Completely Analyzed
A. Confirm that the task is completely analyzed by having someone follow the steps verbatim.
Step 5. Determining How the Skill Will be Taught
A. Select the appropriate teaching method by matching the method to:
i. The learner’s temperament
ii. The learner’s learning style
iii. The history of what has and has not worked for this learner
iv. The learners IEP/IFSP
v. The environment within with the learner functions
B. Present the steps of the task analysis to the learner in an age- and developmentally appropriate manner.
Step 6. Implementing Intervention and Monitoring Progress
A. Implement the evidence-based practices identified as appropriate to teach the target skills, using the steps for implementation and implementation checklist for the selected practices.
B. Follow appropriate data collection procedures to monitor learner progress for the specific evidence-based practices chosen to teach the target skills.