What is a Supportive Environment?

Supportive environment is one of the twelve scales in our Personal Responsibility Map, which is the core assessment in our academic and career goals program. Supportive Environment describes the amount to which friends, family, peers, and others in one’s life value high achievement, and positively encourage people to achieve their goals. Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) is a term used to describe the proactive approach to establishing the behavioral supports needed for students to achieve social, emotional, and academic success. This definition blends the worlds of behavior intervention and academic instruction. Having a supportive environment is a critical factor in making the PBIS framework successful.

How Support Affects Learning


When implementing PBIS, it is important to know how learners feel about their support systems. When students lack a positive support system, it should be a goal of the PBIS process to help them build a support structure that will help them achieve their academic and career goals. Support structures are a crucial part of any students success. It is not an accident that people who succeed have found the magic of surrounding themselves with people who support them. Developing this ability in all students is part of every successful PBIS program.

Supportive Environment and PBIS


Each and every one of your students has certain psychological needs that must be met in order to become a healthy, productive person. Abraham Maslow’s now infamous Hierarchy of Needs puts all human needs into one of five categories. The third level is where the social needs are addressed. This deals with the need to belong or have human relationships. This is where the need to a Supportive Environment falls.


In PBIS, self-actualization leads to academic, and later, career and life success. The need to belong and to be part of a community is a basic psychological need in all of us. The understanding of the importance of a positive support system needs to be learned and continually reinforced. Our Personal Responsibility Map not only identifies the strengths of each user’s support system, it also provides students with valuable interventions to teach them how to build and maintain their positive supportive environment.

Do you want to learn more about how to accurately assess and build a positive support system for your students? Click here to sign up for our trial.