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The Use of Performance Feedback to Improve Treatment Integrity and Student Behavior With a Class-Wide Behavior Intervention


Students with emotional disturbance (ED) who receive special education services in a public school setting fare significantly worse than other students; they are more likely to drop out of school and experience difficulties later in life than students who receive special education services under any other category. Research examining traditional attempts to provide staff with professional development to improve their ability to work successfully with these students has shown that these efforts typically produce unsuccessful outcomes. As a result, this study includes the development of a class-wide behavior intervention based on principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and the use of performance feedback to support the implementation of the intervention. Using a multiple baseline across classrooms design, the effects of performance feedback on the treatment integrity of the system, along with subsequent changes in student engagement and student disruptive behavior, were measured. Results indicated that the implementation of performance feedback was associated with increases in staff treatment integrity. Additionally, improvements in student academic engagement and reductions in disruptive behavior were observed. Limitations of the study, implications for practice, and directions for future research are discussed.

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