A recurrent pattern of negativistic, defiant, disobedient and hostile behavior toward authority figures that persists for at least six months and is characterized by the frequent occurrence of at least four of the following behaviors:losing temper, arguing with and defying adults, deliberately doing things that will annoy other people. 

Example behaviors may include:

  • Frequent Temper Tantrums
  • Arguments with adults
  • Blames others for own mistakes or behaviors
  • Annoying Behaviors
  • Easily annoyed by others
  • Resentfulness
  • Purposeful defiance of rules or requests
  • Spiteful or vindictive behavior

How does ODD impact classroom performance? 

  • Children with ODD may experience challenges with developing appropriate peer and adult relationships. As well, schoolwork may not be high on their priority list and it may be seen as a tool to use when trying to defy authority.
  • Most often, these children have suffering grades, not because of an ability or skill deficit, but because of a performance deficit in lack of work completion. Teachers may also find these students to have low frustration tolerance in completing assignments, frequent temper tantrums, and blaming schoolmates for their own behavior. 
  • As ODD and Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD) are sometimes related, students also may display other behaviors such as challenges with attention and concentration, impulsivity, and/or hyperactivity. 

What can be done at school? 

  • Develop and post school-wide and specific-setting expectations for student behavior
  • Teach expectations and reinforce appropriate behavior through school/class-wide incentive programs
  • Be concrete in directions or correction of behavior
  • Be consistent
  • Build a hierarchy of negative consequences and implement along with awards for positive behavior
  • Attempt to establish and maintain a positive and trusting relationship with the student
  • Conduct a Functional Behavior Analysis to develop behavioral strategies and effective consequences
  • Choose only a few behaviors (the most severe or problematic) to target at first rather than attempting to fix everything