How To Set Up Customized Data Tracking
Optimize your experience with BEHCA—every person is unique, so customizing your BEHCA profile is key to fully understanding their behavior
If you have any existing documents or plans (e.g., IEP’s, BSP’s, 504’s, person-centered plans, or other behavior documentation showing what’s challenging and/or what works versus doesn’t work), use these documents to help align both the language as well as the tracking. Even if at first you are not collaborating with anyone else or inviting others to track data, this documentation—specifically the wording you use—can help keep focus, ensure apples-to-apples terminology, and begin to form a baseline perspective.
What to reflect on when you’re customizing your BEHCA user profile:
- What is your goal with tracking behavior? What insight are you hoping to gain? This will help you identify both language as well as “what” to track.
- How does this behavior impact the individual’s life and those around them? This will help you determine the positive behaviors that you want to see more of.
- What are successful strategies that have worked in the past or are currently being used? This will help you identify influencers within the environment as well as in the notes section of what is being done. Even if this area cannot be answered, continue to ponder, revisit and intentionally observe to gain new perspectives.
- How does the environment impact the individual? This can be anything from smells, textures, sounds, particular people, places, or things. Be observant and creative with this section and make room for changes within the first couple of weeks as you may develop new understandings or perspectives.
Setting up the ‘Customization’ portion of BEHCA:
Identify all positive behaviors you would like to see more of and add those into the positive behavior section. This might look like the following:
- Things they currently do well.
- Include interests/strengths that may lead to added strengths (improvements).
- Combine what they do well (have buy-in) with what we want them to shift in terms of challenging behavior.
Example: Johnny frequently hits to get attention; however, he loves interacting with others while putting puzzles together or playing games. Example desirable behaviors could be:
- Engaged socially with soft touch
- Calmly interacted with peer
- Respectfully engaged with taking turns
- Clearly stated needs using words
Identify all behaviors that indicate frustration or beginning emotional dysregulation, or other warning signs that eventually lead to more challenging behaviors. Examples:
- Furrowed brow
- Increased pace of talking
- Increased volume
- Excessive repeated questions
Challenging (Crisis) Behaviors
Identify up to four behaviors (try to keep it under four to bring validity to the tracking as well as less complexity). List those behaviors in the challenging behavior section as general incidents. This might look like the following:
- Physical aggression: hitting, kicking, scratching, biting, throwing things, pulling hair, pushing, etc.
- Sensory seeking/stemming: spinning, making noises, flapping, repeating phrases, rocking, etc.
- Verbally Aggressive/threats: screaming, making idle or real threats, swearing, making negative comments towards others, saying explicit phrases, etc.
- Self-injurious behaviors (SIB): banging head, biting hand, punching head/face/body, throwing body against floor or wall, slamming self-back, etc.
- Suicidal ideation/threats/attempts: Making threats to harm or kill self, making advances into harming self or stating preparedness to kill self, screaming “I want to die,” or other variations of such
- Property destruction: kicking walls, throwing items to break them, ripping items apart, using weapons/sharp things to destroy furniture, etc.
Detail any intervention strategies for the individual that are known to promote positive behavior and avoid an escalation to challenging behavior. This may include strategies from the following documents:
- Behavior Support Plan goals
- IEP goals or accommodations
- 504 plan accommodations
- Trauma-informed practices
- Collaborative problem solving
- Sensory break (3 choices)
- Visual schedule
- Verbal prompt
- Check for understanding
Think creatively and observe closely; the goal is to pay attention to ALL variables influencing the person’s ability to self-regulate. The more agitating events, the less patience we have
- Particular noises: alarms, fans, sirens, birds, dogs barking, siblings yelling/screaming, road noise from car, windows down in car, etc.
- Sensory stimuli response: other people touching them or hugs, hair being brushed/washed or otherwise, certain clothing with tags/material/seams/etc., wind, car rides (particularly longer or curvy), food (textures and flavors), showering (being wet, cold/hot, soap, towels, etc.)
- Certain people/personalities: Power struggles, limited choice giving, gruff voice/demeanor, high pitched voice, timid, unsure how to respond or seemingly fearful, specific physical features; beard, long-hair, bald, tall, women, men, children, etc.
- Changes in schedule: canceled appointments, time changes, having to wait long periods (appointment late), new provider, new teacher/para professional, different location for school/work/other, favorite choices no longer being available (or being limited)
- Pollen count/changes in seasons: Pollen is something we are planning to track regularly, in the meantime we are noticing big effects with the increased count.
Health Challenges: Identify any chronic or recurring health issues, like seizure or migraine headache.
Medications/supplements: Enter all medications or supplements given daily. (NOTE: if your plan supports MAR (Medication Administration Records) and you have this option enabled, you will not see the basic medications and supplements in this section as they are replaced by MAR tracking in the individual's Profile). It is important to make notes of any observable influencers or changes, related to the health section. This might be particularly important when experiencing medication changes or rapid changes in specific health-related concerns; rapid weight gain or loss, increased anxiety or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).