Welcome to Behaviorbabe

Ethical Advocate for Accurate Application & Dissemination of Behavior Analysis

What is a Behavior Plan?

A written course of action. It is a plan for what to do to prevent challenging behavior and what to do when it occurs. A behavior plan should also specify any reinforcement system in place as well as who is in charge of making revisions, and when the team will meet to discuss updates to the plan.

Who needs a behavior plan?

According to I.D.E.A. a behavior intervention plan must be created for any learner whose behavior impedes their learning or the learning of others in their environment. Generally, behavior plans are useful anytime there are behaviors we want to systematically decrease (e.g., yelling, non-compliance, hitting) or increase (e.g., participating, initiating conversation, pretend play).

What are the components of a behavior plan?

  • Operational definitions: describe the behavior in detail. Provide examples and non examples, so others can detect when behaviors start and stop.

  • Preventative strategies: decreasing aversive properties of a task or transition, preparing learners about upcoming changes.

  • Response strategies: how to respond to a behavior once it has a occurred in a way that will minimize reinforcement for challenging behavior, maintain a safe environment, and help the learner meet their needs by systematically teaching replacement strategies.

  • Use clear and explicit language, so others can easily understand descriptions and instructions. Provide examples when possible.

  • Person responsible for development of plan: while often a team process, a point person should be clearly identified.

  • Schedule for on-going monitoring: behavior plans should be updated and revised as often as needed, and at least annually or when circumstances (e.g., new teacher, different school, sibling born, move to new town, etc.) change.

Sample behavior plans

SP Behavior Plan
School Plan

LM Behavior Plan
Technical Language

A child’s BIP should be monitored and adjusted as needed. A BIP doesn’t always work as planned. Two of the most common reasons are:
  • A mismatch between the intervention and the targeted behavior. Sometimes the IEP team assumes the misbehavior happens for one reason, but the real reason is something else completely.
  • A failure to monitor and adjust the rewards or reinforcement for appropriate behavior over time. What works at first might soon become “old hat” and need to be switched up.

Problem behavior can be triggered by things that are unrelated to children’s learning and attention issues. It can be caused by frustration with school, family issues or social pressure. Even the size of a classroom or nearby distractions can set off inappropriate behavior.