Home / Help and Hope:  Combining PBS and Optimism Training for Parents of Young Children with Challenging Behavior

Help and Hope:  Combining PBS and Optimism Training for Parents of Young Children with Challenging Behavior


Have you encountered families who feel that there is no hope to change their child’s behavior?

The reduction in negative thinking and interpretation of events by parents has been documented as influencing parent behavior change, including enhanced implementation fidelity of behavior support strategies, resulting in improved child and family outcomes.   Learn about the Positive Family Intervention research project and the cognitive behavior skill training procedures, also known as optimism training, that were utilized to teach parents how to identify situations prompting negative self-talk, specific beliefs that create barriers to intervention, the consequences of these beliefs, and the practice of using disputation and substitution. An application of optimism training will be shared that demonstrates how the reduction of parent pessimism helped to promote parent confidence, improved parent and child efficacy, and influenced the successful delivery and fidelity of PBS interventions for their child at home.   Future considerations of adapting optimism training for use within collaborative teams to foster increased teacher confidence, persistence, and implementation fidelity of behavior supports for young children in school settings will also be proposed for discussion.


Oct 5, 2022


3:00 PM


1 hr

Related Resources

Certificate Info

Certificate of Attendance

A downloadable certificate is available for both live and recorded webinars. To receive the certificate, you must fill out the evaluation survey.

How to access the survey:

Live participants: You will receive an email after the webinar with the link to the survey. Recording viewers: The URL link for the survey will be displayed at the end of the webinar. You will need to type that URL into your internet browser to access the survey and certificate. Note: Type the URL exactly as you see it. URL is CASE SENSITIVE. Once you submit the survey, the certificate will appear. You can then save and/or print your certificate.

NCPMI Presenter(s)

Lise Fox

University of South Florida

Lise Fox, PhD, is a Professor and Chair in the Department of Child and Family Studies in the College of Behavioral and Community Sciences of the University of South Florida. She is the Principal Investigator of the National Center for Pyramid Model Innovations, a faculty member with the ECTA Center, and is involved in multiple research and national technical assistance projects related to early childhood programs and practices.  Her research is focused on practical approaches for the inclusion of young children with problem behavior in community settings and individualized interventions for addressing young children’s challenging behavior.

Guest Presenter(s)

Mara "Shelley" Clarke

University of South Florida

Mara "Shelley" Clarke, M.A., BCBA, is a Faculty Research Associate within The Department of Child and Family Studies, USF. She has been involved in conducting applied research utilizing Positive Behavior Support for over twenty years. Her primary focus has involved collaborating and guiding teams to develop and implement function-based behavior interventions for use in home, school, and community settings, addressing the reduction of child challenging behavior, increased skill acquisition, and promotion of improved quality of life features for young children and their families. These successful research endeavors have allowed Ms. Clarke to disseminate study outcomes, resulting in over forty peer-reviewed publications, four book chapters, and presentations at over one hundred local, national, and international conferences. Ms. Clarke’s current interests involve ensuring family engagement, promotion of inclusion and equity for young children, and expanding coaching elements available to families and teachers, such as cognitive behavior training techniques, and mindfulness to enhance parent efficacy, implementation fidelity, parent confidence and improved child outcomes.

IDEAs that Work logo

This website was made possible by Cooperative Agreement #H326B220002 which is funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs. However, those contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government. This website is maintained by the University of South Florida. Contact webmaster. © University of South Florida