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University of Utah - Department of Educational Psychology

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1 University of Utah - Department of Educational Psychology
Geoffrey Colvin, Ph. D. University of Oregon Managing Acting-Out Behavior TM: A review of the staff development program to prevent and manage acting-out behavior Training School Psychologists to be Experts in Evidence Based Practices for Tertiary Students with Serious Emotional Disturbance/Behavior Disorders By Sarah H. Francis University of Utah - Department of Educational Psychology US Office of Education 84.325KH325K080308

2 Managing Acting-Out Behavior TM
A Staff Development Program to Prevent and Manage Acting-Out Behavior Presented by Geoffrey Colvin, Ph.D, University of Oregon Program Includes: Video Program Tape One: Model for Describing Acting-Out Behavior (36 Min.) Tape Two: Strategies for Managing Acting-Out Behavior (47 Min.) Workbook To accompany the taped presentation by Dr. Colvin Publisher: Behavior Associates (1992) Cost: ≈ $100

3 Managing Acting-Out Behavior TM
Preface* The procedures need to be implemented by all staff who work with the target student or students. The program offers basic guidelines. Individual staff are expected to develop a specific written plan for their target student(s). Staff should review the tapes several times to understand the whole program and to avoid implementing bits and pieces of the program to secure short term benefits. Regular review meetings should be conducted to assess progress and to determine appropriate adjustments. *(1992) Behavior Associates

4 Philosophy* Intentions of the program Research and Data Driven
Indicators of agitation Presence of an escalating behavior chain Presence of successive interaction The back-and-forth interactions that are often threats or confrontational. “War games.” Research and Data Driven The descriptions used to illustrate the seven phases of behavior are “generalizations or summaries of behavior observed from a large number of students of many years,” – G. Colvin, Ph.D. *(1992) Behavior Associates

5 PART I: Describing Acting-Out Behavior*
There are seven phases of acting-out behavior. We need to be able to observe student behavior so as to identify which phase the student may be in. 5. Peak 6. De-escalation Intensity 4. Acceleration 3. Agitation 7. Recovery 1. Calm 2. Trigger Time Phases of escalated behavior *(1992) Behavior Associates

6 Phase One – Calm* Overall Behavior - Cooperative On Task
Follows rules and expectations Responsive to praise Initiates behavior Goal oriented Socially appropriate *(1992) Behavior Associates

7 Phase Two – Trigger* Overall Behavior – Series of unresolved problems
Conflicts Denial of something they need Something negative is inflicted on them Changes in routine Provocations Pressure Interruptions Ineffective problem solving Errors Corrections *(1992) Behavior Associates

8 Phase Three – Agitation*
Overall Behavior - Unfocused Increase or Decrease in Behavior Increase: Eyes dart Language non-conversational Busy hands In and out of groups Off task/On task Decrease: Stares into space Language subdued Hands contained Withdraws from group Off task “Frozen” *(1992) Behavior Associates

9 Phase Four – Acceleration*
Overall Behavior – Student displays engaging behaviors Questioning and arguing Non-compliance and defiance Off task Provoking students Compliance with accompanying inappropriate behaviors Criterion problems Threats and intimidation Verbal abuse *(1992) Behavior Associates

10 Phase Five – Peak* Overall Behavior – Student is out of control
Physical abuse Assault Self abuse Severe tantrums Hyperventilation Screaming Running Violence *(1992) Behavior Associates

11 Phase Six – De-Escalation*
Overall Behavior – Student displays confusion Confusion Reconciliation Withdrawal Denial Blaming others Sleeping Responsive to directions Responsive to manipulative or mechanical tasks Avoidance of discussion (unless there is occasion to blame others ) *(1992) Behavior Associates

12 Phase Seven – Recovery*
Overall Behavior – Eagerness for busy work and reluctance to discuss Eagerness for independent work or activity Subdued in group work Subdued in class discussion Defensive Avoidance of de-briefing *(1992) Behavior Associates

13 PART-II: Strategies for Managing Acting-Out Behavior*
Managing early phases of acting-out behavior appropriately will prevent serious behaviors from occurring. The real teaching and management occurs in phases one through four (calm, trigger, agitation and acceleration). In the remaining phases (peak, de-escalation and recovery) the emphasis is on safety, re-entry and follow-up. *(1992) Behavior Associates

14 Calm* Strategies Structure Quality Instruction Provide Attention
Preparation Delivery of instruction Classroom organization Expectations Management system Quality Instruction “Teach them to learn and they will pay attention” Provide Attention Contingent attention Non-contingent attention *(1992) Behavior Associates

15 Triggers* Strategies Formal strategies for problem solving
Individual Problem Solving Plan Curricula Clearly identify the source of the problem 1:1 Services for district resources Identify possible solutions or operation Services purchased from community Assist student in evaluating options and selecting one option Pre-Correction plan Context – Predictable problem behavior Discuss results and implication of the choice Expected or alternative behavior Develop implementation plan, specify tasks and who is responsible for each task Context adjustments or accommodations Develop criteria for success and specify review date Behavior reinforcement Prompts Monitoring plan *(1992) Behavior Associates

16 Agitation* Strategies
Basic Approach – Make accommodations to enable student to settle down. Timing – Make accommodations before onset of serious behavior otherwise you make reinforce a chain of avoidance or escalation. Space – Provide the student with an opportunity to have some isolation. Time – Give the student some options with deadlines. Adjust schedule. Preferred Activities – Allow engagement of preferred activity for a short time. Teacher Proximity Independent Activities Movement Activities Involve the student in the plan *(1992) Behavior Associates

17 Agitation Continued… Possible Problems and Remedies
Problem: Other students may question why this student should be getting the breaks or privileges when they are working hard. “Its not fair.” Remedy: incorporate these procedures as exceptions to the general expectations that are presented to the class. The usual class expectations are presented and then these procedures are presented as exceptions. The class is expected to mind their own business and keep working. Problem: The individual student may use the procedures to avoid work, “I don’t want to do math today, I feel agitated.” Remedy: The procedures can be presented in two phases. In the first phase the student does not have to make up time, however, in the second phases there will be a cost on the accommodations such as the student will have to make up time.

18 Acceleration* Strategies Avoid escalating prompts
Agitated behavior from staff (e.g., shouting); cornering the student; power games or getting in the student’s face; nagging; making statements that discredit the student in front of peers; or becoming engaged in arguing. Maintain calmness, respect, detachment Utilize crisis prevention strategies that were approved beforehand. Delivery of expected behaviors, time for response, then follow- up. Follow-up De-brief *(1992) Behavior Associates

19 Peak* Strategies Short term interventions Long term interventions
The very first step should be to address SAFETY (safety for other students, the involved student and staff). The safety procedures need to be approved and staff need to be very familiar with details of implementation. The most common strategies are: Isolation and removal of other students Parent contact Police call Short-term suspension Restraint More information needed Long term interventions Repeated instances of out of control behavior should serve as a “red flag” that we need to do things differently. Plan intervention to target earlier in the chain; analyze environment; refer to counseling/evaluation; examine school policy and procedures; etc. *(1992) Behavior Associates

20 Peak Continued… Strategies Precautions
The procedures used to address peak or out of control behavior are typically INTRUSIVE (especially if force has to be used). It is critical that a district/school develop clear procedures for managing behavior at this point. The following guidelines are recommended: Strict criteria should be established for when these procedures are to be used… All staff who are likely to use the procedures should be trained fully to protect all parties. Staff should receive regular review and practice opportunities. Two staff members should be involved at the same time. Staff needs to be designated to monitor the student carefully and to introduce and independent activity as early as possible. Careful records need to be kept. Parent permission should be obtained. The procedures should be part of school policy and should be in the IEP for special education students who exhibit out of control behavior.

21 De-Escalation* Recovery* Strategies Strategies
Provide strong focus on normal routines. Do not negotiate on consequences for the serious behavior. Strongly acknowledge appropriate handling of situations similar to previous situation where student exhibited serious behavior. De-brief. Communicate expectation that the student can succeed with help. Establish a plan with specific steps. Isolate the student. Allow some time to cool down. Engage in independent work for twenty minutes requiring a product. Complete exit paperwork. Restore environment. Resume regular schedule. *(1992) Behavior Associates

22 Limitations of the Program
No guidelines for how to test progress. Vague instructions and definitions for items that involve legal liability. No standard method of restraint discussed during Peak phase. Publisher and author are one and the same. “Dr. Colvin’s Library” Lack of data and research – a commercially driven program. No information on seclusion. No research regarding the validity or efficacy of the program.

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