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A Correlational study on the Exceptional Children Teachers’ Perspectives of Functional Behavior Assessment in North Carolina Public Schools

Abstract

The use of the functional behavior assessment (FBA) in public school settings lacks research. The general problem was that teachers are not trained in how to conduct an FBA. The specific problem was that teachers find the process vague and do not feel qualified. The purpose of the study was to investigate the strength of the relationship between Exceptional Children (EC) Teachers’ number of years teaching, those who went to school to be an EC Teacher versus lateral entry EC Teacher, education level, grade level they teach and their perception of the FBA federal mandate in a large diverse county school system in central, North Carolina. This quantitative study documented several variables that had the potential to influence EC Teachers’ perception of the FBA federal mandate. The results from this study were consistent with what the current research indicates are issues with FBA in the public-school setting. Results from this study were specific to the county and can be used to help support future endeavors of implementation of the FBA mandate in the public-school setting. The results from the research indicate that there is a positive relationship between the number of years a person has been an EC Teacher and the perception, that there is no relationship between EC Teachers who went to school to be EC Teachers versus lateral entry teachers, the results indicate that there is no relationship between EC Teacher’s educational level and their perception and that there is a positive relationship between the grade level EC Teachers teach and their favorable perception of the Functional Behavior Assessment federal mandate. The implications of this study could be used for training initiatives for EC Teachers and their use of FBA. This study was significant because it may help with staff trainings on the FBA process and outcomes. Additionally, there was a gap in the research in the field of Applied Behavior Analysis and the FBA process in public schools, and this research may have had implications with respect to further research.

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