Nova Center of the Ozarks



Residential Services

Nova provides services to individuals in an Individualized Supported Living arrangement (ISL) which allows the individuals to live in their own home with one or two housemates. The goal for each individual is to become as independent as possible and to be able to lead a happy and productive life. Nova staff are present to help each individual reach their goals in life.

The homes are typically 3-bedroom, 2-bath ranch-style homes in South Central Springfield. Each home is decorated and furnished based on the individuals tastes and updates are made regularly with the help of donations. Nova has built relationships with area landlords to help ensure each home is taken care of and of high quality. The Department of Mental Health recognizes the individuals’ homes in Nova’s residential services as some of the nicest homes supported by a provider agency. 


Day Habilitation Services

Day Habilitation services enable individuals to live independent lives in their own home or with their families. Support is provided one-on-one and in group settings in the home and community.

Services revolve around the specific need of each individual and include: community integration, money management, honing social skills, promoting self-care, self-advocacy, home and work skill development, and health and safety.

Day Program

Through Nova’s on-site Day Program, individuals have the opportunity to work, learn, and play to develop important skills and be active in the community. Each individual is encouraged to strive for self-determination and personal growth, and activities revolve around individual preferences and ISP goals. The program operates Monday through Friday, 7am-3pm.


Behavior analysis focuses on the principles that explain how learning takes place. Positive reinforcement is one such principle. When a behavior is followed by some sort of reward, the behavior is more likely to be repeated. Through decades of research, the field of behavior analysis has developed many techniques for increasing useful behaviors and reducing those that may cause harm or interfere with learning.

Applied behavior analysis (ABA) is the use of these techniques and principles to bring about meaningful and positive change in behavior. Behavior analysis is a scientifically validated approach to understanding behavior and how it is affected by the environment. In this context, “behavior" refers to actions and skills. "Environment" includes any influence – physical or social – that might change or be changed by one's behavior.

 ABA services are essentially the modification of environmental influences to teach positive actions and skills. 


Missouri First Steps

In our First Steps program, Behavior Analysts use the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) to develop skill acquisition programs for children with developmental delays and/or developmental disabilities, ages birth through three.  Behavior Analysts work directly with the children and their caregivers to implement these programs using Discreet Trial Training. During therapy sessions, Behavior Analysts focus on verbal behavior, and teaching the child to use a form of functional communication to get their needs met. This could include speaking, using sign language or using the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS). Behavior Analysts also focus on decreasing any problem behaviors the child is exhibiting, and teaching appropriate replacement behaviors.

Services offered: ABA Evaluation, ABA Consultation, ABA Implementer, Transition Assistance into Early Childhood

Area Schools

NIS provides behavioral services to area schools.  Behavior Analysts work with school staff to complete a Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA) to determine why the student is engaging in the problem behaviors. Then, a Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP) is created to decrease the problem behaviors, and teach the student how to get the same results using appropriate behavior. Behavior Analysts work directly with the student, implementing the BIP and modeling implementation for school staff. Behavior Analysts will then coach and train school staff on implementing the BIP, and will eventually fade out to a consultative basis. NIS also provides homebound instruction to students that are no longer able to be served in the public-school setting. Homebound instruction can take place in the student’s home, school or another community location.

Services offered: Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA), Behavior Support Plan (BSP), Staff training on implementation of individualized BSP, Modeling sessions in which Behavior Analyst implements BSP, Coaching sessions in which Behavior Analyst observes staff implementation of BSP, Professional Development Workshops and Trainings, Homebound Instruction, Transition Assistance for Homebound Services to the School Setting


DMH Behavior Services

For adults and children not receiving services through our other programs, NIS provides behavior intervention and support on an individualized basis.  Because each program is tailored to the lives of those served, what this can look like varies greatly.  For some in Individualized Supported Living (ISL), our Behavior Analysts will develop a Behavior Support Plan (BSP) that offers ISL staff methods to decrease problem behaviors and increase pro-social behavior. It can also include methods for teaching individuals practical skills, social skills and activities to enrich their environment and provide alternatives to problem behaviors.  Our individual services can also take on the form of community based practice of behavior support plans, social skills learning groups, and natural-home-based interventions, and more.

Services offered: In home ABA Programming, Discrete Trial Training, Toilet Training Program, Feeding Program, Visual Supports, Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA), Behavior Support Plan (BSP), Academic Tutoring, Community Integration, Social Skills Training, Attend IEP Meetings, Classroom Autism Awareness (Friend 2 Friend Model)