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.


32nd Annual Convention; Atlanta, GA; 2006

Event Details

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Symposium #459
School-wide Positive Behavioral Supports: Effects of Variations in Implementation
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
10:30 AM–11:50 AM
Area: EDC; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Robert F. Putnam (The May Institute)
Discussant: Robert F. Putnam (The May Institute)
Abstract: School-wide positive behavior support (SW-PBS) involves the integration of four elements: operationally defined and valued outcomes, behavioral and biomedical science, research-validated practices, and systems-change (Center on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports, University of Oregon, 2004). As schools develop and implement SW-PBS, variations in the design and implementation of these practices emerge as a result of systemic variables. This symposium will discuss three variations to the standard approach to SW-PBS: 1) consultation to school leadership teams who report having previously implemented SW-PBS; 2) application of sequential rather than simultaneous implementation of SW-PBS across settings; and 3) variations in administrative participation and support of SW-PBS practices. Data on the fidelity of implementation and related changes in school climate and student behavior will be presented. Implications for behavior analysts who must measure and evaluate the impact of these variations on school and student outcomes will be discussed.
Developing School-wide Positive Behavioral Supports: A little bit of knowledge can be a dangerous thing.
Abstract: A fundamental part of implementing SW-PBS practices is the establishment of regional or local trainers to build and sustain SW-PBS practices who have participated in a full training sequence for school leadership teams that was led by a competent and experienced PBS trainer (Center on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports, University of Oregon, 2004). Some schools have developed and implemented SW-PBS without participating in this critical feature. Although these schools assert that they have developed and are implementing SW-PBS with fidelity, when pressed to demonstrate evidence through standard measures of implementation, data do not always meet accepted standards of implementation (e.g., as measured by the School-wide Evaluation Tool, Sugai, Lewis-Palmer, Todd & Horner, 2001). This paper will present evidence that, without appropriate training and consultation to leadership teams, teams may be left without sufficient support to bring about changes in school climate and student behavior.
Effects of School-wide Positive Behavior Support on Setting Specific Pro-social Student Behavior.
KIMBERLY S. THIER (The May Institute), Lisa Marie Angello (The May Institute)
Abstract: The purpose of this study is to examine the effects of universal SW-PBS strategies on setting specific pro-social student behaviors, using a multiple baseline across settings design. In general, SW-PBS is designed to improve student behavior across all classroom and non-classroom settings. Typically, schools measure improvement as a function of decreased disciplinary referrals after universal rules and expectations are simultaneously taught across all settings. This can be challenging for schools undergoing systemic changes. The goal of this study is to expand on this practice and previous research studies by a) examining pro-social student behavior rather than only problem behaviors as a dependent measure, and b) examining the types of pro-social behaviors demonstrated in non-classroom settings (i.e., behaviors consistent with general school expectations and setting specific expectations) as they are systematically implemented across multiple settings.
Administrators as PBS Leaders: A Top-driven Process?
JANNETTE REY (The May Institute), Christine McGrath Davis (The May Institute), Adam Feinberg (The May Institute)
Abstract: SW-PBS often requires, as an initial step, the development of a school leadership team to steer this effort. This school leadership team should include building stakeholders who are representative of various school-wide systems (i.e., Administration, Teachers, Pupil Support Personnel). “Participation” by administrative personnel is not just encouraged but considered necessary due to their unique leadership and decision-making authority (Sugai & Horner, 2002). However, does the overall degree of implementation and maintenance of school-wide practices change when school leaders vary in their degree of participation and support? This paper will examine the relationship between school leadership and implementation of SW-PBS across urban middle schools who participated in a district-wide SW-PBS initiative. Administrative leadership will be defined, and data related to degree of implementation across schools will be examined. The findings from this research highlight the critical factors that can impact implementation and maintenance.



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