|        A Resource for Teachers, Clinicians, Parents, and Students by the Brain Injury Association of New York State.|
Step 1: Organize observations relevant to the problematic behavior/issue
In many cases, there are several contributors to the student’s identified problem. These contributors may interact with each other, therefore, it may be necessary to combine tests from different categories of possibilities. The existence of several interacting contributors may become obvious as you proceed through individual intervention experiments.
Attention seeking: Some students may be inconsistent in their behavior and performance as a way to seek adult and/or peer attention. (See Tutorials on Attention; Behavior Management: Prevention Strategies; Behavior Management: Contingency Management)
Relevant observations: The student may engage in surprisingly inconsistent behaviors depending on the attention he is receiving. The student may tell others about behavior in a manner that seems designed to obtain attention (positive or negative).
Useful experiments for assessment and intervention:
1. Observe and record the frequency and/or intensity of the problem behavior when a new teaching strategy or support is being implemented versus when it is not being implemented.
2. Possible exploratory teaching strategies or supports for attention seeking (See Tutorial on Attention): Create an environment that provides ample attention to the student. For example, the student may be given a leadership role in the classroom. Or adults may give special attention to the student on a regular basis.
3. If the frequency and/or intensity of the targeted behavior decreases during intervention, it may be that this student’s problem behaviors are in part a result of attention-seeking behavior. (See Tutorials on Attention; Behavior Management: Prevention Strategies; Behavior Management: Contingency Management)
Possible referrals: School psychologist or behavior specialist for behavioral assessment and behavior management strategies; counselor for counseling
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