Functional analysis is an individualized evaluation designed to assess an individual’s problem behavior in relation to environmental events that may influence the probability of that behavior. Functional analysis is designed to identify (a) the environmental contexts in which an individual’s problem behavior is likely and unlikely to occur, (b) the consequences that reinforce and maintain the individual’s behavior in those contexts and (c) the treatments that are most likely to effectively reduce the individual’s problem behavior. This presentation will illustrate how functional analysis methods have (a) increased our understanding of the influence of environmental antecedents and consequences have on problem behavior, (b) led to the development of innovative and effective interventions, and (c) provided methods for determining which treatment components are necessary and sufficient to replace problem behavior with appropriate, alternative responses. This discussion will also demonstrate how descriptive data can be used to develop functional analyses for idiosyncratic functions of problem behavior.
Review Wayne Fisher’s biographical statement.