Author: Ellen Y. Ahiyon
Title: Conducting Functional Behavior Assessments and Subsequent Behavior Intervention Plans for Emotionally and Behaviorally Disordered Students in Kindergarten Through Fifth Grade
Institution: Nova Southeastern University
Dissertation Advisor: Dr. Barbara Packer
Degree: Doctor of Education
Conducting Functional Behavior Assessments and Subsequent Behavior Intervention Plans for Emotionally and Behaviorally Disordered Students in Kindergarten Through Fifth Grade. Ahiyon, Ellen Y., 2004: Applied Dissertation, Nova Southeastern University, Fischler Graduate School of Education and Human Services. Functional Behavior Assessment/Emotionally Handicapped/Emotionally Behaviorally Disordered/Behavior Disorders/Behavior Intervention Plans.
This applied dissertation was designed to provide school-based professionals training and access to effective research based Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA) tools and methodologies in order to achieve and create a quality TEAM-based FBA process for assessing Emotionally and Behaviorally Disordered (EBD) children's behaviors. Conducting quality FBAs lend to the development of cogent behavioral intervention solutions contained in skillful Behavior Intervention Plans (BIPs). Extensive research revealed that there was a lack of time dedicated to effective FBA/BIP training for school personnel at this researcher's school facility. Furthermore, BIPs were not consistently implemented, monitored and refined when needed. Subsequently, EBD students' exhibition of physically aggressive and disruptive behaviors in school was needlessly elevated.
This researcher developed and implemented training modules to in-service a 12-member school-based team on carefully selected FBA/BIP strategies and best practices. FBA components such as background data gathering techniques, interview strategies, various observation protocols, scatter-plot graphs and behavior intervention approaches were discussed in detail. One FBA team interview strategy developed by Knoster (2000) entitled the Initial Lines of Inquiry (ILI) was implemented by the FBA/BIP training team and was monumental in enabling the school-based team to identify antecedents and setting events that precipitated selected EBD students' problem behaviors. The ILI team interview format was instrumental in subsequent development of quality BIPs. Each student's parent(s) participated in each ILI team interview meeting. Ten EBD students were the focus of this applied dissertation study.
Analysis of the data revealed that 5 of the 10 targeted EBD students demonstrated a marked decrease in incidents of aggressive and disruptive behaviors during the FBA/BIP implementation phase. It is important to note, however, that all 10 targeted EBD students' displays of disruptive and/or aggressive behavioral outbursts decreased during the implementation phase of this researcher's applied dissertation study. The most successful FBA component conducted during this study was the ILI FBA team interview sessions as this format strongly encouraged a comprehensive team approach to identifying functions of students' behaviors that included parent participation as a key element in the development of each student's FBA and subsequent BIP.
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