The purpose of this study is to determine the different behavior modification techniques to manage the classroom environment. The goal is to have a well mannered classroom because it should attribute to a better learning environment. Implementing different behavior modification techniques should improve student achievement and maximize their potential.Definitions
Classroom behavior will be measured by the amount of interruptions during the class and the amount of times the teacher needs to write up students. Student achievement will be measured by their scores on end of section formative exams. The teacher will complete a survey at the end to each lesson to monitor the progress of the students and determine if the modification was usefully in the lesson. They will also reflect on what could have been improved. The reflection will also be a part of the survey as well.
The first study discussed using functional assessment-based interventions for children that were at risk for emotional and behavior disorders. Studies with these types of disorders are classified by a number of social, behavioral, and academic characteristics that pose challenges to administrators and teachers. These were for students that more common interventions efforts, such as primary or secondary prevention programs prove to be insufficient for shaping behaviors. For this study they took eight fifth-grade students from elementary schools in California. The school district consists of an ethnically diverse, urban population with socioeconomic status ranging from lower to upper-middle class. They took eight male students, three of which received special education support, but none of the students had a physical, neurological, psychiatric disability that would prevent them from behaving appropriately or performing academically. The participants were nominated by the teachers of this school. The teachers were asked to pick their three to five most problematic and disruptive students to receive the functional based modifications. Then, they measured the student’s disruptive behavior and academic engagement. They measured the disruptive behavior by following four specific categories; unauthorized out of seat behaviors, disturbing others, disruptive noise, and talking without permission. The academic engagement was measured when the student’s were attending to the current task and material, appropriately asking for assistance, and making appropriate responses. The researchers employed either primary consequent-based or antecedent-based interventions and matched it to their function of behavior. The antecedent-based treatment consisted to self-monitoring and different strategies related to task-avoidance. The consequent-based treatment varied, but mainly consisted of withholding reinforcement of an undesirable behavior and giving reinforcement to appropriate behavior. The results of this study showed a decrease in disruptive behavior along with an increase in academic engagement. They also showed that antecedent-based treatment strategies were more effective than the more commonly used consequent-based treatment strategies.
The next study also used function-based intervention in an effort to decrease disruptive behavior while increasing academic engagement. The propose of the study was to replicate the effects of interventions that were already proven to be effective in treating unwanted behavior, such as self-monitoring and differential reinforcement, but they also employed some science-based interventions to target behavior. The study was conducted in a public kindergarten classroom in Tennessee. They only selected one student which was a six-year old, white male that did not qualify for any special education and was not diagnosed disorder. His teacher referred him due to frequent disruptions that impeded the teacher’s ability to instruct the class. The classroom had only four rules; keep hands, feet, and other objects to yourself, raise your hand for permission to speak, follow directions, and treat others as you want to be treated. They measured total disruptive behavior, academic engaged time, and had an interobserver agreement. The total disruptive behavior was used to target certain behaviors, such as interrupting classroom instruction and hitting or kicking peers. The academic engaged time was measure using a stopwatch and recording the amount of time the student was actively engaged in classroom activities. Lastly, the interobserver agreements consisted of three graduate students that would collect all of the behavioral observations including a baseline. The researcher and teacher worked collaboratively to complete the functional assessment process. They designed a function-based intervention that was accepted by all of the parties involved, they implement the intervention, and then examined the outcomes of the interventions. Part of the interventions was self-monitoring to help keep the student on-task. They placed a small flip chart on his desk that had a list of on-task behavior questions on one side and smiley/sad faces on the other. In five minute intervals the teacher would instruct the student to circle if he believed that he was on-task and the teacher would also circle an expression. If both the student and teacher marked the smiley faces, then the student receive praise from the teacher. The teacher also used differential reinforcement by ignoring disruptive behavior as much as possible and giving attention to appropriate behavior. The results showed that the interventions were effective at decreasing the student’s disruptive behaviors and increasing his overall classroom engagement. The study was also highly rated by the teachers as well.
The next study examine if disc golf can be use as a creative, recreational play intervention for improving classroom behaviors in children that disrupt class. There have been several studies that have shown the use of therapeutic play is imperative when working with young students because they need an opportunity to release any energy they have in a safe, comforting, and judgment-free environment. Disc golf is a game in which participants compete on an eighteen-hole course and try to complete the course with the fewest throws possible. The participants will be throwing a Frisbee from a tee box to a basket that is a few hundred feet away. The researcher asked the questions: Can a sport be used as a play intervention in order to improve classroom behaviors in disruptive students? Is there a difference between a control and experimental group in level of positive classroom behavior following this type of intervention? The purpose of the study was to determine if disc golf could improve positive classroom behaviors in students with these types of behaviors. They took twenty-two 4th and 5th grade students from a rural school-based counseling program. They had two different groups, an experimental and control. The experimental group spent four weeks participating in one hour sessions of disc golf. The students had the freedom to throw by themselves or in groups and to throw as much they wanted. The control group received no therapeutic intervention. The teachers observed a significant improve in the students that were receiving the intervention verse the students that received no intervention. The students also had an improvement in academic achievement. This was determined by post-test scores, the experimental group showed improvement whereas the control group did not.
In conclusion, using behavior modifications to curve student behavior has been documented from several studies and has proved to be effective, but further investigating should be done to determine the effectiveness of these techniques across different ethnic backgrounds. Hopefully, through more studies we can definitively prove which strategy is the most effective at altering unwanted behavior.
The student’s participating in this study will include about forty-six ninth grade students from two classrooms at DeWitt High School. Demographically, approximately 80% of the students are white, 16 are black, and 4 are Hispanic. DeWitt is a public school in a rural, farming community. Most of the students come from lower to middle class families and the school has about 65% of their students that are eligible for free or reduced lunches.
The study will consist of two groups, an experimental and a control. One class will be listed as the experimental and the other will be listed as the control. The control group will be observed but it will not receive any intervention what so ever. The experiment group will be observed and receive an intervention. The intervention will be functional based and will be geared toward decreasing disruptive behavior along with increasing overall student achievement mainly self monitoring and differential reinforcement. The timeline for the study will be throughout the entire course of the semester. The observer will record the amount of disruptions throughout the lesson and after the lesson the teacher will fill out a reflection page on how the lesson went and what can be done to improve it. At the end, the student’s achievement will be measured by their end scores in the classroom and overall improvement in grade. The self-monitoring will consist of an evaluation checklist the student will right on when prompt by the teacher. This will help keep them on task. The differential reinforcement will consist of the teacher ignoring the student’s disruptive behavior and then giving positive reinforcement to appropriate behavior with verbal cues.
Master-level graduate students will collect the data regarding the amount of classroom disruptions and types of interventions being implemented by the teacher. For data collection, the observer will fill out a student behavior checklist (appendix 1) and the teacher will complete a reflection survey.
The student scores will be analyzed at the end to determine which class showed the most improvement. Not only test scores will be used in the analysis but the homework will be used as well. This will all be entered in an excel spread sheet so the classes can be easily compared and graphics can be made comparing each of the classes overall scores. Also, class average, median, and mode can be easily calculated in this format. Second, the observer will record when the students disrupt class or go off-task. They will also record what kind of differential reinforcement, whether positive or negative reinforcement, and how the student reacted to it.
Lastly, the teacher will complete a reflection survey. Their responses in the control and experimental group will be compared to see if there is a correlation in the response and the overall grade of the classes.