Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Elizabeth Lemerise (Director), Kelly Madole, Andy Mienaltowski

Degree Program

Department of Psychology

Degree Type

Specialist in Education


Due to the immense challenges faced by young children who exhibit emotion regulation problems, prevention programs have been designed to train teachers on strategies useful for improving classroom behavior. The current study examines the effects of a prevention program implemented in a blended Head Start/daycare setting and evaluates the outcomes of the training on children’s cognitive/preliteracy skills, selfregulation, and social competence in the fall and spring following teacher training. The intervention group (Western Kentucky University Child Care Center) and control group (Bryant Way Child Care Center) were part of a blended Head Start/child care preschool program. Children’s self-regulation, social competence, and cognitive/preliteracy skills were assessed in the Fall and Spring of the school year. Children in the intervention group exhibited better cognitive/preliteracy skills as shown by results on Woodcock- Johnson subtests. Teacher ratings on the ERC showed that girls improved in teacher reported self-regulation, the control group received higher scores on teacher rated lability than did the intervention group, and boys were rated higher on the lability scale than were girls. In addition, Head Start children were rated higher in emotional lability than were daycare children. Teacher ratings on the SCBE scale indicated that children received higher teacher ratings of social competence in the Spring than in the Fall and girls were rated higher than were boys. Additionally, children received lower internalizing behavior problem ratings in the Fall than in the Spring, Head Start children were rated higher in internalizing behavior problems than children in daycare, and boys in the control group received higher ratings of internalizing problem behaviors than those received by any other group. Furthermore, children in the control group were rated higher than children in the intervention group in externalizing problem behaviors in both Fall and Spring, but neither group showed a significant change in externalizing problem behaviors from Fall to Spring. Self-regulation enables children to inhibit inappropriate emotional outbursts as well as control their reactions to situations. Understanding children’s self-regulation skills is of vast importance to individuals in the field of education as the information provides practitioners the opportunity to improve children’s self-regulation in the preschool years.


Applied Behavior Analysis | Child Psychology | Cognitive Psychology | Developmental Psychology | Educational Psychology | Psychology