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.


46th Annual Convention; Online; 2020

Event Details

Previous Page


Paper Session #342
Restorative Justice as Behavior Intervention in Schools: The Promises and Pitfalls for Behavior Analysts
Monday, May 25, 2020
9:30 AM–9:50 AM
Area: EDC
Chair: Mary Comis (Duquesne University)
Restorative Justice as Behavior Intervention in Schools: The Promises and Pitfalls for Behavior Analysts
Domain: Service Delivery
Temple S Lovelace (Duquesne University), MARY COMIS (Duquesne University), JoVonne Tabb (Duquesne University)
Abstract: In 2013-2014, 111,000 students were expelled from school (National Center for Education Statistics, 2019). Disproportionately, they were from marginalized populations. In response to this and its implication in the school-to-prison pipeline, restorative justice gained huge traction in schools. Restorative practices, a part of restorative justice, are defined as a way to “build healthy relationships and a sense of community to prevent and address conflict and wrongdoing,” (The Advancement Project, 2014). As school-based behavior analysts are consulting with schools, they are often in a multi-disciplinary team that is committed to implementing a multi-tiered system of support, but use restorative practices as Tier 1 support. Misuse of this can disproportionately push students to Tier 2 or higher placements. In this presentation, we will introduce the results of a scoping literature review on the use of restorative practices as a behavioral intervention. Next, we will discuss the promise and pitfalls of its use from a behavioral analytic lens. Lastly, we will introduce a behavior analytic approach to restorative practices grounded in Skinner’s examination of educational reinforcement, countercontrol and group control (Skinner, 1953). We will also highlight why Skinner’s thoughts on culture and control are the foundation for an effective restorative justice framework.



Back to Top
Modifed by Eddie Soh