Integrating Applied Behaviour Analysis and Positive Behaviour Support: A Person-Centred and Strengths-Based Approach

Project: Research

Project Details

Project Description

In response to the National Disability Insurance Agency Quality & Safeguarding Commission’s newly released Positive Behaviour Support Capability Framework, Monash University is partnering with Irabina Autism Services to deliver a customised training program to Irabina's workforce. The aim of this project is to build workforce capability in person-centred and strengths-based behaviour support in ways that uphold the rights of children and young people with disability who display severe behaviours of concern.

The training consists of 5 workshops to be delivered synchronously in addition to time for self-study. A program evaluation will subsequently be conducted to assess the impact of the workshop model for participants, how workshop participants will integrate their new learnings into their professional practices, and potential challenges that workshop participants may encounter when translating their new learnings into their professional practice.

The objectives of the workshops are:
- To enhance the current knowledge and expertise of the workforce in the administration of a broader range of best practice evidence-based assessment and behaviour support practices that are aligned to the NDIS Quality and Safeguarding Commission’s Positive Behaviour Support Capability Framework.

- To develop staff expertise in models of disability support (including the medical, social, and human rights models of support) and relevant state and national legislation and policy around the development, implementation, and reporting of behaviour support practices (including restrictive practices).

- To integrate the current knowledge and skills of Irabina staff with a person-centred and strengths-based approach to behaviour support.

- To encourage a more rigorous approach and emphasis on measuring quality of life and wellbeing outcomes for child and family, using appropriate tools to track improvement.

Currently, there is a recognised shortage of skilled behaviour support practitioners in Australia, meaning that the current supply cannot meet participant demand. This, combined with the rapid implementation of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), has placed intense pressure on disability service providers to upskill their staff quickly.

The complex nature of the services provided by behaviour support practitioners paired with the lack of readily accessible professional development opportunities (such as tertiary courses or certificate programs that deliver content aligned to the Capability Framework) in Positive Behaviour Support has meant that organisations that wish to deliver behaviour support have had to think creatively about how to build the capability of their staff.

The research component of this project will evaluate how a workshop-based model of professional learning can potentially address this knowledge to practice gap. Qualitative research methods will be used to assess the impact of the workshop series on participants’ perceptions of their competence and confidence to deliver behaviour support in ways that are aligned to the Capability Framework. New data will be generated through focus groups with workshop participants following the workshops. The data will be analysed to better understand the perceived value of a workshop-based training model to BSPs, how participation in the workshop-based training model has influenced BSPs perceptions of competence and confidence to deliver positive behaviour support and the areas the BSPs feel they need continued or additional support. Data will be used to inform the Quality and Safeguarding Commission and the disability sector more widely about strategies for building workforce capability in Positive Behaviour Support.
Effective start/end date24/02/2230/10/22