Intensive Outpatient Program
Training caregivers to reduce challenging behaviors

We help caregivers find the right treatments to reduce dangerous or disruptive behaviors in their child.

Is my child a good fit for this program?

Some kids with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) engage in problem behaviors that are dangerous or disruptive to daily life. If your child experiences these issues, he or she may be a good fit for our Intensive Outpatient Program. The program helps create a unique treatment plan for each child and empowers caregivers to use the treatment at home and in the community. 

How do you determine a treatment plan? 

We will observe problem behaviors using an assessment called a functional analysis. This testing will happen during the first few weeks of the admission. 

It helps us learn: 

  • The reason for your child’s problem behavior 
  • The best treatment for your child’s problem behavior 

We will review several treatment options. We want to reduce problem behavior and increase appropriate behaviors, like appropriate communication. Treatment goals are matched to the needs of the individual child and family. We focus on reinforcing positive behaviors to replace the disruptive ones. 

How long are appointments? 

The program lasts an average of 12 weeks, but the length depends on your child’s needs and progress. Your child will come to the center from 9:15 a.m. to 3:15 p.m., Monday through Friday. 

Session locations

Services generally take place at Marcus Autism Center. Once we find an effective treatment plan, we will train parents, teachers and other care providers to use the treatment. Training may occur at:  

  • Marcus Autism Center 
  • Your home 
  • Your child’s classroom 
  • Other community settings, like grocery stores or restaurants 

Do caregivers attend sessions? 

Your child must be present each day, Monday through Friday. You and other primary caregivers must be present for: 

  • Assessments and paperwork on the first two days of admission 
  • Other meetings and training sessions as needed

Pre-admission orientation

We require that at least one caregiver attends a pre-admission orientation.  This orientation must be completed for your child to be eligible for admission to the program. 

Mandatory caregiver training

Caregiver training typically starts about six weeks after the program starts but depends on your child’s progress. We also conduct training during the last two to four weeks of the program. 

Mandatory meetings

The program requires you attend a beginning-of-admission meeting and a weekly caregiver meeting. We aim to be flexible in scheduling your weekly meeting on a day that works for your family. 

Beginning admission assessments

At least one primary caregiver must be present at both admission assessments at the start of the program. Admission assessments take place at: 

  • Day one: Marcus Autism Center
  • Day two: Your home 

What if I miss an appointment? 

Treatment will only work if you and your family participate regularly. We will re-evaluate your child’s admission if you cancel too many sessions. 


Email our team  or call 404-785-9464 for more information. 


To have your child evaluated by our team, you’ll need a doctor referral and to complete the steps to make a new patient appointment.