Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


38th Annual Convention; Seattle, WA; 2012

Event Details

Previous Page


Symposium #210
CE Offered: BACB
Improving the Quality of Behavior Support and Instructional Practices: A Systems Approach
Sunday, May 27, 2012
2:00 PM–3:20 PM
604 (Convention Center)
Area: OBM/EDC; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Robert F. Putnam (May Institute)
Discussant: Susan Wilczynski (Ball State University)
CE Instructor: Melanie DuBard, Ph.D.

During the 2010-211 school year, the administrative staff at a large private school serving students with autism spectrum disorder and/or developmental disabilities conducted a system wide needs assessment to address the needs of a growing program. Results of the needs assessment identified areas within the educational and behavioral domains where systems level improvements as well as increased consistency and continuity of practices were needed across the school. Three of the areas identified were: 1) the reduction of crisis intervention procedures i.e.; protective holds; 2) improvement in the treatment integrity of behavior support plans, and; 3) the amount and quality of direct instruction. The development of electronic and paper based tools were developed and data was collected on crisis intervention procedures, inter-observer agreement data for educational program, and treatment integrity measures for behavioral support plans. This symposium examines the process of creating and then implementing data collection procedures and the use of these data to improve the systems across this school.

Keyword(s): Behavior Supports, Instructional Practices, Systems Approach

Assessing and Developing System-wide Interventions to Reduce Crisis Intervention Procedures

MELANIE DUBARD (May Institute), Blake Grider (May Institute), Robert F. Putnam (May Institute), Bonnie Souza (May Institute)

Using data based decision making concerning the effectiveness of behavior support interventions and the use of crisis intervention procedures in a large school serving students with autism spectrum disorder and/or developmental disabilities is often made on a student by student basis. This presentation will review the development of a system to collect school-wide data that could be used to determine the effectiveness of school-wide behavior support as well as individual behavior support. The use of functional assessment information to ascertain system interventions particularly in these schools is often lacking. Often schools do not review data at the systems level to make programmatic decisions and if so only examine the frequency and duration of procedures. Staff at this center assisted in designing the system to examine the frequency, duration and type of crisis intervention procedure. In addition the system allowed the review of location, time, activity and staff involved in these procedures to help the program as a whole improve its behavior support practices. Presentation of data as well as the effective use of this to make system level changes in interventions will be presented.


Evaluation of Behavior Support Plan Written Formats to Improve Treatment Integrity

KATE GILLIGAN (May Institute), Valerie Hoffberger (May Institute)

Treatment integrity is the degree to which treatments are implemented as they were planned or designed. Following completion of a behavior support plan (BSP), staff must monitor the effectiveness of the plan in relation to problem behavior and make conclusions about treatment effectiveness. A number of variables have been evaluated in the treatment integrity literature to determine what components contribute to high levels of treatment integrity with behavior plans in both the home and school settings. Some of those components have included type of training, length of training, and performance feedback. There are other variables that could potentially affect treatment integrity such as staffs knowledge of behavior principles, stress, and how information is presented to staff (using brief forms, flow charts, etc.). One recommendation resulting from the needs assessments was for staff to evaluate treatment integrity with the current behavior support written format as compared to treatment integrity obtained with the behavior support plan written in a competing pathways framework. The process of developing a treatment integrity measure, developing a method of collecting treatment integrity school wide, and how a change in the format of behavior support plans occurred will be discussed.


Improving Students' on Task Behavior and Direct Instructional Strategies on a System-wide Basis

SHANON M. TOMASSONE (May Institute), Jennifer Iverson (The May Institute), Rebecca Parenteau (May Institute)

Students with autism spectrum disorder and/or developmental disabilities often have poor rates of on-task behavior. An analysis found deficits in this area in a large school for students with autism spectrum disorder and/or developmental disabilities. A systems approach was used to improve overall student on-task behavior. This presentation will review the research in this area and the development of tools to measure this behavior as well as the staff variables found to impact on task behavior. An examination of the data collected across the school will be reviewed as well as the use of performance feedback to improve staff behaviors found to be related to increased on task behavior and improved direct instruction practices.




Back to Top
Modifed by Eddie Soh