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3 Things to know about a Replacement Behavior

Welcome back to AB Behavioral Consulting! Today we will be discussing the importance of teaching replacement behaviors.


Replacement behaviors are behaviors that are functionally appropriate to teach and use in the replacement of problem behaviors. Although it is a very simple concept, finding appropriate replacements can be difficult, and having a trained professional such as a Behavior Analyst can help. Based on a prior assessment completed (Functional Behavioral Assessment) we determine what the function of the behavior is, and as we complete the Behavior Intervention Plan, we determine the appropriate replacement behaviors.


Replacement behavior can vary based on topography (what it looks like), as well as function. For example, if we determine a client throws his cup on the ground, we can teach him replacement behaviors of asking for more juice, signing for more juice, or even going to the fridge and carefully pouring juice into a cup on their own.


The 3 things to take away from this post is it recognizes that a replacement behavior must have:

  • A Reason: Please remember, as with everything in our field we need to have reasonable cause to work on teaching a replacement behavior

  • An Appropriate Replacement: Identifying a behavior(s) to replace those we want to see a decrease

  • Additional Skill Acquisition goals: Creating a treatment plan that is associated with teaching skills to help prevent other problem behaviors from occurring.



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