Positive Behavior Interventions
Volume 6, Number 1, Winter 2004
TABLE OF CONTENTS AND ABSTRACTS
Robert L. Koegel and Glen Dunlap
Transitions for Young Children with Autism from Preschool to Kindergarten
Emily J. Forest, Robert H. Horner, Teri Lewis-Palmer and Anne W. Todd
The transition of young children with autism from preschool to kindergarten is an important event for both sustaining gains made during preschool, and establishing future social and academic development. This paper provides a summary of 25 transition elements identified from the research literature as important for a successful transition. The elements were built into a survey instrument and the instrument was used with the parents, preschool teachers, and kindergarten teachers for three children with autism who transitioned during 1999-2001. Results from the survey indicate that transition elements identified in the literature were perceived as important by families, preschool teachers, and kindergarten teachers. High variability, however, was reported in the perceived level of implementation for the transition elements. The report provides an index of transition elements that may be useful to guide future research and to facilitate effective transitions.
The School-wide Evaluation Tool (SET): A Research Instrument for Assessing School-wide Positive Behavior Support
Robert H. Horner, Anne W. Todd, Teri Lewis-Palmer, Larry K. Irvin, George Sugai, & Joseph B. Boland
Schools throughout the country are now encouraged to implement school-wide positive behavior support procedures as a way to improve their behavioral climate, safety and social culture. Research is needed, however, to determine (a) the extent to which schools already use school-wide behavior support, (b) if training and technical assistance efforts result in change in the use of school-wide positive behavior support procedures, and (c) if use of these procedures is related to valued change in the safety, social culture and violent behavior within schools. To address these questions, researchers need a metric for assessing if schools are implementing school-wide positive behavior support practices. The School-wide Evaluation Tool (SET) was created to provide a rigorous measure of primary prevention practices within school-wide behavior support. The present report describes the content of the SET and documents the psychometric characteristics of the instrument. Results suggest that the SET is a valid and reliable measure, and can be used to assess the impact of school-wide training and technical assistance efforts. The SET also will be useful in formal analyses of the relationship between use of school-wide positive behavior support and changes in valued social and academic outcomes.
Framing Positive Behavior Support in the Ongoing Discourse Concerning the Politics of Knowledge
Wayne Sailor and James L. Paul
In this paper we examine a progressive form of postmodern social theory for its contribution to raising substantive issues about the politics of knowledge, or the factors that govern decision processes regarding the nature of evidence from research. We then examine the basis for the reaction against postmodernism that has appeared in the special education literature to date and, in particular, question whether it, collectively, represents a reasoned defense of the scientific basis for inquiry. We call attention to a confusion that occurs in these reactive positions between postmodernism on the one hand, and subjectivism (i.e., qualitative research methods) in the production of knowledge on the other, which, like positivism (i.e., empirical methods), is a modern epistemology. Finally, we offer a justification of progressive postmodern social theory as a means to create a needed discourse on contextualizing our professional practices. We suggest that positive behavior support because of its inherent pragmatism and multi-method focus on valued outcomes for people with disabilities, may offer a practice-focused forum for more productive conversations about multiple warrants, or justifying reasons, for alternative approaches to inquiry.
Using Staff and Student Time Engaged in Disciplinary Procedures to Evaluate the Impact of School-Wide Positive Behavior Support
Terrance M. Scott & Susan B. Barrett
This paper presents an example of how school time was monitored to facilitate a cost analysis of school-wide systems of positive behavior support. The example provides descriptions of (a) how positive behavior support efforts were initiated in the school, (b) how time and money were spent preparing for and implementing positive behavior support, and(c) how changes in behavior referrals and suspension were used to evaluate the effect of positive behavior support on the larger system. Results demonstrate the school’s positive assessment of PBS, based on their predetermined criteria. A discussion focuses on larger issues of cost analyses as systemic evaluation tools for assessing lifestyle change.
Improving Classroom Behavior by Modifying Task Difficulty: The Effects of Increasing the Difficulty of Too-Easy Tasks
John Umbreit, Kathleen L. Lane & Carlos Dejud
This study examined the effects of increasing task difficulty when inadequately challenging tasks are assigned. Jason, a 10-year-old, normally developing Caucasian male, attended a fourth-grade general education classroom at a public elementary school. During independent academic assignments in math and reading, Jason often talked with other students, kicked his seat or the one in front of him, or wandered around the classroom. His teacher considered these behaviors to be very disruptive. The study was conducted in two phases. In Phase 1, a functional behavioral assessment identified that Jason’s problem behaviors (a) occurred when he had completed his assignment and (b) resulted in him gaining access to preferred activities. In Phase 2, a function-based intervention (providing more challenging academic assignments) resulted in improvements in Jason’s behavior. Both Jason and his teacher gave the intervention very positive acceptability ratings.
Innovative Practices: Self-Determination and Student Involvement in Functional Assessment
Michael L. Wehmeyer, Daniel J. Baker, Rick Blumberg & Richard Harrison
Five 6th-grade students diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), taking psycho stimulants for treatment of ADHD symptoms, and enrolled in a general education classroom participated in the study. Participants were taught self-management techniques to monitor academic performance, on-task behaviors, and disruptive behaviors. A multiple baseline design across students with intervention withdrawal embedded within each baseline was used to empirically assess the effectiveness of self-management. Self-management associated with increases of on-task behaviors and academic performance, and associated with a decrease of disruptive behaviors when compared to other phases. Implications for practical application of the strategy in general education classrooms are discussed.
A Not So Good Job with Good Job: A Response to Kohn, 2001
Phillip S. Strain & Gail E. Joseph
A Book Review of Shapiro, Joseph P. (1994) No pity: People with disabilities forging a new civil rights movement