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.


43rd Annual Convention; Denver, CO; 2017

Event Details

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Symposium #214
CE Offered: BACB
Toward an Understanding and Application of Necessary Components of Written Behavior Plans
Sunday, May 28, 2017
10:00 AM–10:50 AM
Convention Center Mile High Ballroom 2A
Area: PRA; Domain: Service Delivery
Chair: Alissa Anne Conway (Western Michigan University)
CE Instructor: Alissa Anne Conway, M.A.

Behavior analysts are ethically required to conduct assessments and develop function based interventions based on these assessments (BACB Professional and Ethical Compliance Code, 2014; Baer, Wolf, Risley, 1968). The interventions must be written comprehensively and clearly into an accessible document, known as a behavior support plan or behavior intervention plan. Individuals creating these plans must first be able to identify the proper components of a behavior plan (Horner, Sugai, Todd & Lewis-Palmer, 2000; Kroeger & Phillips, 2007; McVilly, Webber, Sharp & Paris, 2013; Vollmer, Iwata, Zarcone & Rodgers, 1992) and then have an organized way to communicate these components. The presenter will first present the necessary components of a behavior support plan will be identified based on a survey conducted with professionals in the field. The development of a potential behavior support plan template to utilize across settings will be presented, and the development of rubric, as well as possible evaluative strategies for these templates will be reviewed.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): BSP, components, training

Reviewing Necessary Components of Written Behavior Plans

SHAWN P. QUIGLEY (University of New Mexico Medical Group), Robert K. Ross (Beacon ABA Services)

Behavior Analysts are required to document assessment results and behavior change programs clearly and concisely (BACB 4th Edition Task List, 2012; BACB Professional and Ethical Compliance Code, 2014; Baer, Wolf & Risley, 1968). This documentation often takes the form of an assessment report and/or behavior plan. Carr (2008) suggested this process of documentation occurs in three stages: identification of appropriate treatments, content of the plan and the plan structure/visual layout. However, Carr further stated there is little guidance for the content of the plan and the plan structure/visual layout. This lack of guidance is further complicated by the recent Registered Behavior Technician (RBT) task list requiring knowledge of the essential components of a written skill acquisition and behavior reduction plan (BACB RBT Task List, 2013). There have been previous attempts as resolving this lack of guidance (e.g., Horner, Sugai, Todd & Lewis-Palmer, 2000; Kroeger & Phillips, 2007; McVilly, Webber, Sharp & Paris, 2013; Vollmer, Iwata, Zarcone & Rodgers, 1992), but the passage of time, methodological concerns, dearth of research and other factors, allow the lack of guidance to persist. The purpose of this presentation is summarize the literature regarding behavior plan components and to share data from a survey of behavior analysts (i.e., BCBA and BCBA-D) regarding necessary components. Once a consensus of essential components is established, subsequent researchers can evaluate the validity of the consensus. Additionally, structure and visual formatting of the essential components can be evaluated.


Creating Electronic Behavior Support Plan Templates

CODY MORRIS (Western Michigan University )

Often times in practical settings behavior analysts are required to include specific components in behavior support plans. From a clinical director or BCBA supervisor perspective, it can be challenging to insure that supervisees include all of the appropriate components in the behavior support plans they create. This part of the symposium will focus on the process of creating electronic behavior support plan templates that will assist therapists through the process of writing behavior support plans to the standards set by the supervisor. Whether supervisees need guidance in writing target behavior definitions, goals, and assessments or following state regulations, electronic behavior support plan templates may assist. Electronic behavior support plans can be used to create more consistent behavior support plans in a variety of settings. Examples will be provided on how to create templates with the goal of helping practitioners create higher quality behavior support plans.


Creation and Utilization of A Rubric for Behavior Support Plans

ALISSA ANNE CONWAY (Western Michigan University)

Behavior analysts are often required to write behavior support plans without specific guidance on the requirements for each component of the plan. Though templates provide guidance as an outline for the behavior support plan, they do not provide specific details as to how to fill in each component. A rubric can provide the information to guide individuals to complete a template with examples and details for appropriate information. A rubric not only serves as a guide for the individual writing the plan, but may also be utilized as supplementary material during trainings of how to write behavior support plans or as an evaluation tool for supervisors or committees reviewing behavior support plans. Rubrics may be adjusted per setting or location based on state regulations and setting policies. Possible methods of training with a rubric as well as evaluative methods will be discussed.




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