Program

Apr 30, 2012

OVERVIEW

This social relations intervention is aimed at aggressive, rejected and rejected
only Black youth. Rejected children were considered disliked by their peers and
lacked leadership skills. The social relations intervention is designed to
inhibit responses of violence and aggravation and stimulate adaptive social
problem-solving thinking of aggressive, rejected and rejected only children. The
intervention includes positive social skill training elements and cognitive
behavioral elements that promote deliberate and nonimpulsive problem solving
skills. An experimental study of the social relations interventions found that
the program was effective in promoting positive social skills and behavioral
strategies with aggressive, rejected children. The intervention was not shown to
be effective for rejected only children.

DESCRIPTION OF PROGRAM

Target population: Black
children who were found to be aggressive and rejected or children who were
considered rejected but not aggressive by their peers.

The social relations intervention is designed to provide aggressive or rejected
Black children with positive social skills training to promote prosocial
behaviors and social problem solving thinking. The program consists of four
components: 1) social problem solving; 2) positive play training; 3) group-entry
skills training; and 4) dealing effectively with strong negative feelings. The
components are designed to alter rejected children’s low peer acceptance and
response to interpersonal conflicts and problems. The program is delivered twice
a week over 26 individual sessions lasting 30 minutes, as well as 8 sessions in
small groups. Seven sessions are dedicated to social problem solving and nine
sessions are dedicated to enhancing skills involved in positive relationships.
These sessions occur during the school day in either groups or individually.
Staff members are encouraged to vary the time spent on parts of the curriculum.
Children are provided with feedback about their social behavior.

The social relations intervention uses cognitive-behavioral therapy procedures
with an added component of anger-management. This intervention combines
previously explored cognitive behavior therapies with an anger-coping program.
The staff consisted of female psychology graduate students and a doctoral-level
psychologist.

EVALUATION(S) OF PROGRAM

Lochman, J. E., Coie, J. D., Underwood, M. K., & Terry, R. (1993). Effectiveness
of a social relations intervention program for aggressive and nonaggressive,
rejected children. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 61(6),
1053-1058.

Evaluated population: A
total of 52 Black third grade children were recruited from an inner-city
school system that served predominantly lower-middle socioeconomic status homes.
About half (27 children) were boys, and the other half (25 children) were girls.
Children were recruited based on a peer-nomination screening process, in which
children were asked to indicate which three students they liked the most, which
three they liked the least, and which three started the most fights. Children
who were rated as both aggressive and rejected or only rejected were eligible
for the study.

Approach: Based
on their peer nomination scores, children were randomly assigned to either the
intervention (aggressive, rejected or rejected-only) or control ( aggressive,
rejected or rejected-only) groups. Children in the control groups could receive
usual school counseling services, but were not eligible for the social relations
intervention.

The researchers collected pre-intervention data by administering a self-concept
scale to children and asking teachers to complete a behavior checklist. At this
time, children also completed the peer nomination process. Posttest data were
collected a year after the pre-test data and follow up data were collected a
year after posttest data.

Results: No
impacts for the entire intervention group were found at the postintervention and
one-year follow-up, but the intervention was found to be effective for the
aggressive, rejected intervention subgroup of children. At postintervention,
this group showed significant reductions in aggression and social rejection and
had more positive social acceptance when compared with children in the
aggressive, rejected control group. The rejected only intervention group did not
differ from the rejected only control group in any of these variables. At the
one-year follow up, the aggressive, rejected intervention group demonstrated
significantly lower levels of aggression and higher levels of prosocial
behavior than the aggressive, rejected control group. The children in the
rejected-only intervention group did not differ from those in the rejected-only
control group at follow-up.

SOURCES FOR MORE INFORMATION

References

Lochman, J. E., Coie, J. D., Underwood, M. K., & Terry, R. (1993). Effectiveness
of a social relations intervention program for aggressive and nonaggressive,
rejected children. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 61(6),
1053-1058.

KEYWORDS: Aggression,
Skills Training, Black or African American, Social and Emotional Health Other,
School-Based, Conduct/Disruptive Disorders, Urban, Social Skills/Life Skills,
Children, Elementary, Males and Females (Co-ed).

Program information last updated 04/30/12.

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