Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Philosophy & Religion

First Advisor

Tom Petros


The present study evaluated the effectiveness of a 12 week school-based behavioral intervention with preschoolers age 4 to 5 with self-control problems. Teachers were trained to use instruction, modeling, rehearsal, and role-playing to increase the children's self-control. Children were taught self-monitoring, self-verbalization, the use of production cues, and self-control skills during one on one training. The classroom intervention consisted of weekly educational sessions on the proper classroom behaviors that are indicative of good self-control. The treatment program aimed to improve the child's self-control skills and to decrease impulsive behaviors. It was also intended to train self-control skills to children so that they can internalize these skills to modify their behavior at school and in other settings. The study implemented a combination of several treatment components that have been lacking in the past literature in order to enhance, maintain, and generalize trained self-control skills, including: self-verbalization, cueing, self-monitoring, and teacher and classroom training.

The interventions were effective in reducing some behaviors, but not all, for each participant. Many of these effects maintained during follow-up. Since the individual training was tailored for each child, the intervention affected each child differently. The classroom intervention was effective in reducing many behaviors in combination with the individual intervention, as well as, on its own. Overall, when the individual intervention was administered alone the results that were produced· indicated that the training was effective and the results maintained. When the classroom intervention was administered alone for 8 of the behaviors the results that were produced displayed a decrease in 5 of the target behaviors during training and maintained for 4 of those behaviors. When both the classroom and individual interventions were administered, the combination was shown to be effective in 4 out of the 9 applications and three maintained. Overall 100% of the children displayed a decrease in frequency for at least 1 target behavior and 4 out of the 5 children's decreases in target behavior also maintained into follow-up. Furthermore, the teachers reported that the classroom intervention not only positively affected the participants' behavior; they saw a positive effect on the classroom as a whole and thought it was a very useful strategy.

Included in

Psychology Commons