Dimensions of Behavior

There are several different dimensions of a behavior. It is important to recognize these different dimensions when attempting to teach a new behavior or reduce an unwanted behavior so that you can create a plan for shaping  the behavior and effectively assess progress. Generally you will work on shaping one dimension of a behavior at a time.

Frequency: The number of times a student engages in a given behavior with in an observation period.

Rate: Is a ration of frequency to time. For example: John blurted out 2 times per minute. Stacy made a squeaking noise 3 times per minute.

Duration: Is the measure of how long a student engages in a given behavior. Sally stayed on task for 3 minutes. Jason’s tantrum lasted for 5 minutes.

Latency: Is the amount of time between when the cue for a behavior is given and the behavior begins

Topography: Is what a behavior looks like

Intensity: Is the force with which a behavior occurs.

Locus: Is the location of a behavior.

And of course …Fluency: With fluency you are measuring the frequency that a behavior is performed accurately. Fluency is very important when determining mastery¬† of a behavior.