Maryland Positive Behavior Support Training

Understanding Behavior

Diagram that shows progression from predictable to positive to consistent.

All of us have engaged in behavior at some time in our lives that is considered challenging from someone else’s point of view. Sometimes these behaviors are minor and do not cause too much trouble. In other situations, the actions you take might become a danger to you or someone else. 

You are not expected to be able to lead all of the efforts involved in positive behavior support after completing this module. Instead, think about how the information you are learning will help you recognize and work with other people are facilitating the positive behavior support process.

At times, a challenging behavior may be internal to a person. This can occur when a person experiences a mental health issue that has become a crisis or involves a physiological issue related to illness or is related to a diagnosis.  In many cases, however, challenges arise due to interactions between one or more people. Even when a challenging behavior occurs due to a physical or mental health related cause, the way in which we respond to the person experiencing these events can increase or decrease the problems that the person experiences. 

Positive behavior support provides a way for people to build positive and supportive everyday routines and settings while sharing the same core values described in person-centered practices:

  • Building positive and meaningful relationships,
  • Changing the ways in which people interact in everyday routines and settings, and
  • Empowering people to make choices, problem solve, and achieve their ideal life outcomes.

The goal of Positive behavior support is to create predictable, positive and consistent home, work, and community settings.

  • People receiving support
  • Staff members
  • Supervisors and leaders of organizations
  • Family members and guardians
  • The greater community