Why would I take data?
Simply put, data helps you make decisions and allows you to
avoid emotional opinions or reactions related to behaviors
that may otherwise evoke emotional feelings. It helps
professionals make decisions that can change your child's life
for the better.
Odds are, if you are working with a professional (or on your own) to change beahivors improve skills, you've been asked to collect data.
Although parent reports may be useful as an indirect report of
behavior to inform ongoing therapeutic interventions by a
trained practitioner, when caregivers themselves collect
behavioral data while implementing interventions with their
children, this practice produces positive outcomes (Singh,
The data that caregivers have been trained to obtain ranges from child skill acquisition and challenging behavior frequencies to taking self-monitoring data on treatment integrity (Nadler, 2012; Singh, 2012).
Sundberg et al. (2018) suggests that one way for a parent, as a teacher, to evaluate their child's treatment should be the collection of behavioral data directly related to the what the treatment is addressing. They stated that because of the extensive time spent with their child, a parent might have upward of 220,000 learning opportunities with their child per year, indicating importance for the caregivers to be equipped to both teach and evaluate their teaching.
Need more reasons?
For families of children with developmental disablities, taking data can be extremely helpful and already being requested by that childs mental health proefessional.