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Teaching Functional Independence 


General Information

Title: Teaching Functional Independence

Presented By: Steve Ward, MA, BCBA

Live Webinar Date:  Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Time: 10:00 am to 1:00 pm eastern (New York)

Recording Availability:  June 17- 26, 2020

Recording Closes at 11:59 pm eastern (New York)


During this webinar, Steve will discuss an analysis of how the timing of prompts impacts the development of independence. He will also describe what it takes to make a "functional behavior" (e.g., putting a napkin in the trash) truly "functional" (e.g., doing so after it has been used, without reminders, avoiding distractions, etc). Steve will explain how functional independence can be targeted from the very beginning of a learner's programming and into vocational and inclusive education opportunities. Participants will be provided with an assessment and guided to score their student's "Perseverance and Focus" and select potential instructional targets.

Target Audience: Professionals for whom the topic is within their scope of practice. We welcome students and others who are also interested in the topic to join us.

Learning Objectives

  1. Participants should be able to discriminate between a prompt and a redirection.
  2. Participants should be able to select prerequisites to functional independence.
  3. Participants should be able to identify examples of supports that limit the extent to which a behavior chain can be considered "functional".
  4. Participants should be able to discriminate between (un)likely opportunities to teach problem solving.

Presenter Bio and Disclosure Statement

Steve Ward, MA, BCBA has been working in the field of Behavior Analysis since 1995, and is currently co-owner of Whole Child Consulting, LLC. Steve has been consulting to teams around the world, addressing everything from early communication and physical aggression to vocational opportunities and inclusion in college courses. Steve authored What You Need to Know about Motivation and Teaching Games: An In-depth Analysis, The Inventory of Good Learner Repertoires, Teaching Good Learner Repertoires and co-authored Teaching Advanced Learner Repertoires, and Another 21 Games: This time, it's personal…. These publications reflect Steve's passion not only for what students learn, but also for the manner in which they learn it. Steve specializes in teaching learner repertoires, including social repertoires, incorporating knowledge from a variety of perspectives and remaining at all times behavioral in his own perspective.

Disclosure Statement

Steve Ward is an author or co-author of books mentioned during the presentation. He receives royalties from the sale of the books. He also receives speaker fees for presenting for ABAC.



10:00 am: Introduction
10:05 am: Webinar begins
11:30 am: 10 minute break
11:40 am: First Q&A session
11:50 am: Webinar resumes
12:45 pm: Second Q&A session
1:00 pm: Evaluation, post-test and code submission forms

Credit Hour Information

Licensed/Certified Behavior Analysts: 3 CEUs (Learning)*

CE not available for other professions for this webinar

  • Must pass post-test with 80% or above and submit all attendance codes

*CE for viewing Live or Recording
** CE only for viewing Live

For ABAC's continuing education approvals statements please view our Continuing Education page