Degree Granting Department
Psychological and Social Foundations
Social skills, After-school program, Multiple baseline, Single-case, Intervention
Social skills training was investigated in an after-school program setting with four seven- and eight-year-old males. Two were Hispanic and two were African-American. Social skills training consisted of a direct instruction, behavioral learning model of skillstreaming as described by McGinnis and Goldstein (1997). There were four major components to each social skills training session: (1) an explanation of the skill being taught; (2) modeling by the researcher of the skill being taught; (3) role play by each of the participants; and (4) performance feedback regarding the role plays. Sessions lasted approximately 30 minutes and were held weekly throughout the intervention phases of the study. The behaviors taught were raising ones hand before leaving the seat, sitting properly in ones seat, and attending to homework or staff instructions.
Participants also received reinforcement for performance of the social skills in homework sessions at the after school program, as is consistent with the literature regarding social skills training. However, the reinforcement and behavior learning (direct instruction) components were introduced both in combination and at separate times to experimentally control for the influence of each intervention component. This research design allows for the investigation into the relative effectiveness of direct instruction versus reinforcement in social skills training. Experimental control was demonstrated through the use of a multiple baseline across behaviors design. Direct instruction and reinforcement for behaviors were systematically introduced at separate times, keeping some behaviors under baseline condition while moving others into intervention conditions.
Visual analysis of the results indicates that social skills training was effective in improving the three target behaviors of all four students. Direct instruction, reinforcement, and the combination of the two presented together all were effective in improving the target behaviors. Possible intervention effects not related to social skills training may have influenced the behavior of attending.
Scholar Commons Citation
Caples, Robert, "Effects of social skills training on the interpersonal behaviors of elementary school students in an after-school program" (2005). Graduate Theses and Dissertations.