Increasing Safety, Dignity, and Joy Across the Day: Universal Protocols (3 CEUs)

Please read below before purchasing this course.


  1. The video contained within this course is protected by copyright. Downloading or making copies of the videos is prohibited.
  2. The purchase of this course is for a single user. Sharing login credentials with other people is prohibited. Broadcasting the course to a group is also prohibited.
  3. You will have access to the course for 14 days from the date and time of purchase.
  4. If you need more time to complete the course, an extension link will appear upon expiration under the course title in the “My Profile” page. Extensions are provided in 14-day increments for $20.


Special thanks to Dr. Theresa Fiani and Tina Gunn for their participation in the presentation of this course.



The Practical Functional Assessment and Skill-Based Treatment processes have been demonstrated to reduce or eliminate severe problem behavior and increase important life skills for clients with a variety of strengths and needs. However, building these skills takes time and expertise, and stakeholders often wonder what they should do while a client is awaiting PFA/SBT, and what to do outside of treatment session time for clients just beginning the process.

The Universal Protocols offer a solution. The goals are to (a) increase joy among clients—that is, to increase the extent to which clients are happy, relaxed, and engaged throughout the day, (b) prevent escalation to severe problem behavior by removing events/interactions that commonly evoke problem behavior and by reinforcing distress indicators, (c) teach clients that staff are not adversarial but rather are there for them, and (d) increase staff job satisfaction. The Universal Protocols aim to eliminate staff and client injury and to minimize the need for any physical management tactics. They are also designed with the assumption that all people receiving specialized services may have experienced multiple adverse events and/or repeated stressful situations, which must be considered if staff are to develop trusting and productive relationships with them.

Many organizations also appreciate the values that underlie PFA/SBT and are interested in establishing those values as the foundation from which all their services are provided, whether a particular client engages in problem behavior or not. The presentation will discuss how the Universal Protocols can fit into a comprehensive service system and explore the logistics behind scaling their use within an organization.

In this presentation, attendees will learn about the elements that make up the Universal Protocols through description, rationale, video models, and examples. Attendees will also learn about implementation logistics and receive tips from a school based BCBA who has used the Universal Protocols in her district.

The Universal Protocols have been used in settings including public and specialized schools, residential programs, clinics, homes, and hospitals, with individuals aged preschool through adult, with a range of diagnoses. This presentation is suitable for viewers familiar with the PFA/SBT processes.


Attendees will be able to:

  1. Describe 7 elements of the Universal Protocols
  2. Identify examples of the Universal Protocol elements
  3. Distinguish between a general and personalized version of the Universal Protocol
  4. Describe a process by which the Universal Protocols might be developed, implemented, and scaled across an organization
  5. Describe how the Universal Protocols can fit into a comprehensive service system
  6. Describe measures that might be used to evaluate the effects of the Universal Protocols on a client/staff-specific and broad scale


  1. This course is divided into 8 chapters.
  2. Each chapter presents a video.
  3. If you close your browser before finishing a video, your place in the video will not be saved. Therefore, we recommend that you jot down the timestamp before closing your browser so you can quickly find the spot at which you left off when you return.
  4. After most videos there will be a short quiz.
  5. Many of the quiz questions are in the style of “multiple selection.” That is, there will often be more than one correct answer.
  6. Be sure to check your spelling when composing constructed answers.
  7. 100% correct responding is required before moving to the next chapter.
  8. When all quizzes are successfully completed, you will be presented with a certificate worth 3 BACB CEUs (1 General, 1 Ethics, 1 Supervision) and a link to a feedback survey.
  9. Be sure to check out the “Download Materials” section before the first chapter helpful resources for learning and implementing the Universal Protocols.
Chapter Video Duration Number of Quiz Questions
1 21:11 4
2 16:22 5
3 14:07 4
4 19:42 5
5 30:12 4
6 25:46 5
7 16:46 4
8 20:24 5

Tell Us How We Can Help

To help us design an organizational training, provide on-site implementation support for your staff, and schedule follow-up video conferencing, tell us about you, your organization, and your goals.

Book Meeting