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Definition and scope for positive behavioural support

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Background: In light of forthcoming policy and guidance in the UK regarding services for people who display behaviour that challenges, we provide a refreshed definition and scope for positive behavioural support (PBS). Through doing this we aim to outline a framework for the delivery of PBS that is of practical and strategic value to a number of stakeholders.

Method and materials: We draw extensively on previous definitions of PBS, relevant research and our professional experience to create a multi-component framework of PBS, together with an overall definition and a breakdown of the key ways in which PBS may be utilised.

Results: The framework consists of ten core components, categorised in terms of values, theory and evidence-base and process. Each component is described in detail with reference to research literature and discussion regarding the interconnections and distinctions between these.

Conclusions: We suggest the framework captures what is known and understood about best practice for supporting people with behaviour that displays as challenging and may usefully inform the development of competences in PBS practice, service delivery, training and research.


Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2013

More about this publication?
  • Positive behavioural support (PBS) combines the conceptual framework of applied behaviour analysis with the values base of social role valorisation and framework of person-centred approaches. The International Journal of Positive Behavioural Support is a peer-reviewed publication that aims to:

    · define and promote good practice in relation to the use of PBS

    · add to the evidence base regarding such interventions

    · demonstrate how PBS interventions can support people to change their challenging behaviours, improve their quality of life, and result in reductions in the use of restrictive procedures (such as physical intervention, seclusion and as required medication)

    · bridge the gap between academic research and service practice
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