Monday, February 6, 2012

Overview of Positive Behavior Supports

The goal of Positive Behavior Supports (PBS) is to decrease and prevent the occurrence of challenging behavior by making changes in the environment to support positive and appropriate behaviors. This is often done in an “indirect” way: through teaching new skills, making environmental changes (such as using visual schedules or other visual support systems), and providing a positive and enriching environment, rather than directly intervening on the problem behaviors (ASAT).

According to the Association for Positive Behavior Support, PBS for students with autism involves various components, including:
  • Functional Behavioral Assessment (FBA). See Positively Autism’s ABA Tutorial for more information on FBA procedures.
  • Clearly and frequently reinforcing/rewarding appropriate behaviors.
  • Changing the environment to minimize “triggering events” the precede problem behaviors.
  • Making efforts to enhance the individual’s quality of life through increasing community involvement, providing opportunities to make choices, increasing positive relationships with others, etc.
The Association for Positive Behavior Supports offers a variety of PBS fact sheets here:

The Texas Autism Resource Guide for Effective Teaching lists Social StoriesTM and teaching communication skills as examples of positive behavior support strategies.

References and Resources

Association for Positive Behavior Support:

Association for Science in Autism Treatment (ASAT):

Center on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports:

Texas Autism Resource Guide for Effective Teaching:

Positively Autism's Collection of Social Stories:

Positively Autism's ABA Tutorial:

Positively Autism's "Intro to Autism" Tutorial:

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