The IEP & Co-Teaching : Resources for the FBA and BIP

Tuesday, June 30, 2015
Lets face it, functional behavior assessments (FBA) and behavior intervention plans (BIP) are data intensive and very comprehensive. It's challenging to complete and you need hire a village to complete it.

It was the first time I had to write a real BIP on my own. I had a few classes on writing them, and wrote a pretend one as the final assessment for the class. I was given a lot of support from my inclusion facilitator and two co-teachers. It would be odd for me to give advice on what to write, since I'm a novice myself, so I'm going to focus on what will help write an awesome FBA and BIP.

This post will hopefully provide some resources that will help you write an awesome FBA and BIP. I recently put them together in a binder (same kind as my IEP Resources Binder) for the sake of organization.

Looks better than a pile!

DISCLAIMER: When writing a FBA/BIP, the strategies and resources you need are based on the student. It is individualized, therefore, not all these forms will be appropriate for your FBA/BIP.

Here's what it looks like:

Behavioral Supports Tier

  • Before even attempting to conduct an FBA or write a BIP, the student must have gone through all the tiers of behavioral supports (RTI/ MTSS). I've had to show this to a fellow co-teacher because she recommended a student for a 504/BIP before double checking what was already in place for the student. It's also a good reminder for me that I've gone through all the necessary steps. I can't seem to find my version, but here's a link to a really good one (page 45).
Great visual for all teachers!

Approval/ Notification

  • Collect all the data (i.e. your communications log, detention forms, referrals for suspensions, etc)
  • Notify the parent(s) of the student. My super efficient case manager would say "call them." I say call them and send a note home. Paper trail, always.
Word on the street is that the state (IL) will make it mandatory to ask for permission before we run an FBA.

Functional Behavior Assessment Forms

  • These were used this year (pg 2). I expect that this section will expand. There's some instructions on the basic steps for recording the data - this was to ensure that "all my ducks were in a line."
  • FBAs are sometimes tricky to explain to co-teachers. Thus, alongside the data, I found some awesome FBA summary charts. This is a great visual to use when explaining what was discovered concerning the student's behavior. You can find it here. I've only used it once, but it's good to have when you've got co-teachers who really need the support!
Chart that helps with finding the correct data tool.
Appropriate jargon reminders.

Data collecting tables and charts

Interviews and Surveys

  • Teachers
    • The one I used is REALLY LONG. I ended up sitting down with my co-teachers (i.e. the teachers who spend the most time with the student), and going through it together. I highlighted the ones that I wanted to focus on with them. It goes over pretty much everything from the classroom environment to what teachers are seeing.
  • Students
    • Reflection of Behaviors - I've used this to interview (download link) the student and it provided interesting data on whether the student was aware of their behavior not. 
    • Forced-Choice Reinforcement Menu - I didn't use this for my caseload, but I know it'll become handy down the line. It's a great way of seeing what the student wants and what will be effective.
  • Parents:
    • I like the idea of involving the parent. However, I knew the paperwork was going to get lost on the way home by the student, so I spoke to the parents on the phone with some general questions about what they see. Here's a good one if you can trust that it gets home and back!
Interviews/ Surveys for the team to fill out with you. 
Student Interviews/ Surveys for behavior and reinforcrs.


  • Reference Sheet (pg 50) - great for double checking your language and working with your team to consider what to provide for the student based on his/her forced choice menu.
  • Possible Reinforcers (pg 43) - sometimes you just need some help coming up with some ideas, here's a list of some things that you could use.
Defining and determining appropriate Reinforcers

Behavior Planning

  • Support Planning - are you sitting down and writing out the target behavior statements ?(student's target behavior is ... he complies when ... he does not when...)
Antecedent intervention chart for describing behaviors.
I haven't used this - a good visual to help with planning.

Behavior Intervention Plan

So by now, with all the data, a BIP should probably be written out/ completed with the help of your team. I tried showing it (in it's original form), to the team and guess what? It overwhelmed them. The language, the way it was organized, the consequences - basically everything caused utter confusion. As you know, we have to support all needs, so a visual map was made. 
  • BIP-At-A-Glance- check it out on Julia's blog!
  • FBA/BIP Checklist - I got mine from a professional development, there's no electronic copy. This is a very good one though.
BIP-At-A-Glance/ Flowchart for easy team meetings.
Final FBA/BIP checklist before submitting the final draft!


  • I kept things that I used or want to use in the classroom. It's nice to have everything in one spot.
    • 1 - 5 Behavior Scale (you can definitely make it with the student - what words would they use, what do they want, etc)
    • Student Reflections - (pg 3-5) great deescalation activities
    • Data Collection Forms (pg 10 - 14) - Personally, our middle school has a behavior clipboard that follows them from class to class. These are some intensive ones that I think are cool.
    • Good News notes (pg 7 - 9) - if this is a good reinforcer, definitely use it!
    • Behavior cards - these were given out during a professional development. I kept them in case I ever I needed them.
Some of the things I listed above.

If you find that a lot of the things here aren't useful here's two (out of the gazillion places) you can go to and find great resources:


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