EDF5667 - Positive behaviour support - 2017

12 points, SCA Band 1, 0.250 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.




Associate Professor Umesh Sharma (Semester 1)

Dr Pearl Subban (Summer Semester A)

Unit guides



  • First semester 2017 (Flexible)
  • Summer semester A 2017 (On-campus block of classes)


This unit focuses on the key principles of using system-wide positive behaviour support (PBS) practices. PBS is a framework of practices that help improve the social and learning behaviours of students and decrease disruptions that interfere with instruction in educational settings and communities. The unit examines the wide-ranging research supporting PBS for learners of all age groups including preschool, primary, and secondary school students, and for students with severe emotional behaviours and those with developmental disabilities. Students critically review strategies for designing school-wide/system-wide PBS programs based on evidence and are supported to develop their own PBS strategies that can be used to prevent and/or respond to challenging behaviours in their educational contexts. Consideration is given to the work of leading and sustaining PBS strategies and practices across schools and systems.


Upon successful completion of this unit students should be able to:

  1. understand the key principles of using a system-wide PBS framework
  2. communicate the rationale for using positive strategies to prevent and respond to challenging behaviours
  3. demonstrate knowledge about a range of PBS strategies and reinforce these through practice
  4. critically review strategies designed to develop whole school-wide/system-wide PBS plans
  5. design a PBS plan that responds to their educational contexts and issues
  6. identify an evidence-based approach that gathers data to underpin the development and evaluation of PBS practices
  7. develop knowledge of broader strategies to lead and sustain PBS practices in schools and/or systems.


Critical review of research on PBS practices (3200 words, 40%)

Designing a professional development program for a school (4800 words equivalent, 60%)

Workload requirements

Flexible mode offers a stand-alone online offering that allows students to learn and engage in content and assessment in a supported way. It also provides a face-to-face component over the semester to engage students with the online learning content, which students can attend if they are able and interested.

Minimum total expected workload equals 288 hours per semester comprising:

  1. Contact hours for flexible students:
    • 12 contact hours and 24 hours equivalent of online activities over the semester or
    • 36 hours equivalent of online activities over the semester
  2. Requirements for offshore Kaplan-based students:
    • one intensive block (usually from Thursday to Sunday)
    • at least 14 hours of online study per term
  3. Additional requirements (all students):
    • independent study to meet the minimum required hours per semester

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study

Required for Master of Education in:

Inclusive and special education

Elective for Master of Teaching in:

Early years education

Primary education

Secondary education