Serious Emotional Disturbances

-Whitney Piatt
Defining Emotional Disturbances
Individuals with behavior disorders are “those who
chronically and markedly respond to their
environment in socially unacceptable ways and/or
personally unsatisfying ways but who can be taught
more socially acceptable and gratifying behavior”
(pg. 291)
1) Conduct Disorder (CD): antisocial, acting out,
disrupting, temper tantrums, negative, argumentative,
bully, blames, others, selfish, cruel
2) Socialized Aggression (SA): socialized delinquents,
possible gang membership, lies, runs away, steals,
admires criminals
3) Attention problems-immaturity (AP): acts younger
than age, difficulty with directions, distractable
…characteristics cont.
4) Anxiety Withdrawal (AW): anxious, depressed,
believes will fail, complains of being sick, difficulty
making decisions
5) Psychotic Behavior (PB): difficulty differentiation
between reality and fantasy, hallucinations
6) Motor Excess (ME): jumpy, fidgety, nervous, high
activity level
Having a behavior disorder involves…
Behavior that goes to an extreme- behavior that is
not just slightly different from the usual
A problem that is ongoing- one that does not
Behavior that is unacceptable because of social or
cultural expectations
SED in Education
*In order to receive special education, the students must exhibit
one or more of the following characteristics:
1) An inability to learn that cannot be explained by intellectual,
sensory, or health factors
2) An inability to build or maintain satisfactory interpersonal
relationships with peers
3) Inappropriate types of behavior or feelings under normal
4) A general, pervasive mood of unhappiness or depression
5) A tendency to develop physical symptoms or fears associated
with personal school problems
-Students with SED
2/3 of students with SED could not pass competency exams for
their grade level
These children have the lowest GPA of any group of students
with disabilities
44% failed one or more courses in their most recent school
They have a higher absenteeism rate than any other disability
category (missing an average of 18 days of school per year)
48% drop out of out high school compared with 30% of all
students with disabilities and 24% of all high school students
Over 50% are not employed within 2 years of exiting school
J., & Leitschuh, C. (2006). Special Education (11th
ed.). Dubuque, IA: Kendall Hunt.
 Dunn,

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