Publication Date


Degree Program

Department of Psychology

Degree Type

Education Specialist


Classroom discipline is often a primary concern of teachers. Little is known, however, about the extent of teachers' knowledge, training, and skills with behavior management issues. This study was conducted to examine teachers' training with specific behavioral strategies, their personal level of proficiency in resolving these problems, and to determine if teachers consider the function of aberrant behaviors when deciding upon treatment interventions. A survey was developed to address these issues. The survey was distributed to teachers in four south-central Kentucky counties and two western Kentucky counties. Of the 350 surveys distributed, 209 were returned for a 59.7% return rate. There were 177 regular education teachers and 32 special education teachers included in the sample. Results of this study indicated a relatively high percentage of students exhibited problematic behaviors to the point that an intervention was necessary to resolve the problem. The highest percentage of teachers received training in behavior management strategies through a workshop/in-service. The majority of teachers reported they received training in a variety of behavioral methods, with the training perceived as only moderately helpful. When asked to rate their skills in resolving specific behavior problems, teachers reported their skills to be at a moderate level. The majority of special education teachers had heard of the term functional assessment although less than half received any training in this procedure. Most of the regular education teachers indicated no knowledge of functional assessment. Most teachers did not consider the function of the problematic behaviors when deciding upon treatment interventions. The results revealed a strong need for improved training in classroom management strategies. Future research is needed to determine more effective strategies to train teachers in classroom management.


Psychology | Teacher Education and Professional Development