USF Libraries
USF Digital Collections

Utility of positive peer reporting to improve interactions among children in foster care

MISSING IMAGE

Material Information

Title:
Utility of positive peer reporting to improve interactions among children in foster care
Physical Description:
Book
Language:
English
Creator:
Van Horn, Jenny L
Publisher:
University of South Florida
Place of Publication:
Tampa, Fla.
Publication Date:

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
social rejection
peer acceptance
foster homes
peer relationships
negative interactions
Dissertations, Academic -- Applied Behavior Analysis -- Masters -- USF   ( lcsh )
Genre:
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )

Notes

Summary:
ABSTRACT: This study investigated the utility of positive peer reporting to improve placement outcomes in foster care settings. Rejected children are likely to exhibit disruptive behavior problems due to frequent negative interactions with their peers, augmenting an already unstable environment in foster care. Researchers have found positive peer reporting to be successful in increasing social status and positive interactions and reducing negative interactions. Utilizing a multiple baseline with reversal elements, this study examined the effects of positive peer reporting on the positive and negative interactions of socially rejected children in foster care settings. Results supported previous literature with the first participant's positive interactions increasing from a mean of 16.67% in baseline to 55.63% during treatment; this was the final phase after a placement change.The second participant's positive interactions increased from a baseline average of 8.6% to a mean of 52.67% after positive peer reporting was implemented. Percentages reversed to near-baseline levels when treatment conditions were removed, averaging 21.5%. Fading procedures returned positive interactions to 41.39%, and these levels maintained across the final baseline, averaging 40%.
Thesis:
Thesis (M.A.)--University of South Florida, 2004.
Bibliography:
Includes bibliographical references.
System Details:
System requirements: World Wide Web browser and PDF reader.
System Details:
Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Statement of Responsibility:
by Jenny L. Van Horn.
General Note:
Title from PDF of title page.
General Note:
Document formatted into pages; contains 35 pages.

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of South Florida Library
Holding Location:
University of South Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
aleph - 001498105
oclc - 57709278
notis - AJU6700
usfldc doi - E14-SFE0000488
usfldc handle - e14.488
System ID:
SFS0025179:00001


This item is only available as the following downloads:


Full Text

PAGE 1

Utility of Positive Peer Reporting to Impr ove Interactions Among Children in Foster Care by Jenny L. Van Horn A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in Applied Behavior Analysis College of Graduate Studies University of South Florida Major Professor: Pamela G. Osnes, Ph.D. Jennifer Austin, Ph.D. Stacie Neff, M.S. Date of Approval: September 16, 2004 Keywords: social rejection, peer acceptance, foster homes, peer relationships, negative interactions Copyright 2004, Jenny L. Van Horn

PAGE 2

i Table of Contents List of Tables ii List of Figures iii Abstract iv Chapter One Literature Review 1 Outcomes of Peer Rejection 1 Public Posting 2 PPR Research 3 ABA in Foster Care 5 Current Study 6 Chapter Two Method 7 Participants 7 Setting 8 Dependent Variables & Response Measurement 8 Generalization Promotion 9 Reliability 10 Social Validity 11 Design 11 Chapter Three – Results 14 Chapter Four – Discussion 18 References 22 Appendix A: Data Collection Sheet 25 Appendix B: Social Status Scale 26 Appendix C: Intervention Rating Profile – 15 27 Appendix D: Goals & Outcomes Validity Scale 28 Appendix E: Compliment Chart 29

PAGE 3

ii List of Tables Table 1 Social Rating Scales 30

PAGE 4

iii List of Figures Figure 1 Percentage of Positive and Negative Interactions 16 Figure 2 Percentage of Total Interactions 17

PAGE 5

iv Utility of Positive Peer Reporting to Improve Placement Outcomes in Foster Care Settings Jenny Van Horn ABSTRACT This study investigated the utility of positive peer reporting to improve placement outcomes in foster care settings. Rejected children are likely to exhibit disruptive behavior problems due to frequent negative interactions with their peers, augmenting an already unstable environment in foster care. Researchers have found positive peer reporting to be successful in increasing social status and positive interactions and reducing negative interactions. Utilizing a multiple baseline with reversal elements, this study examined the effects of positive peer reporting on the positive and negative interactions of socially rejected children in foster care settings. Results supported previous literature with the first participant’s positive interactions increasing from a mean of 16.67% in baseline to 55.63% during treatment; this was the final phase after a placement change. The second participant’s positive interactions increased from a baseline average of 8.6% to a mean of 52.67% after positive peer reporting was implemented. Percentages reversed to near-baseline levels when treatment conditions were removed, averaging 21.5%. Fading procedures returned positive interactions to 41.39%, and these levels maintained across the final baseline, averaging 40%.

PAGE 6

1 Chapter One Literature Review Aversive experiences in social interactions may result in peer rejection, a situation that is exacerbated when peers fe aring similar treatment systematically reject the target child. Once targeted for negative peer interactions, rejection is more conspicuous and the child is excluded from social activities (Buhs & Ladd, 2001). As a child becomes more marginalized, his social interactions inevitably decrease. Social isolation and classroom withdrawa l are obvious means to avoid further negative interactions, decreasing potential opportunities to build a social support system (Buhs & Ladd, 2001). Peer acceptance in a school setting is important not only in a child’s social interactions, but in his academic progress as well. Buhs and Ladd (2001) examined this relationship more closely in a longitudinal study of peer rejection in kindergarten students. In the beginning of the school year, children selected those classmates that they were least and most likely to play with, and reported to researchers how often their peers harassed them. Teachers supplemented these data with their own ratings of peer exclusion, and independent observers collected data on children’s unsuccessful attempts to engage their peers during free play. These measures, along with classroom participation, school achievement, and emotional adjustment were assessed at the end of the school year to identify the specific variables related to peer rejection and school adjustment. Results correlated peer rejection with subsequent victimization and low classroom participation. As rejected children

PAGE 7

2 distance themselves from classroom activities, the potential for academic and emotional problems increases (Bush & Ladd, 2001). Many peerand self-mediated interventions have been implemented to increase appropriate behavior and productivity in a variety of settings. Public posting incorporates elements of each type of intervention; an individual tracks his own progress and recruits peer attention and feedback by posting it in a public area. Wolfe, Heron, & Goddard (2000) found that public posting increased written language performance for four elementar y-school boys when paired with other selfmonitoring procedures. Public posting has been proven beneficial in increasing ontask behavior during academic and recreational activities (McKenzie & Rushall, 1974; Hall, Cristler, Cranston, & Tucker, 1970), as well as increasing peer feedback on academic successes (Van Houten, Hill, & Parsons, 1975). While these techniques are effective in improving performance, few studies have incorporated these procedures to enhance social interactions. Positive Peer Reporting (PPR) has been investigated as an intervention to improve the social ratings of isolated children and to increase their positive interactions, ultimately improving their peer relationships and chances for academic success. Given a specified amount of time to observe them, individuals are later rewarded for publicly reporting the positive behaviors of their peers. Many researchers have assessed the effects of positive peer reporting on improving the social interactions of rejected children in classroom and residential care settings. Ervin, Miller, and Friman (1996) examined the effects of positive peer reporting on increasing the social acceptan ce of an adolescent girl in a classroom setting. Positive and negative peer interactions were recorded during baseline and

PAGE 8

3 intervention phases utilizing an ABAB reversal design. During intervention, students were given points using a token economy syst em for making positive evaluations of the participant at the end of an academic class. Positive interactions and peer acceptance ratings of the participant increased while negative interactions were nearly eliminated during intervention phases The participant’s problem behaviors also decreased when peer attention was solicited for her pro-social behaviors. Jones, Young, and Friman (2000) contributed to the research regarding the influence of positive peer reports on social acceptance in three adolescents exhibiting delinquent behaviors in a classroom setting. Pro-social behaviors and social status showed increases when participants’ peers were rewarded for positively appraising their behaviors in an academic setting. Researchers also assessed the social validity of using PPR to improve peer interactions and found that these procedures were highly acceptable to the classroom teacher and easily implemented (Jones et al., 2000). After positive peer reporting was established as effective in the classroom setting, researchers extended its utility to residential care. This was an important step considering that negative peer interactions may affect not only academic achievement but overall adjustment and behavioral performances as well (Buhs & Ladd, 2001). Targeting social behaviors in residential care is potentially crucial in promoting a transition to family life. Bowers, McGinnis, Ervin, and Friman (1999) examined the utility of positive peer reporting in a residential care setting. Data were collected on peer interactions, peer ratings, and problem behaviors of the participant, a fifteen-year-old boy reported as rejected by his peers and exhibiting multiple behavioral problems.

PAGE 9

4 During a set time interval, the participant’s peers were rewarded with points that could later be exchanged for privileges for reporting positive remarks about the participant to a staff member. Additionally, the participant could earn points for making positive comments about his own behavior, and all remarks were later relayed to him. Results supported the literature on positive peer reporting in a school setting, with increasing positive in teractions, fewer negative interactions, higher peer acceptance ratings, and decreased problem behaviors. Bowers, Woods, Carlyon, and Friman (2000) attempted to experimentally replicate the findings of Bowers et al. (1999) and further the research on positive peer reporting in residential care. Four participants selected for their antisocial behaviors were targeted for PPR. One child was selected weekly and his peers were given points for positively appraising the target child’s behavior. Positive and negative interactions were recorded during free time following this session. Ratings of peer likeability were assessed prior to and following intervention. Overall, positive interactions and peer ratings increased following implementation of positive peer reporting. One limitation of the previous research is a lack of attention to maintenance and generalization beyond the experimental setting. Researchers have failed to demonstrate that positive peer reporting produces any long-term effect on peer interactions. A second limitation of research on PPR is its consistent application to very structured environments. Positive peer reporting has proven effective in schools and residential treatment centers, but research has failed to extend its utility to the home environment, where peer relations may also affect behavior. Behavioral problems become particularly significant in temporary foster care homes and may

PAGE 10

5 ultimately determine the child’ s stability in a foster care placement. Since foster care is a likely progression following residentia l care, it is important to evaluate the efficacy of positive peer reporting in maintaining such a placement. As Gilverston & Barber (2002) indicate, research conducted in foster care settings is limited; in two studies launched to interview foster children on placement outcomes, non-response rates were 82 and 72.5%, which were attributed to noncooperation due to social workers’ high case loads or separation from research. The less-structured environment and responsibility of foster parents to implement procedures may also contribute to the lack of research in this setting. The transition from consistent to more variable settings ma y be particularly challenging, especially considering the already present instabilities. Upper, Lochman, and Aveni (1977) investigated the use of contingency contracting to reduce the disruptive behaviors of foster children. Children signed contracts outlining expected behaviors and their consequences, successfully reducing problem behaviors and subsequently increasing prosocial behaviors identified by their foster parents. The foster parents were responsible for formulating and maintaining the contracts following a trai ning consisting of instruction, modeling, and role-playing of contract negotiations. Interventions were successfully carried out utilizing the natural environment, potentially increasing the probability that their effects could maintain beyond the study’s completion. This study, however, focused on individual-based interventions rather t han manipulation of the social environment within the home. Effective peer relations have been shown to be important in classroom and residential care settings where the social environment necessitates interactions.

PAGE 11

6 Researchers have not yet considered the peer relationships also involved in foster care settings, where the introduction of new individuals may be consistently variable. Disruptions in placement become more common when problem behaviors increase, a fact which Moore, Osgood, Larzelere, and Chamberlain (1994) correlated with the number of children within a home. A poo led time series showed evidence that approximately one more behavior problem occurred daily with each additional foster child in the home. The more likely that behavior disruptions are, the higher the chances are that a child will be removed from the foster home to residential or institutional settings (Moore et al., 1994). The current study shows that a system of positive peer reporting in a foster home greatly improved peer interactions and decreased the problematic interactions responsible for disrupting many foster placements. These findings support previous research of improved social interactions of children in foster care settings using positive peer reporting. Modified PPR procedures were implemented to maintain the intervention effects beyond the study’s completion.

PAGE 12

7 Chapter Two Method Participants Participants were selected for this study based on reports of social rejection from a therapeutic foster care agency providing behavior analytic services where the primary investigator was interning. Initial anecdotal observations verified that much of the interaction directed to the particip ants was negative, including name-calling, yelling, insulting, and occasionally escalating to physical aggression. The first participant, Jakob, was 14 years old and resided in a foster home with two-parents and four other children. He was recommended for this study by a therapeutic foster care agency based on a poor relationship with his 12-year-old foster sibling. The second participant was a 12-year-old girl, Jaida, who was recommended for this study by a therapeutic foster care agency based on negative peer interactions with her 10-year-old biologic al sister. When the study began, she lived in a one-parent foster home with her sister, but she moved during the initial baseline to a therapeutic home due to treatment differences. When it was determined that she would benefit more from therapeutic counseling, she could no longer reside in a home with children receiving behavior analytic services, a policy of the foster care agency.

PAGE 13

8 Setting The study was conducted in two foster homes. Data collection and intervention implementation typically occurred on either Tuesday or Friday at approximately 5:00 in the evening after participants had returned from school. In-home data collection for Jakob occurred in a middle class home with two parents, four foster children, and one biological child. The foster mother was Hispanic and the foster father Caucasian. Both were approximately 35 years old. The mother had a part-time job and the father was unemployed through most of the study. Their children were 9, 12, 14, 16, and 17 years and were of Hispanic, Caucasian, and African American ethnicities. Jaida resided in a lower-mi ddle class home with her foster mother, biological sister, and two other foster siblings between 10 and 16 years of age. The foster mother and children were African American. The participant moved during the initial baseline to a foster home away from her biological sister, but the original home remained the setting for the study. Each week prior to data collection, the participant was transported back to her former foster home for sibling visitation, where baseline data were originally collected. Dependent Variables and Response Measurement Data were collected with the form shown in Appendix A. Using 15-second intervals, peer interactions were scored as positive, negative, or no interaction through all conditions once weekly for 30 minutes; beginning in the second baseline, data were collected once weekly for 60 minutes. Utilizing the scale from Jones et al. (2000), social status was assessed prior to the study’s onset, during intervention, and after the study’s completion. As shown in Appendix B, participants were asked to ra te each of their foster siblings based on

PAGE 14

9 “how much they would like to spend free time” with him, and to select a number ranging from 1 (not at all) to 7 (very much). Jakob’s participation in the study was discontinued after the initial intervention phase; the targeted relationship was disrupted when his foster sibling was reunified with his biological mother. Therefore, Jakob was able to participate only in baseline and one intervention phase. For Jaida, baseline observations were collected followed by intervention, reversal to baseline, modified PPR procedures, and a final baseline. Data were collected once weekly on peer interactions and were recorded as positive, negative, or none. Beginning in the second baseline, two data points were collected each session. Originally, one data point per session was collected; since sessions could only be scheduled once weekly, sessions were expanded to include two data points per session in order to meet deadlines. Positive interactions were defined as interactions that observers judged to be pleasant and free of such items as sarcasm, criticism, insult, active and passive social avoidance, negative emotion and aggression (Bowers et al., 1999). Negative interactions were defined as interactions observers judged to be unpleasant because they included those behaviors listed above (Bowers et al., 1999). Intervals devoid of interaction were recorded as no interaction. Generalization Promotion Procedures that facilitated generalized responding in this study focused on all three categories described by Stokes and Osnes: exploit current functional contingencies, train diversely, and incorporate functional mediators (1989). Current functional contingencies were exploited as participants come into contact with and learn to recruit the social consequences of positive peer interactions. In addition to expressing interest in the tangible rewards paired with the appraisals, participants

PAGE 15

10 appeared to be excited to both deliver and listen to compliments. Foster parents also became involved, providing supportive statements while participants complimented one another. Training was diverse as participants learned multiple response exemplars through the participation of their peers. Participants expressed support of each other’s positive appraisals consistently, offering suggestions and encouragement if their peer hesitated or struggled with a compliment. Functional mediators were incorporated through peer and foster parent involvement, both physically and socially. Particularly for Jaida, her sister and former foster parent appeared to become discriminative stimuli for positive appraisals, since observation sessions became their only contact following Jaida’s move. Additionally, charts used to record complimentary statements were kept consistent through intervention and modified PPR conditions. Reliability The research investigator served as the primary observer with a second, independent observer. Observers simultaneously started and stopped stopwatches to define intervals. A second observer was present for 50% of the observations and was trained with the primary observer to 100% interobserver agreement prior to the study’s onset (Jones et al., 2000). Training involved scoring social interactions as positive or negative for 30 minutes using 15-second intervals. Interobserver agreement for Jakob averaged 99.17% (range: 98.33 – 100%); the average for Jaida was 99.04% (range: 97.5 – 100%). As in Jones et al. (2000), interobserver agreement was calculated by dividing the number of agreements on positive, negative, and no interactions by the total number of observed intervals and multiplying by 100.

PAGE 16

11 Social Validity Social validity was assessed usin g the Intervention Rating Profile-15 (Martens, Witt, Elliot, & Darveaux, 1985), as shown in Appendix C. Supplementing the IRP-15 was a second scale assessing the goals and outcomes of the study, displayed in Appendix D. Both measured the acceptability and efficacy of the intervention and were distributed to the foster parents after the study was completed. Design Procedures were implemented utilizing a multiple baseline design across participants with reversals and a modified PPR phase. The independent variable was the administration of points continge nt on positive peer reporting in the home setting. A chart was used to tally and record the number of positive appraisals made by each participant. Peer interactions were recorded throughout baseline and intervention procedures, and social acceptance rating scales were administered once prior to the onset of the study, once du ring intervention, and again following the study’s completion. Baseline Baseline data included social rating scales and percentages of positive and negative interactions throughout observations. Positive Peer Reporting On the afternoon of the intervention, the primary investigator stated the following to the part icipants, adapted from Jones et al. (2000): From now on, after school, we will be focusing on peer relations. When I am here, both of you will be given a chance to give a positive compliment to each other. Your compliment should describe something that the other said or did. For each compliment you give, you will receive one point which will be recorded on the chart and will count towards a prize of your choosing. You

PAGE 17

12 must compliment each other every day that I am here for your points to count toward the prize. Participants and foster siblings both were given opportunities to earn points to avoid “singling out” the targeted child. During the initial PPR session, positive appraisals were defined as something the peer said or did; examples were given such as “he asked me how I was doing” and “she gave me a hug”. For each appraisal statement made, a “smiley face” was recorded on the chart shown in Appendix E, and each smiley face was equivalent to one point. Prizes were identified and point values assigned based on parent and participant preferences, and included candy, small toys, and games. Participants and their peers exchanged their points for prizes immediately, which preceded 30minute observation sessions. Second Baseline Following the intervention, conditions for Jaida reversed back to baseline; the initial intervention phase was the last for Jakob. All experimental variables were withdrawn and positive peer reporting was discontinued. Data were collected on positive and negative peer interactions, and the primary investigator announced the following: “You both did very well complimenting each other, but this week we will not be collecting points.” Modified PPR After the second baseline, modified PPR procedures were implemented. Points were given for each occurrence of PPR, but could not be turned in for a prize. On the morning following the second baseline, the primary investigator announced the following: The program we started earlier was done to improve your relationship. From now on, you will be given a chance to compliment each other and will receive a point on the chart. Your compliment should describe something your peer said or did any time during that day.

PAGE 18

13 Peer interactions during modified PPR procedures were recorded once weekly for Jaida. Social acceptance rating scales were readministered following the completion of the third baseline.

PAGE 19

14 Chapter Three Results Levels of positive and negative interactions are displayed across all conditions in Figure 1. Jakob’s positive interactions during baseline averaged 16.67% (range: 9.17-25%). Positive intera ctions increased to 55.63% (range: 36.6772.5%) during treatment. As shown in Table 1, social ratings did not vary, remaining at 7 or "very much” on the scale from 1 to 7 prior to and following administration of positive peer reporting. During baseline, Jaida’s positive interactions averaged 8.06% (range, 1.6723.33%). Social ratings were at 1 or “not at all” on the social rating scale from 1 to 7 but increased to 7 or “very much” during treatment. Levels increased during PPR to a mean of 52.67% (range: 37.5-63.33%) but did not maintain across the second baseline, averaging 21.5% (range: 17.5-30%). These figures increased to 42.83% (range: 40-43.33%) when modified PPR procedures were administered, but never reached the levels attained during intervention. Levels maintained across the final baseline, averaging 52.08% (range: 45.83-57.5%). Results for social rating scales are displayed in Table 1. In addition to the qualitative changes noted, total interactions for each participant varied across conditions, as displayed in Figure 2. During baseline, Jakob interacted for an average of 36.67% of the intervals; this increased to 60.84% of the intervals during PPR. Jaida’s interactions occurred an average of 41.65% of baseline intervals and 55.67% of PPR intervals. Total interaction decreased to

PAGE 20

15 43.33% during the second baseline and increased to a mean of 53.54% during modified PPR. Levels maintained at 53.54% across the final baseline. Social Validity Displayed in Appendix C, the IRP-15 (Martens et al., 1985) was adapted to home settings and administered to foster parents following completion of the study. Jakob’s foster father reported a score of 73 (of a possible 90), indicating 81.11% satisfaction with t he procedures. To supplement the procedural rating scale, a second scale was administered which revealed 100% satisfaction with goals and outcomes of the study. Jaida’s former foster mother reported a score of 75 (of a possible 90), indicating 83.33% satisfaction with the procedures. She indicated 100% satisfaction with goals and outcomes of the study.

PAGE 21

16 0 20 40 60 80 100 12345678910111213141516171819202122232425BLPPRBLFadingBL Jakob Positive Interactions Negative Interactions 0 20 40 60 80 100 12345678910111213141516171819202122232425 Jaida Positive Interactions Negative Interactions Jaida Moved Sessions Doubled Sessions Percentage of Occurrence Figure 1. Percentage of Positive and Negative Interactions Across Baseline, Intervention, Second Baseline, Modified PPR, & Final Baseline Conditions. mPPR

PAGE 22

17 0 20 40 60 80 100 12345678910111213141516171819202122232425 Jaida 0 20 40 60 80 100 12345678910111213141516171819202122232425 Jakob BLPPRBLFadingBL Sessions Percentage of Occurrence Figure 2. Percentage of Total Interactio ns across Baseline, Intervention, Second Baseline, Modified PPR, & Final Baseline Conditions mPPR

PAGE 23

18 Chapter Four Discussion Results of this study supported previous literature that showed that positive interactions and social ratings of rejected children increase with implementation of positive peer reporting. Previously demonstr ated in residential (Bowers et al., 1999; Bowers et al., 2000) and school settings (Ervin, et al., 1996; Jones et al., 2000), the current study extended these results to foster homes. Administration of PPR revealed a dramatic increase in positive interactions as well as a decrease in negative interactions. Though the initial reversal to baseline revealed a decrease in positive interactions generalization procedures built into the study may have contributed to the levels never reaching their initial lows. Even though all intervention procedures were withdrawn and baseline conditions resumed, positive interaction levels remained higher and negative interaction levels lower in the second compared with the initial baseline. Initial maintenance effects were mini mal, however, necessitating the modified PPR phase. The levels were lower in the modified PPR condition because the immediate reinforcer present in the in itial PPR condition (exchanging points earned by stating compliments for tangible rewards) was removed. The chart may have served as a common functional mediator facilitating generalization of the increase in positive interaction, but may not have been as strong as intervention conditions because points were no longer exchanged for items. It should also be noted that fewer appraisal statements were made during modified PPR conditions, a mean of

PAGE 24

19 9.6 during PPR and only 5.6 during modified PPR, which may explain lower levels of positive interaction. Since statements were no longer directly related to external rewards, their natural consequences were comparatively weakened. The modified PPR condition served to effectively maintain increased levels of positive interaction across the final baseline. During this phase, participants complimented one another without being asked to do so. Eliminating the artificial rewards effectively made the natural consequences of complimenting more desirable. Positive appraisals imply social acceptance, which is particularly rewarding for children whose interactions are primarily negative. Once the focus was removed from the tangible reward, participants seemed to become more interested in the compliments than in their corresponding point values. Future research might investigate whether the exchange of points for rewards must necessarily precede a modified PPR phase to achieve similar results; acknowledgement of the positive appraisal paired with verbal praise might be sufficient. While social validity results were positive, the questionnaires administered contained some limitations. It is not certain that the foster parents were clear about the specific goals and outcomes of the study, as they had not been directly outlined since prior to its onset. Questions asked were more general and did not directly assess specific elements of the study. Another weakness is that participants were not involved in any assessments outside of social ratings. Scales did, however, indicate that procedures were satisfactory and outcomes notable. Approximately one month following the study’s completion, a behavior analyst still working with the family provided anecdotal reports from Jakob’s foster parent, indicating that he continued to use PPR procedures in his home.

PAGE 25

20 There are two components of PPR that simultaneously affect interactions: active listening and observing necessary to state a compliment, and hearing the positive compliments being stated. It has not been made clear which of the two have a larger impact on the data. Future research could investigate this by systematically separating and uni fying participants when positive appraisals are being made, thus making distinct the working components of PPR. In addition to improvement in interaction quality, it was also noted that the number of interactions increased followi ng implementation of PPR. These results indicate that positive peer reporting might also be extended to populations where increased interaction would be beneficial. Similarly, future research could also investigate effects of PPR on interactions with the foster parent; anecdotally, much of the data recorded as “no interaction” actu ally involved participants interacting with their foster parent, though it cannot be certain that this varied at all across conditions. Replications of this study with more participants, time, and fewer placement disruptions would strengthen these findings. Given the scheduling conflicts, intervention procedures could only be administered once weekly. Findings may have been greater had the foster parents been able to carry out the procedures daily. Utilizing separate homes for one sibl ing group, the primary investigator was primarily responsible for implementing PPR; increased foster parent involvement may have also increased generalization as a social and physical mediator. Social validity results coupled with the anecdotal report indicated that PPR procedures, goals, and outcomes were highly acceptable to foster parents. PPR is effective as a low-effort intervention used to increase positive and decrease negative interactions among foster children. These negative interactions are largely

PAGE 26

21 responsible for escalating behavior problems within a home and resulting in placement disruption. Findings from this study indicate that PPR may be effective in promoting a more stable environment within foster homes.

PAGE 27

22 References Bowers, F.E., McGinnis, J.C., Ervin, R.A., & Friman, P.C. (1999). Merging research and practice: The example of positive peer reporting applied to social rejection. Education and Treatment of Children, 22, 218-226. Bowers, F.E., Woods, D.W., Carlyon, W.D., & Friman, P.C. (2000). Using positive peer reporting to improve the social interactions and acceptance of socially isolated adolescents in residential care: A systematic replication. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 33, 239-242. Buhs, E.S. & Ladd, G.W. (2001). Peer rejection as an antecedent of young children's school adjustment: An examination of mediating processes. Developmental Psychology, 37, 550-560. Ervin, R.A., Miller, P.M., & Friman, P.C. (1996). Feed the hungry bee: Using positive peer reports to improve the social interactions and acceptance of a socially rejected girl in residential care. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 29, 251-253. Gilberston, R. & Barber, J.G. (2002). Obstacles to involv ing children and young people in foster care research. Child and Family Social Work, 7, 253-258. Hall, R.V., Cristler, D., Cranston, S., & Tucker, B. (1970) Teachers and parents as researchers using multiple baseline designs. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 3, 247-255.

PAGE 28

23 Jones, K.M., Young, M.M., & Friman, P.C. (2000). Increasing peer praise of socially rejected delinquent youth: Effects on cooperation and acceptance. School Psychology Quarterly, 15, 30-39. Martens, BlK., Witt, J.C., Elliott, S.N., & Darv eaux, D.X. (1985). Teacher judgments concerning the acceptability of school-based interventions. Professional Psychology, 16 191-198. McKenzie, T.L. & Rushall, B.S. (1974). Effects of self-recording on attendance and performance in a competitive swimming training environment. Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 7, 199-206. Moore, K.J., Osgood, D.W., Larzelere, R.E., & Chamberlain, P. (1994). Use of pooled time series in the study of naturally occurring clinical events and problem behavior in a foster care setting. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 62(4), 718-728. Stokes, T.F. & Osnes, P.G. (1989). An operant pursuit of generalization. Behavior Therapy, 20 337-355. Upper, D., Lochman, J.E., & Aveni, C.A. (1977). Using contingency contracting to modify the problematic behaviors of foster home residents. Behavior Modification, 1(3), 405-416. Wolfe, L.H., Heron, T.E., & Goddard, Y.L. (2000). Effects of self-monitoring on the on-task behavior and written language performance of elementary students with learning disabilities. Journal of Behavioral Education, 10(1), 49-73.

PAGE 29

24 Appendices

PAGE 30

25 Appendix A Participant: Jaida Jakob Date: ________ Phase: BL PPR BL MPPR BL Observer: J A 15 30 45 60 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 +____ positive intervals total intervals ____ % positive intervals -____ negative intervals total intervals ____ % negative intervals 0____ none intervals total intervals ____ % no intervals

PAGE 31

26 Appendix B How much do you like to spend free time with __________? 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Not at all. Very much.

PAGE 32

27 Appendix C The purpose of this questionnaire is to obtain information that will aid in the selection of classroom interventions. These interventions will be used by foster parents or children with behavior problems. Please circle the number that best describes your agreement or disagreement with each statement using the scale below. 1=strongly 2=disagree 3=slightly 4=slightly 5=agree 6=strongly disagree disagree agree agree 1. This would be an acceptable intervention for the child’s problem behavior. 1 2 3 4 5 6 2. Most foster parents would find this intervention appropriate for behavior problems in addition to the one described. 1 2 3 4 5 6 3. This intervention should prove effective in changing the child’s behavior. 1 2 3 4 5 6 4. I would suggest the use of this intervention to other foster parents. 1 2 3 4 5 6 5. The child’s problem behavior is severe enough to warrant use of this intervention. 1 2 3 4 5 6 6. Most foster parents would find this intervention suitable for the behavior problem described. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7. I would be willing to use this intervention in my home. 1 2 3 4 5 6 8. This intervention woul d not result in negative side effects for the child. 1 2 3 4 5 6 9. This intervention would be appropriate for a variety of children. 1 2 3 4 5 6 10. This intervention is consistent with those I have used in my home. 1 2 3 4 5 6 11. The intervention was a fair way to handle the child’s problem behavior. 1 2 3 4 5 6 12. This intervention is reasonable for the behavior problem described. 1 2 3 4 5 6 13. I liked the procedures used in this intervention. 1 2 3 4 5 6 14. This intervention was a good way to handle this child’s behavior problem. 1 2 3 4 5 6 15. Overall, this intervention would be beneficial for the child. 1 2 3 4 5 6

PAGE 33

28 Appendix D Goal & Outcome Rating Scale 1. The goals of this study were appropriate for the children asked to participate. 1 2 3 4 5 disagree disagree somewhat neither agree nor disagree agree somewhat agree _______________________________________________________________________________ 2. I consider the goals of this study to be important. 1 2 3 4 5 disagree disagree somewhat neither agree nor disagree agree somewhat agree _______________________________________________________________________________ 3. I consider the goals of this study to be practical. 1 2 3 4 5 disagree disagree somewhat neither agree nor disagree agree somewhat agree _______________________________________________________________________________ 4. The outcome of this study fits with the study’s original goals. 1 2 3 4 5 disagree disagree somewhat neither agree nor disagree agree somewhat agree _______________________________________________________________________________ 5. I noticed improvement in my child’s behavior after the study began. 1 2 3 4 5 disagree disagree somewhat neither agree nor disagree agree somewhat agree _______________________________________________________________________________ 6. The outcome of the study made the procedures worthwhile. 1 2 3 4 5 disagree disagree somewhat neither agree nor disagree agree somewhat agree _______________________________________________________________________________

PAGE 34

29 Appendix E COMPLIMENT CHART!! DATE Jaida Melanie 10.01

PAGE 35

30 Table 1 Social Rating Scales from 1 or “Not at A ll” to 7 or “Very Much” for Each Participant During the Initial Baseline, Intervention, & Final Baseline Conditions Participant BL PPR Final BL Jakob 7 7 N/A Jaida 1 5 6


xml version 1.0 encoding UTF-8 standalone no
record xmlns http:www.loc.govMARC21slim xmlns:xsi http:www.w3.org2001XMLSchema-instance xsi:schemaLocation http:www.loc.govstandardsmarcxmlschemaMARC21slim.xsd
leader nam Ka
controlfield tag 001 001498105
003 fts
006 m||||e|||d||||||||
007 cr mnu|||uuuuu
008 041209s2004 flua sbm s000|0 eng d
datafield ind1 8 ind2 024
subfield code a E14-SFE0000488
035
(OCoLC)57709278
9
AJU6700
b SE
SFE0000488
040
FHM
c FHM
090
BF176.7 (ONLINE)
1 100
Van Horn, Jenny L.
0 245
Utility of positive peer reporting to improve interactions among children in foster care
h [electronic resource] /
by Jenny L. Van Horn.
260
[Tampa, Fla.] :
University of South Florida,
2004.
502
Thesis (M.A.)--University of South Florida, 2004.
504
Includes bibliographical references.
516
Text (Electronic thesis) in PDF format.
538
System requirements: World Wide Web browser and PDF reader.
Mode of access: World Wide Web.
500
Title from PDF of title page.
Document formatted into pages; contains 35 pages.
520
ABSTRACT: This study investigated the utility of positive peer reporting to improve placement outcomes in foster care settings. Rejected children are likely to exhibit disruptive behavior problems due to frequent negative interactions with their peers, augmenting an already unstable environment in foster care. Researchers have found positive peer reporting to be successful in increasing social status and positive interactions and reducing negative interactions. Utilizing a multiple baseline with reversal elements, this study examined the effects of positive peer reporting on the positive and negative interactions of socially rejected children in foster care settings. Results supported previous literature with the first participant's positive interactions increasing from a mean of 16.67% in baseline to 55.63% during treatment; this was the final phase after a placement change.The second participant's positive interactions increased from a baseline average of 8.6% to a mean of 52.67% after positive peer reporting was implemented. Percentages reversed to near-baseline levels when treatment conditions were removed, averaging 21.5%. Fading procedures returned positive interactions to 41.39%, and these levels maintained across the final baseline, averaging 40%.
590
Adviser: Pamela G. Osnes.
653
social rejection.
peer acceptance.
foster homes.
peer relationships.
negative interactions.
690
Dissertations, Academic
z USF
x Applied Behavior Analysis
Masters.
773
t USF Electronic Theses and Dissertations.
4 856
u http://digital.lib.usf.edu/?e14.488