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Course Overview

Behavior Basics

May 6, 2024 - August 16, 2024

Many individuals with autism spectrum disorder experience behavior challenges. Understanding the function of those behaviors and having a tool kit from which to select evidence-based strategies to match the unique needs of the individual is key to increasing desirable behaviors. By completing this online course, you will learn functions of behavior, the steps in completing a behavior intervention plan, and evidence-based practices to support the unique needs of the individual.

  • Registration Instructions
  • Course registration is a two-step process: 1) Register on AIM and 2) Register and pay on Ashland University's system. Once you have completed this two-step process, this course will be available to you on AIM at the start of the semester, May 6, 2024.

    If you have questions about this course or the registration process, please contact the course instructor, Sheila Smith at
  • Registration Details
  • Course registration open April 15, 2024 - July 19, 2024
  • 1-Credit course costs $225 paid to Ashland University
  • Login to Register
Course Modules

Autism Spectrum Disorder and Medications

Estimated Time to Complete: 1 1/2 hours

In this module, we hope to educate caregivers and school personnel on psychiatric/behavioral conditions experienced by children with ASD, how medication may be used to help alleviate these symptoms, and how to best collaborate with medical professionals. It is important for teachers and family members of children with ASD to be knowledgeable about potential medications as well as their benefits and side effects. Collaborating effectively with healthcare providers is key to providing the best care to children with ASD.

Behavior Intervention Plans

Estimated Time to Complete: 1 hour

Working to improve the life of individuals with ASD is the ultimate goal of families and professionals. Part of this improvement may involve addressing challenging behaviors. This module will discuss development of effective behavior intervention plans, and provide resources and guides for use.


Estimated Time to Complete: 1 1/2 hours

Extinction is a procedure based on the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) in which reinforcement of a previously reinforced behavior is discontinued. Extinction is therefore, withholding or minimizing, to the greatest extent possible, the delivery of the consequence that maintains the interfering behavior. Extinction can be used with behaviors previously maintained by positive or negative reinforcement and by naturally occurring sensory consequences. This module will provide information on the evidence-based practice of extinction.

Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA)

Estimated Time to Complete: 1 1/2 hours

Functional behavior assessment (FBA) is a process for determining the purpose a challenging behavior serves for an individual. Through this process, teacher, parents, and interventionists can identify environmental variables that control and maintain challenging behavior. Subsequently, they can use FBA data to design effective interventions that reduce challenging behaviors while simultaneously increasing behaviors that facilitate self-determination. In this module, we will help the reader understand the relationship between the environment and challenging behavior. Furthermore, we will describe the steps for engaging in the evidence-based FBA process, the tools available for gathering information, and guidelines for implementation of the process.

Functional Communication Training

Estimated Time to Complete: 1 1/2 hours

Functional communication training (FCT) is a practice that emerged from the research on functional behavioral assessment (FBA). Once the FBA has determined the function of a single interfering behavior, or a group of behaviors that all serve the same function, FCT is used to teach a new, communicative behavior that replaces the interfering behavior (i.e., the communicative behavior serves the same purpose as the interfering/target behavior). This module will provide information on the evidence-based practice, FCT.


Estimated Time to Complete: 2 1/2 hours

Prompting procedures include any assistance given to individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) that assist them in using a specific skill. Prompting can be used to teach a variety of skills, including seeking information, pointing to objects, initiating and responding to greetings, and remaining "on task." The use of prompting procedures increases the probability that individuals with ASD use target skills correctly. This module will provide information on the various types of prompts, the steps required for least-to-most prompting and guidance on implementing prompting with fidelity.

Reinforcement - Updated

Estimated Time to Complete: 2 hours

Reinforcement describes a relationship between learner behavior and a consequence that follows the behavior. This relationship is only considered reinforcement if the consequence increases the probability that a given behavior will occur in the future. In this module, reinforcement procedures will be discussed including positive reinforcement and negative reinforcement. Steps for implementing each of these evidence-based procedures is provided as well as information on how reinforcement can be used with individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD).

Behavior Basics Course Post-Assessment

Post-assessment for Behavior Basics course.