Functional Assessment and Intervention for Challenging Behaviors in the Classroom by General Classroom Teachers

Sherry A. Ellingson, Raymond G. Miltenberger, Jason Stricker, Tami L. Galensky, Matthew Garlinghouse

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


This study assessed teachers' abilities to conduct functional assessments and functional interventions in the classroom setting with students who had developmental disabilities and behavior problems. The results showed that information on antecedents and consequences was consistent when derived from a structured behavioral questionnaire completed by the teacher or when the questionnaire was administered in an interview format by a behavior analyst. Although raters agreed on the hypothesized function of problem behaviors of three students with disabilities based on information from the questionnaire and interview, behavioral functions hypothesized by separate raters for the questionnaire and interview varied for one student, indicating problems with interrrater reliability. Results also revealed that teachers without specialized training in applied behavior analysis are able to carry out direct observations of behavior problems, antecedents, and consequences, and produce information on antecedents and consequences comparable to that of graduate students with 2 years of training in applied behavior analysis. Lastly, implementation of functional and nonfunctional interventions (likely to be implemented in typical classrooms) provided support for the hypothesized functions from both indirect and direct methods of assessment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)85-97
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Positive Behavior Interventions
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Applied Psychology


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