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The effect of instructional framing on children’s task completion and classroom compliance Godfrey, Maureen 1995

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THE EFFECT OF INSTRUCTIONAL FRAMING ON CHILDREN’STASK COMPLETION AND CLASSROOM COMPLIANCEByMaureen GodfreyA THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULLFILMENT OF THEREQUIREMENTS OF THE DEGREE OFDOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHYinTHE FACULTY OF EDUCATIONDepartment of Educational Psychology andSpecial EducationWe accept this as conforming tothe required standardTHE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIAJune 20, 1995Maureen J. GodfreyIn presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanceddegree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make itfreely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensivecopying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of mydepartment or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying orpublication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my writtenpermission.(Signature)Department of/4/{//%The University of British ColumbiaVancouver, CanadaDate________________DE-6 (2)88)ABSTRACTTo help children achieve academic goals, teachers must have specific,easy to administer, effective classroom management techniques. In thepresent study the potential of the “framing effect” for classroom managementwas explored. The term “framing effect” refers to the finding that people’schoices are affected by changes in how a situation is described or “framed”.Framing studies with adults have consistently shown that decisions made byadults are affected by the manner in which information is presented to them.The present study extended framing research from adult contexts to childrenin the classroom. It examined whether the way in which a teacher frames aninstruction, makes a difference in children’s decisions to follow instructions.Approximately 100 grade three and four students were instructed bytheir teachers (a) to complete an academic task and (b) to comply with abehavioral request, in two separate experiments. The teachers usedunframed, and positive and negative framed instructions, including bothindividual and group consequences. The resulting student behavior wasrecorded. Analysis of group means was done using a-priori contrasts todetermine if there was a treatment (framing) effect.Results confirmed the hypotheses that framed instructions would result11in a reliably higher rate of task completion and behavioral compliance thanunframed instruction. Improvement rates in task completion and behavioralcompliance ranged from 20% to 30% over the five classes, and 20% to 70% in32 out of 40 contrasts in individual classrooms. There was no reliabledifference in task completion or behavioral compliance between positive ornegative framing or between group or individual consequences. Exploratoryanalysis indicated no reliable sex difference.Qualitative analysis indicated teachers were unanimous in theirimpression that the framed instructions were effective in increasing children’sappropriate responses to instructions.Future research might include the investigation of sex differences inframing response at various grade levels, investigation of the effect of the useof a time limit as a framing component, and the relationship between differentframing components and personality constructs.111TABLE OF CONTENTSAbstract iiTable of Contents ivList of Tables viiList of Figures viiiAcknowledgments ixChapter One: Introduction 1The Problem 4Rationale 5The Scope of the Study 11Benefits of the Study 15Chapter Two: Review of the Literature 17Part One: Classroom Management 17Part Two: Decision-making Theories and Research 25Simplifying Decision-making 28Framework for Decision-making 30Part Three: Decision-making in Children 32Information Processing 33Children’s Use of Pre-Decisional Information 35Part Four: The Framing Effect 39Part Five: Classroom Consequences 45Part Six: Considerations in the Development of FramedInstructions 48Summary 50Chapter Three: Method 53Methodological Issues 53Overview 55Introduction to Experiment One 55Experiment One: Completion of an Academic Task 56Design 56ivSample .58Procedure 59Instructions to Teachers 65Specific Frames-Completion of an Academic Task 66Introduction to Experiment Two 68Experiment Two: Behavioral Compliance 69Specific Frames-Compliance with a Behavioral Instruction.. .69Hypotheses 70Analyses 73Preliminary Analyses 73Audio-Tape Data: Pre-Treatment 73Sex Effect 74Test of Hypotheses 74Evaluation of Rival Hypotheses 75Class/Teacher Level Analyses 76Qualitative Data 76Chapter Four: Results 77Pre-Treatment Teacher Data 77Summary of Teacher Data 84Experiment One: Completion of an Academic Task 86Statistical Test of Hypotheses 86Sex Effect 88Contrast Analysis-Test of Hypotheses 89Teacher Expectation: A Rival Hypothesis 92Class/Teacher Level Analyses 94Experiment Two: Compliance with a Behavioral Instruction 97Contrast Analysis-Test of Hypotheses 98Sex Effect 101Teacher Expectation: A Rival Hypothesis 103Cooperation as a Covariate 104Class/Teacher Level Analyses 107Post-Treatment Teacher Data 110Summary 116Chapter Five: Discussion 120Findings 121Teacher Perspectives 126Follow-up Interview 131Relationship of Findings to Previous Literature 132VStrengths and Weaknesses of the Study 137Implications for Theory 139Practical Implications 142Further Research 142Conclusion 144References 146Appendix A: Unframed and Framed Requests 1-10 156viLIST OF TABLESTable 1:Table 2:Table 3:Table 4:Table 5:Table 6:Table 7:Table 8:Table 9:Table 10:Table 11:Table 12:Table 13:Table 14:Table 15:Table 16:Experimental Design Format 57Order of Framing: Latin Squares Rotation 62Contrast Matrix for Analyses 75Pre-Treatment Tape Information 78Means (M), Standard Deviations (SD), and t-test results byFrame and Sex 88Contrast Matrix for the Hypotheses 90Contrast Analyses for Task Completion 91Pearson Correlation between SSRS-TF Subscales and TaskCompletion 93Effect Sizes and Improvement Rates for Contrasts 1-4 96Contrast Matrix for the Hypotheses 99Contrast Analyses for Behavioral Compliance 100Means (M), Standard Deviations (SD) and t-test Results byFrame and Sex 101Univariate ANOVA Results 102Pearson Correlations between SSRS-TF Subscales andBehavioral Compliance 104Contrast Analyses Adjusted for Cooperation 105Effect Sizes and Improvement Rates for Contrasts 1-4 110viiLIST OF FIGURESFigure 1: Mean Task Completion under Framing Conditions 90Figure 2: Treatment Means by Teacher 95Figure 3: Mean Compliance under Framing Condition by Sex 103Figure 4: Adjusted Means under Framing Condition by Sex withCooperation as a Covariate 106Figure 5: Treatment Means by Teacher 108VIIIACKNOWLEDGMENTSI am grateful to the members of my research committee, Dr. NandKishor, Dr. Perry Leslie, Dr. Janet Jamieson and Dr. Marshall Arlin whosesound advice was invaluable. In particular I would like to thank my researchsupervisor, Dr. Nand Kishor, whose patience, encouragement and guidance isthe reason this project has reached completion. I would also like to thankSchool District 23, and Mr. Bob Scherer, who gave permission for this study totake place. Specifically, I am greatly indebted to those wonderful teachersand the children in their classrooms who were enthusiastic participants. Thestudy would not have been possible without their generous contributions. I amalso indebted to Dr. Ron Rubadeau who volunteered to read the transcript ofthe pre-treatment tapes, and who offered consistent support. Finally, I wouldlike to thank my family, particularly my husband and my two children, whohave been unfailing in their confidence in me, and who have carried on withoutme for far too many weekends.ixDEDICATIONThis thesis is dedicated to my mother, Rose Solymos, who sets no boundariesfor her love and generosity, and who always sees a glass half-full.x1CHAPTER ONEINTRODUCTIONTeaching is an extremely complex activity. It has been estimated thatelementary teachers engage in more than 500 separate verbal exchangeswith individual students per day (Jackson, 1968). Because of the number ofpeople involved within a classroom, any single transaction can have multipleconsequences, each requiring different reactions from the teacher. In light ofthis, it is not surprising that classrooms are difficult to manage; they aremultidimensional and unpredictable (Doyle, 1986).Teachers regard the ability to control a class as a matter of primeimportance (cf. Merrett & Wheldall, 1993). Consistent with this, research oneffective teaching has indicated the importance of classroom conditions thatdepend directly on the ability of teachers to organize and manage theirclassrooms (Everston, 1989). In a research synthesis rating the importance ofparticular “Curriculum and Instructional Variables” most likely to influencelearning, Wang, Haertel, and Walberg (1990) found that the“...key to effective instructional design is the flexible andappropriate use of a variety of instructional strategies, whilemaintaining an orderly classroom environment. Thehighest overall rating in this scale was for use oftechniques...to control classroom disruptiveness.” (p.35).2Clearly then, it would be beneficial for teachers to be aware of as manystrategies as possible for preventing management problems within theirclassrooms in order to ensure that those problems that can be prevented, areprevented. Nevertheless, it is common to associate classroom managementwith discipline and, therefore, to focus on the misbehavior of children.However, studies examining student engagement (time on task) have directedattention to work-related behavior and ways to increase and sustaininvolvement in classroom events, thereby decreasing misbehavior (Doyle,1986). This emphasis on sustaining involvement in classroom events isconsistent with proactive management techniques. Researchers onclassroom management have gradually shifted their focus away fromdiscipline problems and corrective techniques, towards proactive managementand preventative measures (Froyen, 1988).Dealing with student discipline problems in the classroom usingproactive management and preventative measures is in contrast to traditionalmodels of classroom management. Traditional models tended to focus onhow to correct problems once they have occurred. This often leads to the useof punishment. Punishment can generally be defined as taking awaysomething desirable (e.g., the loss of a privilege) or imposing somethingunpleasant (e.g., extra work, insulting remarks). Although it may be3temporarily effective, the use of punishment may also produce an escalatinground of conflict between student and teacher (Froyen, 1993). For example, ifa teacher’s response to unfinished homework is to assign extra homework, thestudent’s response may be to refuse to comply with the teacher’s request inan entirely different circumstance. “...Behavior problems do not occur in avacuum. Students engage in certain behaviors as a result of numerousfactors operating in the environment” (Smith & Misra, 1992, p.354).Another important factor leading to emphasis on proactive managementtechniques is that teachers can no longer be certain that principals or parentswill support their response to children’s misbehavior (Froyen, 1993). Theymay even face the suggestion that either negligence or incompetence on thepart of the teacher is largely responsible for the problems they encounter intheir classrooms. This situation stems, in part, from the fact that response tomisbehavior is extremely subjective and variable. Because a great dealdepends on the personality of the teacher, the student and the classroomdynamics, the teacher has at least some chance of exacerbating, instead ofhelping the situation (Froyen, 1993). Rather,“...teachers should first reduce the possibility thatinappropriate behavior will occur; second, reinforceappropriate behavior when it occurs; and third, punishinappropriate behavior to minimize recurrence.” (Smith &Misra, 1992, p.355).4Both teachers and students would benefit significantly if the occurrenceof misbehavior was minimized, rather than be forced to deal with themisbehavior after it occurs. What teachers must do is structure teaching-learning events to maximize cooperation and compliance and prevent conflict.The present study was constructed with this goal in mind.THE PROBLEMThe understandings teachers have of classroom managementprocesses and classroom order have a substantial impact on how theymanage their classrooms. However, there is a scarcity of research usingcognitive models to articulate management principles (Doyle, 1986). It ishoped that the present study will add to this body of research by applyingresearch from the field of decision-making to classroom management.Decision-making as a form of cognition provides opportunities for thedevelopment of problem-solving processes and allows children experiences ingenerating, predicting, acting upon, and evaluating alternatives. Makingdecisions ultimately leads to the development of autonomy and independence(McNairy, 1985). In contrast to the volume of research on the effect of predecisional information on adult decision-making, there has been very littleresearch concerned specifically with how pre-decisional information or framed5instruction might affect children’s decisions within the classroom or elsewhere.Therefore, the extent to which the information framing effect would generalizeto classroom-related decisions made by children as a result of framedinstruction remains an open question. If the information framing effect doesgeneralize to the classroom, it may be one proactive management techniquethat teachers could use to enhance task involvement and decrease theoccurrence of inappropriate behavior in the classroom.RATIONALEResearch in adult decision-making has shown that “information framing”produces a “framing effect” that influences one’s decisions. The term framingeffect refers to the finding that peoples’ choices are affected by pre-decisionalinformation in which there are differences in how a situation is described orframed (Tversky & Kahneman, 1981). That is, choices are dependent on howthe presented information is framed or worded.Information framing research with adults has taken place in nonacademic contexts and has investigated how the labeling or framing ofinformation affects a variety of judgments and decisions. Stimulus dimensionsshown to be susceptible to framing effects in these studies include consumerproduct attributes, properties of gambling, contracts for labor negotiations and6student performance measures (Levin, Schnittjer, & Thee, 1988; Tversky &Kahneman, 1981). Methods of presenting these dimensions have rangedfrom listing attribute values to scenarios in which the framing manipulation isembedded within a story-like context. The effects of positive and negativeinformation framing, as indicated by these studies, appear to be robust andpervasive.Tversky and Kahneman (1984) have found that any decision problemtakes the form of a choice between maintaining the status quo and acceptingan alternative to it. The alternative may usually be said to have advantages aswell as disadvantages. Disadvantages may be looked upon as losses, whileadvantages may be seen as gains. Generally, people have been found to bemore averse to incurring losses than to achieving gains (Kahneman &Tversky, 1979). That is, when the loss or the probability of the loss is includedin pre-decisional information, individuals are less willing to gamble than if thatinformation had not been presented. In other words, the inclusion of negativeinformation acts as a deterrent to taking a gamble. Tversky and Kahneman’s(1979) findings on framing effects suggest that phrasing or framing informationin positive terms (e.g., chances of winning a gamble) leads to more favorableassociations than does framing the same information in negative terms (e.g.,chances of losing the gamble).7Tversky and Kahneman (1981) found that choices were greatly affectedby changes in the uconteu or “framing’1of problems. They found that whenthe information framing indicated a sure loss, individuals tended to choose arisk-taking alternative. Conversely, when the information framing indicated asure gain, individuals tended to choose a risk-aversive alternative. Theyconcluded that the way an instruction is framed greatly influences thedecisions made. Further to this, Levin (1985) reported a difference betweenthe effect of one- and two-attribute frames on choice. Specifically, individualstended to avoid a gamble when they were aware there was a sure loss andthe probability of that loss, but tended toward the gamble knowing there was asure gain and the probability of that gain.How children make decisions is a question still very much underdiscussion. This is partly due to the fact that exactly what cognitive processeschildren use to make decisions is a relatively recent area of research. Inaddition, there has been limited research into decision processes from adevelopmental perspective (Klayman, 1985). However, information framing,which is a form of pre-decisional information, has been shown in variousstudies to have significant effects on adult& decision-making (Tversky &Kahneman, 1981). An important implication of information framing is that “thepreferences we construct depend on the questions we ask ourselves, and8hence the selection of questions is an essential part of the construction”(Shafer, 1986, p.40). In other words, preferences have to be looked upon assomewhat unstable and possibly as existing only in our minds. As a result,the pre-decisional information we present to children may influence theirconsiderations and the questions they ask themselves, and may well becrucial to the decisions they ultimately make.If we consider following teacher’s instructions in the classroom a risk-aversive alternative and not following teacher’s instructions in the classroom arisk-taking alternative, Tversky and Kahneman’s findings (1981) suggest thatwe may be able to produce an instructional framing effect. That is, the wayinstructions are framed in the classroom may impact children’s decisions tofollow them. Because of the considerable effect information framing has ondecision-making in general, it seems reasonable to believe that teachers canproduce an instructional framing effect on children’s decisions and subsequentbehavior within the classroom. They may be able to increase task completionand behavioral compliance by “framing” their instructions.Applied to the classroom, this may mean that if teachers include positiveconsequences attached to the desired behavior in their instructions, childrenwill more likely attend to the gain, or the consequence attached to theappropriate behavior. Also, if the information regarding the negative9consequence attached to the non-preferred behavior is included in teacher’sinstructions, the children will more likely avoid the non-preferred behavior andthe loss. Rather, they may be more likely to maintain the status quo, more sothan if the negative consequence was not included. These speculations, inturn, suggest that a two-attribute frame including what is to be gained or lostand the probability of gaining or losing it will cause children to tend toward thecompliant behavior.The types of consequences generally used within a classroom may bedivided into two broad categories: consequences based on groupcontingencies and consequences based on individual contingencies. Theeffect of individual and group contingencies for consequences has beenstudied in the context of modifying both academic and behavior problems.Conclusions on the effect of the use of individual and group contingencies forconsequences in the classroom have been mixed. Thomas, Lee, and McGee(1987) found that individual contracts were more effective with certain agegroups. Shapiro and Goldberg (1986) found no differences between types ofgroup contingencies for consequences, although they found that studentsexpressed preference for individual contingencies for consequences.Gresham and Gresham (1982) found interdependent group consequences tobe most effective.10There is some evidence to suggest there is a difference in the decisionmade when framing includes group versus individual consequences. Paese,Bieser, and Tubbs (1993) found that the difference in risk preference becamelarger at the group level than at the individual level. They observed that whenindividuals share the same information frame for an impending group decisionand the decision is not reframed prior to group discussion, framing effects atthe group level appear to be stronger than those at the individual level. Theyconcluded that when group members share a common frame of reference atboth the individual and group levels, the group decision may polarize towardeither greater caution or greater risk-taking, depending on whether the shareddecision frame is positive (gains) or negative (losses). Paese et al’s (1993)study may mean that in the classroom, a two-attribute positive or negativeframe, with a group contingency for a consequence as the second attribute,may be even more effective than a two-attribute frame with an individualcontingency for a consequence.There are many variations of specific consequences available forteachers to use, both individual and group. Social reinforcers such as facialexpressions, words, and proximity, activity reinforcers such as extra computeror physical-education time, and tokens, are all suitable (Smith & Misra, 1992).Teachers are most likely, however, to implement an intervention including11consequences when the required amount of time and resources arereasonable, when the intervention is not punitive and when it is perceived asbeing effective (Rosen, Taylor, O’Leary, & Sanderson, 1990). Instructionalframing may be said to require reasonable amounts of time and resources andmay be non-punitive. What remains to be demonstrated is the effectivenessof instructional framing. That is, do two-attribute, framed instructions have aneffect (shown through previous research in non-academic contexts) onchildren’s classroom compliance? A two-attribute framed instruction wouldinclude a teacher request, the consequence attached to that request, and theprobability of that consequence occurring. If two-attribute, framed instructionsdo have an effect, is this effect large enough for practical use of framing as aclassroom management strategy?THE SCOPE OF THE STUDYThe present study applied information framing theory (Levin et at., 1985;Tversky & Kahneman, 1981) to children’s task completion and behavioralcompliance in the classroom. The effect of the framed instruction wasdetermined by the responses of the children as recorded by the teacher.Analyses examined the difference between the effects of an unframedinstruction (e.g., how teachers might ordinarily express an instruction), and the12effects of four contrived two-attribute framed instructions: (1) a two-attributepositive frame with a group contingency for a consequence; (2) a two-attributepositive frame with an individual contingency for a consequence; (3) a two-attribute negative frame with a group contingency for a consequence and (4) atwo-attribute negative frame with an individual contingency for a consequence.Compliance has traditionally been perceived as feminine sex-typedbehavior, and more characteristic of girls (Brophy & Good, 1974). However, tothe best of my knowledge only one study (Fagley & Miller, 1990) has reporLeda stronger framing effect for women than for men. In the absence of cleardirection that the effect of framing is sex-typed, it was not possible to predictwhether there would be an interaction between framing and sex. Therefore,for exploratory purposes only, data were analyzed for sex effect.The general research question in this study was as follows:What is the effect of positively and negatively framed instructions, whichinclude the consequences of behavior and the probability of the consequencesoccurring, on children’s decisions to follow teacher instructions in theclassroom?The specific questions included the following:1. Is there a difference in the effect of unframed instructions and two-attributepositive and negative framed instructions on student decisions when they are13asked to: (a) complete an academic task, (b) follow a behavioral instruction.2. Is there a difference in the effect of two-attribute positive and negativeframed instructions in 1(a) and 1(b) above when the student’s decisions haveconsequences for: (a) self, (b) group.These questions were addressed in two separate experiments. The firstexperiment involved academic instructions and the second experimentinvolved behavioral instructions. The second experiment was a replication ofthe first, with the exception of the dependent variable, and was done todemonstrate reliability of results. Before each experiment began, teacherswere audio-taped from 270 to 360 minutes during teaching time with theirclassrooms. This was done to establish whether the teachers used primarilypositive, negative or no consequences as parL of their managementprocedures.In Experiment One, classroom teachers presented an unframedinstruction, a two-attribute positive, and a two-attribute negative framedinstruction to students in their classroom requesting completion of anacademic task. The frames were delivered with a group contingency for aconsequence and with an individual contingency for a consequence. Thedependent variable was the completion of the academic task. ExperimentTwo was a replication of Experiment One, differing only in the choice of the14dependent variable which required following a behavioral instruction.The present study was conducted in a naturalistic environment, withteachers as research assistants. According to Erickson (1986),“If classroom teaching in elementary and secondaryschools is to come of age as a profession - if the role of theteacher is not to continue to be institutionally infantalized -then teachers need to take the adult responsibility ofinvestigating their own practice systematically and critically,by methods that are appropriate to their practice” (p.57).In this study, teachers were given the opportunity to be a part of theinvestigation by acting as research assistants. As such, they chose theconsequences they felt comfortable using, and were responsible for deliveringthe frames and for recording the children’s responses to the treatments. Theirobservations took place in the classroom as they were involved in day-to-dayactivities with their students. Teachers used their own judgments regardingwhere and when to use framed instructions and the extent to whichcompliance occurred. They were asked to complete a Social Skills RatingScale for each student. In addition, teachers gave their impressions of theeffectiveness of the framed instruction; discussed which frames they wouldsubsequently be likely to use, ‘and evaluated the prospect of using framing asa classroom management tool.Because the children made the decisions, the unit of analysis was each15child’s response as judged by the teacher. Teachers were expected to deliverthe treatment uniformly. Although teachers were not a factor in the analyses,post-hoc analyses were done to determine if there was a teacher effect.BENEFITS OF THE STUDYThere are several reasons why this study has significance for boththeoretical literature and instructional practice. It adds to decision-makingtheory by extending information framing theory to educational practice. Itprovides evidence for the contention that the effects of two-attribute, positiveand negative information framing may be generalized to decisions made bychildren in the classroom, a context not studied before. Thus, a contribution ismade to the generalizability of framing theory.In terms of potential practical benefit, the pre-decisional nature ofinformation framing suggests it may be used as a preventative classroommanagement technique. The importance of preventative strategies in theclassroom is evident when the implications of the decisions children makeregarding their actions in the classroom are examined. A child’s decision tofollow teacher’s instruction may enhance the classroom atmosphere theteacher wishes to maintain. A child’s decision to complete a learning task alsohas serious implications for that child’s learning and the teacher’s ability to16teach. Evidence for the framing effect is presented in the Chapters to come.17CHAPTER TWOREVIEW OF THE LITERATUREThe rationale used to establish the viability of framing of instructions byteachers to increase children’s task completion and behavioral compliancewas based on the research reviewed in this chapter. The review is organizedinto six major parts. The first part is an overview of theory and research onclassroom management. The second part is a discussion of decision-makingtheories and research. The third part focuses specifically on decision-makingin children and includes literature concerning children’s use of pre-decisionalinformation and decision characteristics. The fourth part is a review ofpertinent research on the “framing effect” and includes research suggestingwhy information framing may be expected to affect the decision-making andsubsequent behavior of children in the classroom. Part five includes researchon teachers’ use of individual and group consequences for children’sclassroom behavior. Part six summarizes the rationale for the development ofthe framed instructions as a classroom management technique.PART ONE: CLASSROOM MANAGEMENTClassroom management has been defined as the “provisions and18procedures necessary to establish and maintain an environment in whichinstruction and learning can occur” (Duke, 1979, p.xii). Classroommanagement has in the past, commonly been associated with discipline,control or similar terms suggesting management of unacceptable studentbehavior. Management of student behavior has been seen as a precursor toinstruction (Doyle, 1986). During the 1960s and much of the 1 970s, emphasisin management approaches was on discipline and what to do after thestudents misbehaved (Jones & Jones, 1986). These reactive methodsfocused on counseling to help children understand themselves and resolvetheir conflicts (Brophy, 1983). The counseling approaches used includedGlasser’s Reality Therapy (Glasser, 1965), Dreikurs’ logical consequences(Dreikurs & Cassel, 1972), and Gordon’s response to misbehavior throughproblem-solving and communication (Gordon, 1974). The early 1 970s alsosaw the development of several action-oriented, behaviorally-based programs.Cantor’s (1976) Assertive Discipline, which emphasizes control over disruptivestudent behavior, was one of the most popular programs. Recently, thetraditional methods of classroom management, including discipline andcontrol, have been supplemented by an emphasis on preventing behaviorproblems (cf. Gettinger, 1988).The shift towards prevention of behavior problems in the classroom19parallels a general movement in society toward prevention of problems acrossthe life-span in all community settings (Froyen, 1993). In education, thisemphasis on prevention, including the planning for, and encouragement ofproductive behavior, has come to be known as “proactive classroommanagement.” Proactive classroom management has three characteristicsthat distinguish it from other management techniques: 1) it is preventativerather than reactive; 2) it integrates methods that facilitate appropriate studentbehavior with procedures that promote academic achievement using effectiveclassroom instructional techniques; and 3) it emphasizes the groupdimensions of classroom management. That is, the minimization of disruptivebehavior by individuals is often accomplished through well-managed groupactivities (Gettinger, 1988).Interest in proactive classroom management may be traced to Kounin’s(1970) study of elementary classrooms. Kounin and his colleagues analyzedvideotapes of two types of classrooms: smoothly functioning, well-organizedclassrooms and ineffectively managed classrooms. The researchers expectedto find differences in disciplinary techniques, but instead found similarreactions to student misbehavior. The differences in the classrooms existed inthe actual occurrence of misbehavior. That is, more effective teachers weremore skilled at proactive or preventative classroom management. Generally,20Kounin (1970) found that successful classroom management depended onteachers’ ability to “. . .monitor and minimize disruptions and to maintain highlevels of work involvement among students” (cf. Gettinger, 1988, p. 230). Hedescnbed the proactive behaviors characteristic of effective teachers as“withitness” (teachers’ ability to remain aware of what was happening inclassrooms and communicating this awareness to the students); overlapping(attending to simultaneous events); smoothness and momentum in lessons,and group alerting (sustaining a group focus). The smoothness andmomentum in lessons included continuous activity “signals” or “cues” tostudents. Management problems were observed to be more frequent whenstudents had no clear signal or task on which to focus. Group alertingtechniques included motivational comments.Kounin’s (1970) findings provided the impetus for research in proactivemanagement. Of particular interest for the present study were Kounin’sobservations that a clear task focus, motivational comments and high-levelwork involvement were key to preventing misbehavior. Managementeffectiveness is often described as a function of student involvement inacademic tasks (cf. Gettinger, 1988). Instructional framing may includemotivational comments that help students to focus on task, and as a resulthelp increase student’s task involvement and decrease misbehavior.21During the 1 970s, research on “teacher effectiveness” was alsogrowing. Gettinger’s review (1988) indicated much of this research grew outof the process-product tradition of classroom research which she defined asthe “relationships between teacher behaviors in the classroom (the processesof teaching) and student outcomes (the products)” (Gettinger, 1988, p.228).Brophy (1982) and Good (1979) indicated that teacher-effectiveness researchclearly found that classroom management skills were very important foreffective teaching. Researchers at the Research and Development Center forTeacher Education at the University of Texas-Austin demonstrated thatteachers who have managerial problems in the first few days of school havecontinuing problems throughout the year, and that managerial success relatesto student involvement and achievement (Emmer & Everston, 1981; Good,1979). Among the instructional management behaviors of teachers thatcorrelated strongly with achievement were “minimizing disruptions anddiscipline problems” (Brophy & Everston, 1976, p.51). Other research findingsindicate that irrespective of any one instructional curriculum or program,“...how effectively teachers manage their classes isrelated to students’ progress in the acquisition ofbasic skills. Thus, it seems clear that effectivemanagerial techniques, running classrooms withminimum disruption and maximum student taskinvolvement, are strongly associated with studentlearning.” (Gettinger, 1988, p.228).22In addition to findings confirming the importance of classroommanagement skills to learning, the shift in emphasis to proactive managementand preventative measures has been due in part to the fact that, historically,counseling intervention programs for reducing behavioral difficulties have, atbest, met with mixed success (Dodge & Crick, 1990). Emphasis on preventionhas led to an attempt to understand the mechanisms involved in thedevelopment of aggression. To this end, a theory based on the understandingof how specific aggressive behavioral responses come about in socialinteractions began to take shape (Dodge & Crick, 1990). Bandura andWaIters (1963) rejected psychoanalytic theory and developed a theoryconcerned with how children and adults operate cognitively on their socialexperiences and how these cognitive operations then come to influence theirbehavior and development (Grusec, 1992). Social cognitive theory considersthe cognitive processes involved in an individual’s responses to provocativesocial stimulus and“...relies heavily on an understanding of how individualsperceive cues, make attributions and inferences aboutthose cues, generate solutions to interpersonal cues andproblems and make behavioral decisions about how torespond to those problems” (Dodge & Crick, 1990, p.9).By understanding what specific cues affect behavior, behavioral change canbe facilitated.23Social cognitive theory suggests that aggressive responses are notinevitable, rather, they are contingent on specific thoughts and patterns ofprocessing information (Dodge & Crick, 1990). Individuals are believed toabstract and integrate information encountered in various social situations.Through this abstraction and integration they represent themselves and theirenvironments in cognitions including response-outcome expectancies,perceptions of self-efficacy, and standards for evaluative self-reactions(Grusec, 1992). Social cognitive theory, therefore, lends itself to researchaimed at preventing classroom problems. That is, if we could changebehavior by changing the cues (information presented) being processed, wewould be able to selectively present information that would be more likely toprevent behavior problems and disruption in the classroom. Consequently,teachers would be able to help children to choose appropriate behavior overinappropriate behavior, thereby not only helping to maximize learning, butenhancing the child’s perception of self-efficacy and providing standards forevaluative self-reactions (Bandura & Walters, 1963).Evertson (1985, 1989) found that teachers who have been trained inclassroom management techniques had lower off-task rates, lessinappropriate behavior, and were able to plan and implement routines thathelped the year to begin effectively. Evertson (1989) theorized that although24the concepts presented to teachers were not new to them, they benefited fromthe opportunity to examine their own practice, and from having a rationale anda framework within which to fit the teaching techniques. This suggests thatteachers who use instructional framing techniques should benefit from havinga theoretical rationale within which to fit the use of consequences, as well asfrom the examination of their own practice.In summary, as a result of research indicating the importance of skillfulclassroom management, the continuing difficulties teachers face in terms ofbehavior management in the classroom, the lack of success of traditionalmethods in preventing classroom problems and the general shift in societytoward prevention of problems, current research in classroom managementhas shifted toward prevention of problems and proactive management(Froyen, 1993). Proactive classroom management research seems to indicatethat when classroom management techniques are able to minimize disruptionsand discipline problems, student learning increases (Gettinger, 1988).Similarly, when students are provided with a focus and motivationalcomments, and are engaged in academic tasks, disruptions are minimized. Inaddition, social cognitive theory suggests that inappropriate behavior is notinevitable, and may be influenced by the information that is presented andprocessed. Social cognitive theory purports that specific thoughts and25patterns of information processing determine specific behavior, and that if theinformation presented can be modified, then so can the resulting behavior(Dodge & Crick, 1990). This allows the conclusion that if teachers can providestudents with information that will help them to choose appropriate behavior,classroom disruptions should decrease and student learning should increase.The present study set out to determine whether the information we provide tochildren in the classroom can help them make choices that will ultimatelymaximize their learning through increased task completion and behavioralcompliance.PART Two: DECISION-MAKING THEORIES AND RESEARCHAny behavior is the result of processing information to reach a decisionfrom various options. In order to help children choose appropriate behaviorover inappropriate behavior, we need to establish whether specific informationpresented to a child changes his or her choice of one behavior over another.Because there is not a great deal of research focusing on how children makedecisions, it is necessary to rely on the extensive research on adult decisionmaking for theoretical and methodological guidance in understandingdecision-making in children (cf. Davidson, 1991).In one of the early reviews of research on decision-making, Stovic,26Fischhoff, and Lichtenstein (1977) stated that behavioral decision theory hastwo interrelated facets, normative and descriptive. Normative theoryprescribes courses of action that conform to the decision maker’s beliefs andvalues, whereas descriptive decision theory describes those beliefs andvalues and the way in which individuals incorporate them into their decisions.In general, normative decision rules are designed to make maximum use of allthe information relevant to the evaluation of each alternative in a choicesituation. These rules imply a complete search of all the information availableand a “compensatory” (choosing of options based on the most importantdimensions) evaluation process. That is, “they involve a quantitativeevaluation of each attribute of each alternative and a balancing of one attributeor dimension against another according to their relative importance or weight”(Klayman, 1985, p. 181).Descriptive research has relied on normative models when studyinghow people perceive, process and evaluate probabilities. However, whennormative models were found to be violated in all but very specific instances,they served only as the starting point from which the descriptive models wereproduced. Generally, researchers have concluded that because of thelimitations of people’s information processing capacities, their judgments anddecisions are subject to systematic bias, with the result that normative27decision models have not been very effective in predicting decisions thatpeople make (see Einhorn & Hogarlh, 1981; Kahneman & Tversky, 1984).Consequently, the descriptive models, which examine how people actuallymake decisions, rather than prescribing how people should make decisions,are the models most useful in current behavioral decision research (Fischhoff,1988). Therefore, research within the field of behavioral decision theory has,more recently, focused on describing how people actually identify alternativeoptions; how they identify possible consequences; how they assess thedesirability and likelihood of those consequences occurring; and what decisionrules they use to make a choice (Fischhoff, 1988). In addition, researchersbegan to look at how the underlying cognitive processes in probabilisticthinking were affected by the limitations of the thinker and the interaction ofthe demands of the task (Slovic et al., 1977). Much of this emphasis on thelimitations of the thinker was due to Tversky and Kahneman’s (1974) findingsthat pointed to the “heuristics” of representativeness, availability andanchoring. Their research indicated that these heuristics are used to simplifyproblems and may sometimes lead to large, systematic bias in decisionmaking.28SIMPLIFYING DECISION-MAKINGKahneman and Tversky hypothesized (1974) that judgmental bias inindividual decision-making could be caused by reliance on heuristics such as“representativeness” and “availability”. The “representativeness” heuristic isinvoked when an outcome is highly representative of the process from which itoriginates. As a result, the probability of the outcome is judged to be high. Ina classroom, the representativeness heuristic may become a factor in asituation where students do something that they feel is similar to an actionusually rewarded by the teacher in order to experience the outcome, that is, areward from the teacher. For example, the teacher may make an approvingcomment when one student helps another by explaining how to do a particularmath problem. The representative heuristic may cause another student togive a math answer to a fellow student, expecting the teacher to reward thebehavior with an approving comment.The “availability” heuristic causes a bias whereby an event is judgedlikely or frequent if it is easy to imagine or recall relevant instances of thatevent. Events of frequent occurrence are usually easier to recall thaninstances of less frequent events. “Availability” is also affected by otherfactors unrelated to likelihood, such as familiarity, recency and emotional29saliency. As a result, reliance on “availability” may cause systematic bias(Kahneman & Tversky, 1974). In the classroom, this may be illustrated byconsistency and predictiveness of teacher routines. The availability heuristicmay cause students to incorrectly predict one event over another. Forexample, students in a class may have one teacher for two different subjectson alternating weeks. Even if a routine is clearly established, the studentsmay inevitably anticipate the teacher will be teaching the subject they preferevery time he comes and feel disappointed when they find it is time for thesubject they prefer less.As problems become increasingly more complex, an important problem-solving component may be the ability to modify strategy using heuristics inorder to balance relevant factors. This ability, in turn, may be developmental.Children may not have the techniques needed to simplify problem-solving as aresult of their own limitations in thinking ability. It may follow that by providingchildren with pre-decisional information that reduces, as much as possible, theneed for simplification through the use of heuristics, we may be able to helpthem use all of the information available to them to make appropriate andexpected decisions.30FRAMEWORK FOR DECISION-MAKINGRegardless of the idiosyncrasies of an individual’s processing ability andthe specific situation involved, the steps people go through when makingdecisions are relatively consistent (Fischhoff, 1988; Kahneman, Slovic, &Tversky, 1982). Both the normative and behavioral perspectives use a similarframework for describing what people should be doing (in the normativeperspective) or for analyzing what they actually do (in the behavioralperspective). The normative perspective maintains that individuals followparticular decision rules, whereas the behavioral models have not yetestablished generalized decision rules (Fischhoff, 1988; Kahneman et al.,1982). Furby and Beyth-Maron (1992) have outlined the steps in decision-making, for both the normative and the behavioral model, as follows:1. The decision maker identifies the possible options. Any choice usuallydepends not only on the characteristics of the selected option but on thecharacteristics of the other options considered. Thus, the identification ofall feasible options should be the first step in any process of decision-making. For a decision to engage in a particular behavior there are twooptions: to engage in it or not (e.g. Should I do what my teacher has askedme to do or not?). Other decisions may call for consideration of more thantwo alternatives.2. Identify the possible consequences that may follow from each option.Typically, the possible consequences differ from option to option. Even ifthey were identical, one would still have meaningful decisions to make aslong as the probabilities of consequences varied across options. By statingthe consequence of a choice, the teacher makes it clear what the31consequence of the preferred option is. (What will happen to me if I dowhat my teacher asks?)3. Evaluate the desirability of each of those consequences. By Furby andBeyth-Maron’s (1992) definition, risk is present in a decision only if at leastone possible consequence is valued negatively (i.e., entails some loss). Bystating the consequence of the preferred choice, the teacher is able tomake the student aware of the gain connected to the preferred choice,possibly enhancing the desirability of that choice. By stating the lossconnected to the undesirable behavior, the teacher makes that choice lessdesirable. (If I do as the teacher asks I will be able to gain a point. If I donot do as she asks I will lose a point).4. Assess the likelihood of those consequences. Whenever the likelihood ofany of the possible losses is greater than zero but less than one, then riskperception is a potentially important element of the decision-makingsituation. It may follow that if the child perceives certain gain with no risk inan alternative, that alternative may be more attractive than anotheralternative. In the classroom, gain may be defined in various ways: i.e.,there may be perception of status (gain) by not following the teacher’sdirections; there may be attention gained by not complying with theteacher’s instructions, etc. However, by stating the probability of the gainconnected to the preferred behavior, the teacher lets the children know thatthere is a sure gain involved with the preferred behavior, but they arepresented with a risk (e.g., Will they achieve their goal of attention orstatus?) when choosing the alternate behavior.5. Combine the above according to some “decision rule” in order to identifythe “best” option. A widely accepted criterion for the best option is thatwhich maximizes one’s well-being. One definition of “rational” behavior ischoosing that option which appears to maximize well-being, given thedecision maker’s knowledge and beliefs (e.g., about consequenceprobabilities and values). Thus, using a given decision rule, the optimalchoice depends on that decision maker’s personal values and perceptions.In the present study, the goal was to have the children value the gainassociated with the consequence of the preferred option more than thegain they perceived they would receive from the alternate option. In orderto help them reach this decision, they had to be made aware that thechoice of the inappropriate behavior involved a risk of losing something.32All of the steps in the decision-making process outlined above were ofspecial interest in this study. These steps show why we would expect framedinstruction to affect children’s decisions to comply. This study was concernedwith determining whether the specific wording of the options and theirconsequences would have an effect on decisions made by children in theclassroom.In summary, rather than follow the principles described in normativedecision-making theory, research has established that people often rely onvarious heuristics or simplification techniques to help them make decisionsabout complex problems (Slovic et al., 1977; Einhorn & Hogarth, 1981). Inaddition, individuals tend to consistently follow a specific set of steps in orderto reach a decision (Furby & Beyth-Maron 1992). Included in these steps isthe identification of the options available and the consequences that followthose options, both of which can be identified in pre-decisional information.PART THREE: DECISION-MAKING IN CHILDRENAlthough adult decision-making has been studied extensively, muchless is known about children’s decision-making. In order to consider howframed instructions may affect children’s decisions to comply, we need toexamine what we do know about children’s decision-making. This section will33examine the characteristics of children’s decision-making and thecharacteristics of the instructional sets that may affect their decisions. Theimplications for the design of the present study are presented.INFORMATION PROCESSINGWe know relatively little about how decision-making skills develop (Pitz& Sachs, 1984). Most cognitive developmental research has treated decision-making strategies as hierarchical, with newer, better strategies supersedinginferior ones. In addition, research on children’s decision-making has focusedon the development of cooperative and competitive behaviors and not ondecision-making perse (Chao, Knight, & Dubro, 1986). Several recent studieshave, however, used an information processing perspective to assess howchildren use information from varying instructional sets.Information processing research shows that young children’sperformance on social decision-making tasks is often dependent on the matchbetween the instructional set and the child’s general information processingcapabilities. That is, there seems to be evidence that age differences in socialdecision-making are connected to the ability of the child to apply theprocesses needed to complete the necessary cognitive steps (Chao et al.,1986). For example, young children have difficulty estimating the numbers in34sets larger than three or four (Gelman, 1972), do not take part in socialcomparison in some situations (Ruble, 1983), and despite knowing theprocesses required in a task, are not always able to execute them (Sternberg& Powell, 1983). This suggestion of task-specific cognitive demands andproblem-solving is compatible with the inconsistencies in the developmentalresearch. Chao et al. (1986) found that if young children (age range three toseven) have sufficient difficulty with the information processing requirementsof a task, they may avoid making complex social decisions in favor of simplersocial decisions. However, if the social decision-making situation forces thechild to use appropriate strategies and/or provides and makes certaininformation salient, then young children may make complex social decisions.This finding is consistent with decision-making research. Decision-makingresearch with adults suggests that they use simplifying techniques orheuristics when making complex decisions. If children are unable to applycertain simplifying techniques, they may be unable to make complex decisionsand consequently avoid making them. The finding that children, when shownappropriate strategies, can make complex decisions is relevant to this study.It suggests that framed instructions, by making specific information salient,may have an effect on children’s behavior choices. The need to makeinformation more “usable” for children is supported by findings from research35on children’s pre-decisional information gathering.CHILDREN’S USE OF PRE-DECISIONAL INFORMATIONYoung children’s pre-decisional information gathering may followdifferent, less adequate strategies than that of older children and adults. InDavidson’s study (1991), seven- and eight-year-old children searchedinformation exhaustively before making a decision. Their justificationsindicated they used that information to make decisions. This may representimprovement in searching behavior in light of Vurpillot’s (1968) finding thatchildren younger than five or six, when required to inspect pictures of twohouse fronts and decide if they were the same or different, based theirdecisions on an incomplete comparison of critical features. Similarly, using apicture comparison task, Rothman and Potts (1977) found that kindergartenchildren preferred a strategy that was incomplete and required preliminaryanalysis of the problem situation, whereas fourth graders preferred a moreaccurate but exhaustive strategy. Davidson’s (1991) results suggested thatolder children (seven and eight year olds) are more likely than youngerchildren (five and six year olds) to use relevant information to guide theirsearches of pre-decisional information. Younger children are more likely toinclude less relevant information in their decisions. Davidson (1991)36concludes that although younger children did not search completelyhaphazardly, it was not clear how they made their decisions.Jacobs and Potenza (1991) attempted to establish whether childrenused the representativeness heuristic identified by Kahneman and Tversky(1972, 1973) or baserates (the number of times something occurs) to makesocial decisions. They concluded that as children get older, they begin to usebaserate information more often, using it in the social domain when no otherinformation is available. At the same time, they found that the use of therepresentativeness heuristic increases with age for social decisions. Jacobsand Potenza’s (1991) results seem to suggest that instructional framing willhave an increasing effect on children as they get older. If their interpretation iscorrect, as children get older they collect sufficient information about the socialsituations they are in to use baserates when making a decision. Youngerchildren (age 5, 6), on the other hand, are more likely to rely on personalpreference when making their decisions. Older children may have hadenough experience with the social consequences of compliance and noncompliance with teacher instructions, for framing to have a significant effect asa classroom management technique. For example, children in Grade Three orFour most often avoid hitting other children in full view of the teacher knowingthere is likely to be an unpleasant social consequence in the form of37punishment or disapproval.RELEVANT DECISION CHARACTERISTICSStudies indicate that decisions of children as young as seven or eightyears old are influenced by the characteristics of the decision task (Davidson,1991). This is consistent with findings of studies with adults (Payne, 1976)and with 12-year olds (Klayman, 1985). Davidson (1991) found that childrensearched similar amounts of information for complex and noncomplexalternatives when presented with a hypothetical situation. This is in contrast tothe finding that in real-life situations, children take more time and use morepre-decisional information for important decisions than unimportant ones(Davidson & Hudson, 1988). It may be that children make better decisions inreal-world contexts, in the sense that they search information morethoughtfully and comprehensively. This finding suggests that a study involvingchildren’s decisions would achieve more realistic results if conducted in a realsituation such as a classroom setting and with regular tasks.Davidson and Hudson (1987) found that when a decision wasirrevocable, young children took more time and were more consistent in theirdecisions. First- and third-graders modified their behavior as a result ofdecision reversibility, and also articulated the need to spend more time and38consider more options for irreversible decisions. In addition, first- and third-graders were shown to understand how the importance of a decision affectsthe decision-making process. Therefore, it seems that children do respond tomanipulations of decision characteristics, and by extension they may alsorespond to framed instructions within the classroom.In summary, research on children’s decision-making, although limited,has provided some information regarding how children make decisions. Thepresent study was influenced by this information. Firstly, children’s decisionsare related to their information-processing capacities (Chao et al., 1986). Thatis, pre-decisional information must be “usable” by the child; the child must beable to process it, if not, the child may avoid making a decision. Although useof the representativeness heuristic and baserates aid in simplifying informationfor social decisions, these simplification strategies have been found toincrease as children get older (Jacobs & Potenza, 1991) and may not beassumed to be available to all children. This suggests that pre-decisionalinformation presented to children must be as simply and clearly stated aspossible to ensure that the majority of the children in the classroom will beable to use the information effectively. The instructional frames used in thestudy attempted to ensure this happened. In addition, because children aremore likely to search information if the situation is real and if the decision is39irreversible (Davidson, 1991) the study took place in an actual classroom.By incorporating what researchers have found about children’s decision-making with what we know to be the effects of information framing asdemonstrated in adult decision-making research, we may be able to provideteachers with a pro-active, preventative behavior management technique.PART FOUR: THE “FRAMING EFFECT”The presentation of pre-decisional information may have an importantimpact on the decisions people make. One area of research that has exploredthis possibility is that of “information framing.” Explanations and predictions ofpeople’s choices are often based on the assumption that these choices followconsistent, elementary rules. However, as discussed previously, theseelementary requirements have been found to be systematically violated. Suchviolations have been well demonstrated within the perspective of informationframing theory (Tversky & Kahneman, 1981). There are situations in theclassroom, like many other situations, where the same choice alternativesmay be differently described or in terms of relative gains or losses. Forexample, a classroom teacher may describe a situation negatively and say, “Ifyou are not quiet, you will lose your gym time.” Alternatively, the teachermight describe the same situation positively and say, “If you are quiet, you will40have gym.” The teacher may also describe the situation in relatively neutralterms saying simply, “Please be quiet.” Although all instructions describe thesame situation, they are presented differently and each may have a differentimpact on the decision the children make.The term “framing effect” refers to the finding that subjects’ choices areaffected by changes in how a situation is described, or framed (Tversky &Kahneman, 1981). The essential feature of the framing effect is that areversal in choices by subjects takes place as a result of different framing(Miller & Fagley, 1991; Tversky & Kahneman, 1981). For the classroom, theimportant implication of the information framing effect is that children’sbehavioral choices in the classroom may depend to some extent on how theteacher “frames” expectations.The way in which information is presented, or framed, has been shownto affect many different types of decisions, including the choice between twoalternative courses of action varying in risk (Kahneman & Tversky, 1979;Neale & Brazerman, 1985; Tversky & Kahneman, 1981), the decision whetherto pursue a particular course of action (Levin, Johnson, Deldin, Carstens,Cressey, & Davis, 1986), and the evaluation of individual choice options(Levin, 1987; Levin, Johnson, Russo, & Deldin,1985). Framing effects havebeen demonstrated in the description of consumer products, gambling, labor41negotiations, and student performance.Methods of presenting framed descriptions have ranged from a simplelisting of values to framing within a life-like situation context. An example of asimple listing of values is given below (Redelmeier & Tversky, 1992):Decision 1: Choose between: (A) a sure gain of $240; (B)25% chance to gain $1000 and 75% chance to gainnothing.(84% chose the sure gain).Decision 2: Choose between: (C) a sure loss of $750; (D)75% chance to lose $1,000 and 25% chance to losenothing.(87% avoided the sure loss).An example of a life-like situation is given below (Kahneman &Tversky, 1984):Imagine that you have decided to see a play and paid theadmission price of $10 per ticket. As you enter the theater,you discover that you have lost the ticket. The seat wasnot marked, and the ticket cannot be recovered.Would you pay $10 for another ticket?(Yes: 46%; No: 54%).Framed another way:Imagine that you have decided to see a play whereadmission is $10 per ticket. As you enter the theater, youdiscover that you have lost a $10 bill.Would you still pay $10 for another ticket?(Yes: 88%; No: 12%).In the above example, although the loss in dollars is the same, thedecision to buy another ticket is very different.42Information framing effects can occur without anyone being aware of theimpact of the information frame on the ultimate decision. This is illustrated inthe use of the terms “cash discount” and “credit card surcharge.” These twolabels frame the price difference as a gain (cash discount) or as a loss (creditcard surcharge) by implicitly designating either the higher or the lower price asnormal. Because losses loom larger than gains, consumers are less likely toaccept a surcharge than to forego a discount (see Levin, 1988).Levin (1988) examined the effect of the information frame on theevaluation of single-choice options. In a variety of tasks, the same objectiveinformation was evaluated more favorably when it was framed positively thanwhen it was framed negatively. Subjects were more willing to take gambleswhen they were assessed in terms of “probability of winning” than when theywere assessed in terms of “probability of losing.” Student performance wasrated more favorably when scores were expressed as “% correct “than whenthey were expressed as “% incorrect” (Levin, 1988).Levin (1986) also found that if alternatives are incompletely describedthe choices individuals make are different than if information is completelydescribed. If information is given in a “two-attribute” frame, that is, amount tobe won and the probability of winning or losing, individuals have differentreactions than if information is given in a “one-attribute” frame. If the43probability of winning or losing is omitted, individuals tend to make differentchoices. Levin (1986) found that when both pieces of information werepresented, ratings were higher in the positive than in the negative condition.Subjects were more apt to choose the two-atLribute gamble in the positivecondition than in the negative condition. The implication of the finding is thatindividuals are deterred from taking a gamble when they are aware of theprobability of losing, but when individuals are aware of the probability ofwinning they are more likely to gamble for the win. Individuals are more likelyto maintain the status quo when facing equal probabilities of loss or gain (e.g.,they have a greater aversion to loss than need for gain).Given the robustness of the information framing effect, is it likely toprovide an effective classroom management technique? The powerfulinformation framing effect demonstrated with adults, makes it reasonable toassume that such an effect could be demonstrated in the classroom. Tverskyand Kahneman’s findings (1981) imply that children in the classroom mighttake a risk, if by taking that risk they had a chance of gaining something theyvalued. On the other hand, they would be less likely to take a risk if they hada chance of losing something of value. It may follow that if children had a100% chance of gaining something of value, they would be more inclined tochoose the option that provided this gain. In addition, if the children were44provided with an option that gave them 100% chance of a loss, they may bemore inclined to choose the alternate option. Levin’s (1988) findings suggestthat children would be more likely to avoid a risk if they know the loss and theprobability of the loss attached to the risk, than if they do not know the lossand the probability of the loss. They would also be more likely to choose anoption if they know the gain attached to the option and the probability of thegain, than if they do not know the gain and the probability of the gain.Therefore, it is possible that children may be more likely to follow theteachers instructions if the instructions are framed to include what is to begained or lost and the probability of the gain or loss. For example, the teachermight tell the children that if they complete the assigned questions they willhave a 100% chance of improving their mark. An instruction could also beframed negatively. For example, the teacher could tell the children that if theydo not complete the assigned questions, they have a 100% chance oflowering their mark. As long as the probability of the loss is included as aconsequence of the non completion of the task, the children should be inclinedto avoid the risk of the loss and, therefore, choose the alternate or preferredbehavior. Conversely, if the positive frame includes the gain and theprobability of the gain as a consequence of the preferred behavior, thechildren should be inclined to choose the preferred behavior.45The selection of appropriate contingencies for consequences forbehavior is an important factor in developing an appropriate frame.Considerations and rationale for selection of contingencies for consequencesare discussed next.PART FIVE: CLASSROOM CONSEQUENCESClassroom consequences may be positive or negative and are chosento strengthen or weaken behavior. A reinforcer may be defined as anystimulus following a response that encourages that response to be repeated.Reinforcement is the process of strengthening a behavior. Positivereinforcement involves the presentation of desirable consequences that arelikely to strengthen behavior. Negative reinforcement involves the removal ofunpleasant consequences, and is also likely to result in the strengthening ofbehavior. On the other hand, negative consequences occur as a result ofundesirable behavior and are likely to decrease the undesirable behavior (cf.Bowd, McDougall & Yewchuk, 1994).There are two broad categories of contingencies for consequencesused in classrooms: individual and group. There are three types of groupcontingencies described by Litow and Pumroy (1975). Independent groupcontingencies require the same response of all individuals in the group, but46access to reinforcement (consequences) is based only on each individual’sresponse. This is illustrated when a teacher gives a criterion forconsequences which must be fulfilled by every individual before any individualgets the reward. Interdependent group contingencies make access toconsequences dependent on the collective performance of all members of agroup. For example, an interdependent contingency would be operating if ateacher announced that the average of all scores must be nine out of tencorrect for any student to be reinforced. Dependent group contingenciesmake access to consequences based on the performance of a selectedmember of the group (Shapiro & Goldberg, 1986).Some researchers have found that the use of peers for contingencymanagement may have stronger effects than teacher-managed contingencies(McLaughlin, 1981) and establish peers as an important source of control forclassroom behavior (Gresham & Gresham, 1982). Gresham and Gresham(1982) consistently found the interdependent condition to be the most effectivegroup performance contingency for reducing disruptive behavior. Pigott,Fantuzzo, Heggie, and Clement (1984) and McReynolds, Gange, and Speltz(1981) also found the interdependent group performance conditions showedgreater change in desired performance. Kazdin and Geesey (1977) andShapiro, Albright, and Ager (1986) compared group dependent reinforcement47contingencies to independent reinforcement contingencies in improving theclassroom behaviors of individual students. They found support for theposition that earning reinforcement for oneself and the group was superior toearning support for oneself. However, Shapiro and Goldberg (1986) did notfind differences between the two.Reviews of the literature on the effect of individual and groupcontingencies for consequences in the classroom suggest that groupcontingencies are equivalent in performance to individual contingencies(Hayes, 1976; Litow & Pumroy, 1975; McLaughlin, 1974). This appears to betrue whether target responses are academic or behavioral (cf., Shapiro &Goldberg, 1986). No definite conclusions can be drawn regarding relativeeffectiveness. Rather, choice of contingencies may need to be based onacceptability of treatment (Witt & Elliott, 1985) or ease of implementation(Shapiro & Goldberg, 1986). Interdependent group consequences may bemore efficient for the teacher as it means that the behavior of a large group ofstudents rather than individual behavior has to be monitored. In addition,interdependent group contingencies have been found to be at least aseffective as other types of group contingencies. For these reasons,interdependent group as well as individual contingencies for consequenceswere used as part of the instructional frame in this study.48It is important to note that when choosing consequences for individualstudents, the same consequences may be viewed differently by differentstudents. Age differences, cultural values and home environment all influencethe kinds of reinforcements children value (cf. Bowd et al., 1994). Forexample, additional physical education may be perceived by one student as apositive consequence and be perceived by another as a negativeconsequence. Therefore, when choosing consequences for use in theclassroom, it is important that teachers are aware of individual student’sperceptions of the consequences used.PART Six: CONSIDERATIONS IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF FRAMED INSTRUCTIONSWhen developing the framed instructions for classroom teachers therewere several factors considered. Firstly, the steps that adults (Furby & BeythMaron, 1990) and possibly children go through before reaching a decision andthe implications of this process were incorporated. These steps include theidentification of options and consequences, and the subsequent choice ofoption (which is dependent on the value the options and consequences holdfor the individual). Secondly, a method of presenting this information in a waythat would predispose children to choose the appropriate behavior wasneeded. The answer came from information framing research. The work of49Tversky and Kahneman (1981) on risk-taking indicated that individuals willavoid the sure loss and tend toward the sure gain. In addition, people tend toprefer the status quo than to suffer loss. Levin’s (1986) findings concerningcompletely and incompletely described alternatives, or one- and two-attributeframes, indicated that individuals are more likely to avoid risk when they knowwhat is to be lost and the probability of the loss, and tend toward the gainwhen they know what is to be gained and the probability of the gain. Next,the characteristics of the task as a function of children’s behavior whenmaking decisions were considered. Finally, the types of contingencies forconsequences that would be used as a result of research on the effectivenessof different contingencies was included.In the present study, the teacher instructions were presented specifyingthe options and their consequences, along with the likelihood that theconsequences would occur. The instructional frames indicated the specific“chance of gaining” or the specific “chance of losing” a named consequence.For example, “Your group has a 100% chance of earning a sticker if yourbehavior allows you to stay in the group,” illustrates a positive frame.Alternatively, “Your group has a 100% chance of losing a sticker if yourbehavior causes you to leave the group,” illustrates a negative frame. Thedeliberate framing of the options and their consequences was predicted to50affect the children’s decision to follow the teacher’s instruction.SUMMARYLiterature was reviewed in the areas of classroom behaviormanagement, decision-making, information framing effects, including theeffects of positive and negative framing, and individual versus groupconsequences as applied to children in the classroom. The application ofinformation framing theory to classroom management, within the context ofchildren’s decision-making regarding their behavior in the classroom, wasexplored.Given the complexity of the teaching activity and the significantmanagement problems that can occur within the classroom, it is essential thatteachers have access to effective, proactive strategies for preventingmanagement problems. A theory that lends itself to delineating suchstrategies is social cognitive theory. Social cognitive theory suggests thatbehavior occurs as a result of the type of information being processed as wellas the pattern of processing. This in turn suggests that by presentinginformation in a specific way, encompassing specific considerations, someinappropriate behavior in the classroom could be prevented.The choice of appropriate behavior over inappropriate behavior51involves decision-making. Researchers in the area of decision-making havefound that individuals use various simplifying heuristics to make it possible forthem to process complex information. Within the field of decision-making,information framing research has established how the manner in whichinformation is presented influences the decisions individuals make. The“framing effect” has been studied with adults in various contexts and has beenfound to be robust and pervasive. There is very little information regarding theframing effect on children’s decisions.Children’s cognitive characteristics, as well as the characteristics of thespecific decision, have an impact on how children make decisions and on thekind of decisions they make (Davidson & Hudson, 1987, 1988). How childrenprocess information and use decision rules when they are processing predecisional information are crucial factors in their ability to make “rational”decisions. Research on children’s decision-making has recently begun toexamine the process of their decision-making. This research has found thatyoung children’s social decision-making depends on the match betweenprocessing ability and the information presented. Although it is uncertain howyoung children use decision rules, they do appear to follow different, and lessadequate strategies than older children or adults. At the same time, youngchildren appear to use more pre-decisional information when the situation is52real than when it is presented hypothetically. Children also seem to take moretime and are more consistent in their decision-making when the decision isirreversible.Research on the effect of individual and group contingencies forconsequences has produced mixed results. There does not appear to beconsensus on which contingency is most effective. Choice of a contingencymay be best based on acceptability and ease of use.In light of the research reviewed, the present study asked, “What is theeffect of positively and negatively framed instructions, which include theconsequences of behavior and the probability of the consequences occurring,on children’s decisions to follow teacher instructions in the classroom?”The implications of information framing for children’s decisionssuggested an opportunity for teachers to help children make appropriatechoices within the classroom. Consequently, the effect of framed instructionson children’s decisions with respect to teacher instructions became the focusof the present study. Chapter Three describes the methodology that was usedto carry out the study.53CHAPTER THREEMETHODThis study set out to determine if framing of instructions by teacherswould have an effect on children’s task completion or behavioral compliance inthe classroom. This chapter begins with a discussion of the methodologicalissues pertinent to the study including the participation of teachers asresearchers, teacher bias, and the use of pre-treatment tapes. Each ofExperiments One and Two are then described, including the design, sample,procedure, instructions to teachers, specific frames used, hypotheses andanalyses.METHODOLOGICAL ISSUESTeacher bias as a result of teacher expectation was a possible sourceof error in this study. Teacher expectations have been established asimportant determinants of both teacher-pupil interactions and achievementoutcomes (Brophy & Evertson, 1981, 1971; Brophy & Good, 1979; Good,1981). That is, teachers who expect students to be successful and treat themas if they will be successful are likely to see them succeed, while teacherswho expect failure from children and treat them as if they will fail, are likely to54see them fail (Good & Brophy, 1987).Analyses of teacher bias examined for teacher expectation effect andsystematic error in their observations. This was accomplished by having theteachers administer the Social Skills Rating Scale-Teacher Form (SSRS-TF).The SSRS-TF provides ratings of cooperation; assertiveness; self-control;externalizing behavior; internalizing behavior; hyperactivity and academiccompetence. The teacher ratings from the SSRS-TF were correlated with theteacher observations of task completion and behavioral compliance toexamine for teacher bias and subsequent statistical adjustment if needed.Pre-treatment audio-tapes of all five classrooms were made before thestudy began. The goal of the audio-taping was to sample the type ofinstructions routinely given by the classroom teachers. The tapes establishedif the teachers in the study used unframed instructions (ex., “Could we just usehands?”) or framed instructions (ex., “If I don’t get more cooperation than I’mgetting now we are going to put these away.”). Framed instructions werethose teacher instructions articulating consequences. If the teachers didinclude consequences in their instructions, were the consequences positive ornegative? This aspect of the design was employed in order to establish if itwas reasonable to assume that teachers used untramed instructions. Inaddition, reaction by students to the frames used in the study may have been55influenced by the teachers’ use of consequences before the study. If theteachers used predominately positive or negative consequences the studentsmay have reacted to the frames as a result of this. A sample of pre-treatmentclassroom activity and teacher comments would provide some explanation ifthere were differences between classrooms in framing effects. That is, theaudio-taped data might be helpful in explaining possible differences inclassroom level analyses.OVERVIEWThere were two experiments in this study. Five Grade Three and Fourclassroom teachers from three different schools parLicipated voluntarily ineach experiment. Before the experiments began, the classrooms involvedwere audio-taped during class instructional time. The total time taped was270 minutes for Teacher A and 360 minutes for Teachers B, C, D, and E.After the audio-taping, the teachers completed the Social Skills RatingSystem-Teacher Form-Elementary Level (SSRS-TF) for each student. Theexperiments began once the audio-taping and the SSRS-TF were completed.INTRODUCTION TO EXPERIMENT ONEExperiment One contrasted the effect of an unframed instruction (no56consequences included in the instruction), with a two-attribute positive, and atwo-attribute negative frame requesting completion of an academic task. Thepositive and negative frames were delivered with individual and groupcontingencies for consequences.Teachers observed and recorded, for each student, the number ofquestions completed out of the total number of questions assigned. Theirobservations were recorded as compliance with the instruction, partialcompliance with the instruction, or non-compliance with the instruction. Taskcompletion received a score of two, partial task completion a score of one, andnon-completion of the task received a score of zero. The relationship betweenactual observed completion of an academic task and teacher rated AcademicCompetence on the SSRS-TF was analyzed to examine for teacher bias in theobservation of individual student task completion. In addition, task completionas a result of individual and group contingencies for consequences wasexamined. The data were also examined for sex effect.Experiment One: Completion of an Academic TaskA). DESIGNExperiment One was a one-factor within subjects design. The within57factor had four experimental “framing” treatments. Students in each of theclassrooms in the study were randomly assigned to one of five groups, andeach group was exposed to an unframed instruction and four differentexperimental treatments, namely:1) Positive frame-group consequence - treatment one.2) Positive frame-individual consequence - treatment two.3) Negative frame-group consequence - treatment three.4) Negative frame-individual consequence- treatment four.The format of the experimental design is presented in Table 1 below.Table 1Experimental Design FormatUnframed Treatment 1 Treatment 2 Treatment 3 Treatment 4InstructionPositive Frame Negative FrameClassroom Group Individual Group IndividualConsequence Consequence Consequence Consequence1 Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 Group 4 Group 5(Subjects 1 5)* (Subjects 6-10) (Subjects 11-15)) (Subjects 16-20) (Subjects 21 -23)2 Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 Group 4 Group 5(Subjects 1 -5) (Subjects 6-10) (Subjects 1 1-15) (Subjects 16-20) (Subjects 21-25)3 Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 Group 4 Group 5(Subjects 1-4) (Subjects 5-9) (Subjects 10-13) (Subjects 14-17) (Subjects 1 8-20)4 Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 Group 4 Group 5(Subjects 1 -5) (Subjects 6-10) (Subjects 1 1-15) (Subjects 1 6-20) (Subjects 21 -22)5 Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 Group 4 Group 5(Subjects 1 -5) (Subjects 6-10) (Subjects 11-14) (Subjects 15-19) (Subjects 20-22)*Subjs were numbered sequentially after random assignment to the 5 conditions58B). SAMPLEClassrooms were chosen on a teacher volunteer basis. ParLicipantswere children from Grades Three or Four from different schools in Kelowna,British Columbia. These grades were chosen because previous research hasindicated that younger children (second grade) searched information with littleregard for whether the information was related to the task (Davidson, 1991).As a result, it was possible that framed instructions would not have asignificant effect on the decisions of children second grade or lower. In orderto establish an instructional framing effect, it seemed most logical to focus onchildren in Grade Three or higher.The goal of the study was to contrast the difference between anunframed instruction and positive and negative framing effects on children’sbehavior in the classroom, regardless of the socio-cultural background of thechildren. The literature reviewed (Chapter Two) did not indicate socio-culturalbackground as a significant factor in previous framing studies and there wasno indication that incorporating socio-cultural background would be fruitful.However, the classrooms in the study were relatively homogeneous, locatedwithin middle-class, predominately white neighborhoods.The number of boys and girls in the study was approximately equal.59The number of boys for each frame ranged from 50 to 53 and the number ofgirls ranged from 53 to 56. Numbers varied due to absences. Research hassuggested that there are differences in compliance between males andfemales (Brophy & Good, 1974; Fagley & Miller, 1990). However, asdiscussed in Chapter Two, there is not sufficient research to predict therelationship between gender and framing effect. Nevertheless, the data wereexplored for differences in the degree of compliance between boys and girls.C). PROCEDUREBefore the experiment began, teachers were audio-taped for a minimumof 270 minutes of instructional time using a tape recorder. After theclassrooms were audio-taped, the teachers were required to complete theSSRS-TF for each student in their classroom. The SSRS-TF provided SocialSkill, Problem Behavior, and Academic Competence ratings. Teachers werenot informed about the experiments to come when they completed the SSRSTF and audio-taped instruction in their classrooms in order to protect theintegrity of the treatment.Upon completion of the SSRS-TF, teachers were given the ObservationRecord Forms (ORE), (see Appendix A) for each treatment condition.Teachers observed naturally occurring behaviors after delivering unframed or60framed instructions. To enhance ecological validity, they were given thefreedom to deliver the frames when they felt it was most appropriate.Teachers recorded when they observed what they considered to becompliance in task completion, partial compliance in task completion or noncompliance in task completion. Teachers determined their own subjectiveparameters for indicating task completion for which a score of 2 forcompliance was awarded. Similarly, they established parameters for partialcompliance for which a score of 1 was awarded, and parameters for noncompliance for which a score of 0 was awarded. The measurement wasdefined as interval because the observations recorded were not distinctlycategorical. That is, compliance by definition included partial compliance. Inaddition, teachers established their own “compliance”, “partial compliance”and “non-compliance” intervals based upon personal judgment, much as isdone when completing a Liken scale.There were five different OREs for each Experiment, one for theunframed instruction and one for each treatment condition or framedinstruction. The unframed instruction and each framed instruction waspresented once to each student in each of the groups. Each ORE includedthe unframed or the framed instruction the teacher was required to use, aswell as a pre-selected list of the students who were to receive that specific61unframed or framed instruction.Repeated measures designs are susceptible to sequence effects andcarryover effects. This should be considered whenever the possibility existsthat exposure to one treatment will have an influence on the effect of anothertreatment (Howell, 1987). To counter the carryover effect in this study,treatment sequences were assigned by means of a Latin square. Eachteacher started with the unframed instruction (UR) and continued with thepositive frame with group consequence (PG), the positive frame with individualconsequence (P1), the negative frame with group consequence (NG), and thenegative frame with individual consequence (NI). The instructions weredelivered to each student in the entire class in five separate rounds. Forexample, in classroom one, students 1-5 received the unframed instruction,students 6-10 received treatment 1, students 11-15 received treatment 2,students 16-20 received treatment 3 and students 21-23 received treatment 4.After students 21-23 received treatment 4, students 1-5 received treatment 1and so on. Therefore, each student received an unframed or framedinstruction before any student received a second treatment. Thus, eachstudent had a total of one unframed instruction and four framed instructionsdelivered to him or her. Teachers were asked to deliver the unframed andframed instructions within a time period that was realistic for their classroom.62This time table varied depending on the specific activities and “opporLunesituations” within each classroom.The class was randomly divided by me into five groups (approximately20% of the class per group), each of which received an unframed instructionand one of the treatments from the teacher. The instructions given were oneof the following:1) Unframed instruction.2) Positive frame-group consequence - treatment one.3) Positive frame-individual consequence - treatment two.4) Negative frame-group consequence - treatment three.5) Negative frame-individual consequence - treatment four.The order for the administration of the framing instructions in Latin squaresrotation is given below in Table 2:Table 2Order of Framing: Latin Squares RotationGroup 1 Group 2 Group 3 Group 4 Group 5Round 1 Unframed Treatment 1 Treatment 2 Treatment 3 Treatment 4InstructionRound 2 Treatment 1 Treatment 2 Treatment 3 Treatment 4 UnframedInstructionRound 3 Treatment 2 Treatment 3 Treatment 4 Unframed Treatment 1InstructionRound 4 Treatment 3 Treatment 4 Unframed Treatment 1 Treatment 2InstructionRound 5 Treatment 4 Unframed Treatment 1 Treatment 2 Treatment 3InstructionNp.t: Treatment = Framed Instruction63The unframed instruction was the first instruction delivered in Roundone. Treatment 1 had the teacher pose a two-attribute instruction that waspositively framed and included a group consequence. Treatment 2 had theteacher pose a two-attribute instruction that was positively framed andincluded an individual consequence, addressed to the individual studentinvolved. Treatment 3 had the teacher pose a two-attribute instruction thatwas negatively framed and included a group consequence. Treatment 4 hadthe teacher pose a two-attribute instruction that was negatively framed andincluded an individual consequence.Each teacher was provided with multiple copies of each of the fivedifferent Observation Record Forms (ORF). One copy of each form was usedto record observations for each round of treatment delivery. That is, theteacher used the unframed instruction and the instructional frames one, two,three, and four for the first round of treatment. This meant that each child inthe classroom had one of the frames delivered to him or her in this first round.The process was repeated for rounds two, three, four, and five. By the end ofthe fifth round each child had received the unframed instruction and the fourtreatments or framed instructions. This meant there were a total of fiverequests and observations (data points) per child.The purpose of the ORF was twofold. It standardized the framing used64by the teachers and included the essential components of the framedinstructions. These components consisted of the frame’s positive or negativedesignation; the probability that a consequence would occur (100%) andprovision for a consequence. The standardization was necessary to ensurethe teachers included these components. In order to promote ecologicalvalidity, teachers were free to choose when to administer the frames and theywere free to choose specific consequences. That is, the times when teacherswould be most likely to use the frames outside of the experiment wouldgenerate the most valid results. Similarly, the consequences teachers usedhad to be consequences they would feel comforLable using. If not, teacherswould be unlikely to use the technique (Rosen, 1990). Some of theconsequences teachers used were points; tickets (for a draw); gym time andfree time. The ORE was also designed to simplify the recording process. TheORE included:1. Written instructions;2. The necessary components of the framed instruction for the completion ofan Academic Task;3. A randomly organized roster of the names of the students who were giventhe respective treatment in each round;4. Space in which to record whether the instruction was made;5. Space in which to record whether the instruction resulted in taskcompletion, partial completion or non-completion.65INSTRUCTIONS TO TEACHERSTeachers were informed of the importance of including theconsequence and the probability of the consequence for each instruction. Thespecific instructions given to the teachers were as follows:“Pose the instructions below to each of the students in yourclass whose names appear on this sheet. Indicatewhether the instruction was made of each student bychecking the ‘yes’ or ‘no’ column under the section‘Instruction Made’. Indicate the response made by eachstudent by checking ‘compliance’, ‘non-compliance’ or‘partial compliance’ under the ‘Response Made’ column. If‘partial compliance’ is checked, indicate the number ofitems completed out of the total numbers assigned.”The response for compliance received a score of two; the response for partial-compliance received a one; and the response for non-compliance received ascore of zero.The procedures were discussed with the teachers before the start of theexperiment. The wording for the unframed instruction and the treatmentconditions one through five are given below. Individual teachers supplied theparticular consequence for appropriate behavior so that it was consistent withwhat had already been established within the classroom. In addition, asidentical consequences are perceived differently by individual students,teachers were free to consider the effect of particular consequences on66individual children, and select those that would be most effective. As a result,the parLicular consequences used by the teachers may have varied. The timelimit allowed to complete the questions and the number of questions assignedmay have varied. However, the framed instructions made it very clear whatthe consequence and the probability of receiving the consequence was to be.Because the number of questions and the time limits varied, brackets havebeen placed around the examples given below.SPECIFIC FRAMES - COMPLETION OF AN ACADEMIC TASKThe specific instructional frames were as follows:Unframed instruction:“(John), please finish the questions.”Treatment One: Positive frame with group consequence.“(Carol), if you finish these (5) questions withinthe nexL (10) minutes, there is a 100% chance that your group willreceive a (point).”Treatment Two: Positive frame with individual consequence.11(Matt), if you finish these (5) questions withinthe next (10) minutes, there is a 100% chance that QJiwill receive a (higher mark).”Treatment Three: Negative frame with group consequence.“(Susan), if you do not finish these (5) questions67within the next (10) minutes, there is a 100% chance thatyour group will lose (10 minutes gym time)”.Treatment Four: Negative frame with individual consequence.“(Don), if you do not finish these (5) questionswithin the next (10) minutes, there is a 100% chance thatyou will lose (free time)”.Each teacher ws asked to give the above instructions to each of thestudents whose name appeared on each form. Responses were recorded onthe forms provided. I collected the completed forms.Before the experiment began, teachers were asked whether theybelieved they would be able to comply with the demands of the task. I helpedto solve any anticipated problems that teachers anticipated. For example,Teacher D was concerned the children would wonder why she was “...talkingdifferently.” We decided the best approach would be to tell the students shewas gathering information that would help us to help children learn. Inaddition, I was available to discuss solutions for any unforeseen problems thatoccurred during the experiment.It was anticipated that teachers would cooperate in this experimentbecause of the immediate, demonstrable benefit that might ensue as a resultof their participation. I visited the classrooms at least once during every weekthroughout the duration of the experiment to ensure that any concerns or68problems the teachers had would be addressed.INTRODUCTION TO EXPERIMENT TWOExperiment Two contrasted the effect (on behavioral compliance) of anunframed instruction, with a two-attribute positive, and a two-attribute negativeframe requesting behavioral compliance. The positive and negative frameswere delivered with an individual and a group contingency for a consequence.The student’s response was observed and recorded as compliance with theinstruction or non-compliance with the instruction. Where compliance with theinstruction was recorded, the teacher was asked to indicate the duration ofcompliance as follows: (1) 5 minutes or less; (2) five to ten minutes; (3) morethan 10 minutes. When compliance for ten minutes to the length of the activitywas recorded, a score of three was awarded; when compliance for under tenminutes was recorded, a score of two was awarded; when a compliance forfive minutes or less was recorded, a score of one was awarded and whennon-compliance was recorded, a score of zero was awarded. The effect oncompliance of the individual and group contingencies for consequences wasalso examined. In addition, the relationship between actual behavioralcompliance and teacher ratings of Social Skills and Problem Behaviors on theSSRS-TF was analyzed to examine for teacher bias in the observation of69individual student compliance.EXPERIMENT TwO: BEHAVIORAL COMPLIANCEExperiment Two was identical to Experiment One with the exception ofthe dependent variable. The design, subjects and procedure were exactly thesame. The difference between Experiment One and Experiment Two was thatthe former focused on students’ completion of an academic task, whereas thelatter focused on the students’ compliance with a specific classroom controlinstruction as shown in the examples below.SPECIFIC FRAMES-COMPLIANCE WITH A BEHAVIORAL INSTRUCTIONUnframeci Instruction:“(Jill), please sit quietly.”Treatment One: Positive frame with group consequence.“(Bob), if you sit quietly for the next (5)minutes, there is a 100% chance that your groupwill receive a (free time).”Treatment Two: Positive frame with individual consequence.“(Ann), if you sit quietly for the next (5)minutes. there is a 100% chance that you will receive(extra gym time).”70Treatment Three: Negative frame with group consequence.“(Michael), if you do not sit quietly for the next (5)minutes, there is a 100% chance that your group will lose(their turn).”Treatment Four: Negative frame with individual consequence.“(Molly), it you do not sit quietly for the next (5)minutes, there is a 100% chance that you will lose(a point).”B). HYPOTHESESTversky and Kahneman’s (1981) information framing theory andfindings relating to the framing effect in decision-making under conditions ofrisk and Levin’s (1986) findings on decision-making as a result of one or two-attribute frames generated the hypotheses of this study. In this case, theframed instructions were two-attribute framed instructions (gain or loss and theprobability of achieving that gain or loss). The first predictions were madeconcerning the difference in the task completion and behavioral compliance ofchildren receiving an unframed instruction from their teachers and childrenreceiving a two-attribute framed instruction. Components of framing examinedfor effect on task completion and behavioral compliance were the positive ornegative orientation of the frame (Tversky & Kahneman, 1981), and individualand group contingencies for consequences (Hayes, 1976; Litow & Pumroy,711975; McLaughlin, 1974).On the basis of previous studies involving individual and groupconsequences, a prediction was made regarding task completion andbehavioral compliance as a result of the inclusion of individual or groupcontingencies in the framed instructions. Studies seem to indicate that groupand individual contingencies may be equivalent in effectiveness in themanagement of both academic and behavioral responses.There was a potential rival hypothesis as a result of possible teacherexpectation bias. To determine if this was a factor, the correlation betweenconstructs as rated by teachers on the SSRS-TF before the study took placeand actual task completion and behavioral compliance by the students wasexamined. This hypothesis was based on findings that teachers who expectstudents to be successful and treat them as if they will be successful are likelyto see them succeed, while teachers who expect failure from children andtreat them as if they will fail, are likely to see them fail (Good & Brophy, 1987).Would those students rated highly by teachers in “academic competence” or“social skill&’ be high in actual task completion and behavioral compliance?Would those students rated highly by teachers in “problem behaviors” be lowin actual task completion and behavioral compliance?Finally, due to research indicating the sex typing of compliance in the72classroom (Brophy & Good, 1974), the effect of sex on task completion andbehavioral compliance was studied.Analysis focused on testing the following specific hypotheses in each ofthe Experiments:HYPOTHESIS ONE:The average (a) task completion in Experiment One; (b) compliance inExperiment Two, will be greater under treatment one (positive frame, groupconsequence) in comparison to the unframed instruction.HYPOTHESIS Two:The average (a) task completion in Experiment One; (b) compliance inExperiment Two will be greater under treatment two (positive frame, individualconsequence) in comparison to the unframed instruction.HYPOTHESIS THREE:The average (a) task completion in Experiment One; (b) compliance inExperiment Two will be greater under treatment three (negative frame, groupconsequence) in comparison to the unframed instruction.HYPOTHESIS FOUR:The average (a) task completion in Experiment One; (b) compliance inExperiment Two will be greater under treatment four (negative frame,individual consequence) in comparison to the unframed instruction.HYPOTHESIS FIVE:The average response under treatment one (positive frame, groupconsequence) will be equal to the average response under treatment two(positive frame, individual consequence).73HYPOTHESIS Six:The average response under treatment three (negative frame, groupconsequence) will be equal to the average response under treatment four(negative frame, individual consequence).HYPOTHESIS SEVEN:The average response under treatment one (positive frame, groupconsequence) will be equal to the average response under treatment three(negative frame, group consequence).HYPOTHESIS EIGHT (Rival Hypothesis-Experiment One):There will be a positive relationship between actual degree of task completionand teacher ratings of Academic Competence.HYPOTHESIS NINE (Rival Hypothesis-Experiment Two):There will be a positive relationship between actual degree of compliance andteacher ratings of Social Skill and Problem Behaviors.ANALYSES(1) PRELIMINARY ANALYSESAUDIO-TAPE DATA: PRE-TREATMENTData concerning the participating teachers, as well as an assessment ofthe way in which the teachers tended to interact in the classroom before theexperiment began were examined. Teachers agreed to audio-tape theequivalent of a day’s instruction. Teacher comments from this tape that were74directed at students task completion or behavior were transcribed by me. Thecomments on the transcription were then independently coded by me andanother qualified teacher, not involved with the study, as framed or unframedinstructions. The pre-treatment audio-tapes were used to establish whetherteachers used unframed instructions or comments in the course of their dailylessons and to explain possible classroom/teacher differences in taskcompletion or behavioral compliance.SEX EFFECTData were examined to establish if there was a difference in the effect ofthe framed instructions on task completion or behavioral compliance betweenboys and girls. For a clear test of the hypotheses, one question was pertinent:Will there be an interaction between sex and framing?(2) TEST OF HYPOTHESESThe hypotheses were statistically evaluated with a priori contrastscorresponding to the hypotheses. For each hypothesis, Dunn’s method wasused, and experimentwise error was controlled by Bonferroni’s adjustment ofalpha (Glass & Hopkins, 1984). The analyses were accomplished with theSYSTAT computer program.75The contrast matrix for the hypotheses is presented below in Table 3.Table 3Contrast Matrix for AnalysesMeans ComparedHypothesis Contrast # UR Ti T2 T3 T41 1 1 -i 0 0 02 2 1 0 -i 0 03 1 i 0 0 -1 04 1 i 0 0 0 -i5 5 0 1 -1 0 06 6 0 0 1 0 -i7 7 0 -i 0 1 0Note: UI=Unframed Instruction; T=Treatment (Framed Instructions).EVALUATION OF RIVAL HYPOTHESESHypotheses eight and nine examined the relationship between degreeof task completion in Experiment One and teacher ratings of AcademicCompetence for both the positive and negative conditions respectively. InExperiment Two, the relationship between the degree of behavioralcompliance and teacher ratings of Problem Behavior and Social Skill wasexamined for both the positive and negative conditions.76CLASSITEACHER LEVEL ANALYSESThe data were examined for a possible classroom/teacher effect oncompliance. That is, did the individual teachers make a difference in taskcompletion and behavioral compliance? Data were also examined to establishif the order in which the frames were administered had an effect on taskcompletion and behavioral compliance. Effect sizes and improvement rateswere calculated for contrasts that predicted mean differences (1-4).(3) QUALITATIVE DATAAdditional information, in the form of qualitative data, is also presented.Pre-treatment audio-tapes of the teachers, as well as teacher comments, areexamined.Findings based on the analyses outlined above are presented inChapter Four.77CHAPTER FOURRESULTSData were collected to establish if framing of instructions by teacherswould influence children’s task completion or behavioral compliance in theclassroom. Pre-treatment teacher data are presented first. The statistical testof the hypotheses and sex effect analyses are presented next. Teacherexpectation and classroom/teacher level analyses are presented last.PRE-TREATMENT TEACHER DATAFive teachers from three different schools participated in the study.There were 109 children in total from five different classrooms and threedifferent schools. Ten Grade Four teachers in schools in which I was workingwere asked if they would agree to participate. Of these ten, five agreed totake part in the study. These teachers were asked to audio-tape a day’sinstruction in their classrooms. The pre-treatment tapes were used todetermine if they used framed or unframed comments and instructions whenaddressing the children in their classes, and if these comments andinstructions were of a positive or negative orientation. Table 4 belowrepresents the pre-treatment audio-tape information:78Table 4Pre-Treatment Audio-Tape InformationTeacher Years Grade Class Minutes Teacher SubjectsTeaching Size Taped Comments:F=9% SpellingA 13 4 22 270 U=91% Mathematics100% rater MusicAgreement LAF=4% MathematicsU=96% MusicB 5 4 23 360 100% rater LAAgreement SSScienceF=9%-1 4% SpellingU=86%-91 % MathematicsC 16 3/4 split 20 360 66%(2/3) rater LAAgreement ScienceF=1 6%-21 % SpellingU=79%-84% MathematicsD 13 3/4 split 22 360 78%(7/9) rater LAAgreement ScienceWritingF=11% SpellingU=89% MathematicsE 5 3/4 split 22 360 100% rater LAAgreement ScienceJournaltjt: LA=Language Arts; SS=Social Studies; F=Framed comments including a consequence;U=Unframed comments without a consequence.Audio-tapes were transcribed by me, and relevant teacher commentswere noted in written form. That is, any teacher comment and instructionaddressing task completion or student behavior was writLen down for later79review. The comments and instructions were then rated by me and anotherqualified teacher, who did not parLicipate in the study, to determine if thecomments and instructions were framed or unframed.Teacher AThe pre-treatment tape of Teacher A’s classroom indicated that sheverbally monitored much of the behavior in her class, but she rarely included aconsequence, that is, framed her instructions (9% framed, 91% unframed).Teacher A tended to monitor student behavior with positive comments forappropriate behavior and negative comments for inappropriate behavior. Shereminded the children of appropriate behavior and whether they weredisplaying it. She was positive when she noticed appropriate behavior. Forexample,“Oh, I just love the way you listened.”The general tone of the classroom was positive and happy, but quitenoisy. Teacher A often reminded the children to be quiet:Who’s making noises over there?”Shhh..., my goodness what a busy bunch of organizers wehave here.”“It’s really hard to concentrate when a lot of people aretalking out.”“We don’t call out.”80“We’re wasting all sorts of time getting ready. Every time thatyou stop playing, your mouth starts going.”“I can’t believe how loud you guys are today. Shhhh Who’s..”“I am getting tired of saying this over and over again.”Teacher BThe tapes of Teacher B’s classroom indicated that he often allowed thechildren to work independently or in groups. When working in groups, theclassroom noise level was fairly high. Teacher B seemed to be very quiet,rarely commenting on the activity in the class, with a generally positive style.He did not interfere with student activities and was seldom heard askinganyone to be quiet or generally monitoring behavior. Teacher B did notusually include consequences with his instructions (4% framed, 96%unframed). However, he did occasionally point out inappropriate behavior.For example,“John, this is a classroom, there is no room for hooting andhollering.., save it for the outside.”“We are going to see the new school don’t want to havethem say how poorly behaved the Grade Fours are.”Teacher B’s comments immediately resulted in quiet from the class.On the third of Teacher B’s tapes (out of four), another teacher cameinto the class to teach. This teacher was an older woman with many years of81teaching experience. Her tolerance for the noise level in the classroomappeared to be less than that of Teacher B’s. Soon after she arrived in theclass, she said,“Would you please sit down. I have a problem with peoplenot doing what I ask them to do.. .this is the third time, wouldyou please sit down?”The students worked very quietly after this comment, so quietly that theclassroom sounded empty on the tape.Teacher CThe tapes made in Teacher C’s classroom characterize her style asfirm, clear and specific. She sometimes used consequences (14% framed,86% unframed). For much of the recorded time on the tapes Teacher C wasteaching the class and asking for individual input. She insisted onparLicipation:“I want to hear from people who never put their hands up. I havethe same people answering and thinking for you. I want you todo some thinking too.”When she was teaching, her class was very quiet. When some of thestudents were whispering during a class discussion, Teacher C was firm andswift in her reaction. She also suggested a negative consequence for thestudents’ behavior.Teacher C: “Sit up here. If that continues, all three of you82will be spending time with me. Do you know what we aretalking about?”The student gave an incorrect answer.Teacher C (to another student):“No. Do yj know what we are talking about?”The second student also gave an incorrect answer.Teacher C,“No. When we’re trying to assist in the classroom, I wanteveryone’s attention. You’ve disrupted us; you owe us anapology.”Another example of Teacher C clarifying consequences:“I don’t want to police the game. If we can’t play fairly thenwe can’t play the game.”Teacher DThe tapes indicated that Teacher D had a very positive but firm stylewhen giving instructions or making requests of students. She sometimes usednegative consequences (21% framed, 79% unframed). For example:“You have to get these done in the next five minutes. If not, I mighthave to ask you to work on your own. If the team is working well, fme.If not“Would you return to your seat please and on your way you can take apoint off because I already asked you.”If students behaved inappropriately, Teacher D intervened immediately.83For example, students were asked to go to their desks to work in pairs for aScience experiment. Some students began to laugh and Teacher Dimmediately said,“Excuse me!”The appropriate response from the children was also immediate.Teacher D did not ask the class verbally for their attention; rather, she rang abell when she wanted the class to listen to her.Teacher D felt that her class was a challenge, but that they had learnedby the month of May that when she made a request of them, she meant whatshe said.Teacher ETeacher E generally directed the students in a positive way andsometimes used negative consequences in her directions (11% framed, 89%unframed). Teacher E tended to monitor the students’ behavior for them. Forexample,“Justin, I don’t think you should be sitting beside John because you tendto chat.”“O.K., what do you do when you’re finished, Brandon?”Teacher E also pointed out when students were doing “the right thing”.For example:84“That’s sure concentrating. That’s good.”Teacher E sometimes used punishment:“If we’re not using our time wisely, we’ll just go on to thisand you’ll have it for homework.”Teacher E felt that her class was the most challenging class she hadtaught. My observation of the students in her class indicated the studentswere often off-task, and seemed to have great difficulty understandingdirections and subsequently completing work. In addition, the class includedchildren who intensely disliked each other. They refused to sit near oneanother and were continually monitoring each other in efforis to get oneanother “in trouble”.SUMMARY OF TEACHER DATATeacher data from the pre-treatment audio-tapes indicated that thepercentage of framed instructions given by teachers ranged from 9% to 21 %,but the majority of their comments, from 79% to 96% were unframed, that is,without consequences. Indeed, the majority of their comments were notinstructive, rather they were descriptive or anecdotal. While it was impossibleto tell from the audio-tape what, if any, non-verbal consequences wereprovided by the teachers, the salient information in this study was the framing,or lack of framing, present in the verbal comments and was apparent on the85audio-tape. Four out of five teachers used negative consequences forbehavior and three out of five used praise. Teacher A used praise (“I just lovethe way you listened”) when commenting on student’s behavior, as well as,negative consequences, but most often reflected the children’s behavior backto them in an approving or disapproving way without using consequences(“We don’t call out”). Teacher B generally did not use consequences forbehavior during the time taped, but sometimes commented on the children’sbehavior (telling them how they should behave). Teacher C generally usednegative consequences, (e.g., “you will be sitting with me”, “you owe anapology”; “...then we can’t play the game”). Teacher D used praise (“ThanksJosh. Good choice”), negative consequences (“...if not, I might have to askyou to work on your own”), and comments indicating her approval ordisapproval of the children’s behavior (“I would say that Carly and Katie knowhow to manage themselves”). Teacher E used praise (“That’s good”) andpunishment (“...you’ll have it for homework”). Teachers C, D and E all usedgroup as well as individual consequences.All of the teachers seemed capable of delivering the frames withconsequences. However, there were differences in the teachers’ use ofconsequences. Teacher D appeared to be more explicit in her expectationsthan the other teachers, and more inclined to attach consequences to her86instructions. Teacher B, on the other hand, was much less inclined than theother teachers to give verbal direction or feedback. Teacher A, while verymuch inclined to give verbal feedback, was unlikely to attach consequences tobehavior. This pre-treatment data suggested there was some possibility of adifference in the results obtained by individual teachers. Teacher D seemedto be the teacher who was operating most closely to treatment conditionsbefore treatment began. She even commented that by this time of the year(May), her students knew that, “When I say something, I mean it.”The exact time in which the teachers were able to deliver the unframedand the framed instructions varied. However, they were all delivered betweenthe time span of May 4 and June 25, 1994.EXPERIMENT ONE: COMPLETION OF AN ACADEMIC TASKSTATISTICAL TEST OF HYPOTHESESThe within-subject multiple measurement design of the experiments inthis study has highly restrictive assumptions for ANOVA. Not only thestandard assumptions for ANOVA have to be met, but also the covariancesbetween all pairs of treatments have to be equal to meet the compoundsymmetry assumption (Glass & Hopkins, 1984). However, when a within87subject experiment is evaluated as a whole, false conclusions can be avoidedby examining the outcome of both a univariate ANOVA and a MANOVA.Because there were five treatments in each experiment, it was possible to useANOVA viewing each treatment as one variable measured over five times, orto use MANOVA, viewing each of the five treatments as separate variables.According to Wilkinson (1990), when both univariate and multivariateresults corresponding to the hypothesis converge to the same conclusion, theconclusion drawn about the effects is trustworthy. Both analyses ofExperiment One converged to the same conclusions. The test of thetreatment effect was F(4,372)=4.59, MSe=0.1 6, p.05 in univariate analysis,and Wilk’s Lambda=0.89, F(4,90)=2.91, p.05 in multivariate analysis.Consequently, there was no threat to interpretation of statistical results.Moreover, compound symmetry is required only in the evaluation of theexperiment as a whole, and the single degree of freedom contrasts thatunpacked the treatment effects are not affected.Although treatments were rotated, there was at least some possibility ofan order effect on the unframed instruction. However, analysis of varianceindicated no reliable order effect, F(4,98)=2.89, MSe=.33, p.07.88SEX EFFECTA question of interest was whether children’s reaction to the academicframed instructions varied by sex. There were no statistically reliabledifferences in average reaction of boys and girls under any of the framedinstructions in task completion. The descriptive statistics are reported in Table5.Table 5Means (M), Standard Deviations (SD), and t-test Results by Frame andSexBoys Girls t-testFrame n M SD n M SD t df pUI 51 1.62 .69 53 1.77 .51 -1.23 102 .22PG 50 1.90 .30 54 1.94 .23 -.85 102 .40P1 53 1.79 .50 56 1.82 .43 -.33 107 .75NG 51 1.84 .46 53 1.89 .32 -.56 102 .58NI 53 1.89 .38 55 1.89 .32 -.06 106 .95Note. Uneven n’s are due to student absences. t is based on pooled variance.UI=Unframed Instruction; PG=Positive Group; P1= Positive Individual; NG= Negative Group;NI=Negative IndMdual.An examination of Table 5 shows that the most similar responses byboys and girls were on the positive frame with the individual consequence (P1)and the negative frame with the individual consequence (NI). The most89variable reaction based on sex was under the unframed instruction (UI), butthis difference was not statistically reliable. Consequently, the concern thatsex may be a potential compounding factor in the evaluation of thehypotheses was ruled out.CONTRAST ANALYSES-TEST OF HYPOTHESESThe dependent variable means are reported and illustrated in Figure 1.UI PG P1 NG NIFraming ConditionFigure 1: Mean Task Completion under Framing Conditionst,4I: UI=Unframed Instruction; PG=Positive Group; PI=Positive Individual; NG=Negative Group;NI=Negative lndMdual.90The dependent variable means, that is the means for completion of anacademic task for each of the conditions, were found to be different. Aspredicted, all of the framed conditions had greater average compliance thandid the unframed condition. The positive frame with the group consequence(PG) and the negative frame with the individual consequence (NI) appear tobe have been the most effective frames.The contrast matrix for the hypotheses is shown in Table 6.Table 6Contrast Matrix for the HypothesesContrast UI PG P1 NG NIC1(H1): UIvsPG 1 -1C2(H2): UI vs P1 1 -1C3(H3): UIvsNG 1 -1C4(H4):UIvsNl 1 -1C5 (H5): P vs N 1 1 -1 -1C6 (H6): Gr vs.l 1 -1 1 -1C=Contrast. H=Hypothesis. UI= Unframed Instructions; PG=Positive GroujPI=PositiveIndividual; NG=Negative Group; NI=Negative Individual; P=Positive; N=Negative; Gr=Group;I=IndMdual.91As predicted, Ftests reported in Table 7 below revealed that allcontrasts between the unframed instruction and the framed instructions (Cl -C4) were statistically reliable.Table 7Contrast Analyses for Task CompletionContrast MSe F (1 ,93) p ES (r) IRCl (Hi): UI vs PG .48 9.85 .00* .31 30%C2 (H2): UI vs P1 .49 4.22 .04* .21 20%C3 (H3): UI vs NG .39 6.08 .02* .25 24%C4 (H4): UI vs NI .34 10.16 .00* .32 30%C5 (H5): P vs N .57 .02 .89 .01 2%C6 (H6): Gr vs I .48 .20 .66 .05 4%Note: C=Contrast. H=Hypothesis. UI=Unframed Instruction; PG=Positive Group; PI=PositiveIndividual; NG=Negative Individual; NI=Negative Individual; P=Positive; N=Negative; Gr=Group;I=Individual; ES=Effect Size; IR=lmprovement Rate. *p05There was no reliable difference between the effect of the positive andnegative frames (C5) and the effect of the individual and group consequences(C6). Effect sizes (ES) as well as improvement rates (IR) are included (cf.92Rosenthal, 1991). Contrast analyses one through four indicated increasedcompliance under framed instructions and supported the main thesis of thestudy. Improvement rates varying from 20% to 30% imply the practical utilityof framed over unframed instructions.TEACHER EXPECTATION: A RIVAL HYPOTHESISA rival explanation for the data could be that teacher expectationinfluenced judgments regarding observation of task completion. This rivalhypothesis was examined. The teacher ratings of academic competence onthe SSRS-TF for the children were correlated with overall actual taskcompletion to establish if teacher observations of task completion after thedelivery of framed instructions was influenced by the teacher’s knowledge oftheir students.The constructs rated by teachers on the SSRS-TF that correlatedpositively with compliance were cooperation, assertiveness, self-control, andacademic competence. The cooperation and self-control constructs correlatedmost highly with task completion under framed instructions. The correlationswere weak, indicating the observations of task completion were not influencedby teacher expectation. The constructs that correlated most negatively withcompliance were externalizing behaviors and hyperactivity. That is, those93students rated by teachers as having more externalizing and hyperactivebehaviors, tended to be less compliant under all frames. The internalizingbehavior ratings correlated negatively with all but the individual positive frame,with which they showed a small positive correlation. The unframed instructiontended to be most negatively related to the hyperactivity scale. Thecorrelations and the corresponding Bonferroni probabilities are reported inTable 8.Table 8Pearson Correlation between SSRS-TF Subscales and Task CompletionInstructional FrameSSRS-TF UI PG P1 NG NI(n=1 00) (n=1 00) (n=1 05) (n=1 00) (n=1 04)1-Cooperation .23 .20 •34* .29 .242-Assertiveness .18 .17 .14 .19 .153-Self-Control .23 .27 .22 .19 .134-Externalizing -.24 -.21 -.10 -.30 -.135-Internalizing -.23 -.07 .17 -.29 -.046-Hyperactivity-.30 -.15 -.21 -.26 -.117-Academic Competence .12 .18 .06 .27 .20N2t: n varies due to absences. Instructional Frames: UI=Unframed Instruction; PG= PositiveGroup; P1= Positive Individual; NG=Negative Group; Nl= Negative Individual. p.05 (after Bonferroniadjustment).94The Bonferroni probabilities indicated that academic competence, themost relevant construct, as rated on the SSRS-TF, did not covary reliably withthe task completion observed by the teachers following the academic frames.Evidently, the rival hypothesis that teachers’ observation may be biased wasunsupported, allowing meaningful interpretation of the outcome of the mainhypotheses tests.CLASS/TEACHER LEVEL ANALYSES:The contrast analyses are based on data over five different classroomsand five different teachers. The treatment may have been statistically reliableas a result of large sample size and the resulting statistical power. However,classrooms typically have much smaller class sizes. A major objective of thisstudy was to establish whether instructional framing was an ecologically validclassroom management technique. Therefore, although individual class sizeswould mean low power and therefore loss of statistical significance, effectsizes were calculated for each classroom to determine the practicalsignificance of the treatment. Figure 2 below represents the means for taskcompletion under the unframed instruction and under each of the framedinstructions for each Teacher. The graph illustrates that the unframedinstruction generally resulted in lower task completion than did the framed9521.81.61.41.2I0.80.60.40.20A B C D ETeacherFigure 2: Treatment Means by TeacherIit: UI=Unframed Instruction; PG=Positive Group; PI=Positive Individual; NG=Negative Group;NI=Negative Individual.Effect sizes and improvement rates for each of the contrasts predictinga directional difference, that is, Hypotheses 1 through 4 (the contrastsbetween the unframed and the framed instructions), are presented for eachTeacher in Table 9 below. When the effect is of practical value and the nullhypothesis is not rejected because of low power (small sample size), it is ainstructions.ci UID PGDPID NG• NI96serious type II error (Glass & Hopkins, 1984). Type II error has been avoidedby looking at the effect size for each of the contrasts at the classroom levelinstead of at statistical significance.Table 9Effect Sizes and Improvement Rates for Contrasts 1-4Teacher A Teacher B Teacher C Teacher D Teacher En=22 n=20 n=18 n=22 n=12Contrast ES IR ES IR ES IR ES ES InUI .36 40% .07 8% .24 24% .27 30% .63 60%C2(H2):.35 40% .25 24% .11 12% .25 24% .14 16%C3(H3)..13 12% 0 0% .24 24% .21 20% .73 70%C4(H4): 35 40% .39 40% .24 24% .18 20% .58 60%NQt: UI=Unframed Instruction; PG=Positive Group; PI=Positive Individual; NG=Negative Group;NI=Negative Individual.It is important to note that improvement rates in task completion undertreatment conditions are for the most part, large enough to make a realdifference in individual classrooms. In Teacher E’s class, the negative groupframe was extremely effective indicating a 70% improvement rate incompliance. It should also be noted that the children in Teacher E’s97classroom generally appeared to have been most influenced by framing.Indeed, despite the small sample size per classroom, contrasts 1, 3 and 4, inTeacher’s E classroom remained statistically significant, indicating a robustframing effect.Of note is that Teacher E had the largest number of absences andtherefore the fewest number of observations. Although there were 24 childrenin her class, she recorded only 12 observations. In comparison, Teacher Arecorded 22 observations, Teacher B recorded 20, Teacher C recorded 18,and Teacher D recorded 22.Two of the contrasts in Teacher B’s class had effect sizes of lowpractical significance. The contrast between the unframed instruction and thepositive group frame indicated an 8% percent improvement rate and thecontrast between the unframed instruction and the negative group frameindicated no improvement under framed conditions.EXPERIMENT TWO: COMPLIANCE WITH A BEHAVIORAL INSTRUCTIONAnalysis of results of Experiment Two, in addition to that described forExperiment One, includes analyses of covariation of compliance with thecooperation construct of the SSRS-TF. In Experiment Two, the cooperationconstruct of the SSRS-TF correlated significantly with actual compliance so it98was necessary to adjust for teacher expectation effect for meaningfulinterpretation of the treatment effects. This was done by analyses ofcovariance with cooperation as a covariate.As in Experiment One, both univariate and multivariate analyses weredone to ensure the standard assumptions for ANOVA were met as well as thecompound symmetry assumption. Both univanate and multivariate analysis inExperiment Two converged to the same conclusion. The overall test of thetreatment effect was F(4,386)=7.21, MSe=.40, p.05 in univariate analysis,and Wilk’s Lambda=.80, F(4,96)=6.O1, p.05 in multivariate analysis.It was felt that there was at least some possibility of an order effect onthe unframed instruction. However, analysis of variance indicated no reliableorder effect, F(4,1 03)=1 .04, MSe=1 .62, p.1 7.CONTRAST ANALYSIS-TEST OF HYPOTHESESThe hypotheses predicted a statistically reliable difference between thebehavioral unframed instruction and the framed instructions. The hypothesespredicted no difference between the positive and negative and the group andindividual frames. The contrast matrix for these hypotheses is shown in Table10.99Table 10Contrast Matrix for the HypothesesContrast UI PG P1 NG NICl (Hi): UI vs PG 1 -iC2(H2): UlvsPI 1 -1C3(H3): UIvsNG 1 -1C4 (H4): UI vs NI 1-1C5(H5): PvsN 1 1 -1 -1C6(H6): Grvsl 1 -1 1 -iNote. C=Contrast. H=Hypothesis. UI=Unframed Instruction; PG=Positive Group; PI=PositiveIndMdual; NG=Negative Group; NI= Negative Individual. P=Positive; N=Negative; Gr=Group;I=IndMdual.Contrast analyses indicated an increased rate of compliance under theframed conditions and supported the main thesis of the study. The positiveframe with the group consequence (PG), the negative frame with the groupconsequence (NG), the negative frame with the individual consequence (NI)and the positive frame with the individual consequence (P1) all resulted in areliable increase in degree of compliance from the degree of complianceunder the unframed instruction. Positive or negative orientation of the framedid not reliably affect compliance. Similarly, the use of group versus individual100contingencies for consequences did not reliably affect compliance. Theresults are reported in Table 11.Table 11Contrast Analyses for Behavioral ComplianceContrast MSe F(3, 99) p ES(r) IRCl (Hi): Ulvs PG .98 9.39 .00 .29 30%C2 (H2): UI vs P1 .99 4.06 .01 .20 20%C3 (H3): UI vs NG .85 5.02 .00 .22 20%C4 (H4): UI vs NI .90 7.96 .00 .27 30%C5 (H5): P vs N 1.46 1.89 .14 .14 14%C6 (H6): Gr vs I 1.04 .54 .66 .07 7%NQi. C=Contrast. H=Hypothesis. UI=Unframed Instruction; PG=Positive Group; PI=PositiveIndividual; NG= Negative Group; NI=Negative lndMdual. P=PosiLive; N=Negative; Gr=Group;I=IndMdual.Contrast analyses one through four indicated greater behavioralcompliance as a result of framed instructions and supported the main thesis ofthe study. Improvement rates ranging from 20% to 30% imply the practicalutility of framed over unframed instructions.101SEX EFFECTA question of interest was whether the response to the behavioralframes differed by sex. Sex appears to have had an effect on complianceunder the unframed instruction (UI) and the positive frame with an individualconsequence (P1). The results are reported in Table 12.Table 12Means (M), Standard Deviations (SD), and t-test Results by Frame andSexBoys Girls t-testFrame n M SD n M SD t df pUI 53 2.11 1.17 55 2.66 .80 -2.82 106 .01*PG 53 2.64 .71 56 2.73 .56 -.75 107 .46P1 53 2.47 .99 56 2.80 .55 -2.17 107 .03*NG 52 2.62 .77 55 2.70 .54 -.59 105 .56NI 53 2.62 .79 56 2.77 .54 -1.13 107 .26Npj. Uneven ns are due to absences. t is based on pooled variance. UI= Unframed Instruction;PG=Positive Group; PI=Positive Individual; NG=Negative Group; Nl=Negative Individual. *po5102Univariate F-tests were conducted to determine effects of theindependent variable of sex. These results are reporLed in Table 13. Withinsubjects, the treatment by sex interaction was not reliable. Therefore, differenttreatments did not vary reliably by sex. However, within subjects analyses didindicate a reliable treatment effect.Table 13Univariate ANOVA Resultsdf MSe F pBetween SubjectsSex 1 1.24 5.27 .02*Within SubjectsTreatment 4 1.68 4.13 .00*Treatment X Sex 4 .41 2.22 .07Note. Greenhouse-Geiser Epsilon=.81; Huynh-Feldt Epsilon=.84. p.05.Treatment means for Experiment Two are graphed in Figure 3. Thetreatment means are shown for each sex. Treatment means indicate the girlstended to have a higher rate of compliance than the boys, under all but theunframed instruction.10332.52D Boys1.5•GirlsI0.50Framing ConditionFigure 3: Mean Compliance under Framing Condition by SexNote: UI=Unframed Instruction; PG=Positive Group; PI=Positive IndMdual; NG=Negative Group;NI=Negative IndMdual.TEACHER EXPECTATION: A RIVAL HYPOTHESISThe Pearson product-moment correlation matrix in Table 14 showssome moderate correlations between the constructs of the SSRS-TF as ratedby the teachers, and actual compliance. As in Experiment One, cooperation,assertiveness, self-control and academic competence correlate positively withcompliance. Externalizing, hyperactivity and internalizing constructs allcorrelated negatively with compliance. Internalizing correlated negatively withall but the positive individual frame. Table 14 is presented below.104Table 14Pearson Correlations between SSRS-TF Subscales and BehavioralInstructional FrameSSRS-TF UI PG P1 NG NI(n=i 04) (n-i 05) (n=i 03) (n=i 03) (n=i 05)i-Cooperation .61* .25 .40* .61* 49*2-Assertiveness .35 .16 .24 .39 .243-Self-Control .63 .22 .30 .46 .424-Externalizing .42* -.18 -.31 -.24 -.215-Internalizing -.03 -.14 .02 -.09 -.026-Hyperactivity - .42* -.33 - .29 - .42* - •377-Academic Competence .36 .21 .30 .39 .27Note: n varies due to absences. UI= Unframed Instruction; PG=Positive Group; PI=PositiveIndividual; NG=Negative Group; Nl=Negative Individual. *p05 (after Bonferroni adjustment).CooPERATIoN AS A COVARIATECorrelation coefficients established that compliance under the framedconditions covaried with cooperation ratings by the teachers. The Bonferroniprobabilities indicate that the teachers’ rating of the cooperation construct (1),the most relevant construct, covaried reliably with compliance, with levels ofCompliance105statistical significance at p.01 for all but the positive frame with groupconsequence (PG). This meant teachers’ observation of compliance with theirbehavioral request was likely influenced by their expectation. As a result,cooperation was included in the analyses as a covariate to adjust for teacherexpectation effect. The results are presented below in Table 15.Table 15Contrast Analyses Adjusted for CooperationContrast MSe F(2,1 04) p ES(r) IRCl (Hi): UI vs PG 1.09 5.72 .00* .23 24%C2 (H2): UI vs P1 1.00 3.06 .05* .17 16%C3 (H3): UI vs NG .83 6.82 .00* .25 24%C4 (H4): UI vs NI .43 7.93 .00* .27 30%C5 (H5): P vs N 1.46 .76 .47 .09 8%C6 (H6): Gr vs I 1.00 .68 .51 .08 8%C=Contrast. H=Hypothesis. UI=Unframed Instruction; PG=Positive Group; PI=PositiveIndividual; NG= Negative Group; NI=Negative Individual. P=Positive; N=Negative; Gr=Group.The adjusted means for each of the treatments with cooperation as thecovariate are presented in Figure 4.106BoysGirlsN: UI=Unframed Instruction; PG=Positive Group; PI=Positive IndMdual; NG=Negative Group;NI=Negative IndMdual.2.802.602.402.202.001.801.60•j1.401.201.000.800.600.400.200.00Framing ConditionFigure 4: Adjusted Means under Framing Condition by Sex withCooperation as a CovariateThe graph of the means indicates that the least effective frame for bothof the sexes was the unframed instruction (UI). The most effective frames forthe boys were the negative frame with the group consequence (NG), thepositive frame with the group consequence (PG), and the negative frame withthe individual consequence (NI). The most effective frames for the girls werethe positive frame with the individual consequence (P1), and the positive framewith the group consequence (PG). Without adjustment of the means for107cooperation as a covariate, the girls tended to have higher scores on thedependent variable, compliance, than when the means were adjusted forcooperation as a covariate. On the other hand, without adjustment of themeans for cooperation as a covariate, the boys tended to have generally lowerscores on the dependent variable, compliance, than when the means wereadjusted with cooperation as a covariate. This finding seems to suggest thatthe boys in this experiment were perceived by the teachers as beingsomewhat less cooperative than the girls.CLASS)TEACHER LEVEL ANALYSES:As in Experiment One, the treatment in Experiment Two may have beenstatistically reliable as a result of large sample size and the resulting statisticalpower. Therefore, although individual class sizes would mean low power andtherefore loss of statistical significance, effect sizes were examined for eachclassroom to determine the practical significance of the treatment. Figure 5below represents the means for behavioral compliance under the unframedinstruction and under each of the framed instructions for each Teacher. Thegraph illustrates that the framed instructions generally resulted in a greaterdegree of behavioral compliance under the treatment conditions than did theunframed instruction.10832.82.62.42.221.8 DUI• PG1.6DPI1.4 UNGD NI1.2I0.80.60.40.20Figure 5: Treatment Means by TeacherNt: UI=Unframed Instruction; PG=Positive Group; PI=Positive Individual; NG=-Negative Group;NI=Negative Individual.The effect sizes and improvement rates for each of the reliablecontrasts specified in Hypotheses 1 through 4 (contrasts between unframedand framed instructions) are presented for each Teacher in Table 16 below.When the effect is of practical value and the null hypothesis is not rejectedbecause of low power (small sample size), it is a serious type II error. Type IITeacher109error has been avoided by looking at the effect size for each of the contrasts.It is important to note that improvement rates in behavioral complianceunder treatment conditions are for the most part, large enough to make a realdifference in individual classrooms. Of particular interest is that the negativeframes had improvement rates consistently over 20%, while the improvementrate of the positive frames was considerably more variable. The positiveframe with the individual consequence seemed to be the least effective frame.Despite the small sample size per class, a number of the contrasts werestatistically significant indicating a robust framing effect. As in ExperimentOne, the children in Teacher E’s classroom appear to have been mostinfluenced by the framed instructions. However, more observations wererecorded by Teacher E in Experiment Two than in Experiment One. InExperiment Two, there were 22 observations in Teacher A’s class, 21 inTeacher B’s class, 20 in Teacher C’s class, 22 in Teacher D’s class and 21 inTeacher E’s.The effect sizes for the contrasts between the unframed instruction andthe positive group frame indicated the positive group frame was not effectivein Teacher D’s classroom; the contrast between the unframed instruction andthe positive individual frame indicated the positive individual frame was noteffective in Teacher A’s classroom. Pre-treatment tape data indicated that110Teacher A did not generally use consequences and Teacher D sometimesused positive and negative consequences.Table 16Effect Sizes and Improvement Rates for Contrasts 1-4Teacher A Teacher B Teacher C Teacher D Teacher E(n=22) (n=21) (n=20) (n=22) (n=21)Contrast ES IR ES IR ES IR ES IR ES IRC1(H1):UI-PG .43 40% .48 50% .37 40% 0 0% .42 40%C2(H2):Ul-PI .06 6% .19 20% .13 12% .19 20% .52 50%C3(H3):Ul-NG .25 24% .47 50% .42 40% .28 30% .45 50%C4(H4):UI-NI .45 50% .47 50% .22 24% .28 30% .25 24%j: C=Contrast. H=Hypothesis. UI=Unframed Instruction; PG=Positive Group; PI=PositiveIndividual; NG=-Negative Group; N I=Negative Individual.POST-TREATMENT TEACHER DATAResults of the statistical analysis were supplemented by informalcomments from the teachers while the study took place and after the studywas completed. Teacher A noted a dramatic difference in her classroom bythe end of the school year. The children were generally very quiet, andprompted each other to conform to her expectations. She commented, “I don’t111want them to go on next year!”, meaning their behavior was so easy tomanage that she would like to teach them for another year. Teacher A’sfeeling that the children’s behavior improved over the duration of theexperiment was substantiated by the improvement rates calculated for herclassroom. In Experiment One, the improvement rates in her classroomranged from 12% to 40%, while in Experiment Two they ranged from 6% to50%. Teacher A continued to use the instructional frames after theexperiment was completed. She did think that the frames would be moreeffective at the beginning of the year when the school day did not have somany interruptions.Teacher B felt that he had a very well behaved class. He did not reallyfeel his students needed consequences to comply with his instructions.However, he felt that although his students were well-behaved and generallycomplied with his instructions, they found the positive frame very motivating.In Experiment One, the positive frame with the individual consequenceresulted in a 24% improvement rate in compliance, while the positive framewith the group consequence resulted in an 8% improvement rate. InExperiment Two, the positive frames indicated an improvement rate of 50%and 20%. Teacher B indicated the students did not like the frames with thenegative consequences, but they complied with them despite this feeling. In112fact, the students in Teacher B’s classroom did not respond to the negativeframe with the group consequence in Experiment One (improvement rate 0%),but they did respond to the negative frame with the individual consequencewith an improvement rate of 24%. In Experiment Two, Teacher B’s classroomshowed improvement rates of 50% and 20% under the positive frames, and50% under both of the negative frames. He felt that although his current classdid not need consequences to be specifically articulated by him when he wasgiving an instruction, the framed instructions were effective and he would usethe frame with positive consequences with a different class. Teacher B, likeTeacher A, felt that the frames would be most effective at the beginning of theyear.Teacher C felt that she had a very compliant class. She commented,“I’m so lucky this year.” She did not feel that she really needed any additionalmethods to control behavior. Teacher C agreed to participate in theexperiment as she felt she might benefit from what she learned in subsequentteaching years and she felt it was important to contribute to educationalresearch. She said that she did not like to give rewards for what sheconsidered expected behavior. She also said that she never put the childreninto groups with consequences contingent upon group behavior orachievement, which she felt was unfair. However, during the experiment,113Teacher C felt the children liked the positive frame and responded well to it.Improvement rates in both Experiment One and Two indicated the negativeframes were most effective at 24% in Experiment One and 40% and 24% inExperiment Two. The positive frames showed an improvement rate of 12%and 24% in Experiment One and 40% and 12% in Expenment Two. AlthoughTeacher C reported the children complied very well with the negative frame,Teacher C did not like the way they responded. She thought they feltpressured, became agitated with each other and as a result “were not verynice.” For example, one group member said to another, this done...”, inwhat Teacher C described as a “very forceful” manner. It is possible that thereaction to the negative frame may have had something to do with theconsequence Teacher C chose. The consequence involved losing physicaleducation time. Nevertheless, as Teacher C felt, the improvement rates forboth the negative frames were practically significant at 24%.Teacher C commented on the time factor in the instructional frame andfelt that the time limit was difficult for the children to understand. That is, shedid not think they understood in terms of actual time, what “ten minutes”meant. Teacher C did use time on the pre-experiment tape, but perhaps thelack of understanding of time was not relevant as she ultimately made thedecision regarding time spent:114Teacher C,“How many people need more time? How much time?”Student replies.Teacher C, “No, five minutes.”Teacher D commented that she and the children liked the positive framebest. She felt the children did not like the negative consequence. They feltdisappointed if they received a negative consequence and “would groan.11Teacher D’s conclusions were substantiated by the improvement rates forExperiment One which were 30% and 24% for the positive frames and 20%for each of the negative frames. However, in Experiment Two, theimprovement rates for the negative frames were 30% and 0% and 20% for thepositive frames, indicating the greatest improvement on one of the negativeframes. Unlike Teacher C, Teacher D liked the effect of the time limitcomponent of the frame. She felt that the students were more able to focuswhen they had a specific time limit. If she asked them to work for 20 minutes,she felt they were able to sustain attention on the appropriate task for those 20minutes better than if she had not included the time factor. Teacher D also feltthe students responded better when they were addressed by name. TeacherD did note however, that her “good” students wondered why she wasspecifically addressing them when giving instructions, when they consistently115did as they were required.Teacher D felt that participating in the experiment gave her usefulinformation regarding classroom management. She commented that thepositive individual frame would be an effective method to establish behavioralexpectations quickly at the beginning of the year. She felt it could be phasedout and reintroduced as needed. Teacher D continued with the program ofpositive consequences for expected behavior after the experiment wascompleted.Teacher E described her class as a challenge. She felt that as a groupher class lacked empathy for each other and had difficulty listening andcompleting work. In addition, there were significant personality conflictsbetween some of the students in Teacher E’s class. Overall, Teacher E likedthe positive frames best and felt they were most effective. She did not likeadministering the negative frames and felt the students in the class did not likethem, although she felt that they increased compliance. She did not ordinarilyuse group consequences and did not feel completely comfortable using groupconsequences. Teacher E felt that the negative frames were not as effectiveas the positive frames. This was not substantiated by the improvement ratesin Experiment One. The improvement rates for the negative frames were 60%and 70% and 60% and 16% for the positive frames. However, in Experiment116Two the improvement rates were 50% and 24% for the negative frames and50% and 40% for the positive frames. Teacher E felt the framing would havebeen more effective at the beginning of the year. She felt that by May thestudents already understood her expectations.SUMMARYPre-treatment audio-tapes of teachers in their classrooms indicated thepercentage of framed instructions delivered by teachers ranged from 9% to21 %, while the percentage of unframed instructions ranged from 79% to 96%.Four out of five of the teachers used negative consequences for inappropriatebehavior. Three out of five of the teachers used positive comments. Post-treatment teacher comments indicated that all teachers felt the framedinstructions were more effective than the unframed instructions.The statistical results for Experiment One also generally supporled themajor research hypothesis, namely, that two-attribute framed instructions canincrease children’s task completion in the classroom. Contrast analysisindicated the instructional frames had a reliable, positive effect on taskcompletion. Improvement rates indicated that task completion increased 20%to 30% from framed instructions when unframed instructions were used. Thehypotheses that the effect of positive and negative framing and group and117individual consequences would be equal was supported. The questionconcerning a difference in compliance as a function of sex was not supportedin Experiment One. Although the constructs from the SSRS-TF correlatedpositively and negatively with compliance as would be expected, none of theattributes from the SSRS-TF covaried significantly with compliance.Classroom level analysis indicated that generally, there was a practicallysignificant improvement rate in task completion under framed instructions.Improvement rates in 15 out of 20 contrasts were over 20% and ranged ashigh as 70%. Teacher E, who had a particularly difficult class, experiencedsignificantly larger effect sizes under framed instructions than did the otherfour teachers.The statistical results for Experiment Two generally supported the majorresearch hypothesis, namely, that two-attribute framed instructions canincrease children’s behavioral compliance in the classroom. Contrast analysisindicated that instructional frames had a reliable, positive effect on behavioralcompliance. Overall, improvement rates indicated that behavioral complianceincreased 20% to 30% from unframed instructions when framed instructionswere used. Classroom level analysis indicated that generally, there was asignificant improvement rate in behavioral compliance under framedinstructions. Improvement rates in 17 out of 20 contrasts were over 20% and118ranged as high as 50%. Teacher E, as in Experiment One, experiencedsignificantly larger effect sizes under framed instructions than did the otherfour teachers. The hypotheses that the effect of positive and negative framingand group and individual consequences would not be reliably different weresupported. This is consistent with previous results. Although one of theconstructs from the SSRS-TF, cooperation, correlated positively withcompliance, adjusting for cooperation made no difference in the main findings.The treatment by sex interaction was found to be unreliable implying nooverall differential impact of the frames for boys and girls.Results of Experiment One and Two indicate that there was a reliableframing effect when instructional frames were used by teachers in theclassroom. The size of the effect (20%-30%) in both experiments is such thatthere would be a noticeable improvement in classroom management. Inaddition, at the classroom level, 32 out of the 40 contrasts indicatedimprovement rates in task completion and behavioral compliance ranging from20% to 70%, indicating a significant practical effect within individualclassrooms.Post-treatment data indicated that all the teachers felt the treatmentswere effective. Although they commented May of the school year was not anideal time to introduce a new classroom management technique, and119expressed preferences for cerLain frames over others, they all agreed theframes increased task completion and behavioral compliance.This study took place in regular classrooms with teachers acting asresearch assistants by observing behavior and collecting data. Statisticalresults indicate that instructional framing resulted in a significant increase intask completion and behavioral compliance. These results are consistent withteacher perceptions that the instructional frames were effective.120CHAPTER FIVEDISCUSSIONThe purpose of this study was to determine if the information framingeffect, documented in previous studies with adults, generalized to children inclassrooms and as a result could be used as a management tool. Wouldteacher “instructional framing” increase children’s task completion andbehavioral compliance with teacher instructions? I set out to establish therewould be a difference between children’s responses to instructions fromteachers given the way a teacher might ordinarily give instructions, referred toas unframed instructions, and children’s responses to framed instructions.The study was composed of two separate experiments. Experiment Onefocused on academic task completion and Experiment Two focused oncompliance with a behavioral request. Experiment Two was a replication ofExperiment One, with the exception of the dependent variable, and was donein order to establish reliability of the results.Chapter Four presented the data analyses of the results of ExperimentOne and Experiment Two. Chapter Five will examine these findings and theirrelationship to previous literature. In addition, the post hoc follow-up, thestrengths and weaknesses of the study, the implications of the study and121possible future research directions are discussed.FINDINGSResults indicated that the “framing effect” did generalize to children inthe classroom and supported the main hypotheses in both Experiment Oneand Two. In Experiment One, task completion under all four framedinstructions was found to be reliably greater than task completion under theunframed instruction. In Experiment Two, behavioral compliance under allfour framed instructions was found to be reliably greater than complianceunder the unframed instruction. Effect sizes for the framed instructions rangedfrom .21 to .32 in Experiment One and .20 to .29 in Experiment Two. Thisreflects an improvement rate in both task completion and behavioralcompliance ranging from approximately 20% to 30%. Effect sizes of thismagnitude could be expected to make a real difference in the classroom.These findings are consistent with the pattern of results based on Tversky andKahneman’s findings (1981) that people will tend toward a gain and avoid aloss.Analysis was also done at the class/teacher level to identify effect sizesand improvement rates in individual classrooms, Improvement rates in 32 outof 40 comparisons, over the two Experiments, were at least 20% and ranged122as high as 70%. Teacher E, who appeared to have the most difficult class tomanage, experienced the most dramatic improvement. The children inTeacher E’s classroom seemed to have great difficulty listening to directionsand completing assignments. The framed instructions may have imposed astructure for expectations that helped them to focus on the salient issue, i.e.,completing the task or complying with the behavioral expectation.In Experiment One, Teacher B’s class was the only one that had asmaller increase in appropriate behavior under both of the frames with groupconsequences than under those with individual consequence. Teacher B wasgenerally the least verbally directive teacher and most often had the childrenworking in groups. The children in this class may have been accustomed togroup reinforcement and may have responded to the novelty of the use ofindividual consequences as a result.Children in the classes of Teachers A, C, D and E did not appear toclearly respond more favorably to either the positive or negative orientation ofthe frames. However, Teachers C and D, who used more pre-treatmentframing than did the other teachers, had the least variability among theresponses to the frames. Their classrooms may have most closely resembledtreatment conditions and consequently, had the most even reaction to theframes from their classes. That is, the children were more familiar with the123framing “format,” regardless of the type of consequence. Nevertheless, it isnot possible to conclude from this study, that previous practice influenced theresponses of the children. The reasons why specific frames worked better insome classes than others would be an interesting area to pursue. What isclear in this study is that all framed instructions were more effective thanunframed instructions.Improvement rates for Experiment Two in individual classroomsappeared more dramatic, that is, generally larger, than for Experiment One.This may be because generally, teachers may be more exact in theirestimations of a student’s ability to comply with behavioral expectations thantheir ability to complete an assigned task. However, Teacher D experiencedno improvement under the positive group frame and Teacher A had a minimaleffect under the positive individual frame. On the pre-treatment tape,Teachers A, C, D and E seemed inclined to articulate negative consequencessubsequent to inappropriate behavior. Nevertheless, Teachers C and E hadat least as large an effect with the positive consequence as with the negativeconsequence. Teacher B, who did not generally use consequences on thepre-treatment tape, observed greater compliance under the negativeconsequences. As in Experiment One, on the basis of these results, it isdifficult to draw conclusions regarding the influence of previous practice on the124individual classes’ responses to framing.There was no reliable difference in task completion due to the use ofpositive or negative wording in the frames. Effect size for positive versusnegative orientation was .01 in Experiment One and .14 in Experiment Two.This was expected given the wording of the frames. That is, the positiveconsequence was articulated in connection to the preferred behavior and theprobability of achieving that consequence. In previous experiments, when thepositive consequence and the probability of achieving that consequence werearticulated, individuals have tended to the behavior resulting in thatconsequence. Similarly, when the negative consequence and the probabilityof achieving that consequence were articulated, individuals have tended toavoid the behavior resulting in that consequence (Tversky & Kahneman, 1981;Levin, 1988). The negatively framed instructions, although not significantlygreater in effect on compliance, did show a tendency to generate higheraverage compliance from the boys in Experiment Two. The mean compliancefor the girls did not reflect this tendency.There was no reliable difference between the use of individual or groupcontingencies for consequences in either Experiment One or Two. The effectsize for the group versus individual consequence in Experiment One was .05and .07 for Experiment Two. This result is consistent with previous studies125that have not indicated a consistent advantage using one type of contingencyfor consequence over the other. Reviews of the literature suggest that groupcontingencies are equivalent in performance to individual contingencies inboth academic and behavioral contexts (Hayes, 1976; Litow & Pumroy, 1975;McLaughlin,1974). Recommendations for using individual or groupcontingencies may have to be based on their acceptability and convenience(Witt & Elliott, 1985). It suggests teachers would be best to use the type ofconsequence they feel most comfortable with and which appears to be mostappropnate for the situation.No correlation between the constructs of the SSRS-TF and completionof an academic task were found in Experiment One, but a correlation betweenthe cooperation construct and behavioral compliance was found in ExperimentTwo. The correlations for Experiment One suggest that teacher bias was nota factor in the recording of student behavior. Although overall, the constructson the SSRS-TF were not found to correlate reliably with task completion,constructs on the SSRS-TF that might be associated with task completion(cooperation, self-control) correlated negatively with task completion.Constructs on the SSRS-TF that might not be associated with task completion(externalizing behaviors, hyperactivity) correlated negatively with taskcompletion. The internalizing behavior ratings correlated negatively with all126but the positive individual frame, with which it showed a small positivecorrelation. These weak but insignificant correlations provided concurrentvalidity for teachers’ observations. In Experiment Two, because cooperationcovaried with compliance, it was included in the analysis as a covariate.However, when the means were adjusted for cooperation, there was still asignificant framing effect. When the analysis was adjusted for cooperation,the girls’ average rate of compliance was slightly lower than the boys’ averagerate of compliance under the positive group (PG), the negative group (NG)and the negative individual (NI) frames. When the analysis was not adjustedfor cooperation, the girls average rate of compliance was greater than that ofthe boys’ under the unframed instruction and all of the framed instructions.This finding suggests girls may be viewed by teachers as more cooperativethan boys, but are not necessarily more responsive to framing. The analysesindicated there was no interaction between sex and treatment in ExperimentOne or Experiment Two.TEACHER’S PERSPECTIVESThe findings of the study were corroborated by the teachers’ commentsand feelings both during and after the experiments. Teacher commentsconverged with the statistical analyses by indicating they felt strongly that127instructional frames had an effect on children’s classroom compliance.Although teachers had been skeptical the frames would be effective in May ofthe school year, they commented that all of the frames seemed to result ingreater task completion or behavioral compliance. In addition, in post-hocobservation, four out of five of the teachers used framing in the Fall term of thefollowing school year. Evidently, “instructional framing” was practicallymeaningful.All of the teachers felt the time of the year the frames were administeredwas not ideal, and Teachers D and E commented specifically the childrenwere already responsive to their instructions and classroom rules. TeachersB and C felt they had parlicularly “good” classes and did not anticipateimproved task completion or behavioral compliance as a result of framing.Teacher comments regarding the less than ideal conditions for introducing anew management technique in May of the school year were based onlegitimate factors. Many of the classrooms had planned field trips or were outof their classrooms for lessons. Track and field practice interlered with thedaily schedule. In addition, most of the teachers felt class routines andteacher expectations were well established. The teachers who consideredtheir classes to be exceptionally “good” felt that compliance was not likely toincrease. In total, teachers’ concerns that the frames would not have a128noticeable effect certainly seemed realistic. Nevertheless, despite thesecomplications, framing did have a reliable effect. The result serves to illustrateits robustness and suggests that framing may well be more effective at thebeginning of the school year.All of the teachers commented that either they, the children, or both, didnot like the negative frames as much as they liked the positive frames. Theteachers’ comments that they did not like using negative consequences mayhave been, in pail, reflective of a belief in the superiority of positive versusnegative feedback in classrooms. Using negative consequences may be seenas a sometimes necessary, but undesirable route for eliciting desirableresponses. In addition, teachers felt the students did not like negativeconsequences and may have anticipated the resulting overall negative impacton the atmosphere in the classroom. However, all teachers agreed thatalthough the students did not like the negative consequences, they wereeffective in increasing task completion and behavioral compliance.Interestingly, the pre-treatment tapes indicate that although four out of fiveteachers used praise, four out of five used negative consequences but none ofthem used positive consequences. This may be a result of the negativeconsequences being viewed as “logical consequences,” or a lack ofawareness of the use of negative consequences (perhaps they were viewed129differently by the teachers), but does illustrate a gap in belief and practice.Teachers C and D commented on the use of time as a component ofthe frames. Teacher D felt it was helpful, while Teacher C felt it wasconfusing. Teacher D felt giving the children a specific time frame helpedthem to maintain concentration knowing it was for only a short length of time.Teacher C felt the children could not anticipate the length of time shementioned and, therefore, found it confusing. These differences areinteresting in that in both classes children were in a GradeThree/Four splitand, therefore, of about the same age. It is unclear why one group found theuse of time confusing, while another found it motivating.An unexpected finding of the study was the information provided byteachers regarding the use of individual student names when giving aninstruction. In addition to the impact of the framed instructions, Teachers Aand D noted the students responded positively to being addressedindividually, even when they used the unframed instruction. They felt thestudents responded more readily and were more likely to follow instructionswhen addressed by name. Education students are routinely told of theimportance of addressing individual students by name during the course oftheir training in Education. On the pre-treatment audio-tapes, teachers did notroutinely use individual student names when giving specific instructions.130However, when reminded of the practice, the teachers noted its value as amanagement tool. This is consistent with research indicating teachers benefitfrom training in management techniques even when the techniques are knownto them (Evertson, 1989).Teacher A initially found it very difficult to deliver the unframed andframed instructions. She felt her class was a challenge and when she startedusing the frames she said the students were “noisier than ever.” However, bythe second week, she felt the frames were beginning to have an effect. Shealso felt that the unframed instruction was beginning to have the same effectas the framed instructions. Nevertheless, statistical analyses did not reveal areliable order effect.By the third week, Teacher A noticed that the children within the groupswere reminding each other to stay on task. She reported that even though thechildren did not like the frames with the negative consequences, theyresponded to them. She felt the positive frame with the individualconsequence had a very noticeable effect (which the statistical analysissubstantiated). After directing the positive, individual frame in Experiment Oneto one of her students, this student commented,“Mrs. A, that was the best reading period I have ever had.Can you do that for me again?”131Teacher A reported this comment to me as confirmation of the effectiveness ofinstructional framing.FOLLOW-UP INTERVIEWAlthough not planned, I checked with the teachers who participated inthe study to see if they used framing in the Fall of the following school year(1994). Four out of five of the teachers continued to use framing. Teacher Bcommented that he had forgotten about the frames and felt he might use themnow that he had been reminded of them. One of the teachers was using aninstructional frame with positive consequences; three of the teachers wereusing instructional frames with both positive and negative consequences.Teacher A commented that she did not have to use her rather time-consumingsystem of points and charting that she usually finds is necessary at thebeginning of the school year. Although she did not know if this was a directresult of the framing, she felt it was a possibility. The continued use ofinstructional framing by the teachers in the study seems to confirminstructional framing qualifies as a classroom management technique that isnot only effective, but is likely to be implemented. It is easy to use in that itdoes not require a lot of time or resources to be successful, it does not have tobe punitive and it is perceived as effective (see Rosen et al., 1990).132RELATIONSHIP OF FINDINGS TO PREVIOUS LITERATUREThe impetus for this study was the need for preventative classroommanagement strategies in the classroom. Teachers consider classroommanagement one of the most difficult aspects of teaching (Merrett & Wheldall,989), and would much rather prevent problems than be forced to deal withthe problems once they occur. In addition, Kounin’s (1970) observations ofeffective classrooms indicated they differed from ineffective classrooms, not indisciplinary methods as he expected, but in the degree to which misbehaviorwas prevented. The findings of the present study indicate that teachers maybe able to use framed instructions in their classrooms as a preventative,proactive behavior management strategy. The results indicate that framingincreases task completion and behavioral compliance (thereby decreasingnon-compliance) with teacher instructions, consequently reducing behaviorproblems and increasing time on task. The findings are consistent withstudies indicating that teacher training in teaching techniques results inimproved classroom management (Evertson, 1985).Social cognitive theory purporls that behavior can be changed bychanging the cues that prompt the behavior (Dodge & Crick, 1990). Bandura’stheory of social cognitive learning suggests individuals “mentally represent133their environment and themselves in terms of certain crucial classes ofcognitions that include response-outcome expectancies, perceptions of self-efficacy, and standards for self evaluation” (cf. Grusec, 1992, p. 781; Bandura,1986). The results of the present study lend support to this theory. Whenteachers gave specific cues in the form of instructional frames, they articulatedresponse-outcome expectancies. Instructional framing helped ensure thechildren more often chose the appropriate behavior than if instructions weregiven in a neutral way, increasing perceptions of self-efficacy. By choosingthe appropriate behavior and receiving a valued consequence, children weregiven a concrete means by which to self-evaluate their behavior.Descriptive decision theory has demonstrated that individuals usesimplifying heuristics to solve complex problems (Kahneman, 1972). Becausechildren may not have the ability to simplify problems through the use ofheuristics, rather than attempt to make decisions for complex problems, theysometimes avoid making decisions (Chao et al., 1986). Part of the goal in theconstruction of the frames used in the present study was to simplify thedecision problem so that the children involved would not have to avoid thedecision. That is, the desirable or undesirable choice and its consequencewas stated clearly by the teacher. As a result, there was very little chance thatthe children were distracted by a range of possible options, eliminating the134need for simplification of the information presented and encouragingappropriate action by the children. Simplification was possible by assumingthat the steps children go through when making a decision are similar to thesteps adults go through (Furby & Beyth-Maron, 1992). The instructionalframes included an option, the consequences attached to that option, andestablished desirability and likelihood of the consequences through framing.This construction may have been of particular help to those children inTeacher E’s classroom who had difficulty listening and choosing theappropriate course of action.The research reviewed on children’s decision-making indicated that it isimportant to match children’s processing abilities and the demands of the task(Chao et al., 1986). As children develop, they are thought to be increasinglyable to use the representativeness heuristic and baserate information (Jacobs& Potenza, 1991). However, whether the children in this study had developedthe ability to use these strategies is unknown. Chao et al. (1986) found that ifyoung children have sufficient difficulty with the information processingrequirements of a task, they may avoid complex social decisions. Byproviding explicitly stated consequences attached to specific behavior,framing may have simplified the complexity of the decision. In addition,children are inclined to make more thoughtful decisions when the situation is135real versus hypothetical, and when the decision is seen as irreversible(Davidson, 1991). For these reasons, the fact that the study took place in theclassroom increases the validity of the results, making them more meaningful.Results indicating that task completion and behavioral compliance inchildren increased reliably in both the behavioral and academic experiments,adds to the robustness of the instructional framing effect and its usability.Framing research indicates that individuals respond to risk in predictable ways(Tversky & Kahneman, 1981). Individuals have been found to tend toward thegain if a problem is stated positively and tend to avoid the loss if a problem isstated negatively. People’s tendency to avoid loss is greater than theirtendency to achieve gain. In addition, when probabilities of gain or loss areincluded within information presented, individuals will tend toward the riskwhen the probability of gain is included, and avoid the risk when the probabilityof loss is included. When the probability of loss is omitted, individuals tendtoward risk (Levin, 1986). In the present study, the probability of the loss wasincluded, so that children would be unlikely to risk the loss by avoiding thenon-compliant behavior. This proved to be correct. Conversely, if theprobability of the gain was included, children would tend toward the gain, andchoose the appropriate behavior. Again, this was found to be the case. Theframes were contrived in such a way as to cause the children to tend toward136the appropriate behavior whether the frame was positive or negative.Conclusions of the research on individual and group consequences hasbeen mixed. As a result, it was felt there may not be a difference between theframed instructions with individual or group contingencies. A test of thishypothesis resulted in confirmation of previous findings. That is, no reliabledifference between the rate of compliance with group or individualcontingencies for consequences was found (Hayes, 1976; Litow & Pumroy,1975; McLaughlin, 1974).Compliance has been thought of as a sex-typed behavior (Brophy &Good, 1974). In addition, Fagley and Miller (1990) found women were moreaffected by framing than men. In this study there was no difference incompliance between boys and girls in either Experiment One or Two.However, there is some evidence suggesting that greater compliance to adultsby girls than boys depends to some extent on the specific situation (Carpenter,1983).An imporLant factor when discussing classroom managementtechniques is teacher use of the technique. Teachers in this study continuedto use framing in the Fall of the next school year, demonstrating that teacherscan and will use framing to enhance their personal effectiveness as managers.This is consistent with Rosen et al. (1990) who found effectiveness, time137efficiency and the non-punitive nature of classroom management strategiesmade them attractive to teachers.STRENGTHS AND WEAKNESSES OF THE STUDYOne of the strengths of this study was that it took place in the classroomwith teachers as research assistants. Teachers were able to communicatetheir opinions regarding the use of instructional frames based upon theirexperience. Because some teachers are uncomfortable with outsideresearchers (Cooper, 1994) and because teachers control what happens inthe classroom and, therefore, the research that is applied in the classroom(Stenhouse, 1975), results of this study have ecological validity. The majorconclusion reached in the study, that is, that instructional frames are effectivein the classroom, has been verified by both the statistical analyses and theteachers’ comments. Not only does this indicate that instructional framing islikely to be effective, but it makes it more likely that teachers will use it.Results of this study give specific direction, based on framing theory, forthe wording of teacher instructions in the classroom. The instructional frameswere used across subject areas, at different times of the day. They wereeffective in increasing academic task completion and increasing behavioralcompliance. As a result, it may be said that the frames seem to be effective138across a broad range of classroom activity. The analyses also examined theimprovement rate at the class/teacher level. It was possible to see thepercentage increase in task completion and behavioral compliance for each ofthe frames in each of the classrooms.Although the present study gained ecological validity by using teachersand classes in vivo, this presented some methodological issues. Teacherswere viewed as research assistants and it was assumed their observationsregarding task completion and behavioral compliance were accurate.Therefore, no verification of teacher observations was done. In other words,verification of teacher observations was sacrificed for the enhancement ofecological validity. However, it is entirely possible teachers would have feltuncomfortable with an outside observer in their classroom checking theirratings (Cooper, 1994). Studies of observer effects on observees indicate thatadult behavior changes as a result of observer presence, and older subjectsare more affected by observation than younger ones (cf. Foster & Cone,1980). Because teacher observations of task completion and behavioralcompliance were viewed as the only really meaningful observation, interobserver verification would have been of limited value in this study. Inaddition, inter-observer verification may have distracted the teachers fromhonestly reporting their observations (Foster & Cone, 1980). That is, they may139have been so concerned that their observations matched those of the outsideobserver that their ratings would have been affected. The accuracy of teacherobservations may have been an issue if results had not turned out asanticipated.The limited number of frames administered to each student may be aweakness of the study. Given the lateness of the school year (May, 1994), itwas not possible for each teacher to administer additional frames withinexisting time constraints. It would have been possible to administer additionalframes given more time.The time of year in which the instructional frames were administeredwas seen by the teachers as a weakness. They felt the effect of the frameswas not as powerful as it would have been at the beginning of the year. Thestudents in their classrooms were already familiar with their routines and theirmethods of classroom management. However, the fact that the instructionalframes had a reliable effect on classroom compliance despite the time of yearthey were administered, serves to emphasize the effectiveness of“instructional framing” as a classroom management strategy.IMPLICATIONS FOR THEORYThe findings of this study suggest that two-attribute instructional framing140effects as demonstrated with adults in various contexts, can also bedemonstrated with children. Information framing theory (Kahneman &Tversky, 1981) has, therefore, been extended into an educational context. Ithas been found to be effective in situations other than those involvinggambling. It may be further explored for use as a classroom managementtechnique. In addition, the findings suggest that changing differentcomponents of a frame may have other not yet studied effects. For example,as noted earlier, Teachers C and D thought using time in the frame had aneffect. However, each teacher thought it had a different effect. Teacher Cthought its use was confusing to the children. On the other hand, Teacher Dthought knowing there was a limited amount of time when a particularbehavior was expected helped the children to focus. It would be interesting toinvestigate the effect of the use of time limits in a frame, where appropriate,and the factors involved that contribute to its effectiveness.The constructs rated by teachers on the SSRS-TF did not covarysignificantly with the instructional frames in this study. Nevertheless, therewas some indication that individual personal constructs may be related toresponse to specific components of instructional frames. For example,internalizing behavior as rated on the SSRS-TF correlated negatively with allof the frames, with the exception of the positive frame with the individual141consequence.There was also some evidence in this study to suggest that framingchanged the dynamics in the classroom. In one of the classrooms (TeacherA), the instructional framing seemed to shift the responsibility for the children’sbehavior from the teacher to the children. This observation leads to thequestion: Does the use of instructional framing by a teacher serve as animpetus for fundamental change in how a classroom is managed?There was no significant interaction between sex and compliance ineither of the Experiments. This is in contrast to previous findings (Fagley &Miller, 1980), but consistent with findings that compliance is influenced bysituation (Carpenter, 1983). The findings may be related to the difference inthe effect of framing as a function of the specific task involved. In addition, thedevelopmental level of the children in the study may have influenced theirresponse to framing. Selman (1976, 1980) found that children acquire roletaking gradually, progressing in sequence through developmental levels.They begin to think of themselves not only in terms of age and physicalcharacteristics, but also begin to compare themselves with their peers andothers. The children in this study may not have yet passed into this stage and,therefore, may not have been as likely to have responded in a predictableway. Further research might examine possible sex differences in responses142to framing at different developmental stages.PRACTICAL IMPLICATIONSThe major practical implication of this study is that it provides teacherswith an effective behavior management technique that is easy to administer, ispositively viewed, and is effective, the three components seen asrequirements before teachers will use a new technique (Rosen et al., 1990).In addition, it demonstrates that proactive behavior management techniquescan easily be implemented in a typical classroom. In this study, instructionalframing increased the academic task completion and behavioral compliance ofchildren in Grades Three and Four. That these teachers used framing in theFall of the next school year with Grades Four and Five students is someevidence that instructional framing can also possibly be used successfully withthis age group.FURTHER RESEARCHThere were some differences in the effectiveness of the frames acrossthe individual classrooms, with Teacher E having significantly different resultsfrom the other four teachers. The improvement rates in Teacher E’sclassroom ranged from 16% to 70% in Experiment One and 24% to 50% in143Experiment Two. Teacher E also appeared to have the most difficult class tomanage. This may suggest that instructional framing is most effective withthose students who have the most difficulty following the teacher instructions.It is not possible on the basis of the results of this study to speculate regardingthe role of individual differences in the children’s reactions to the instructionalframes. Nevertheless, although the constructs rated by teachers on theSSRS-TF did not covary reliably with the instructional frames, further researchmay be able to establish which constructs predispose a child to respond tospecific framing components. For example, internalizing behavior as rated onthe SSRS-TF correlated negatively with all of the frames, with the exception ofthe positive frame with the individual consequence. Although not largeenough to be statistically reliable, this relationship seems consistent with thelogic that a student displaying internalizing behaviors would be most likely torespond to positive feedback with individual consequences. In addition, therelationship between children identified as gifted, and children identified asattention deficit, and their responsiveness to framed instructions could beinvestigated.It would be interesting to investigate the effect of the use of time limits ina frame and the factors involved that would make it more effective. Furtherresearch could be done regarding the effect of different components of the144frame such as time and particular consequences. For example, do studentswho understand the meaning of uten minutesu respond to a frame includingthat element of time, more than students who do not know the meaning of “tenminutes?”Sex differences in response to framing might also be investigatedfurther. The findings in this study are in contrast to previous findings withadults indicating women were more susceptible to framing than were men(Fagley & Miller, 1980). The possibility of a developmental shift insusceptibility to the framing effect as children become older could beinvestigated.Lastly, it would be interesting to investigate the effect of instructionalframing on the dynamics of the classroom. Specifically, in one of theclassrooms, instructional framing appeared to shift the monitoring of studentbehavior from the Teacher to the student.CoNcLusioNThe purpose of this study was to find a proactive managementtechnique derived from descriptive behavioral decision theory, specifically,information framing (Kahneman & Tversky, 1981). Teachers were integrallyinvolved and the study took place in actual classrooms. The findings were as145predicted a priori and corroborated with teacher’s feelings. The result is thata technique that may be useful as a classroom management technique hasbeen demonstrated. The improvement rates in completion of academic tasksand compliance with behavioral requests were large enough at the individualclassroom level to recommend “instructional framing” as a technique thatmight be furLher explored in classroom management.146REFERENCESBandura, A., & Walters, R.H. (1963). Social learning and personalitydevelopment. 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Indicate whether the request was made by checking the ‘yes’ or ‘no’column under ‘Request Made”. Indicate the response by checking‘compliance’ or ‘non-compliance’ under the ‘Response Made” column.Treatment Condition #1: Instructional Frame:), please complete these questions.”Student Request Made Response Made CommentsYes No Compliance Partial NonCompliance compliance(number completedout ot numberassigned)1.2.3.4.5.6.7.158OBSERVATION RECORD FORM DATE____Experiment #1: Completion of an Academic TaskInstructions:Pose the following instructional frame to the students in your class listedbelow. Indicate whether the request was made by checking the ‘yes’ or ‘no’column under ‘Request Made”. Indicate the response by checking‘compliance’ or ‘non-compliance’ under the ‘Response Made” column.Treatment Condition #2: Instructional Frame:), if you complete these (5) questions within the next (10minutes) there is a 100% chance that your group will earn a ( ).Student Request Made Response Made CommentsYes No Compliance Partial NonCompliance compliance(number completedout of numberassigned)1.2.3.4.5.6.7.159OBSERVATION RECORD FORM DATE____Experiment #1: Completion of an Academic TaskInstructions:Pose the following instructional frame to the students in your class listedbelow. Indicate whether the request was made by checking the ‘yes’ or ‘no’column under ‘Request Made”. Indicate the response by checking‘compliance’ or ‘non-compliance’ under the ‘Response Made” column.Treatment Condition #3: Instructional Frame:“( ), if you complete these (5) questions within the next (10minutes) there is a 100% chance that you will earn a ( ).Student Request Made Response Made CommentsYes No Compliance Partial NonCompliance compliance(number completedout of numberassigned)1.2.3.4.5.6.7.160OBSERVATION RECORD FORM DATE____Experiment #1: Completion of an Academic TaskInstructions:Over the next week pose the following instructional frame to the students inyour class listed below. Indicate whether the request was made bychecking the ‘yes’ or ‘no’ column under ‘Request Made”. Indicate theresponse by checking ‘compliance’ or ‘non-compliance’ under the‘Response Made” column.Treatment Condition #4: Instructional Frame:), if you do not complete these (5) questions within the next(10 minutes) there is a 100% chance that your group will lose a ( ).Student Request Made Response Made CommentsYes No Compliance Partial NonCompliance compliance(number completedout of numberassigned)1.2.3.4.5.6.7.161OBSERVATION RECORD FORM DATE____Experiment #1: Completion of an Academic TaskInstructions:Pose the following instructional frame to the students in your class listedbelow. Indicate whether the request was made by checking the ‘yes’ or ‘no’column under ‘Request Made”. Indicate the response by checking‘compliance’ or ‘non-compliance’ under the ‘Response Made” column.Treatment Condition #5: Instructional Frame:), if you do not complete these (5) questions within the next(10 minutes) there is a 100% chance that you will lose a ( ).Student Request Made Response Made CommentsYes No Compliance Partial NonCompliance compliance(number completedout of numberassigned)1.2.3.4.5.6.7.162OBSERVATION RECORD FORM DATE:___________Experiment #2: Behavioral ComplianceInstructionsPose the following instructional frame to the students in your class listedbelow. Indicate whether the request was made by checking the ‘yes’ or ‘no’column under ‘Request Made”. Indicate the response by checking‘compliance’ or ‘non-compliance’ under the ‘Response Made” column.Treatment Condition #1: Instructional Frame:), please sit quietly.”Student Request Made Response MadeYes No Compliance: Duration: Non-1). 5 minutes or under compliance2). 10 minutes or under3). 10 minutes to length of activity1.2.3.4.5.6.7.163OBSERVATION RECORD FORM DATE:____Experiment #2: Behavioral ComplianceInstructionsPose the following instructional frame to the students in your class listedbelow. Indicate whether the request was made by checking the ‘yes’ or ‘no’column under ‘Request Made”. Indicate the response by checking‘compliance’ or ‘non-compliance’ under the ‘Response Made” column.Treatment Condition #2: Instructional Frame:“( ), if you sit quietly for the next (10 minutes) there is a 100%chance that your group will earn a ( ).Student Request Made Response MadeYes No Compliance: Duration: Non-1). 5 minutes or under compliance2). 10 minutes or under3). 10 minutes to length of activity1.2.3.4.5.6.7.164OBSERVATION RECORD FORM DATE____Experiment #2: Behavioral ComplianceInstructionsPose the following instructional frame to the students in your class listedbelow. Indicate whether the request was made by checking the ‘yes’ or ‘no’column under ‘Request Made”. Indicate the response by checking‘compliance’ or ‘non-compliance’ under the ‘Response Made” column.Treatment Condition #3: Instructional Frame:“( ), if you sit quietly for the next (10 minutes) there is a 100%chance that you will earn a ( ).Student Request Made Response MadeYes No Compliance: Duration: Non-1). 5 minutes or under compliance2). 10 minutes or under3). 10 minutes to length of activity1.2.3.4.5.6.7.165OBSERVATION RECORD FORM DATE____Experiment #2: Behavioral ComplianceInstructionsPose the following instructional frame to the students in your class listedbelow. Indicate whether the request was made by checking the ‘yes’ or ‘no’column under ‘Request Made”. Indicate the response by checking‘compliance’ or ‘non-compliance’ under the ‘Response Made” column.Treatment Condition #4: Instructional Frame:), if you do not sit quietly for the next (10 minutes) there is a100% chance that your group will lose a ( ).Student Request Made Response MadeYes No Compliance: Duration: Non-1). 5 minutes or under compliance2). 10 minutes or under3). 10 minutes to length of activity1.2.3.4.5.6.7.166OBSERVATION RECORD FORM DATE:____________Experiment #2: Behavioral ComplianceInstructionsPose the following instructional frame to the students in your class listedbelow. Indicate whether the request was made by checking the ‘yes’ or ‘no’column under ‘Request Made”. Indicate the response by checking‘compliance’ and specifying duration by writing 1,2 or 3, or ‘non-compliance’under the ‘Response Made” column.Treatment Condition #5: Instructional Frame:), if you do not sit quietly for the next (10 minutes) there is a100% chance that you will lose a ( ).Student Request Made Response MadeYes No Compliance: Duration: Non-1). 5 minutes or under compliance2). 10 minutes or under3). 10 minutes to length of activity1.2.3.4.5.6.

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