Teaching adaptive behaviour to ‘behaviour problem' high school students : an exploratory study

  • Jennifer Jasinski

    Student thesis: Master's Thesis


    The purpose of this study was to determine whether the Adaptive Behaviour group intervention effected a greater immediate positive change on ‘poorly adapted’ student locus of control, self esteem, group evaluation and perceived behaviour than Helping Skills., Relaxation Training or No Intervention group after eight weeks. The three independent variables - Adaptive Behaviour, Helping Skills and Relaxation Training Group Interventions - were devised and led by the Researcher and two school counsellors respectively. Measurement of the dependent variables was by the use of the following instruments pre-test and post-test: Locus of Control Scale for Children (Nowicki Strickland 1972); Coopersmith Self Esteem Inventory (Coopersmith, 1982); and researcher designed questionnaires. A pre-test post-test group design was used in the study. The subjects were years 7-9 High School students identified by Student Year Advisers and the Assistant Principal Student Welfare as being ‘poorly adapted’ and ‘well adapted’ to the school environment. Students were randomly allocated - in year groups - to the intervention and control groups. Results indicated no short term significant positive change in locus of control for any intervention or control group; no short term significant positive change in self esteem for any intervention group; no significant correlation between locus of control and self esteem scores for any intervention group; positive pre and post-test group evaluations for all groups; some positive short term change in teacher and student perceptions of student behaviour in regard to all three interventions. In some cases students’ behaviour in the experimental group (Group A) was perceived more positively by teachers and students. Some recommendations for further research are: replication of the study over a longer period of time with some modification to the experimental programme, the research design and methods of measurement.
    Date of Award1986
    Original languageEnglish

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