Effects of the Instructions, Modeling, and Practice Components of Behavioral Rehearsal on Assertion Training with College Students

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Counseling Psychology & Community Services


Procedure: The purposes of the present study were to: (1) determine the simple and interaction effects of the instructions, modeling, and practice components of behavioral rehearsal on the development of assertive refusal responses, and (2) assess the effectiveness of the modeling component as a function of the model characteristics. Data on the criterion variable of assertive refusal responses were gathered through a paper-and-pencil self-report measure, a behavioral r

Procedures: Volunteers participating in this study were sophomore, junior, and senior students enrolled in the College of Nursing at the University of North Dakota during the spring semester of 1976. Data from 48 randomly selected female volunteers were analyzed in this study.

Subjects were randomly assigned to one of 12 cells of a 2x3x2 (instructions by modeling by practice) factorial design. Each parson received two individual sessions, approximately 40 minutes each. Prior to training all subjects were administered the Conflict Resolution Inventory (CRI). During the training subjects were presented one treatment condition from each component: (1) either instructions or no instructions; (2) either a coping model or a mastery model or no model; (3) either covert practice or no covert rehearsal.

The training procedure included the following audio-taped segments: (1) the role-played stimulus situation; (2) the instructions component; (3) the modeling component; (4) a repeat of the role-played stimulus situation; (5) the covert practice component; (6) audio-taping of the subject's assertive refusal response. This sequence was administered twice during each session; different stimuli situations were used for the four administrations.

Upon completion of the training, subjects were administered a Behavioral Role-play Assertion Test (BRAT), the global portion of the CRI, and an unobtrusive telephone call follow-up of assertive refusal behavior. Analyses of variance, analyses of covariance, and the Kruskal-Wallis analyses of variance by ranks were the principle statistical tests used to analyze the data.

Findings and Conclusions: The followxng significant findings resulted from this investigation:

1. Listening to a female model making assertive refusal responses had a significant effect on the duration of subjects' assertive refusal responses. Although both modeling conditions produced briefer responses than the no modeling condition, the coping model was more effective in shortening subject responses than was the mastery model.

2. The instructions by modeling interaction produced assertive refusal responses on the BRAT that contained more complete verbal content.

3. Receiving instructions as to the nature and characteristics of an assertive refusal response produced a significant effect on the length of subject responses.

4. The modeling by practice interaction produced brief assertive refusal responses.

This investigation offered no statistically significant basis for believing that the behavioral rehearsal treatment approach effected a change in global assertiveness self-image, or that specific component treatment effects are lasting over time. The situational behavioral role-play measure presented only limited support for the independent treatment effects of the instructions and modeling components, and the interaction effects of the instructions by modeling and the modeling by practice first order interactions.

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