Program

Feb 19, 2009

OVERVIEW

Social Cognitive Training (SCT) is
a four-session group-based skills-training program designed to increase
self-esteem and improve peer relations. Findings from a randomized study
conducted in Australia suggest that the program helps students with low-self
esteem gain greater self-esteem, confidence, and experience fewer negative self
statements, but did not have better relationships with their peers.

DESCRIPTION OF PROGRAM

Target population:
Adolescents with low self esteem and/or problems interacting with peers

The SCT program utilizes a skills
training strategy (i.e., instruction combined with coaching, modeling,
rehearsal, self-observation, peer feedback, and praise) to improve knowledge and
skills related to: a) self esteem; b) self talk; c) positive thinking; d)
communication; e) problem solving; and f) perception. The SCT and the comparison
placebo groups are led by post-graduate students or clinical psychologists who
receiving training over four weeks on program implementation. The program meets
for 90 minutes weekly over a one-month period (four sessions). Homework is
assigned to reinforce knowledge and skills taught during the lessons.

EVALUATION OF PROGRAM

Barrett, P. M.,
Webster, H. M., & Wallis, J. R. (1999). Adolescent Self-Esteem and Cognitive
Skills Training: A School-Based Intervention. Journal of Child and Family
Studies, 8(2), 217-227.

Evaluated
Population: 
The study sample included 51 white Australian students (70.6% female), who were
tenth graders (13- to 16-years old) attending a Catholic high school. The sample
was selected because they were nominated by a teacher and/or school counselor as
having problems interacting with peers and/or issues with self-esteem. The
school was selected because of its need for mental health services and its
readiness to implement a psychosocial intervention.

Approach: This is a
pre-test/post-test experimental study. The study sample was
selected from one school in Australia that was deemed to have a great need for
mental health services and also to have the appropriate environment for a
psychosocial intervention. Only students who were nominated by teachers and/or
the school counselor as experiencing low self esteem or problems getting along
with peers were included in the study.

Adolescents were
randomized to one of three experimental conditions: one intervention group
(Social Cognitive Training: n=19) and two comparison groups: an Attention
Placebo Comparison group (n=16) and a Waitlist Control group (n=16). Program
outcomes were assessed using self-report measures. At pre-test and at post-test,
adolescents rated their self-esteem, self statements, and perceptions of
themselves and of their peer relationships.

Results: Compared to the Attention Placebo and Waitlist Control groups, SCT resulted in
improved self-esteem and, fewer negative self statements, but did not rate
themselves as having fewer difficulties with peers.

SOURCES FOR MORE INFORMATION

References:

Barrett, P. M.,
Webster, H. M., & Wallis, J. R. (1999). Adolescent Self-Esteem and Cognitive
Skills Training: A School-Based Intervention. Journal of Child and Family
Studies, 8(2), 217-227.

KEYWORDS: Adolescents, High School, Self-Esteem/Self-Concept, Skills Training, Life Skills/Social Skills, Other Relationships

Program
information last updated on 2/19/09.