Writing a statement of function
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Writing a Statement of Function. SO WHAT????. Operational Definition. Review of Records. Indirect Assessment. ABC. Data Collection. FUNCTION. Writing a statement of function. Questions to ask: What data am I gathering that seems to be similar? What data contradicts each other?

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So what

Operational Definition

Review of Records

Indirect Assessment


Data Collection


Writing a statement of function1
Writing a statement of function

  • Questions to ask:

    • What data am I gathering that seems to be similar?

    • What data contradicts each other?

      • Remember that direct observation trumps indirect!

    • Do these data point to one function, or a few?

      • Pick your battles!

Writing a statement of function2
Writing a statement of function

  • Use observable terms and avoid explanatory fictions

  • Summarize all of your data from start to finish

  • This is not a list of all of the things that you did!

  • What are some anecdotal things that you observed?

  • “I will definitely take this into account while writing my behavior support plan and in future classrooms”

  • What is your hypothesis? What will you be focusing on?

Good support plans
Good Support Plans:

  • Support the person in the natural environment

  • Encompass a variety of settings and people

  • Can be carried out (with minimal training) by the people in the environment

  • Re-design of environments to reduce behavior

  • Emphasis on teaching replacement behavior

    • Functional communication

      Make problem behavior “irrelevant, inefficient, and ineffective” (Horner, 2000)

Goals of functional behavior assessment

Goals of Functional Behavior Assessment

  • Competing Stimuli

  • What parts of the environment are we willing to change?

  • Competing Reinforcers

  • What are we willing to do to make this a reality?

  • Antecedents

  • Specific Situations

  • Specific Events

  • Specific Stimuli

  • Consequence

  • What happened afterward?

  • Response

  • What did the child do?

Identifying replacement behaviors
Identifying replacement behaviors

  • What can the child do instead of what s/he has been doing that serves the same function?

  • Also needs to be operationally defined

    • Dead man’s rule: if a dead man can do it, it’s not behavior!

  • Good replacement behavior: “taps person on the shoulder instead of hitting”

  • Bad replacement behavior: “sits quietly and waits” (can’t get attention that way…hitting works much better!)

Evidence based practice
Evidence-based Practice

  • Use the library database for your evidence

    • Must be empirical in nature!

  • Search terms: Must include function

    • Functional assessment

    • Replacement behavior

    • Communication training

Acceptable journals you re not limited to these
Acceptable Journals (you’re not limited to these):

  • Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis

  • Research in Developmental Disabilities

  • Behavior Modification

  • Behavior Therapy

  • Behavior Analyst Online

  • Education and Treatment of Children