Catalog > Autism: Positive Behavior Support

Autism: Positive Behavior Support

(60 Hr Course) - $300*

*Individual purchase cost is $5 per credit hour for courses or some districts may have a contract.


Develop classroom techniques for using applied behavior analysis principles and behavioral strategies for students with autism. Investigate data collection, functions of behavior, preventing challenging behaviors, and ethics in applying behavioral techniques.

Requires student contact.

Learning Objectives

The History of Applied Behavior Analysis

Participants will

  • familiarize themselves with the historical context and development of Applied Behavior Analysis,
  • demonstrate a basic understanding of the principles of the pure science of behavior analysis and Applied Behavior Analysis,
  • recognize the Seven Dimensions of Applied Behavior Analysis, and
  • identify the evidence-based practices for instruction of students with an autism diagnosis.

Principles of Reinforcement and Punishment

Participants will

  • recognize the effects of reinforcement and punishment of various types on behavior,
  • complete Field Exercise 1 by administering a Preference Assessment and interpreting its results,
  • develop an awareness of the importance of the concept of pairing with students,
  • compile a rich list of student reinforcer ideas,
  • embed understanding of the terms satiation and deprivation when using student reinforcers,
  • demonstrate an understanding of and seek improvement in classroom Instructional Control based on feedback provided through classroom observation, and
  • complete Field Experience 2 by completing an Instructional Control self-assessment.

Teaching Using Behavioral Principles

Participants will

  • become aware of the purpose for and factors that are important when choosing and administering multiple assessment instruments,
  • recognize the three core areas of functioning that should be assessed in students with ASD,
  • enhance data collection and recording skills,
  • identify the Discrete Trial Training teaching procedures and strategies,
  • recognize the hierarchy of prompting types and their respective prompting strategies,
  • identify errorless teaching procedures, and
  • compare and contrast Natural Environment Training to Discrete Trial Training.

Measurement and Data Collection

Participants will

  • recognize the importance of accurately defining target behaviors;
  • develop an awareness of the dimensions of behavior;
  • when collecting behavioral data, determine the appropriate measure: count, rate, duration, latency, and interresponse time;
  • develop an awareness of school personnel available to support ASD students and resource materials available for classroom data collection;
  • complete Field Experience Activity #3 and observe, record, and analyze behavior; and
  • enhance knowledge of graph components and of the data graphing process.

Functions of Behavior and Intervention Plans

Participants will

  • identify the function of behaviors;
  • identify antecedents, behaviors, and consequences;
  • recognize behavioral setting events;
  • utilize tools for gathering data for a functional behavior assessment (FBA); and
  • use gathered data from the FBA to develop a Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP).

Strategies to Increase and Develop New Behaviors

Participants will

  • recognize the major types of reinforcement schedules and their benefits,
  • recognize the terms of shaping and chaining,
  • develop task analysis skills, and
  • complete Field Exercise #4 which includes a task analysis and chaining tasks.

Preventing Challenging Behaviors: PBIS In Action

Participants will

  • explore the background of the development of Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS),
  • recognize the preventative school-wide and classroom-level tenets of PBIS, and
  • understand the next steps to take when preventative behavioral strategies have not had the desired result.

Dealing with Challenging Behaviors

Participants will

  • analyze and chose interventions and replacement behaviors based on the function of behavior, and
  • recognize socially appropriate replacement behaviors.

Additional Strategies in Dealing with Challenging Behaviors

Participants will

  • explore the use of behavior contracts, group contingencies and token economies for managing student behavior.

Ethics and ABA in the Classroom

Participants will

  • familiarize themselves with the definition of ethics; and
  • identify the ethical elements of the application of Applied Behavior Analysis in the classroom to include
    • therapeutic environment,
    • behavior change focused on student benefit,
    • professional use of ABA through collaboration,
    • student independence-focused goals,
    • on-going data collection and evaluation, and
    • teacher accountability.

Documentation Methods

Participants must document their learning by completing the following summatives.

2 File Uploads - Learner demonstrates implementation of course content by submitting documentation of a specified activity.
1 Multiple Choice Quiz - Learner demonstrates knowledge of content by selecting the correct answer from the choices provided.
4 Reflections - Learner synthesizes previous knowledge and course content in order to develop a narrative response.

The summatives must meet 80% of the established criteria.

Project Team

Author: Carra Summers, Kari Woznick

Developed by Beacon Educator staff.

Course Last Updated: 2023© 2003-2024 Beacon Educator