PBIS Reflection Question #3

When gathering data about a student’s behavior for a Functional Behavior Assessment or for implementation of Tier 3 in a School-Wide Positive Behavior Intervention and Support system, what data would you gather? Review your own discipline’s assessment tools and practices. Are there formal and/or standardized tools available in your discipline that would be useful? What informal measures could you, as a related service provider, offer to the team?

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8 thoughts on “PBIS Reflection Question #3

  1. While observing the child, reviewing records, and receiving reports from teachers and parents, I would take data on the following:
    At what point in the school routine do behaviors occur?
    What are the setting events?
    What are the immediate triggers?
    What is the student motivated by?
    Are there apparent sensory issues?
    Are there functional deficits in the classroom causing the behavior?

    If indicated, I could more formally assess sensory processing (SPM, Sensory Profile) as well as the motivations (Motivational Assessment Scale) and interests of the student. Functional deficits could be formally assessed with a variety of tools if indicated by initial observation and record review.

  2. At the university clinic at Longwood, I have typically used informal measures such as a parent interview to gather information on behavior or an observation. Along with an extensive background questions, we ask about interaction and behavior. If the client does have behavioral issues, we ask questions like, “what type of behavior?”, “when do they occur”?, “how do you (parent/caregiver/teacher) address the behavior?”, “does the behavior impact them (socially, educationally)? If so, how?”. This information would be shared among the interdisciplinary team. As far as formal measures, I am unaware of any behavioral measures that can be administered by speech-language pathologists.

  3. So far, I haven’t had any experience with Functional Behavior Assessments or Tier 3 PBIS. I also don’t know of any PT assessment tools that specifically look at behavior. As far as informal measures go, I could certainly report on any behaviors I am experiencing during therapy times. This data would include what the behavior looks like, how long it lasts, if and how it was eventually controlled, and most importantly, what caused the behavior. As a PT, I would specifically be aware of any physical stimuli leading up to the behavior and any physical responses. Hopefully I would be able to provide some insight into the behaviors cause and potential modifications to prevent and reduce unwanted behaviors.

  4. As an OT gathering data about a students’ behavior, it would be important to review the child’s IEP/history (if applicable) and talk with the school team that see/work with the child on a daily basis (e.g., regular/special education teacher, aides, parents, etc.). It would also be important to observe the student directly. Things I would look for/ask for are:
    What are the child’s general strengths/ weaknesses in the school environment?
    When does the student seem to thrive in school (e.g., certain times of the day, during certain subjects)
    When the the child have challenging behaviors? Does there seem to be a pattern?
    What do the challenging behaviors look like (e.g., running away, yelling, hurting others)
    Does anything appear to trigger the challenging behaviors?
    What strategies have been used to support the child when they are having challenging behaviors? What has seemed to work? What has seemed to not work?

    Depending on the information gathered, it could be helpful for the OT/school psychologist to administer a formal assessment.

  5. My school clinical is not until January, so I don’t have any experience with using any behavioral assessments. To my knowledge, there are not any PT assessment tools that focus on behavior. However, there are informal ways that I could provide insight on a child’s behavior.
    – Is there a common trend for when the behavior occurs? (Time of day, specific environment, etc.)
    – What precedes the behavior, and could that cause the behavior?
    – How long does the behavior last?
    – What is the reaction of others when the behavior occurs?
    – What causes the behavior to stop?
    As a member of the team, I will provide any information that I can, even if it is not a formal assessment.

  6. I am not currently in a school placement thus I have not had to use behavioral assessments yet. At the university clinic I am unaware of any type of formal/standardized behavioral tool. Informal measurements that I could use to offer the team are: parent interview, teacher interview, observation of the student (i.e., in class, at recess/lunch, with friends, etc.). As a school SLP, this is something we will do during the assessment phase, thus this will be a good opportunity to observe/gather information about behaviors that may contribute to academics.

  7. I don’t think there are too many formal OT assessment tools that I would used to observe behavior in practice. I may use the SFA (School Function Assessment) as an informal structural guide or frame for my direct observations of the student. I would also want to know how other members of the team are collecting data or how the team is collecting data as a whole. While I would not likely be present for more than 30-60 minutes of a student’s week, I would contribute as much as possible during that time. For example, at one of my schools we are aiming to ABC data on a student. So during my time with him, I would take note of any relevant ABC events. Similar to question 2, as an OT, I would aim to offer advice to the team on how either the Antecedent or Consequence could be modified to help diminish the unwanted behavior based on data collected.

  8. As a graduate student, I have used more informal measures to learn about the client’s behavior. The informal measures I have used were typically a parent interview, which included questions such as if the child has behavioral concerns, and when does the behavior occur. Another form of informal measure used was an observation of the client when he or she was at the clinic. As a speech-language pathologist, it is essential to observe the student in multiple environments such as the classroom, playground, and cafeteria when completing an assessment for the student. By doing this, the SLP has the opportunity to observe the student’s behavior in various environments.

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