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SPCL 7915 Behavioral Assessment and Intervention: HOME

Open Educational Resource (OER) created for Professor Elizalde-Utnick's SPCL 7915 course.


Welcome to SPCL 7915X, Behavioral Assessment and Intervention.

All the readings and materials that you will need for the course are located on this website. Any text highlighted in blue is a live link. Enjoy exploring the site and SYLLABUS before our first class on Thursday, January 26.

Look at the COURSE CALENDAR for a quick overview of the course. 

Many of the session activities are available to you to preview before and review after each session. We will go over course requirements and this website during our first session.

Class Time:  Section R1 (1659): Thursdays 1:00 - 3:30 p.m.

                     Section R4 (1658): Thursdays 4:30 - 7:00 p.m.

Review the syllabus and this course site before our first class.

Note that there are assigned tasks to be completed prior to our first class session. Go to the SESSIONS tab to see what needs to be completed prior to each session. 





Your course grades are inputted on Blackboard. But you can use the following link to input your grades on an Excel spreadsheet to see how you are doing in your progress toward your final course score and grade.

Course Grade Spreadsheet Link


Graciela Elizalde-Utnick, Ph.D.

Phone: 718-951-5876
Office: 1107 James Hall
Office hours: Mondays, 12:30-1:30 p.m. & 4:30-5:30 p.m. and Thursdays, 11a.m. - 1:00 p.m.; 3:30-4:30 p.m.

Classroom: 1103 James Hall


Brian Utnick, Psy.D.

Phone: 718-951-5876
Office: 1107 James Hall
Office hours: Thursdays 3:30-4:30 p.m.

Classroom: 4129 Boylan Hall


This course is designed to provide students with knowledge and understanding of behavioral assessment and intervention strategies. Students will learn and review the fundamental principles that govern behavior according to behavioral and learning theorists. Students will then apply these principles of behavior to the classroom for assessment, intervention, and evaluation purposes. This course prepares students to engage in collaborative problem-solving and conduct a functional behavioral assessment (FBA). This course also prepares students to develop and implement a function-based behavior intervention plan (BIP) that incorporates an individually tailored reinforcement plan for both the replacement and desired behaviors, antecedent (trigger) prevention strategies, as well as strategies that minimize reinforcement of the problem behavior.

This course is divided six modules:

Module 1: Introduction to Functional Behavioral Assessment (FBA)

Module 2: Problem Analysis & Data Collection

Module 3: Functional Analysis

Module 4: Behavior Intervention Plans (BIPs)

Module 5: BIP Evaluation

Module 6: BIP Applications


This course uses Team-Based Learning (TBL) pedagogy ( TBL increases students’ understanding of course concepts by using them to solve authentic, real-world problems and help them develop their workplace learning skills.

The rhythm of TBL

TBL courses have a recurring pattern of instruction that is typical of many flipped classrooms. Students prepare before class and then students spend the bulk of class time solving problems together. Each session has a similar rhythm, opening with the Readiness Assurance Process that prepares the students for the activities that follow, and then moving to Application Activities that explore real-life case scenarios and apply concepts described in the readings.

Phase 1 - Pre-Class Preparation: Students are assigned preparatory materials to review before start of each module. The preparatory materials can be articles, videos, homework exercises, or PowerPoint slides. The preparatory materials highlight foundational vocabulary and the most important concepts the students need to begin problem solving, but not everything they need to know by module end.

Phase 2 - Readiness Assurance Test (RAT): Most sessions begin with a five-question, multiple-choice quiz (RAT). The RATs hold students accountable for acquiring important foundational knowledge from the assigned readings that will prepare them to begin problem-solving during the class sessions. Students first complete the quiz individually (iRAT) and then repeat the same exact quiz with their team (tRAT).

Phase 3 - In Class Activities: Students and their teams use the foundational knowledge, acquired in the first two phases, to make decisions that will be reported during the whole-class discussions and subject to cross-team discussion and critique. The class will use a variety of methods to have students report their team’s decision at the end of each activity. Sometimes students will hold up colored cards indicating a specific choice, sometimes they will write their answer on small whiteboards, sometimes they will display their work gallery style for the other teams to comment, and other times they will complete short worksheets or surveys, which will be randomly reported to the rest of the class.

Credits: TBL in-class activity image is a TBL cartoon from Sibley and Spiridonoff at the Centre for Instructional Support, University of British Columbia. 

Open Educational Resource Information

Unless otherwise noted, content on this site is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

This course website contains copyrighted materials available only for your personal, noncommercial educational and scholarly use. This site is used in accordance with the fair use provision, Section 107 of the U.S. Copyright Act where allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, education and research. Every effort has been made to provide attribution of copyrighted content. If you wish to use any copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain expressed permission from the copyright owner. If you are the owner of any copyrighted material that appears on this site and believe the use of any such material does not constitute "fair use", please contact Professor Graciela Elizalde-Utnick to have the content removed, if proven necessary.

This open educational resource was created as part of the CUNY and SUNY 2017-19 Open Educational Resources Initiatives. Governor Andrew Cuomo and the NY State Legislature awarded CUNY and SUNY $16 million to implement open educational resources to develop, enhance and institutionalize new and ongoing open educational resources across both universities.

Special thanks to the CUNY Office of Academic Affairs, the CUNY Office of Library Services, Brooklyn College Administration and Professor Miriam Deutch, Coordinator, Brooklyn College Open Educational Resources Initiative. Site design and formatting by Colin McDonald, OER Developer.