ERIC Number: ED084489
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1973-Aug
Reference Count: 0
The Modification of Undesirable Attitudes and Classroom Behavior Through Constructive Use of Social Power in the School Peer Culture.
Whitmore, Joanne Rand
A student leadership program was implemented in an elementary school to increase the social value of constructive (appropriate) classroom behavior and to generate more positive pupil attitudes toward self and school. The specific aims of the intervention were to reduce the disruptive, negative behavior of some socially powerful students while increasing the rewards for more appropriate models and for teacher efforts to improve classroom climate. The Ss were low-income black students in grades 4, 5 and 6. Eight teachers and 280 peers identified 64 actual or potential social leaders who were randomly assigned to experimental or control conditions. Teachers classified the Ss as generally positive or negative in attitudes and behavior. The effects of the intervention upon attitudes of leaders were determined by measures of self-concept, locus of control, social efficacy, and attitudes toward school. Periodically, subject behavior was rated by teachers and coded by naive observers. Participation as leaders did reduce the tendency of subjects with negative attitudes and behavior to become increasingly negative. Males, especially, increased their sense of efficacy and internal acceptance of responsibility. The highest post-intervention self-reports came from the most successful leaders (as ranked by the experimenter). (Author/LP)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (DHEW), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Stanford Univ., CA. Stanford Center for Research and Development in Teaching.