What is a Functional Behavior Assessment?

 

A functional assessment is an approach to figuring out why your child is engaging in certain behaviors that may be interfering with his/her daily life including aggressions, self-injurious behaviors or stereotopy. It uses a variety of techniques to understand the cause of inappropriate behaviors. 

Understanding the reason, or function of inappropriate behaviors can help professionals find ways to change the behavior. The basic idea behind this approach is that your child’s behavior serves a purpose and your child acts a certain way to get to a desired outcome or goal.

Functional assessments are often completed at home, at school, and in the community to assess and evaluate the cause of certain behaviors. Often parents and teachers assume they know what’s causing a child’s behavior, however, with a functional behavior assessment behaviors are carefully analyzed to ensure an appropriate intervention is implemented to reduce inappropriate behaviors.