Interfering behaviors are any set of behaviors that cause harm to self or others, impede learning or are disruptive in daily life functions. Individuals with ASD can present with interfering or challenging behaviors. Communication deficits, lack of social competence, sensory needs and difficulties with executive functioning are a few of the underlying factors that may contribute to these behaviors. Due to the substantial impact of interfering behaviors, these needs must be addressed through a process that identifies the underlying function of the behavior and implements strategies to promote positive behaviors. Therefore; a large body of literature has been devoted to Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA), Behavioral Intervention Plans (BIP), and implementation of positive behavioral interventions and supports. These supports and strategies can result in significant improvement in an individual's behavior and increase his/her quality of life within the context of the school, community, and home.

VCU Autism Center for Excellence Resources

calendar Courses

Foundations of Autism Spectrum Disorder

Strategies for Supporting Positive Behavior in Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Autism Spectrum Disorder for Paraprofessionals

45 Webcasts

Function Matters! How to Determine Why a Student Demonstrates Problem Behavior

Practical Management Strategies: What to do After the Meltdown: Part 2

Prevention, Intervention, Post-vention: What to do After the Meltdown: Part 1

Understanding Challenging Behaviors and the Need for Social Skills Training

No More Meltdowns: Managing and Preventing Challenging Behaviors

Sensory Needs, Sensory Integration, and Self-Regulation in Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Other Websites

Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) is a website provided by the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP). The website provides a Technical Assistance Center to define, develop, implement, and evaluate a multi-tiered approach to Technical Assistance that improves the capacity of states, districts and schools to establish, scale-up and sustain the PBIS framework.

Positive Behavioral Intervention and Supports in Virginia (PBIS) is a collaboration between the Training and Technical Assistance Center at Old Dominion University and the Virginia Department of Education. They have developed a series of modules that relate to strategies of proven effectiveness regarding positive behavioral interventions and supports. Each module contains information on the use of a specific strategy.

National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorder (NPDC-ASD) has identified evidence-based practices that have been shown through scientific research to be effective when implemented correctly with students with ASD.

I'm Determined is a state directed project funded by the Virginia Department of Education which focuses on providing direct instruction, modeling, and opportunities to practice skills aligned with developing self-determined behavior. The project has a variety of tools to assist students with disabilities to control their own lives and steer their own course.

The Association for Positive Behavior Support (APBS) is an international organization dedicated to improving the support of individuals in order to reduce behavioral challenges, increasing independence, and ensure the development of constructive behaviors to meet life goals in the areas of social relationships, employment, academic achievement, functional life-skills, self-determination, health, and safety.

Guides and Factsheets

VCU-ACE has developed a Q and A Fact Sheet on Positive Behavior Supports which poses and answers many important questions about how to address interfering behavior and provide positive behavioral interventions and supports.

Virginia Department of Education provides a number of guidance documents to assist school divisions with pertinent information regarding behavior management. These documents include: Functional Behavioral Assessment, Behavioral Intervention Plans, Managing Student Behaviors in Emergency Situations: Focusing on Seclusion and Restraint, as well as a Guidance Document on Manifestation Determination.

The Center on Social Emotional Foundations for Early Learning (CSEFEL) has developed a "How Do I Decide?" series of guidelines to help those who work with young children with social emotional learning needs to make informed decisions that will positively impact young children's challenging behavior and social-emotional development.

What Works Briefs: The Center on Social Emotional Foundations for Early Learning (CSEFEL) has also developed Summaries of Effective Practices for Supporting Children's Social-Emotional Development and Preventing Challenging Behaviors. Briefs are available describing the effective practices.

Autism Speaks: The Challenging Behaviors Tool Kit discusses intervention principles, strategies, and resources to decrease challenging behaviors and support the implementation of positive behavioral supports.

The Organization for Autism Research (OAR) has a set of worksheets designed specifically for educators working with students with ASD. These worksheets include a "Questions to Ask Parents" form, a parent-teacher communication form as well as a transitions considerations checklist.

U.S. Department of Education Restraint and Seclusion Resource Document offers information on current principles and guidelines on restraint and seclusion.

Videos and Training

ACE offers a variety of videos and trainings to meet the needs of both family members and professionals. Click here to learn more!

Organization for Autism Research (OAR) has developed several video resources for professionals who support individuals with autism spectrum disorder in the school environment. The video resources are:

T/TAC Online provides up-to-date regional and statewide training opportunities to school divisions across Virginia. Virginia's Training and Technical Assistance Centers are a statewide system designed to improve education and opportunities for individuals with disabilities ages 0-22.

Ohio Center for Autism and Low Incidence (OCALI) has created a video series to guide professionals and teams through the process of addressing challenging behaviors of individuals with complex disabilities this eleven part series is based in positive behavioral supports, functional behavioral assessment and behavioral intervention planning.

The Center on Social Emotional Foundations for Early Learning (CSEFEL) has designed a series of four training modules that address the following: building relationships and creating supportive environments, social emotional teaching strategies, individualized interventions, behavioral support plans as well as leadership strategies.

Indiana Resource Center for Autism has developed a two part series entitled The Autism House: Visual Supports for the Home. This is a resource for families or anyone who lives with someone on the autism spectrum. This simulated house features a living room, bedroom, dining room/homework area, kitchen, bathroom, and outdoor area set up with visual supports to aid individuals on the autism spectrum as they go about their daily routines at home.

Autism Internet Modules (AIM) has online training modules to assist professionals working with individuals with ASD to reduce interfering behaviors and promote positive behavioral supports.