Positive Behavior Support

Positive Behavior Support2018-10-05T22:28:45+00:00


Positive Behavior Support (PBS; also called Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports) is a positive support practice. PBS is used to improve the quality of a person’s life at any age. PBS is also helpful because it can be used to prevent or decrease challenging behavior. The tools and strategies used in PBS are based on the science of behavior and medical research. A PBS plan is used to organize the supports needed to help a person. A team who knows the person well meets with her to make a PBS plan. This plan outlines all of the things that team members can do improve the person’s quality of life and change how routines and settings are organized. Another goal of a PBS plan is to learn what kinds of social changes can be made to create positive social interactions across home, school, work, and community settings.

One way to decrease the need for a PBS plan is to use systems change. Systems change is used to increase the use of PBS in early childhood centers, schools, residential, employment, juvenile justice, and other settings to improve the lives of all people. Universal supports that increase person-centered interactions and encourage positive social behaviors are part of systems-wide PBS. Organizations that use PBS look for people who need help and intervene early to improve quality of life and prevent problems. This helps decrease the need for individual PBS plans.

Learn more about the MNPBS Network

In Depth


DHS Home and Community Based Services

Minnesota Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PACER Center)

When Things Get Out of Control: Managing Escalating Behavior by Meme Hieneman & Milissa Yeagley 

Read More Articles, Visit the Association for Positive Behavior Support Families Page

Positive Behavior Support Research with Families
Vaughn, B.J. Clarke, S., & Dunlap, G. (1997). Assessment-based intervention for severe behavior problems in a natural family context. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 30, 713-716.

The Wraparound Process User’s Guide for Families

Association for Positive Behavior Support—Families Page

Association for Positive Behavior Support Keynote Paper Published in JPBI
Carr, E. G. (2007). The Expanding Vision of Positive Behavior Support: Research Perspectives on Happiness, Helpfulness, Hopefulness. Journal of Positive Behavior Interventions, 9(1), 3-14.

Additional Case Study Summaries from Research

Parents’ Guide to Functional Assessment
Tobin, T. J. (2005). Parents’ guide to functional assessment (Third edition). University of Oregon, College of Education, Educational and Community Supports, Eugene. Retrieved May 7, 2009,

Tips for Parents: How to Get Behavior Supports into the IEP.

Impact: Sexuality Feature Issue on Sexuality and People with Intellectual, Developmental and Other Disabilities

Impact: Feature Issue on Parenting Teens and Young Adults with Disabilities

Indiana Resource Center– Positive Behavior Supports Creating Meaningful Life Options for People with ASD (Carr & Pratt)