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Psychology

Western Michigan University

Theses/Dissertations

1984

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Using Performance-Management To Improve The Academic Success Of High-Risk College Students, Valerie L. Jager Dec 1984

Using Performance-Management To Improve The Academic Success Of High-Risk College Students, Valerie L. Jager

Master's Theses

This study evaluated the effectiveness of a performance management program designed to improve the academic success of high-risk college students; students who had been previously dismissed from the university and had grade point averages (GPA) below 2.0 (on a 4.0- point scale). Twenty-two of these high-risk students were required to enroll in a one-credit hour performance-management course. They met weekly with a student staff member and prepared a contract, which specified their goals for the upcoming week and evaluated the past weeks' accomplishments. The students were also required to graph their daily accomplishments and spend ten hours per ...


The Effect Of Aerobic Training And Weight Training On The Cardiorespiratory Fitness, Body Cathexis, And Self-Concept Of College Females, John Stuart Irvine Dec 1984

The Effect Of Aerobic Training And Weight Training On The Cardiorespiratory Fitness, Body Cathexis, And Self-Concept Of College Females, John Stuart Irvine

Dissertations

The present study investigated the effects of two differing exercise programs, aerobic training and weight training, upon the body cathexis, global self-concept, and cardiorespiratory fitness of college females. The subjects were undergraduate nonintercollegiate athletes who self-selected into four different physical education classes that served as the two experimental and one control group. The subjects in the aerobics exercise group engaged in rope jumping, aerobic dance, and jogging for 50 minutes, twice per week, for 14 weeks. The weight training experimental group utilized free weights and variable resistence strength training equipment during the 14-week, twice weekly, 50-minute sessions. The control group ...


Methylphenidate Effects On The Learning And Performance Of Four Hyper Active Children, Paul James Yoder Dec 1984

Methylphenidate Effects On The Learning And Performance Of Four Hyper Active Children, Paul James Yoder

Dissertations

The effects of methylphenidate hydrochloride (Ritalin) on the learning and performance of four hyperactive children were evaluated using a repeated acquisition procedure with both learning and performance components. Three dosages of methylphenidate plus a placebo were evaluated under double-blind experimental conditions. Dosages treated included each subject's therapeutic dosage, a dosage 5 milligrams higher, and a dosage 5 milligrams lower. Methylphenidate produced no effect on either the number of errors per session or on the rate of responding across the range of dosages tested suggesting that the medication neither facilitated nor impaired learning or performance. Data were also collected on ...


The Effects Of A Structured Study-Support Program On The Academic Performance Of Minority College Freshmen In A General Psychology Course, Mark Andrew Jackson Dec 1984

The Effects Of A Structured Study-Support Program On The Academic Performance Of Minority College Freshmen In A General Psychology Course, Mark Andrew Jackson

Master's Theses

This study analyzed the effectiveness of a structured study support course on the academic performance of minority college freshmen in a general psychology course. The study-support course required the participants to study the weekly quiz material in specified increments throughout the entire week. These participants received significantly higher grades than those who did not.

In addition, the weekly quiz scores of the participants during the treatment phase were significantly higher than their quiz scores prior to the beginning of the study-support course. Students who did not participate in the study-support course showed no significant difference in weekly quiz performance during ...


A Performance Audit Of A Graduate Training Program, Maria Emma Garcia Dec 1984

A Performance Audit Of A Graduate Training Program, Maria Emma Garcia

Master's Theses

The present study consists of a performance audit of a graduate training program. The performance audit is an engineering model created by Gilbert (1978) to design, analyze, and evaluate organizations. This performance audit was applied to the Behavioral Systems Analysis Program (BSAP), a graduate training program of the Psychology Department at Western Michigan University. The mission of BSAP consists of training behavioral systems analysts to effectively create or improve systems that benefit humanity.

This study had two objectives: first, the identification of the areas of BSAP with greatest potential for improvement and the identification causes of their deficiencies; second, to ...


Effects Of The Center For The Self-Management Of Academic Performance On High Risk Students, Connie J. Wittkopp Dec 1984

Effects Of The Center For The Self-Management Of Academic Performance On High Risk Students, Connie J. Wittkopp

Master's Theses

The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a behavioral package designed to help keep high risk students in school. Thirty-four undergraduate students on academic probation were referred to the Center for the Self-Management of Academic Performance by the College of Arts and Sciences. These students were divided into two groups: an experimental group which consisted of 21 students and a control group which consisted of 13 students. Members of the experimental group were exposed to a treatment package which included behavioral contracting, lectures, and mandatory attendance at a study center; members of the control group ...


Feminine Role Orientation And Locus Of Control In Battered Women, Nancy C. Zielke Dec 1984

Feminine Role Orientation And Locus Of Control In Battered Women, Nancy C. Zielke

Dissertations

The purpose of this study was to examine locus of control and feminine role orientation in battered women. It was hypothesized that battered women would have a more "external" locus of control than women who have not been in a battering relationship. It was also hypothesized that battered women would describe themselves as having more characteristics that are traditionally associated as "feminine" in nature and fewer characteristics that are considered "masculine" in nature than women who have not been in a battering relationship. Finally, it was hypothesized that there would be a relationship between locus of control and self-perceived feminine ...


Computer-Assisted Consultation: Problem-Identification, David B. Lennox Dec 1984

Computer-Assisted Consultation: Problem-Identification, David B. Lennox

Dissertations

Three experiments were conducted to validate the effectiveness of Computer-Assisted Consultation (CAC)--a computer-based problem identification interviewing system for use in conducting school-based behavioral consultation. The specific goals of problem identification are to establish behavioral objectives and initial assessment characteristics. Experiment I functioned as a pilot which: (1) validated the need for problem identification, (2) demonstrated the general utility of CAC, and (3) provide a basis for program improvement. Experiment II provided a more rigorous analysis of CAC by comparing it with an actual problem identification interview. Two groups of three consultees each were exposed to one of two counter-balanced ...


Psychometric Characteristics Of The Behavioral Observation Scale, Gregg Allen Bolt Aug 1984

Psychometric Characteristics Of The Behavioral Observation Scale, Gregg Allen Bolt

Master's Theses

Self-, peer-, and supervisor ratings were obtained on 52 psychiatric aides using a Behavioral Observation Scale (BOS). Self ratings showed less leniency error than peer- and supervisor ratings. Halo error could not be assessed due to a negative correlation between means and variences. A multitrait-multimethod (MTMM) analysis supported the presence of strong rater bias and significant convergent validity but not discriminant validity. The results of the analyses demonstrated that the ratings obtained from a BOS were not psychometrically superior to other appraisal formats. Questions were raised as to the adequacy of a five point scale, data transformation, and rating scales.


Use Of Contingency Contracting For The Generalization Of Social Skills Of Emotionally Impaired Students, Michelle M. Kapp Aug 1984

Use Of Contingency Contracting For The Generalization Of Social Skills Of Emotionally Impaired Students, Michelle M. Kapp

Master's Theses

The present study investigated the effects of contingency or behavioral contracting on the generalization of emitting polite words. Generalization as a result of social skills training was compared to generalization as a result of contracting. The subjects were three elementary students identified as emotionally impaired. The experimental design was a combination reversal and multiple baseline across subjects. The results of the study supported the hypothesis that contracting would be more effective than the social skills training in initiating generalization of emitting polite words. It was suggested that additional research be conducted to investigate the long term effects of contracting on ...


The Use Of Performance Data To Monitor And Support The Reorganization Of An Educational System, Ellen Spall Thompson Aug 1984

The Use Of Performance Data To Monitor And Support The Reorganization Of An Educational System, Ellen Spall Thompson

Master's Theses

The goal of this study was to determine the performance effects on staff and students following the reorganization of a special education facility. The organizational plan was based on the development of teaching teams where students were grouped together according to exit curricular goals. Four interventions were completed in order to assess the overall outcome of the reorganization project. At the student level, the rate of learning was monitored in order to determine whether the implementation of teams affected educational objective acquisition . At the team level, meeting agendas were surveyed to find out what effect they had on student learning ...


The Effects Of Given Versus Self-Derived Rules On Children's Performance Of A Complex Discrimination Task, Susan F. Roy Aug 1984

The Effects Of Given Versus Self-Derived Rules On Children's Performance Of A Complex Discrimination Task, Susan F. Roy

Master's Theses

Two groups of preschool children were studied in a discretetrial concept formation task involving identification of stimulus cards which shared a common feature (e.g., picture a color, or a facial expression). During training, one group (rule-given) was given a verbal description which delineated the aspect of the stimulus card that should control responding. The second (self-derived rule) group was exposed to the same cards, without a rule (verbal description) being given. Members of each group were reinforced for correct responses (i.e., identifying which of two pictures had the relevant stimulus property), and accuracy of description was recorded for ...


Prescriptive Contracting: Utilization Of Self-Monitoring And Contracting In A Study Improvement Program, Raymond L. Boettger Aug 1984

Prescriptive Contracting: Utilization Of Self-Monitoring And Contracting In A Study Improvement Program, Raymond L. Boettger

Master's Theses

Several factors in program design and concurrent research of study programs for academically at-risk students have been noted in reviewing the literature. Two of the most effective techniques are self-monitoring and contracting. While many of the programs based on these procedures have shown significant increases in rates of study behavior, few have reported actual academic gains. Those that have predominately used simple difference of means tests to show significance. A major drawback to many of the study improvement programs is that they require additional expense to be implemented and maintained.

Prescriptive Contracting in an Individualized Guided Study center was designed ...


Effects Of Tripelennamine And Pentazocine Alone And In Combination On Schedule-Controlled Performance, Deborah Lou Grossett Aug 1984

Effects Of Tripelennamine And Pentazocine Alone And In Combination On Schedule-Controlled Performance, Deborah Lou Grossett

Dissertations

The effects of tripelennamine (3, 6, 12, 18, and 24 mg/kg) and pentazocine (5, 10, 20, 30, and 40 mg/kg), given alone and in selected combinations, were determined in rats performing under fixed-ratio 30 and interresponse-time-greater-than-15-second schedules of food delivery. When given alone, tripelennamine and pentazocine produced statistically significant decreases in responding under the fixed-ratio 30 schedule, but did not significantly affect responding under the interresponse-time-greater-than-15-second schedule. Each drug alone significantly decreased the number of reinforcers (food pellets) earned relative to control values under both schedules. The effects of the two drugs in combination were supra-additive. That is ...


Stimulus-Reinforcer And Response-Reinforcer Relationships In The Determination Of Response Latency, Bruce Edward Hesse Aug 1984

Stimulus-Reinforcer And Response-Reinforcer Relationships In The Determination Of Response Latency, Bruce Edward Hesse

Dissertations

Response latency is measured from the onset of a stimulus to the onset of a response and is relevant to both respondent and operant control procedures. Previous research has shown response latency to be a sensitive operant dependent variable but the contribution of respondent influences was not known. The present experiment used pigeons, a two-key procedure and a two component FR schedule to study the respondent (stimulus-reinforcer) contributions to the determination of an ostensibly operant response latency. Stimuli associated with each FR component were displayed on one key (stimulus key) while responding for reinforcement was required on a second key ...


The Delay-Reduction Hypothesis Of Evocative Effectiveness And Latency, James Bryant Nuzzo Aug 1984

The Delay-Reduction Hypothesis Of Evocative Effectiveness And Latency, James Bryant Nuzzo

Dissertations

Prior studies found that separations between latencies correlated with differential stimuli in a multiple discrete trial procedure were attenuated with increased intertrial interval durations. In this study six pigeons served as subjects in two groups. The procedure for one group was a multiple DRO-FR chain schedule (Ratio Delay group) while in the other group a multiple DRO - response-initiated delay interval chain schedule (Time Delay group) was used. Results of this study are consistent with the Delay-reduction hypothesis of evocative effectiveness which predicts that with increasing initial link durations relative terminal link evocative effectiveness would decrease. Specifically, relative terminal link latency ...


The Effects Of Quantitative Information Content On Selection Strategies In A Complex Concept Formation Design, Tony B. Croke Apr 1984

The Effects Of Quantitative Information Content On Selection Strategies In A Complex Concept Formation Design, Tony B. Croke

Master's Theses

Thirty adult undergraduates and graduate students were placed in one of three quantitative information content groups. The Ss received either High, Medium or Low Information Content (IC) in a concept formation paradigm designed to study the types of problem solving strategies used by Ss under varying amounts of information content. High IC Ss produced the optimal strategy— focusing— sooner and more often than Medium or Low IC Ss. Medium IC Ss did better than low IC Ss. High IC Ss increased their use of focusing over trials, while Medium and Low IC Ss only used focusing intermittently. Medium and Low ...


Feature-Value Effect, Nedra N. Zerbel Apr 1984

Feature-Value Effect, Nedra N. Zerbel

Master's Theses

Feature-value effect concerns the asymmetry obtained in the discrimination learning of pigeons and young children, based on the presence (feature-positive) versus the absence (feature-negative) of a single distinctive feature. Subjects master the discrimination problem when the distinctive feature appears on the positively-reinforced (S+) display but not necessarily when the distinctive feature appears on the non-reinforced (S-) display. This thesis replicates and examines the first (three) extensions of traditionally experimental research to human preschool populations. Six 3-5 year old children attending the Child Development Center preschool served as subjects in the experiment. The feature-positive discrimination training conditions consisted of the presentation ...


The Training Of A Few Response Forms Under Multiple Controlling Variables, Mary-Ann Wiermanski Apr 1984

The Training Of A Few Response Forms Under Multiple Controlling Variables, Mary-Ann Wiermanski

Master's Theses

This study investigated the acquisition of a few response forms under different controlling variables using both a topography based language (TB) (i.e., signing) and a stimulus selection based language (SSB) (i.e., touching symbols) with three language deficient developmentally disabled individuals. The subjects were taught to name, to ask for, and to touch keys that opened boxes that contained some form of reinforcement. Most of the keys' names were trained across more than one set of controlling variables per session. Before training began for a given key under a new condition, a transfer test was conducted, investigating the possibility ...


A Program To Teach Multiple Verbal Relations Involving A Small Number Of Response Forms, Kimberly Lou Richter Apr 1984

A Program To Teach Multiple Verbal Relations Involving A Small Number Of Response Forms, Kimberly Lou Richter

Master's Theses

As a consequence of reviewing the results of non-behavioral and behavioral approaches to language training for the language deficient, further development of an alternative approach seemed warranted. This study attempted to develop a procedure for training a functional verbal repertoire involving a new language system which consisted of originally meaningless words and symbols. Young "normal" children participated as a first step in developing this procedure. Two preschoolers were taught a few verbal responses, each controlled by several different variables. A new verbal response was then taught under the control of a few variables. Transfer of the new verbal responses under ...


The Oral Self-Administration Of Nicotine In Two Groups Of Rats, Jay D. Hansor Apr 1984

The Oral Self-Administration Of Nicotine In Two Groups Of Rats, Jay D. Hansor

Master's Theses

Six, adult male, Spraque-Dawley rats served as subjects in this experiment which examined whether they would self-administer a 32 microgram per milliliter or a 64- microgram per milliliter (32 ug/ml and 64 ug/ml) nicotine tartrate solution when presented concurrently with distilled water. Subjects in Group I had access to a 32 ug/ml nicotine solution and Group II subjects had access to a 64 ug/ml nicotine solution during both phases. During Phase II an "AB" reversal was implemented to ascertain whether the subjects had a side preference or if they preferred to injest nicotine. It was found ...


Social Skills In Vivo: An Experimental And Theoretical Analysis, Stephen Earl Eversole Apr 1984

Social Skills In Vivo: An Experimental And Theoretical Analysis, Stephen Earl Eversole

Master's Theses

A multiple baseline across behaviors was employed to demonstrate generalization effects across settings. A 14 year old shy female was presented with social skills treatment package to increase the rate of eye contacts, verbalizations and smile sin vivo. One of the intervention phases included role-playing of social situations with a peer. A second phase required the occurrence of desired responding while playing foosball-- the same activity which took place in vivo during generality data collection. A third intervention required interaction assignments to be completed in vivo. Results indicate inconclusive evidence of an increase due to the treatment package. A general ...


Effects Of Anticonvulsant Drugs On Learning And Memory, Mitchell Jon Picker Apr 1984

Effects Of Anticonvulsant Drugs On Learning And Memory, Mitchell Jon Picker

Dissertations

The effects of phenobarbital, clonazepam, valproic acid, phenytoin, and ethosuximide were examined in pigeons performing under repeated acquisition of response chains and delayed matching-to-sample procedures. In experiment I, clonazepam, valproic acid, ethosuximide, and phenytoin produced generally dose-dependent increases in rate of responding, while phenobarbital had little consistent effect on response rate across the dose range studied. Phenobarbital and clonazepam produced dose-dependent increases in error rates (i.e., learning impairment). Although valproic acid and phenytoin generally increased error rates relative to control values, this effect was not directly dose-dependent or consistent across subjects. In contrast to the other anticonvulsants examined, ethosuximide ...


Interview Training For College Students: A Behavioral Approach Versus A Self-Help Approach, Toni Yvette Woolfork Apr 1984

Interview Training For College Students: A Behavioral Approach Versus A Self-Help Approach, Toni Yvette Woolfork

Master's Theses

This study was designed to train college students to interview effectively for a job. Ten upper-level students were randomly assigned to an experimental group or a control group. The experimental group participated in a 16-hour training program consisting of modeling coaching, behavior rehearsal, peer and trainer feedback and instructional training. The techniques were used to train students to interview effectively, using the appropriate verbal behavior and nonverbal behavior. The control group's training consisted of a videotape and reading materials. There were significant differences between groups on the verbal behavior, but not on the nonverbal behaviors.


The Psychological Aspects Of Loneliness Experienced By College Students, Jerie Kull Wood Apr 1984

The Psychological Aspects Of Loneliness Experienced By College Students, Jerie Kull Wood

Dissertations

Loneliness is a common problem that occurs at various life stages, but is most intense for college students. To clarify and operationalize the concepts of loneliness, several current sociological and psychological approaches to loneliness were critically examined.

The major purposes of this study were to identify the lonely among the student population, the types of loneliness they experience, the behavioral manifestations of that loneliness, and the effectiveness of an intervention method. The Belcher Extended Loneliness Scale as administered to 126 students in a pretest and 203 students in a posttest. The students also answered questions about grade point average and ...