Addressing Challenging Behavior: Fu nctional Behavior Assessment and Positive Behavior Supports
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Addressing Challenging Behavior: Functional Behavior Assessment and Positive Behavior Supports
Behavior that results in self-injury or injury of others, causes damage to the physical environment, interferes with the acquisition of new skills, and/or socially isolates the learner ( Doss and Reichle )
Challenging Behavior in Children with Down syndromeCoe et al., (1990) and Dykens and Kasari (1997) found higher rates than typically developing children of:attention deficitssocial withdrawalnoncompliance Compulsive like behaviors (e.g., arranging objects, repeating certain actions) (Evans & Gray, 2000)Talking to themselves (Glenn & Cunningham, 2000) Problem behaviors associated with anxiety, depression, and withdrawal increase with age (Dykens & Kasari, 1997; Einfeld, Tonge, Turner, Parmenter, & Smith, 1999).
Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA)An FBA is designed to assess the causes of a students challenging behavior and to make recommendations on corresponding reports and subsequent behavioral intervention plans.
What do we do?
A systematic method of assessment for obtaining information about the function of a problem behavior
Identifies the variables that appear to lead to and maintain the behavior function
Used to help make a plan to increase appropriate behavior and decrease inappropriate behavior
5 Steps for Conducting an FBAIdentify challenging behavior in concrete and observable termsCollect information utilizing indirect assessments. Utilize direct measures to collect data on the challenging behavior and establish base-line levels. Analyze data collected.Develop a hypothesis that describes why the behavior is occurring.NOTE:Once the FBA is completeDevelop recommendations and/or create a BIP to improve the problem behavior.Implementation of a BIP.Evaluate the plan and modify as needed.
Step OneIdentify challenging behavior in concrete and observable terms.
What constitutes problem behavior?
May interfere with the students ability to learn (or the learning of others)
May be dangerous to a learner
May be dangerous to others
May place property at risk
May create a barrier to participation
May create a barrier to relationships
May be stigmatizing
Define the Problem in Observable and Measurable Terms
Must be observable, measurable, precise and not subject to interpretation
What does the behavior look like (topography)When does the behavior occurWhere does the behavior occurWith whom does the behavior occurHow often does the behavior occur
Identify Challenging Behavior in Concrete & Observable Terms*
General descriptionsConcrete & Observable DescriptionsStudent is aggressiveDuring lunch, when student doesnt get his way, he hits other childrenStudent is disruptiveStudent continuously calls out and makes inappropriate comments during math seat workStudent is hyperactiveStudent continuously moves around on seat, plays with items on desk, and gets out of his seat w/o permission during reading activities
STEP TWOCollect information utilizing indirect assessments
Questions To Be Answered
What are the antecedents of the challenging behavior (e.g., setting events that elicit the behavior)?What are the consequences for the challenging behavior, which may reinforce it?What does the student gain?What does the student avoid?
Utilize direct measures to collect data on the challenging behavior and establish base-line levels.
ABC Chart - Antecedent Behavior Consequence data ABC Chart ABC Data
Direct MeasuresDirect MeasuresFrequencyDurationLatencyIntensity
Scatter Plot - data during specific time intervals across the dayScatter Plots
Questions to be answeredWhat is the intensity of the challenging behavior (e.g., frequency, duration, strength, etc.)?How does students challenging behavior compare to his or her peers?How does the students challenging behavior vary across settings?
Analyze data collected
Questions to be answered. . .What patterns of antecedent events and/or consequences are connected to the students challenging behavior?What is the student gaining or avoiding?What are the antecedent events that elicit the behavior and what are the consequences that reinforce the behavior (A-B-Cs)?Do skills and/or performance deficits contribute to the challenging behavior?Are setting events contributing to the behavior?
Consists of the systematic manipulation of controlling variables to demonstrate the function of the behavior (ONeill et al., 1997 as well as Iwata, Dorsey, Slifer, Bauman, & Richman, 1982).Functional analysis involves measuring rates of challenging behavior as a series of conditions are introduced.
Conduct Functional Analysis Manipulate different environmental events to see how behavior changes4 specific conditions are evaluatedAlone test for automatic reinforcementAttention test for socially mediated positive reinforcementDemand test for socially mediated negative reinforcementPlay control for the three other test conditions
Examples of manipulations For a period of time do not deliver any attention while measuring behaviorThen deliver high rates of high quality attention while measuring behaviorTask AvoidanceDeliver easy then hard tasks, novel versus maintenance itemsNon-socially motivatedPlace the child in a variety of situations and observe the behavior
Develop a hypotheses that describes why the behavior is occurring
Why do students display problem behaviors?Five Primary Functions:SEATS
S: Setting EventsBiological/Physiological EventsSleeping, eating/diet, medication, toileting, health, presence of a specific disabilityEnvironmental EventsPhysical events: e.g., temperature, noise, architecture Social events: e.g., staffing changes, previously occurring social interactions characterized by positive or negative valence), forgot favorite toy, number of people in room, changes in schedule
Specific Syndromes asa Setting EventMcGee (1999) noted that the presence of a specific disability itself may in fact function as a motivating operation. a decrease in the reinforcing value of attention in individuals with autism an increase in the reinforcing value of food in individuals with Prader-Willi.
Down Syndrome as aSetting EventWishart (1987) demonstrated children with Down syndrome have a tendency, even at an early age to engage in escape behaviorDemonstrated children with Down syndrome have a propensity to engage in noncompliant behavior often taking the form of cute party tricks. Observed such behaviors during assessment tasks, particularly when the children were presented with slightly more difficult tasks. Thus, specifically in children with Down syndrome, there may be an increase in the reinforcing value of escaping demands and possibly an increase in the reinforcing value of attention.
E: EscapeLearners may display problem behavior in order to escape from, delay, or avoid, tasks and activitiesExamples: work demands, chores, transitions to non-preferred activities, etc.
A: AttentionLearners may display problem behavior in order to gain attention from adults or other students
Examples: parent/teacher attention, peer attention, reprimands, praise, etc.
T: Tangible (Toys/Things)
Learners may display problem behavior in order to access preferred items
Examples: Preferred activities, toys, books, snacks, etc.
Learners may display problem behavior in order to access to or avoid sensory stimulation
Formulate a Written Positive Behavior Support Plan
RationaleTarget BehaviorsBehaviors to increaseBehaviors to decreaseHypothesized function of behaviorAntecedent StrategiesReactive StrategiesMeasurementImplementationFollow up
Include all behaviors to be addressedBehaviors to increaseBehaviors to decrease
Must be operationally defined
Hypothesized Function of BehaviorWhat is the hypothesized function?How did you determine the function?MAS/FASTABC DataFunctional Analysis
Is Behavior due to Setting EventsBiological illness, lack of sleep, ear infection, menses, fatigue, allergies
Environmental noisy and/or crowded environment, negative interaction
Setting Event ChecklistIf you believe there is a relationship between setting events and challenging behavior:List the setting events that are likely to affect challenging behaviorCreate a system where a caregiver identifies if a setting event occurred on a give dayRefer to suggestions to address setting events to help to decrease the likelihood of challenging behavior
Setting Event ChecklistCan also report via telephone, fax, e-mail, text
Event4/14/24/34/44/5 4/6Didnt get a good nights sleep
Mom out of town
Allergies acting up
Addressing Setting EventsRemove the setting event (e.g., ensure good night sleep, medication is taken)Neutralize the effect of the setting event (e.g., relaxation routine, provide food or medication, allow for a nap)Remove stimuli that occasion problem behavior when setting event present (e.g., change in schedule, reduce demands)Increased the rewards available for appropriate behavior when setting event present
Environmental changes that will decrease