Functional Communication Training Case Study

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CHAPTER FOUR FUNCTIONAL COMMUNICATION TRAINING Introduction Functional communication training (FCT) and functional behavior assessment (FBA) are listed as two of the twenty-seven evidence-based practices by the National Professional Development Center (NPDC, 2014). FCT is effective at decreasing problem behaviors and replacing those inappropriate behaviors with appropriate communication skills (Bird, Dores, Moniz, & Robinson, 1989). Over thirty years ago FCT was first conceptualized by Carr and Durand (Durand & Moskowitz, 2015). FCT derived from research done on functional behavioral assessment (FBA). The intention of FBA is to identify what is causing a student to exhibit a problem behavior (AIM 2018). After a FBA has been conducted…show more content…
A few things to keep in mind when determining the replacement behavior is what form of communication is best for that student. It is important to be familiar with the student’s individual needs. For example, are they nonverbal, is PECS being used, is sign language what the student prefers. These are specific needs the teacher should consider. The replacement behavior should be simple, easy to teach and something the student can learn fast and use right away. The form of communication or replacement behavior must be easy for the student to use (AIM, 2018). If the student finds the replacement behavior difficult to use they may become frustrated, which could lead to more interfering behaviors. “The learner has little incentive to use a replacement behavior if it is less efficient than the interfering behavior.” (AIM,…show more content…
The teacher should be aware of the student’s environmental surroundings. It is important that what is taught to the student can be used across all settings. For example, if the student is a middle school student mainstreamed in an art class who needs to communicate their need to use the bathroom, holding up a picture of a toilet is not the most appropriate form of communication in this setting. This can bring unwanted attention and teasing (AIM, 2018). Alternatively, having the student learn the sign for restroom may work. The special education teacher would also have to communicate this information to the general education teacher. Not everyone knows sign language, so it is necessary to have open dialogue with general education teachers about what modifications are taking place. Another option is providing the student with an object that can be placed at the corner of their desk to signal “I need to use the restroom” (AIM, 2018). Additionally, the student should always gain the attention of the communicative partner before making a request. This should be practiced often when in the beginning stages of teaching FCT (AIM,

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