Positive behavior support: Expanding the application of applied behavior analysis

Cynthia M. Anderson, Kurt A. Freeman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Positive behavior support (PBS) is an approach to providing services to individuals who exhibit challenging behavior. Since its inception in the early 1990s, PBS has received increasing attention from the behavior-analytic community. Some behavior analysts have embraced this approach, but others have voiced questions and concerns. In this paper we describe the framework of PBS and show that it is consistent with the tenets of behavior analysis. Also, we illustrate how the framework of PBS might be used to guide practitioners and researchers in the field of applied behavior analysis. We hope to demonstrate that PBS offers useful suggestions regarding how applied behavior analysts can design and evaluate effective programs for people with developmental disabilities or behavioral challenges.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)85-94
Number of pages10
JournalBehavior Analyst
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Applied behavior analysis
  • Developmental disabilities
  • Positive behavior support
  • Theoretical issues in behavior analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology


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