Behavior support strategies in early childhood settings: Teachers’ importance and feasibility ratings


The current study investigated early childhood professionals' opinions regarding the use of behavioral supports for children with challenging behavior. Participants included early childhood special education teachers, Title I teachers, speech and language pathologists, instructional aids and paraprofessionals, physical therapists, and school psychologists. Participants rated 24 behavioral support strategies on both their importance and their feasibility. Overall, results indicated that early childhood professionals rated the majority of the behavior support items in the mostly important range. Participants did not rate as many items as mostly feasible, and statistical analyses documented a significant difference between overall importance of the items and overall feasibility. Early childhood professionals' characteristics were analyzed to investigate whether groups differed in their perceptions of the importance and feasibility of the behavioral support items. Findings indicated that early childhood special education and Title I teachers rated the support items as more important than did paraprofessionals and instructional aids. Educational level also differentiated groups on importance ratings; professionals with either undergraduate degrees or graduate-level educational experiences rated items as more important than professionals with high school-level educations or some college. Years of teaching experience was not associated with ratings, and no teacher characteristic was associated with the feasibility of behavior supports. The implications of these findings are discussed.


Journal of Positive Behavior Interventions


  • S. Convington
  • T. J. Lewis
  • M. Stormont

Prevention Level

  • Primary


  • Administrators
  • Parents
  • Teachers

System Impact

  • Whole School


  • Developmental Disabilities
  • Early Childhood
  • Elementary School