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Disruptive Behaviors of Students Case Study

Pages:7 (2148 words)




Document Type:Case Study


Hypothetical Case Study


Two students, Jack and Bob, determined as aggressive by their educators and chosen using purposive sampling, made up the participants of the study. The two are, at present, enrolled in a behavioral support classroom setting. Neither has knowingly taken part in any research or been involved with self-monitoring or tactile prompt interventions. Both were enrolled in the very same class, require behavioral support, and suffer from various disabilities.


The setting of the research was a self-contained classroom, with the two students referred for serious behavioral issues. Both took part in a behavioral support unit-developed token-economy points system. For system maintenance, a fresh point sheet was utilized every day. Individual sheets illustrated frequency measure tables, for how many times each child displayed aggressive conduct. Sessions (of a ten-minute duration for each subject) were conducted in the course of routine scholastic instruction/teaching on regular school days, occurring thrice daily at the most. Information was collected either manually (i.e., on paper) or digitally (i.e., on a laptop). Information gatherers observed subjects as discreetly as they could. For decreasing reactivity, observers observed lessons for several weeks before gathering information for research. All subject response opportunities were recorded on the information acquisition form, in addition to whether or not participant response was right. Right responses implied those where the opportunity of dependent variable performance was followed by relevant behavior on the part of the staff (Petscher & Bailey, 2006).

On the other hand, a wrong response entailed opportunities not being followed by staff conduct, or if the staff’s conduct was improper, or if target responses were performed without any opportunity arising. The share of right behaviors was computed (number of right reactions/ (right reactions negative reactions) * 100%) at every session’s ending. The sole exception here involved bonus-point related information acquisition, recorded in the form of frequency data. In the intervention stages, independent variable occurrence, in addition to whether their absence or presence was deemed by the observer as right or wrong, was noted as well.


Information was gathered in regular classroom settings. Subjects knew researchers were observing them but were unfamiliar with the study’s variables of interest. Subjects were observed as inconspicuously as could be, with a datasheet and clipboard utilized for recording subject opportunities to engage in target behaviors.

Appropriate dependent variable to be targeted from the graph with an operational definition

Dependent variables for the research were determined based on example, classroom observations, from specific educator requests. Pilot observations indicated every instructional assistant did, at times, display conducts of interest; however, their uniformity and regularity had to be dealt with. Staff conduct was all associated with a token-economy points system adoption.

Disruptive behavior management. A chance at addressing disruptive conduct on a student’s part was identified if the student physically or verbally disturbed others within the classroom. An appropriate reaction to the opportunity involved the subject telling the disruptive student in question to remove the relevant point from his/her record. Record is considered to be areas where points were accorded included sticking to directions, using polite gestures and language, abiding by classroom order, etc. Information was gathered and charted as a percentage of appropriate respondent conduct.

Encouraging Appropriate Conduct: Opportunities for urging students to engage in the right conduct in the class were identified if the student didn’t perform the required task for five seconds at a minimum. Teaching assistants were required to use this opportunity for redirecting the child to conduct him/herself appropriately. A right reaction implied the participant was taking a minute to instruct the child on precisely what conduct is required from him/her. This information was presented in the form of a percentage of the right participant conduct.

Appropriate independent variable to be used from the graph

Training. Low rates being determined upon visual baseline information analysis required a training session to be organized for discussing participant expectations. The study’s first author introduced study objectives, processes, expected outcomes, and dependent variables in a meeting with participants at a tiny office attached to the study setting. Tasks were made clear, and situations explained using modeling. Post-tests were administered to participants where they were…

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…prompted incorrect aggressive student conduct. After the first nine training sessions, he still did not improve in the area of delivering required non- aggressive conduct. Just as in Jack’s case, introducing tactile prompts and self- monitoring combined gave rise to swift, definite improvement in non-aggressive conduct manifestation from session ten onwards. Upon removal of tactile prompts, a 100% response was maintained in case of disruptive aggressive conduct management and prompting proper student conduct. However, the response proved to be more inconsistent upon extension of session duration at the maintenance stage.


Outcomes indicate that tactile prompts notified participants to pay attention and respond appropriately to student behavior. Proper target response delivery on participants’ part (for instance, disruptive conduct management after its occurrence) indicates their response was influenced by the collective stimulus of student conduct and tactile prompt. Maintenance of high target conduct levels following removal of tactile prompt indicates participants are now able to respond appropriately only to student conduct, potentially facilitated, over time, by self- monitoring.

Internal validity of the study

Independent variable impacts are replicated for several diverse participants. When every single-case study design logic element is demonstrated, participant-wide MB design controls for two or more primary internal validity threats such as (a) historical events (for instance, a staff or curricular modification within the class) which may concurrently impact several subjects and (b) maturation/exposure of participant to experimental/clinical setting and procedure (Carr, 2005).

The external validity of the study

Inter-Subject replication constitutes a key process in the establishment of an external study finding generality. Furthermore, the subject design-wide multiple baselines contribute to external study validity through several inter-subject replications.

Social validity of the study

Participants were required to complete anonymous questionnaires on their views regarding independent variables, their perceived improvements in their behavior, and whether or not they believed target behaviors proved helpful. They used a 5-point Likert scale to answer individual questions. According to one participant, the research and associated procedures were helpful, while according to the other, it was very helpful. The latter further noted that taking part…

Sample Source(s) Used


Bailey, J. S., & Burch, M. R. (2018). Research methods in applied behavior analysis, 2nd edition. Routledge.

Barlow, D. H., Nock, M., & Hersen, M. (2009). Single case experimental designs: Strategies for studying behavior for change (No. Sirsi) i9780205474554).

Carr, J. E. (2005). Recommendations for reporting multiple?baseline designs across participants. Behavioral Interventions: Theory & Practice in Residential & Community?Based Clinical Programs, 20(3), 219-224.

Cooper, J. O., Heron, T. E., & Heward W.L. (2020). Applied Behaviour Analysis (Third Edition). Pearson Education, Inc.

Petscher, E. S., & Bailey, J. S. (2006). Effects of training, prompting, and self?monitoring on staff behavior in a classroom for students with disabilities. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 39(2), 215-226.

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