Positive behaviours for learning: Changing student behaviours for sustainable psychosocial outcomes

The Positive Behaviours for Learning (PBL) initiative of the NSW Department of Education and Training Western Sydney Region (DET WSR) was derived from the Positive Behaviour Interventions and Supports (PBIS) program developed in the US. Although the major focus of implementation was on student behaviour for both the Australian and US models, PBL in the Australian context has further emphasised the transferability of implementation effects to sustainable learning outcomes. Students from schools implementing PBL (experimental group) and from schools on a wait list for implementation in the next year (control group) responded to survey items on 5 self-concept scales: school competency, school affect, maths, English, and parent self-concepts. Results showed that the experimental group had relatively higher scores for all 5 measures. However, multivariate analysis of variance found between-group differences only in school competency, math self-concept, and parent self-concept. Evidence suggested positive gains in psychosocial outcomes due to PBL implementation. Since these psychosocial determinants of learning success have the potential of leading to long-term tangible gains in learning outcomes, processes of PBL implementation may further strengthen the facilitation of these constructs.