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Introduction to Functional Assessment. Goals for Today Review the goals of PBS Discuss the role of functional assessment State why an intervention based.

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Presentation on theme: "Introduction to Functional Assessment. Goals for Today Review the goals of PBS Discuss the role of functional assessment State why an intervention based."— Presentation transcript:

1 Introduction to Functional Assessment

2 Goals for Today Review the goals of PBS Discuss the role of functional assessment State why an intervention based upon what a behavior looks like is most likely to be ineffective Define indirect assessment State the advantages and disadvantages of indirect assessment Conduct an indirect assessment and summarize the results using observable terms Quiz FBA Project Rosebud… In schools!

3 Goals of PBS Make problem behavior inefficient and ineffective Provide support across all aspects of a persons life Allow the person to be able to function within the environment s/he chooses to live

4 Behavior Does Not Happen in a Vacuum AntecedentsAntecedents – events that set the occasion for a behavior to occur –Instructions –Introduction or removal of items –Teacher/peer attention (or lack thereof) BehaviorBehavior – response that occurs –Does not have to be a bad behavior! ConsequenceConsequence – events that occur after a behavior –May make the behavior more/less likely to occur again Functions Functions – contingencies maintaining a response

5 Theories of How Functions Work Common Functions of Behavior –Peer/Teacher Attention –Escape or Avoidance of Unpleasant Events –Sensory Consequences –Access to Items (Tangibles)

6 Other factors to consider in assessing causes of problem behavior GENERAL SETTING Low level of reinforcement hot, noisy, crowded INSTRUCTIONAL ISSUES too difficult pacing is too fast/slow lack of variety lack of choice Setting Events/Motivating Operations – things and events that make reinforcers more potent

7 Theories of How Functions Work Communication Hypothesis – all behavior serves a communicative function Behavior, even behavior that looks very similar, can serve very different functions

8 Functional Behavioral Assessment FBA

9 Goals of Functional Assessment Find out whats maintaining the behavior now What strategies would be the most effective for behavior to change

10 Components of a Good Functional Assessment Informal Observation/Record Review Definition of Behavior Problem –Use observable terms Selection of Tools to be used –Use a variety of tools to assess: Problem behavior Skill v Performance Deficits Possible replacement behaviors Possible reinforcers –Utilize a team approach Careful analysis of data Preparing an appropriate support plan

11 Indirect Assessment Checklists, Interviews, and Rating Scales Forms that ask questions that point to the functions of behavior Advantages: Easy to administer Requires very few resources

12 Disadvantages to Indirect Assessment May not identify the correct function Tests of reliability and validity are inconclusive Teacher and Staff biases may affect conclusions drawn

13 Summarizing the Results Use observable terms and avoid explanatory fictions Summarize only what you see You still need more information!

14 Examples I calculated the MAS and the highest score was attention, followed by materials. Mrs. Jones stated that she thought Jimmy was often looking for attention. It seems like attention might be a possible function. The MAS clearly shows that Jimmy is seeking attention. We saw that when Jimmy wants attention, he tends to throw his books. Mrs. Jones agrees with me that this is probably the function. I will definitely take this into consideration when I write my behavior support plan

15 For More Information Alberto, P. A., & Troutman, A. C. (2009). Applied behavior analysis for teachers (8th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Merrill-Prentice-Hall. Asmus, J. M., Vollmer, T. R., & Borrero, J. C. (2002). Functional behavioral assessment: A school based model. Education and Treatment of Children, 25(1), Cooper, J. O., Heron, T. E., & Heward, W. L. (2007). Applied behavior analysis (2nd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Merrill Prentice Hall. Dunlap, G., & Fox, L. (1996). Early intervention and serious problem behaviors: A comprehensive approach. In L. K. Koegel, & Koegel, R.L., Dunlap,G. (Eds.), Positive behavior support: Including individuals with difficult behaviors in the community (pp ). Baltimore: Brookes. Durand, V. M., & Crimmins, D. B. (1988). Identifying the variables maintaining self-injurious behavior. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 18(1), Floyd, R. G., Phaneuf, R. L., & Wilczynski, S. M. (2005). Measurement properties of indirect assessment methods for functional behavioral assessment: A review of research. School Psychology Review, 34(1), Hall, S. S. (2005). Comparing descriptive, experimental and informant-based assessments of problem behaviors. Research in Developmental Disabilities: A Multidisciplinary Journal, 26, Joosten, A. V., & Bundy, A. C. (2008). The motivation of stereotypic and repetitive behavior: Examination of construct validity of the motivation assessment scale. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 38(7), Kearney, C. A. (1994). Interrater reliability of the motivation assessment scale: Another, closer look. Journal of the Association for Persons with Severe Handicaps (JASH), 19(2), Sigafoos, J., & Others, A. (1994). Interrater reliability of the motivation assessment scale: Failure to replicate with aggressive behavior. Research in Developmental Disabilities, 15(5), Zarcone, J. R., & Others, A. (1991). Reliability analysis of the motivation assessment scale: A failure to replicate. Research in Developmental Disabilities, 12(4),


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