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From The CriticsReviewer: Gary B Kaniuk, Psy.D. (Cermak Health Services)
Description: This book describes a functional behavioral classification system to help in designing behavioral treatments in both educational and mental health settings. It deals with three critical phases in addressing problem behaviors: assessment, classification, and treatment.
Purpose: According to the authors, the book provides "a comprehensive approach to designing behavioral treatments for children in homes and residential facilities, students in special and general education settings, and adults residing in inpatient units and facilities," addressing "functional behavioral assessment, function-based diagnostic classification of the target problem, and functional behavioral treatment."
Audience: The authors intend this book for personnel who design behavior programs for persons with challenging behaviors in a variety of settings, noting it also should be helpful to people who are training in applied behavior analysis (ABA). It is also written to serve personnel who have some familiarity with behavioral programs but have not discerned how to provide a functional behavior treatment for specific functions of target problem behavior. Dr. Cipiani, a licensed psychologist and professor at National University-Fresno, has numerous publications in the area of behavior management for children. Dr. Schock, a board-certified behavior analyst, has worked with both child and adult populations.
Features: The book begins with basic concepts and then moves on to chapters on functional assessment, classification of problem behavior, behavior options, and treatment protocols. An appendix contains the Diagnostic Classification System for the Replacement Behavior (DCS-RB). In its focus on ABA, the book's emphasis is on understanding how a problem behavior is reinforced and developing appropriate interventions. The authors include numerous tables and instructive clinical vignettes. The step-by-step approach is practical, addressing many different types of problem behaviors. For example, in chapter five, the authors show how to intervene with a child who often falls to the floor in order to look at a book. They give an example of a frequency sheet to see how often the problem behavior occurs, and a behavior plan focusing on replacement behavior. The only shortcoming of the book is that the thin pages tear fairly easily.
Assessment: This is an excellent resource for addressing problem behaviors. It is practical, easy to read, and contains many clinical vignettes from which to learn. The authors have succeeded in designing a classification system that helps to guide treatment.