Title: Causal thinking, adjustment and social perception as a function of behavioral science concept in elementary school children
CITATION PDF VIEWER THUMBNAILS PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00097913/00001
 Material Information
Title: Causal thinking, adjustment and social perception as a function of behavioral science concept in elementary school children
Alternate Title: Behavioral science concept in elementary school children
Physical Description: 115 leaves. : ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Spano, Bartolo John, 1934-
Publication Date: 1965
Copyright Date: 1965
 Subjects
Subject: Behaviorism (Psychology)   ( lcsh )
Child psychology   ( lcsh )
Psychology thesis Ph. D   ( lcsh )
Dissertations, Academic -- Psychology -- UF   ( lcsh )
Genre: bibliography   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
 Notes
Thesis: Thesis -- University of Florida.
Bibliography: Bibliography: leaves 111-114.
Additional Physical Form: Also available on World Wide Web
General Note: Manuscript copy.
General Note: Vita.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00097913
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: alephbibnum - 000551259
oclc - 13308481
notis - ACX5726

Downloads

This item has the following downloads:

causalthinkingad00spanrich ( PDF )


Full Text






CAUSAL THINKING, ADJUSTMENT AND
SOCIAL PERCEPTION AS A FUNCTION
OF BEHAVIORAL SCIENCE CONCEPTS
IN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL CHILDREN















By
BARTOLO JOHN SPANO









A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE COUNCIL OF
THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE
DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY










UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


December, 1965

























































UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


3 1262 08552 6530










ACKNOWLEDGMENTS


The author wishes to express his gratitude to all those who

made this study possible: to the individual members of his super-

visory committee; Drs. Audrey Schumacher, Chairman, John J. Wright,

Vernon Van de Riet, Marvin Shaw, and Ira Gordon, for their continual

support and guidance; to Misses Mary Finneran, teacher, Atherton Hough

School, and Diana Carney, teacher, Wollaston School, for their valu-

able assistance, helpful suggestions and evaluations during the con-

duction of the experimental study with their individual classes; to

Mrs. Geraldine Gerson, teacher, Atherton Hough School, and Miss Ann

Cohen, teacher, Wollaston School, for the generous loan of their

classes and their assistance with the testing of the control groups;

to Miss Ruth Abbiatti, principal of Atherton Hough School, and Mr.

Robert Hamilton, principal of Wollaston School, for their assistance

and patience with the recurring disruption in their school schedules;

to Mr. Robert Pruitt, Superintendent of Schools, Quincy, Massachusetts,

for his permission to inaugurate the study in his school system; to

Kenneth Jones, of Harvard University, for his valuable assistance in

setting up the appropriate computer programs and in analyzing the data;

to Dr. Sheldon Roen for the birth and development of the idea; to the

South Shore Mental Health Center, Quincy, Massachusetts, and its

Assistant Director, Mr. Saul Cooper, for permission to be absent from

the specific duties of an intern during the conduction of this study.

Very special and sincere thanks are extended to the delightful

children of Miss Finneran's fourth grade class and of Miss Carney's

iii







fourth grade class for their patience with the ineptness of this

teacher, for their sense of humor that saved many a class, and for

the inestimable value of all that they taught this teacher, which

far outweighed what they were taught.









TABLE OF CONTENTS



ACKNOWLEDGMENTS . . . . . . . . . .

LIST OF TABLES. . .. . . . . . . .. .

Chapter

I. STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM . . . . . .

Introduction . . . . . .......
Educational-Psychological Foundation . . .
Causal Thinking and Mental Health. . . .
Causal Thinking and Social Factors . . .

II. METHODOLOGY . . . . . .. . .

Subjects . . . . . . . .
Procedure . . . . . . . . .
Tests Administered . . . . .
Statistical Analyses . . . . .

III. TEST RESULTS. . . . . . . ... .

Analyses of Measures Secured Before the
Behavioral Science Class. . . . . .
Analyses of Measures Secured After Behavioral
Science Class . . . . . . . .

IV. DISCUSSION. . . . . . . . . .

Causal Thinking and Personality. . . .
Change in Causal Thinking and Personality. .

V. SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS . . . . . . .

Introduction . . . . . . . . .
Findings . . . . . . . . .

APPENDIX A. . . . . . . . . . . . .

APPENDIX B. . . . . . . . . . . . .

APPENDIX C. . . . . . . . . . . . .


BIB LI OGRAPHY.


BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH . ..


Page

iii

vi



1

1
2
10
16

18

18
20
22
28

31


31

45

59

59
65

71

71
75

80

85

104

111

115


. . . . . . . .











LIST OF TABLES


Table Page

1. Matching Age, I.Q. and Grade Achievement of Experi-
mental and Control Groups. . . . . . . 20

2. Intercorrelations of Variables Plus Total Test
Scores of Undichotomized Subjects. . . . . 32

3. Variables Significantly Related to Criterion: Causal
Thinking . . . . . ... . ... . .. 35

4. Mean Test Scores of Two Socioeconomic Groups on
Causal Thinking. ................ 37

5. The Standardized Regression Equation of Major Variables
Predictive of Criterion: Causal Thinking. . . 38

6. Intercorrelations of Criterion: Causal Thinking with
Two Major Predictors . . . . . . . . 39

7. Intercorrelations of Criterion and Sub-Scale Scores
of Undichotomized Subjects . . . . . . 40

8. The Standardized Regression Equation of Sub-Test
Scores Predictive of Criterion . . . . . 43

9. Relationships Between Parent-Child Causal Thinking
Scores and Adjustment. . . . . . . .. .. 44

10. Analysis of Covariance for Causal Thinking Scores. . 46

11. Mean Test Scores for Causal Thinking . . . . . 47

12. Analysis of Covariance for Democratic Behavior Scores. 48

13. Mean Test Scores for Democratic Behavior . . . . 48

14. Analysis of Covariance for Critical Thinking Scores. . 49

15. Mean Test Scores for Critical Thinking . . . ... 49

16. Adjusted Interaction Effect Means. . . . . . 50

17. Analysis of Covariance for Mental Health Assets Scores 50

18. Mean Test Scores for Mental Health Assets. . . . 51






LIST OF TABLES-Continued

Table Page

19. Analysis of Covariance for Mental Health Liabilities
Scores. . . . . . . . . .. . . 52

20. Mean Test Scores for Mental Health Liabilities. . . 52

21. Adjusted Interaction Effect Means . . . . . . 53

22. Analysis of Covariance for Self-Peer Perceptions
Discrepancy Scores. . . . . . . . ... 54

23. Mean Test Scores for Self-Peer Perception Discrepancy . 54

24. Intercorrelations of Variables Predictive of Change
in Causal Thinking. .... . . . . . . 55

25. Variables Significantly Related to Positive Change
in Criterion. . . . . . . . . ... 57

26. The Standardized Regression Equation of Major Variables
Predictive of Positive Change in Causal Thinking. .. 58









CHAPTER I


STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM


Introduction


Clinical psychologists have long been involved with the question

of mental health and more specifically, with efforts to eradicate emo-

tional disturbance and to facilitate the positive growth of the human

personality. These efforts have been for the most part restricted to

the intensive personal interaction involved in both individual and

group therapy, and to the more extensive manipulation of the social

environment.

The present study was designed to examine the possibility of

utilizing yet another method to develop mental health-the use of a

didactic or teaching approach on a group basis with children at an

early and impressionable stage of development. It was planned to test

whether the direct teaching of a course in behavioral science would aid

in developing in the children the cognitive element, causal thinking,

and at the same time certain personality variables recognized as enhance-

ments of the personality and as deterrents to maladjustment. Further

effort was made to ascertain whether certain social factors might in-

fluence the receptivity to and development of causal thinking in the

elementary school children.

The question of utilizing public school education as a method of

promoting mental health has long been the concern of educators (1-6). It is









only recently, however, that psychologists have begun to attend to its

potential value in this regard.(10, 52, 53).


Educational-Psychological Foundation

The actual introduction of behavioral science in education can

be traced to William James. Prior to that time, however, educators

such as Rousseau and Pestalozzi had done much to create an atmosphere

in which education was seen not only as the inculcation of cognitive

elements but as the development of the entire personality and as a vital

preparation for human interaction. As a contemporary of James, John

Dewey taught that social studies rather than the classics ought to be

the core of education and advocated that problem-saving methods be

applied in democratically structured classrooms. He was, furthermore,

highly influential in sensitizing teachers to the needs and motivations

of their pupils.

William James, himself, in 1892, accepted the Harvard Corpor-

ation's invitation to give public lectures to teachers. In sharing with

them over the years his thoughts on child psychology, he tried to impart

a sympathetic conception of the mental life of pupils. He suggested

restructuring the emphasis of education by focusing on the child rather

than on the subject matter: "You [teachers] should regard your profes-

sional task as if it consisted chiefly and essentially in training the

pupil to behavior; taking behavior, not in the narrow sense of his

manners, but in the very widest possible sense, as including every pos-

sible sort of fit reaction on the circumstances into which he may find

himself brought by the vicissitudes of life" (19, p. 3).









At about the same time, the education community was also influ-

enced by the serious public concern over the menace of general disease

which eventuated in the organization of the American Social Hygiene

Association with Charles W. Elliot of Harvard as its first president (7)

and the advocacy of sex instruction in the schools. Although narrowly

focused, this activity appears to have set the precedent for using the

resources of the schools to grapple with serious social problems. A

movement to use the schools for "Character and Citizenship" training

followed. The "Mental Hygiene" movement also quickly focused on the

contribution which should or could be made by the schools and numerous

programs of mental hygiene in the schools continue to be advocated. One

of the more ambitious of these programs, that of the human relations

classes, developed from the work of Bullis (11). Concern over religious

and racial intolerance following World War II gave impetus to a strong

"Inter-group Education" movement in the late 1940's.

The advent of psychoanalysis also exerted an important early

influence on the behavioral science aspects of contemporary education (16).

According to Symonds (51), Oskar Pfister, a Swiss teacher, was the first

to have proposed modifications in educational practices based on psycho-

analytic principles. Since then, analysts and other psychotherapists,

such as Low, Adler and Rank, have argued strongly for school acceptance

of some responsibility for the emotional well-being of their students.

Anna Freud's book Psychoanalysis for Teachers and Parents deals in part

with what should be taught to a child concerning his own development,

and stands as a landmark in this movement.

It was at the University of Iowa that research-minded psycholo-

gists first manifested an interest in behavioral science instruction in








the public schools. Butler (12), in 1934, studied the effect of an

instructional program in child development and family relationship on

1,586 high school students, and concluded that they made significant

gains not only in knowledge, but also in self-reliance as measured by an

attitude scale. Since 1941, Ralph Ojemann and his associates at Iowa

(18, 22-27, 29-45) have carried on a continuous research program on

education in human relations and mental health, with special emphasis on

the axiom that behavior is "caused." The program itself was planned with

the specific intent of inculcating or developing a causal orientation

in the elementary school children. This causal orientation was defined

by Ojemann as an understanding and an appreciation of the dynamic, com-

plex and interacting nature of the forces that operate in human behavior.

It involves an attitude of flexibility, of seeing things from the view-

point of others, as well as an awareness of the probabalistic nature of

knowledge. A causally oriented person is described as capable of sus-

pending judgment until sufficient factual information is available;

furthermore, he realizes that his behavior has consequences and that there

are alternative ways of solving social problems. This is immediately

contrasted with so-called "surface-thinking" in which there is either no

concern for an awareness of the dynamics of human behavior or there is

habitual recourse to pseudo-causal approaches, viz. mystical or magical

explanations of behavior, or overgeneralized observations and similar

untested assumptions (stereotyping, labeling, rationalizing, etc.). It

is thought further that a person who is aware of the dynamics and causal

nature of human behavior is better able to solve his own problems and to

meet social situations adequately.

The Iowa project involves no specific intent to introduce new

subject matter as such into the school curriculum. Rather the intent









is to restructure the existing curriculum of Social Studies, English,

Mathematics, etc. so that it is causally oriented throughout and so that

it is taught by a causally oriented teacher beginning in the early years.

To achieve this, the Iowa project (50) developed a one-month intensive

training program for selected elementary school teachers which includes

several units: (1) Developmental problems of the normal child (3 hrs./

wk.), (2) Personal problems of everyday life (5 hrs./wk.), (3) Action

research in the classroom (2 hrs./wk.), (4) Causal approach to an under-

standing of human behavior (2 hrs./wk.), (5) Meeting classroom problems

(3 hrs./wk.), (6) Practicum in preparation of special material (2 hrs./

wk.). In addition, there was developed a causally oriented integrated

curriculum at three age levels; primary, intermediate and secondary.

Examples of experiences provided at the primary level include:

(1) demonstrations furnished by the teacher's behavior as she handles day-

to-day social situations that arise in the classroom and on the play-

ground, (2) use of narratives which contrast "surface" and "causal"

thinking, providing vicarious experiences for the class, (3) use of

expositions to help the child understand and appreciate the work of the

teacher and other persons with whom he interacts directly. Examples of

experiences provided at the intermediate level include (1) the behavior

of the teacher, (2) teaching causally oriented social studies, (3) extend-

ing stories already available in traditional textbooks and readers with

causally oriented discussions, (4) discussion of human behavior in health

education materials, (5) use of room councils as a laboratory for applying

the understanding of behavior dynamics to "real" situations.

Examples of experiences at the secondary level stress the causal

orientation of the presently existing curriculum. Social studies area









is to be based on a study of the forces operating in the behavior of

the people involved; study of English literature can be made an adventure

in gaining more insight into the feelings and other factors that operate

in human striving. It is hoped that through these exposures a student

can learn more about applying the knowledge of human development to the

guidance of his own growth.

Various studies from the Ojemann project have demonstrated to

some degree that participation in an experimental learning program for

both teachers and pupils designed to develop an understanding and an

appreciation of the nature of human behavior and the dynamic factors

operative in social situations, does substantially increase knowledge

of social causality (28, 31, 35, 44, 50). Stiles, for example (50),

investigated changes in the method used by fourth, fifth and sixth-grade

children in handling daily behavior situations brought up for consider-

ation in the "room council" and found that the causal learning program

produced significant changes in the direction of decreased punitiveness

and toward more concern with understanding before deciding.

Muuss (31) matched 25 subjects who had participated in the causal

learning program for two years with 25 subjects who had been in the

program for one year and with 25 subjects from the control group who had

not participated on I.Q., sex and grade. The two-year trained subjects

showed a significantly greater gain than the one-year trained subjects

on the Problem Situation Test (a measure of the tendency to use immediate

punitiveness), on the Children's Anti-Democratic Scale cadsS), and on the

certainty scores of a test for intolerance of ambiguity.

Ojemann et al. (45) utilized 19 children in each of four experi-

mental classes (one fourth-, one fifth-, and two sixth-grade groups) and









four control groups of 25 pupils each. The experimental groups made

significant changes in their causal orientation after participation in

the Causal Learning Program as measured by a Causal Test developed by the

Iowa project to tap the child's awareness of the complex variable nature

of human behavior.

A more recent study by Ojemann and Snider (44) utilized a causally-

oriented behavior observation form in the hands of trained independent

observers to study the changes in observed behavior in the direction of

causality appearing after the administration of Ojemann's teaching program.

The subjects were 206 fourth-grade pupils in four classes (106 in experi-

mental and 100 in control group) and 212 fifth-grade pupils in four

classes (99 in experimental and 113 in control group). With inter-observer

reliability of .67 to .69, the results indicated that two of the four

fourth-grade groups showed significant gains over their respective controls

at the 5 per cent level of confidence while three of the four fifth-grade

groups showed significant changes over their respective controls at the

1 per cent level of confidence.

Somewhat related to the Ojemann project is the recent work of

Ronald Lippitt and his associates at the University of Michigan (25).

Lippitt asserts that "the young child, immersed in a complex social cul-

ture, constantly required to interact wisely with his classmates, his

older or younger siblings, his parents, his teachers and other adults,

has a pressing need to develop an understanding of social processes and

to perfect interpersonal skills" (25, p. 2). To fulfill such a need,

Lippitt and his associates at the Institute of Social Research, University

of Michigan, initiated a program which involves: (1) training present









social study teachers in an appreciation and understanding of the dynamics

of human behavior, (2) developing and incorporating into the already

existing social studies program of the elementary school, brief teaching

units such as "Getting work done together in small groups," "Angry

feelings," "Learning from Groups," (3) complementing the didactic pre-

sentation with behavior specimens or role-playing episodes in the class-

room that allow the children an active observation of and participation

in psychological and social process phenomena, (4) allowing supervised

field work of the older children with the younger in a helping relation-

ship, primarily educational. At the present time, continual evaluation

of this approach yet to be published, is in effect.

The findings reported above supported not only the Iowa project

and by extrapolation the similar Michigan project but suggested the

present study-a modified approach to changing attitudes, less elaborate

in structure, more easily recorded and replicated, more in line with

educational tradition (and hence more easily introduced into the school

curriculum), and more appropriate to causal orientation or thinking.

This would consist in a course in behavioral science-an already avail-

able subject matter including the disciplines of psychology, sociology

and anthropology, concerned with human behavior, and embodying the

"causal" attitude.

It was planned to work with fourth-grade school children as a

young group to whom Ojemann's experience would be pertinent. If this

approach is equal in results to that of Ojemann, it has the advantage

of being more easily introduced into the curriculum and into teacher-

training. Traditionally education has been slow to respond to mental

health projects such as those devised by Ojemann. Ojemann himself has









worked on his planned program since 1949 and it is safe to say that

acceptance has been somewhat slow. The tradition of education has been

to introduce new subject matter from the top down as it is demanded by

society, or as educators can convince society of its value (15). If the

findings warrant, the introduction of behavioral science as a body of

knowledge may be accepted as a part of the existing trend to experiment

with bringingcollege level subjects to the young child.

It was expected that participation in the class in behavioral

science by the fourth-grade children, would result in an increase in

causal thinking because of both the children's previous exposure to

physical causality in other subject areas, and the very framework of

behavioral science and its concepts which are patterned after the

physical sciences, and thus causally oriented. In our culture, it is

understood that a causal approach is taught toward the natural science

phenomena. However, there is no basic dichotomy between social and

natural phenomena. The causal question: "Why does a given phenomenon

occur?" is involved in both areas. Therefore, there is justification

in hypothesizing that an experimental teaching of behavioral science which

is patterned after the natural sciences and which is designed to teach

principles of human behavior, will foster a causal orientation in ele-

mentary school children (14).

In addition, we expected to capitalize on both the interpersonal

behavior of the behavioral science teacher himself who not only conveys

the behavioral science concepts through a didactic, teaching approach

but also through his own approach to and relationship with the children

in the classroom which exemplifies in action the entire causal orien-

tation, and the interpersonal behavior of the children's actual fourth










grade teachers who would be present during the class presentation, who

would assimilate the behavioral science concepts and the behavioral

science teacher's orientation to the children, and who would relate

correspondingly to the children for the remaining week in the light of

this experience, thereby reinforcing this causal experience of the

behavioral science class.

Such a program of teaching behavioral science to elementary

school children had formerly been initiated in a pilot project by

Dr. Sheldon Roen (47). The fourth-grade class used, however, was a

group of intellectually very superior children (130 I.Q. and above) and

evaluated by an achievement test only at the end of a five-month teach-

ing period with one class per week. The present study will investigate

whether participation in a behavioral science class is conducive to

growth in causal thinking in the average fourth-grade pupil. Thus we

state our first hypothesis:

1. Exposure to and participation in a class in behavioral
science will foster significant growth in causal thinking
in fourth-grade school children.


Causal Thinking and Mental Health

Beyond the intellectual value of growth in conceptual thinking,

it seems that a person who is aware of the dynamic and causal nature of

human behavior is better able to solve his own problem and to meet social

situations adequately. For example, lack of insight into the dynamics

of one's own behavior and an unwillingness and/or an inability to under-

stand the problems and the behavior of others tend to increase the level

of anxiety and the degree of insecurity. If other people's behavior

is not understood, it will tend to be threatening as are physical events









which an individual experiences and does not understand. A lack of in-

sight into the dynamics of behavior will tend to make it difficult to

react logically to the behavior of others. Furthermore, if behavior

is not understood, it may be misinterpreted and the individual may

react in such a ways as to produce a threat to the other person's security

and self-respect. This, then, may well generate conflict which would add

further to the difficulty of the situation. If at that time the person

does not understand his own behavior and the factors that influence him

he is likely to feel threatened, insecure and anxious. Evidence is

available to substantiate some of these contentions, at least in part.

In the previously cited Ojemann study (45), there was discovered

a significant difference between the experimental and control groups on

the Problem Situation Test designed to measure punitiveness. The more

causal subjects were less ready to use immediately punitive measures.

These results take on added significance when it is recalled that Lyle and

Levitt (26) showed that "high scorers" on the PST gave significantly

more extra-punitive responses on the children's form of the Rosenzweig

Picture Frustration Test. Also, the "highs" were more frequently ego-

defensive in their responses.

Another study by Levitt (22) compared causally trained and

control groups at the fourth-, fifth-, and sixth-grade levels on the

Children's Anti-Democratic Attitude Scale cadsS). The causally trained

groups showed significantly lower authoritarian scores at all three grade

levels as opposed to the control groups.

A later study by Muuss (31) found significantly lower Anti-

Democratic scores on the CADS in high causally oriented subjects when

compared with low-causally oriented subjects.









Muuss (30), using a perceptual test consisting of a sequence of

unfinished pictures, demonstrated that high-causally oriented subjects

have more tolerance toward ambiguous stimuli. They tend to guess later,

make fewer guesses, and express less certainty when asked to guess what

the final picture is going to be. The causally oriented child may make

a guess but he is more inclined to do so in terms of probability, and is

aware of the tentative hypothetical nature of his response. Muuss also

found (30) that high-causally oriented subjects are more likely to reject

verbal statements indicative of intolerance of ambiguity.

Muuss (31), using a group of 88 high-causally oriented subjects

and 66 low-causally oriented subjects from a group of 280 sixth-grade

children, found significant differences on the Kooker Security-Insecurity

Scale. Muuss also found a significant difference in a similar group at

the fifth-grade level.

Significant differences were also found in scores on the Children's

Manifest Anxiety Scale at both the fifth-and sixth-grade levels. The

high- and low-causally oriented subjects were also different significantly

on the built-in "lie" scale of the Children's Manifest Anxiety Scale.

Bruce (9) reported that sixth-grade pupils with high self-ideal

discrepancy scores who had been in the causally oriented program for two

years evidenced significantly less manifest anxiety on the Children's

Manifest Anxiety Scale than control subjects with equally high self-ideal

discrepancy scores. In other words, it appears that the usual finding

that high self-ideal discrepancy scores are associated with high manifest

anxiety scores has to be modified. It appears to hold only for subjects

low in causal orientation. A growth in causal orientation might change

this relationship.










It will be noted that in the available research on the relation-

ship between causal orientation and selected personality variables:

(1) the emphasis was primarily on the negative, and at time,
global aspects of personality, e.g. insecurity, anxiety,
anti-democratic attitude.

(2) the focus rested primarily on the intra-psychic phenomena
as opposed to the inter-psychic or social interaction.

(3) most studies limited themselves to the fifth and sixth
grade levels of elementary school.

The present study will attempt to determine the nature and extent of the

relationship, if any, between causal orientation or thinking and both

certain positive and more specific aspects of personality, and certain

inter-personal phenomena, and will also extend the study to slightly

younger children.

As noted previously, causal orientation is defined as an aware-

ness of the dynamic complexity of human motivation and an understanding

of the interacting nature of the forces that operate in human behavior

and in social situations in general. If this be the case, then we might

well think that there would be developed at the same time the ability to

see things from the viewpoint of others, a realization that one's behavior

has consequences and that there are alternative ways of solving most

social problems that necessitate in turn, interaction with others.

This description would seem to contain characteristics which are character-

istic of democratic behavior, to wit: cooperation (individual is adaptive,

conformative and helpful in dealing with others), friendliness (individual

has an attitude of "right-doing" toward others, is sympathetic and tact-

ful), integrity (individual has a sense of justice and practices fair

play), leadership (individual has initiative, inventiveness, understands










people and is constructively critical), responsibility (individual is

dependable, efficient, prompt, self-reliant, controls his own behavior

and has patience and perseverance). From these considerations arose

the second and third hypotheses:

2. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and democratic behavior which is a composite
of several secondary characteristics, each of which is in
turn, significantly related to causal orientation.

3. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science
class will foster significant growth in democratic be-
havior among fourth grade children.

Further, it can be thought that to the extent that an individual

acquires a dynamic awareness of the complexity of human motivation and

an understanding of the interacting nature of the multiple determinants

of behavior, to that extent he acquires a flexibility in thinking. He

learns to suspend judgment until sufficient information is available

(in part related to an increased tolerance of ambiguous stimuli demon-

strated by Muuss)(30). In short, he increases in what is described

traditionally as "critical thinking," the ability to weigh evidence, to

deliberate carefully, free from debilitating emotional elements. The

school prizes this as one of the most valuable transfer effects that

needs to be fostered within every subject area itself. From these con-

siderations arose the fourth and fifth hypotheses:

4. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and critical thinking.

5. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science class
will foster significant growth in critical thinking among
fourth-grade children.

Further, it can be reasoned that poor insight into the dynamics

of one's own behavior and an unwillingness and/or an inability to









understand the problems and the behavior of others tend to increase the

level of anxiety and the degree of insecurity. If other people's be-

havior is not understood it will tend to be threatening. A lack of

insight into the dynamics of behavior will tend to make it difficult to

react logically to the behavior of others. Furthermore, if behavior

is not understood, it may be misinterpreted and the individual may

react in such a way as to produce a threat to the other person's security

and self-respect. This, then, might generate conflict which would add

further to the difficulty of the situation.

We see here the effect on the ability to perceive others and

oneself accurately and to be free to test the accuracy of one's inferences

about the environment in which one lives-often labeled reality-testing.

One could reason, then, that there is a correspondence between causal

thinking and the ability to see oneself as others do, and to accept the

reality of his peer relationships. Thus were derived the sixth and

seventh hypotheses:

6. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and the correspondence between self- and
peer-perceptions of self.

7. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science class
will foster significant correspondence between self- and
peer-perceptions of self among fourth grade children.

At face value, causal thinking and its assumed relationship with

democratic behavior, critical thinking, and adequate reality testing, may

well be considered an indication of mental health. For the purpose of

this study this is defined as the possession of attitudes, beliefs,

aspirations, skills and achievements which contribute to a sense of

well-being and which support progress toward realizing one's fullest

potentialities. To the extent that a child appears to be more realistic











in his evaluation of the world around him, more aware of his own limi-

tations as well as assets, and more willing to admit that he does not

know the answer to a problem, he is likely to be psychologically

healthy. This reasoning has been indirectly supported by the Muuss'

research on tolerance of ambiguous stimuli and other research studies

on intolerance of ambiguity quoted in the Muuss article (30). Smock,

for example, showed that psychological stress tended to increase in-

tolerance of ambiguity. Block and Block demonstrated that intolerance

of ambiguity and ethnocentrism were intrinsically related. Levitt further-

more showed that a subject who is intolerant of ambiguity tends to believe

popular misconceptions and superstitions. The eighth and ninth hypotheses

to be tested were:

8. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and mental health assets, and a significant
and negative relationship between causal thinking and mental
health liabilities.

9. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science class
will foster significant growth in mental health assets and
will minimize or correct significantly mental health lia-
bilities among fourth grade children.


Causal Thinking and Social Factors

A previously cited study by Ojemann and Snider (43) indicated

differential results within the four fourth-grade experimental groups

and within the four fifth-grade experimental groups. Only two of the

fourth-grade groups and three of the fifth-grade groups showed signifi-

cant increase in causal thinking over the matched control groups. This

immediately raises the question of receptivity to any planned program

in the area of behavioral science, particularly in causal thinking.









Ojemann has pointed out (38) that newspapers and magazines fail

to make an analytic or dynamic approach to problems of development and

neglect to describe effective methods of dealing with differential causes

of behavior and variability in the rate of development. Muuss also

asserted in defense of his program that "we have children growing up in

families, schools and communities under the influence of parents,

teachers, and citizens most of whom have had relatively little preparation

of a causal nature for their work in guiding children" (32, p. 123).

It seems reasonable to suppose that familial background and social

environment have considerable bearing, first, on the present functioning

level of causal thinking of children, and second, on the receptivity of

children to such causal thinking within a behavioral science class. It

seems reasonable to think further that families and communities consist-

ing predominantly of professional and semi-professional people, who have

had exposure to behavioral science concepts in college (limited as it

may have been) and in their present reading materials, would be relatively

more prepared to facilitate their children's receptivity to such an

orientation. One might thus expect children from the higher socio-

economic levels (with intelligence held constant) to be initially more

causally oriented, and to show greater increase in causal thinking than

children from the lower socioeconomic level as a result of a behavioral

science class. From these considerations arose the final two hypotheses:

10. Fourth-grade school children from higher socioeconomic
levels will be significantly more causally oriented than
children from lower socioeconomic levels.

11. Fourth-grade school children from higher socioeconomic
levels will show significantly greater increase in causal
thinking than children from lower socioeconomic levels as
a result of exposure to and participation in a behavioral
science class.












CHAPTER II


METHODOLOGY


Subjects


Four groups of fourth grade elementary school children from the

Quincy, Massachusetts school system, totaling 103 in number, were

utilized in the study. They included an experimental group of 23 and a

control group of 21 from the Atherton Hough School and an experimental

group of 30 and a control group of 29 from the Wollaston School.

The former school, Atherton Hough, serves primarily families

in the lower socioeconomic level (unskilled laborers); the latter school,

Wollaston School, serves primarily families in the upper middle socio-

economic level and above (professional and semi-professional). To

substantiate this social class difference, a social status index devised

by McGuire and White (29) was utilized to obtain a mean rating of social

status for each school group. A mean rating was obtained from an index

score which is derived from (1) rating on a 7-point scale the "status

parent" of a family on four component scales: dwelling area, house

type, occupation and source of income, (2) multiplying the ratings by

appropriate weights and summing the products to secure a total index

score, (3) employing a table which estimates status level from total

index scores for an approximation of social class.

Because of the unavailability of some of the family background

information and because of the high correlation between "status parent"










occupation and the income component, for the purpose of this study each

of the status parents was rated on occupation, while a representative

sample of the dwellings and neighborhoods of each of the groups were

rated. Extrapolating from these ratings, we obtained a total index

score for each parent. These, in turn, were added and averaged to ob-

tain a mean social status rating for each of the four classes as well as

for each of the schools. A mean rating of 60 placed the Atherton Hough

School in the upper-lower social class level, while a mean rating of

27 placed the Wollaston School in the upper-middle social class level

closely bordering on the upper class level. This offered supportive

evidence for the accepted dichotomy in socioeconomic level.

Care was further taken to match the four classes as closely as

possible with respect to intelligence, grade achievement and chrono-

logical age. Table 1 lists the equivalences.

While the Wollaston groups are slightly higher with respect to

I.Q. and grade achievement, the differences are not statistically sig-

nificant. This is judged to be good group matching considering the

heterogeniety of each of the classes and the assumed differences in-

herent in the various socioeconomic groups.

In addition, care was taken to match as closely as possible the

four homeroom teachers with respect to age, teacher-training, teaching

ability and rapport with their respective classes. The recommendations

and evaluations of the two school principals were utilized to assess

these equivalences. Each of the teachers was in her early twenties,

and had at least one but not more than three years of teaching experience.

Each had earned a B.S. degree from an accredited college within the









Boston area. Each had been given an excellent rating by her principal

on both teaching ability and pupil relationship.


TABLE 1

MATCHING AGE, I.Q. AND GRADE ACHIEVEMENT OF EXPERIMENTAL
AND CONTROL GROUPS


Mean1 Grade 2 Chronological
School I.Q. Achievement Age

Wollaston

Experimental 110.8 4.9 9.73
Control 110.8 4.9 9.73

Atherton Hough

Experimental 105.0 4.4 9.76
Control 106.4 4.4 9.63


I.Q.'s based on group administration of Lorge-Thorndike.

2Based on the Iowa Test of Basic Skills.


Procedure

For a period of one week immediately prior to the initiation of

the behavioral science course, both the experimental and control groups

were administered a series of tests by their individual homeroom teachers

during the regular school day. These tests assessed: (1) initial level

of causal thinking, (2) initial level of adjustment, (3) social relation-

ships, and (4) individual profiles of personality factors. At the same

time, each of the teachers completed a teacher-rating of each of her

pupils.

In addition, midway through the behavioral science course, the

parents of the children in the two experimental groups were mailed the










test assessing causal thinking with instructions to answer the test as

they thought their own children would answer it.

The behavioral science course itself was conducted on the basis

of one 50-minute class per week from January 5, 1965 to June 7, 1965,

a period corresponding to the second half of the regular school year.

The classes, totaling twenty in number, were conducted partly on a

lecture basis, with the children contributing to lengthy group discus-

sions and minor class experiments. The lecture material was further

reinforced by a review and critique of pertinent research studies which

served at the same time as an introduction to class-initiated experi-

ments.

The respective fourth-grade teachers were present during the

classes and took notes of the lectures and class discussions. These

were incorporated into detailed resumes of each class dictated by the

experimenter at the conclusion of each class (see Appendix B). A tape

recorder was initially utilized in hopes of preserving verbatim class

interaction but it proved ineffectual because of extraneous sound inter-

ference.

The planned class content was as follows:

Class 1: Introduction to the concept of individual differences.

Classes 2-3: Introduction to the complexity of causes underlying
human behavior: object itself, surroundings,
internal and external forces.
Methods of obtaining information regarding causes:
verbal inquiry, observation, experimentation.

Class 4: Introduction to the sources of individual differences:
heredity, maturation, learning.

Classes 5-7: Discussion of the concept of heredity, function of
genes, nature of hereditary characteristics.










Class 8: Administration of first objective review test.

Classes 9-10: Discussion of the concept of maturation; relationship
between growth and learning.

Classes 11-13: Detailed investigation of the several stages of human
development with emphasis on developing character-
istics unique to each stage.

Classes 14-15: Discussion in depth of the first stage of development
(infant) involving the notions of trust, love and
self-learning.

Class 16: Detailed discussion of second stage of development
(pre-school) involving in part the notions of in-
creased independence, acquisition of new emotions,
acceptance of consequences of one's actions.

Class 17: Administration of second objective test.

Classes 18-19: Detailed discussion of their stage of development
(school age: 6-10) with emphasis on first, new
learning unique to stage: introduction to school
and its associative learning, new environments,
expansion of one's vision, and second, problems
arising: increased responsibility, competition,
conflicts arising between child and new environ-
ments, conflicts arising between child's feelings
and their expression.

Class 20: Summation. (See Appendix B for representative samples
of class presentations.)

Immediately following the final class, the homeroom teachers

began the readministration of the tests which extended over a one-

week period. The teachers, in addition, re-rated each of their pupils.


Tests Administered

Causal Test.-This instrument was utilized to test both the first

hypothesis (p. 10) which stated that exposure to and participation in a

class in behavioral science will foster significant growth in causal

thinking in fourth grade school children, and the remaining hypotheses

asserting a positive relationship between causal thinking and democratic










behavior (hypotheses 2 and 3); critical thinking (hypotheses 4 and 5);

correspondence between self- and peer-perceptions of self (hypotheses

6 and 7); levels of adjustment (hypotheses 8 and 9); socioeconomic

level (hypotheses 10 and 11).

The original Causal Test was authored by Ralph Ojemann and his

associates at the State University of Iowa and consists of eight des-

criptions of behavior, each followed by a series of true-false items,

offering choices in the interpretation of the previously described

behavior. The test attempts to tap the child's awareness of the complex,

variable nature of human behavior (18).

Test-retest reliability of .67 was obtained on a sample of over

1,000 elementary school children. A number of studies utilizing the test

have been quoted in Chapter I.

The Causal Test utilized in the present study was a revision

by the present investigator, devised specifically for the fourth-grade

population and modeled after the original instrument. An independent

reliability study was performed utilizing 56 fourth-grade school children.

Test-retest reliability (over a one-month period) of .78 was obtained

(See Appendix A).

Behavior Preference Record.-This instrument was utilized to

test hypotheses 2 and 3 which involved the relationship between causal

thinking and democratic behavior (p. 13) and to test hypotheses 4 and 5

which deal with the relationship between causal thinking and critical

thinking (p. 13).

The Record was authored by Hugh Wood, Ed.D., formerly of

Columbia University and now Director, Curriculum Materials Laboratory,

University of Oregon (57).











The coefficient of reliability (alternate forms) for the in-

dividual characteristics range from .774 to .876. The validity of the

instrument, based on a sample of approximately 1,000 students was

determined by correlating the teachers' estimates of the students on

five behavioral characteristics and their critical thinking ability

with their Behavior Preference Record scores on all these items.

The correlation coefficients ranged from .310 to .589.

At the same time, the five characteristics have been intercor-

related with ranges of -.007 to .398 giving evidence that fairly

distinct characteristics are being measured.

The test itself consists of a series of problem situations,

followed by three to five possible courses of action, from which the

student selects one. Following the choices is a list of possible

reasons for a particular choice, from which the student selects one

or more. Scores are obtained for the following aspects of democratic

behavior: cooperation, friendliness, integrity, leadership and

responsibility. A unique feature of the Record is the provision for

measuring critical thinking in behavioral situations.

A Class Play.-This instrument was utilized to test hypotheses

6 and 7 (p. 14) which predict a relationship between causal thinking and

the correspondence between self- and peer-perceptions of self. The Class

Play was devised by Eli M. Bower and associates at the California State

Department of Mental Health in an experimental program to screen out

elementary school children with potential emotional disturbances (8).

It was considered the most valid, single measure of several instruments











utilized. In one study it successfully identified 13 of 14 children who

later manifested symptoms of emotional disturbance (8).

This instrument compares roles assigned to a child by his peers

and roles chosen for himself. It offers two indices: (1) index of

the social impact of the child in the class and (2) index of the

negative impact of the child in the class. By dividing the two and

obtaining a ratio, one acquires an approximation of the quantity of

visibility of the child by his peers and the quality of this visibility.

This instrument was utilized to assess the initial and also the increased

correspondence between perception of self- and peer-perception of self

as a result of exposure to the behavioral science course.

California Test of Personality.-This instrument, in conjunction

with the Mental Health Analysis was utilized to test hypotheses 8 and 9

involving the relationship between causal thinking and levels of adjust-

ment (p. 15). The California Test of Personality was authored by Louis

Thorpe, Willis Clark and Ernest Tiegs, associated with the California

Test Bureau (54). The test is organized around the concept of life

adjustment as a balance between personal and social adjustment. Personal

adjustment is assumed to be based on feelings of personal security, and

social adjustment on feelings of social security. The items in the

Personal Adjustment half of the test are designed to measure evidence of

six components of personal security: self-reliance, sense of personal

worth, sense of personal freedom, feelings of belonging, withdrawing

tendencies, nervous symptoms. The items in the Social Adjustment half

of the test are designed to measure six components of social security:











social standards, social skills, anti-social tendencies, family

relations, school relations, occupational relations and community

relations.

Split-half reliability coefficients obtained on each of the 12

sub-tests range from .75 to.97. With regard to its validity, the Cali-

fornia Test of Personality: Manual (54), lists and briefly describes

some 90 studies that utilized the instrument. Syracuse University, for

example, found that the test correlated more closely with clinical find-

ings than any other personality test. Jackson performed a study showing

the relative effectiveness of paper-pencil tests, interviews and ratings

as techniques for personality and found that the California Test of

Personality proved superior to three rating methods (experimenter, teacher

and parent) as well as clinical interview.

Mental Health Analysis.-This instrument was utilized in con-

junction with the California Test of Personality to test hypotheses 8

and 9 which predict a relationship between causal thinking and level of

adjustment (p. 15). The Mental Health Analysis was authored by Louis

Thorpe, Willis Clark and Ernest Tiegs, associated with the California

Test Bureau (55). The test is organized into two categories; Assets:

close personal relationships, interpersonal skills, social participation,

satisfying work and recreation, and adequate outlook and goals; and

Liabilities: emotional instability, feeling of inadequacy, behavioral

immaturity, concern about physical defects, and nervous manifestations.

The 200 items of the test are distributed equally between the two cate-

gories and among the ten components of the Analysis.












Coefficients of reliability computed by using the Kuder-

Richardson formula 21 for each of the ten sub-tests range from .80 to

.85 based on a population of 425 elementary school children.

Several studies have been conducted with the Mental Health

Analysis (55). Baron administered the test to 443 fifth and sixth

grade children. A sociometric instrument involving four questions and

allowing five choices for each question was administered. Acceptance

status was determined in terms of percentile ranks within the classroom

group. The upper 25 per cent in sociometric status were defined as

"accepted" and the lower 25 per cent as "rejected." Using these criterion

groups Baron found a significant relationship between 11 of the 13

Analysis scores and acceptance status.

A study comparing "delinquent" boys with "normal" boys was con-

ducted by Zaiolski. He administered 14 tests, which included the

Analysis, to two groups of boys. One group was composed of 50 boys

enrolled in an industrial training school and the other group was com-

posed of 50 boys enrolled in a public school. He found significant

differences between the two groups on eight of the Analysis scores.

Warner conducted a study to determine the relationship of socio-

moral behavior and the mental health status of high school boys. He

administered the Analysis to 499 boys in a California high school. From

this group, he chose a smaller group rated most adequately adjusted by

at least two teachers and another smaller group rated least adequately

adjusted by at least two teachers. Warner found that the Analysis

successfully discriminated between the two groups.











Pupil Adjustment Inventory.-This instrument is a five-point

rating scale to be completed by teachers which offers a profile cover-

ing the following pupil characteristics: Academic, Social, Emotional,

Physical, Activities and Interests, School's Influence on the Pupil,

and Home Background. It was utilized to obtain information to enhance

our description and understanding of the causal thinker.

The Inventory itself was developed by Group B of the Suburban

School Study Council, Educational Service Bureau, School of Education,

the University of Pennsylvania.

Achievement Tests in Behavioral Science.-Devised by the present

investigator, these instruments assessed the extent of the assimilation

of the behavioral science concepts which were discussed at some length

in the course. (See Appendix C for representative sample.)


Statistical Analyses

To assess the significance of the relationships among the

variables which were predicted by the hypotheses and to provide the most

adequate description of the causally oriented child, a stepwise multiple

regression technique was used. Programed for the IBM 704-709 computers

and described in Jones (20) and Cooley and Lohnes (13), this technique

first generates the matrix of correlations among the variables (zero-

order), the last variable being considered the criterion. The matrix is

then scanned for the highest predictor-criterion correlation. The

regression sum of squares of this variable on the criterion is then

computed. After the selection of the best predictor, the predictor is

partialed out of the entire correlation matrix. The partial with the









criterion are then scanned for the highest value. This variable is

then selected as the next predictor to be added to the prediction equa-

tion. The new regression sum of squares is computed along with the

F-value. The increase in sums of squares over the previous regression

is also computed along with its significance. The regression equation

is thus built up in a stepwise fashion until the F-value for the

increase in sums of squares falls below a specified critical value.

To assess the change in the experimental groups with regard to

the measured variables as a result of exposure to the behavioral science

course, and to determine the extent of the mean differences between the

experimental and control groups, a modified analysis of covariance

was used. This analysis called ANOVA and programed for the IBM 704-709,

described in Jones (20) and Cooley and Lohnes (13), avoids the compound-

ing of errors that takes place in the traditional analysis of covariance

that assesses the significance of difference between sets of differences

between pre- and post-test scores. By subtracting such scores, one

initially adds the error associated with each and deals with this com-

pounded error when comparing the difference score with other difference

scores which in turn include their own compounded errors. The ANOVA

technique reduces the error term by dealing primarily with only the

error of one score, the post-test score. The pre-test scores are simply

regressed upon the post-test scores producing predicted post-test

scores. Since each individual's predicted score is based upon all the

pre-test scores of the group contributing to the regression line, each

error involved in each pre-test score is cancelled out by the other

scores. The F is calculated on the difference between the actual post-

test scores and the predicted post-test scores of each of the respective










groups, while the means of the post-test scores are adjusted for the

difference between the groups' initial pre-test means. This enables

one to determine the direction of any significant change between the

pre- and post-test means of the respective groups.

To assess the contributing effect of each of the more signifi-

cant measured variables to change in the criterion variable, causal

thinking, the stepwise multiple regression technique was used a second

time. This time the variable to be predicted was change in causal think-

ing with post-test scores in causal thinking serving as the criterion.

Information obtained in this manner would assist one both in predicting

change in causal thinking and in assessing the major factors that would

contribute to one's deriving maximum benefit from the behavioral science

course ordered toward change in causal thinking.

In addition, individual t-tests were computed to provide

complementary information and further clarification in the assessment of

significant differences between group means with respect to several of

the measured variables (17).











CHAPTER III


TEST RESULTS


Analyses of Measures Secured Before the Behavioral
Science Class


Data from the testing conducted prior to the initiation of the

experimental behavioral science class were analyzed first, to test the

following hypotheses:

2. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and democratic behavior which is a composite
of several secondary characteristics, each of which is in
turn, significantly related to causal thinking (p. 13).

4. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and critical thinking (p. 13).

6. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and the correspondence between self- and
peer-perception of self (p. 14).

8. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and mental health assets, and a significant
and negative relationship between causal thinking and mental
health liabilities (p. 15).

10. Children from higher socioeconomic level will be significantly
more causally oriented than children from lower socioeconomic
level (p. 16),

and secondly, to provide the most adequate description of the causally-

thinking child in terms of the variables included in this study.

Table 2 provides the initial zero-order matrix of correlations

among the significant variables including total test scores generated

by the stepwise multiple regression technique. Here all the subjects

were assessed as a total unit with the socioeconomic variable treated














C 0 U0CO t00 C-O\DI C\ N0\M CM TOn 0\
N C 0\ 0 cl- --.\0 vJ\00 0 -. t-I C(nO 0






E-4




p- I I04 \O I;V\-*V Q 0\ CQ 0 C 0 0 0
ol 00000000 00000







oq coo O- o ooo oOoooo- .o-

D Co r-i co oC') VNo Xaf ^. Ci-YO oo 00 \0 O M o -4 CCM n' O O
ODE i0 0 0- CC) M OO" CVNO t \r00 -t -I C -I O\ 0 NOn






F 0 I 0 V n \c, -,.O n-O 0 nU.r 0CC\ -O:t C0j--- 0 - "O M
I III







U)-t 00 0 et rq o % \-o1 o, o o0C Ll\ 0\- o o r o o00 oC o --t oC
"O I 0 0 .- -O1 C0 Oi 10 0 00O 0 00 0 000 V

i tS cc) oO 0 0 a\ a < 0 c. .O 41 0 a M- M CM 0. 0 0*




o 0 r-oc:dddd ooooooooooo
En 00 co 0 -1ONcM ^ 0T1\^O\O NCko vlcu o 00 ^o N 0\V-CI-V- 0c
E- 0M OO r000000l000000000000C0 0







O --O OO \0\00 4 0 Nh 0\ON OCN0\,YO -OO
U- Il I

Ep- CO 0 0co I 0~3C\ 0 0\J 0 M D-- (Y')SO O C-, V 0 \ C -0 O 0
e 0 V) M cMNMn -in n _-rc n Nn -fn cn r-il c O clO T-A _:t
NO vN00000000000000000











-0 LV 0CV- r- CM0 N -I C O C' 0\0 CM ,0 0 C1 0 : M 0 O 0,
S O NO IHOOOOOOOOOOOOOO 00O










n CM I IIddddIodddddddcdc;

-- 0\0 03 0- vON 0\N 0 U10 0 N% -N S CO \ 0 C' 0
* . . * . . . . . .. *













En 0 L--\O cr)-:t q r-i0 rC-I 0 -f 1 CCM q CM CM 0C T( 0-I r-I 0C CM r- 1 CM vq n
C 00C' OcHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOc cOOOOOO

N0
cro\ o 0 0\ o V) o _: t -o vUcO v>no\0 Lc 0ow \N \ o\ n c ON \0 c-i 0
ON O a 0 C0D0 -N 0 0-N Oa 0 IO O 0 -l -l -I O -I l 0
n r0 v-I 800000000000000000004 000






(Y 0 U\ <-I 0ON-rON \ 0 \ ON 00 _: O 4 0 0 n 0\ 0iU
v-0o ?oooooooo0Noooooo c j00





0*




U) 0 jCN-N :U-00 E- v-f 0\v- 0 v-I -l n 0 v-f 00 O 0 N iH 0 i-:I 0 N\ vl -f CO
=- ON 0 N-r rC 0 v-I N v-1 C v -I C --I N i- NO v-I C'l iH O ( Oc N 0 N


ON OOT NNNO NCON N c'O 00 C- IN Nr hO
*-S t * *4 * * * * * * * * **-l -IMCM M MC CM MC C












cOOO

0-4





N Ul 0 \0 0
cOO O 0 O




NO CO -I -I 00








.. 00 aO O 0 \O \O 0
C 0 -I I C 4%


O'--
0O4 0000
Ic f

0C O 0 N0C0' 0




NN II I

C0 -i 0 \O -I C 0O
N 000000


0 1--0 0 T ON- rl
40 O0NNy0



OC O 0 Ch, OO O NO
C\ O 0O) 000N


OO -0 -O N O O- OCN C

C O\2 I O 00090O0 N C 0h1

c . . .
CM0 n N000\00000
O3- -I IO O I I






M * * * * N
\10 000 ON
CMc T 0 0 0 0 0 0

OI IlO I


COo 0 0, ,- CO CO M ON 0 0 \O
0



N-CO 0 NO 00 N\O N"- N- \-- 0 N

000 1, O C -." 0 O.I ( M -
04cC' O 0r0-l 0ln00 0 000 r 0


0
0N 0 0 C\O 0 N c r-N M lb 0 0N "-1





C? 0
cU ~O T\ 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 C U0 0

mO
oO
,-i fO 000000000 0

3 *



U 0*

0 a 4N, COA c N-tCO OO rHN C- 4\O N-CO OO rH N C' 1O NCO
S~E rNNNNNNNNN





























0 0
S4-
4)
0 ) 0


4 0) 0

cH ( PL
P +3 0) 0) 0)

0 0 -1 0) 0)
o o m a
0 0 -

0 0F CU rlM k4-


1 V\O 0 a O\ O -





V-4 i






tn

4- 0 *

0 PL C


(D

CD 4-3 "-
01 r- i P -4
4-'

o a a
)M -4 + 0) 0



+ 4- 0) U I 0
0 1 0) cD -4





+W r -n l 0 0


0) CD r-4 0)


N CA -4 'AO CO
N N N N N N N



















il
0
o


O 4
D ) -0 C) 0l
0 0 4 + 0
3 e d o


o o
1- o o o


0 0 a P4
0 0 IQ O
U U) EP H -4 0 )

r= C. +3 0 0 a
UC -a) U m E-E-


C- n c O C.- ONOCO 8


m
w r-A
01) 0

a o P



cl






cco
0)
4- 4-' 4-'




0) 4-'

*^ <0e


4-2
+-2 r-4
F-, c3
0 0(




0o W

4 0
mP4
t- c
c3 +-


tl-

I
0
'-4



0)







P4
0)

C C
9- 0
T-<


- CM cl -_;
t-A T-irl-i r-i










not as a dichotomizing category but as a continuous variable ranked on

a six-point scale extending from upper class, 1, to lower-lower class, 6.

Table 3 lists the variables significantly related to the

criterion variable: causal thinking, 28.


TABLE 3

VARIABLES SIGNIFICANTLY RELATED TO CRITERION: CAUSAL THINKING


Variables r Probability

2. Assets (M.H.A,) 0.27 <.01
3. Freedom from Liabilities (M.H.A.) 0.37 (.01
4. Personal Adjustment (C.P.P.) 0.37 (.01
5. Social Adjustment (C.P.P.) 0.43 <.01
6. Democratic Behavior (B.P.R.) 0.29 (.01
7. Critical Thinking (B.P.R.) 0.33 <.01
10. Attitude toward Schoolwork (Teacher Rating) 0.24 <.01
13. Types of Associates (Teacher Rating) 0.20 <.01
17. Activities and Interests (Teacher Rating) 0.26 <.01
18. Attitude toward School (Teacher Rating) 0.28 <.01
26. I.Q. 0.39 (.01

The significance of the relationships at the zero-order cor-

relation provides suggestive evidence that permit one to reject the

following null hypotheses:

2. There is no significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and democratic behavior.

4. There is no significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and critical thinking.

8. There is no significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and mental health assets, and no significant
and negative relationship between causal thinking and mental
health liabilities.












The relationship between causal thinking and the correspondence

between self- and peer-perception of self (variable 25), although in

the right direction (-0.06: the less the discrepancy between self-

and peer-perception of self the greater the causal thinking ability),

did not reach significance. Therefore, we cannot reject null

hypothesis 6.

6. There is no significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and the correspondence between self- and
peer-perception of self.

The relationship between causal thinking and socioeconomic

level (variable 27), again, although in the right direction (-0.18:

the higher the socioeconomic level, the higher the causal thinking

ability), did not reach significance. However, it was suggested on

the strength of the group mean of 3.74 on the 6-point rating (Table 2),

that there may have been considerable overlap in the middle range to

mitigate against a significant linear relationship between causal think-

ing and socioeconomic level. Therefore, the children in the upper

socioeconomic level only (ratings 1 and 2) and the children in the

lower socioeconomic level only (ratings 5 and 6) were selected out

resulting in N's of 33 and 43, respectively. A t-test was conducted to

assess the difference between the two selected groups with respect to

their causal thinking test mean scores. Table 4 presents the findings.

Table 4 indicates a significant difference beyond the .02 level

of significance between the socioeconomic groups and their respective

causal thinking test mean scores. With this supportive evidence, there-

fore, we may reject null hypothesis 10:











TABLE 4

MEAN TEST SCORES OF TWO SOCIOECONOMIC GROUPS ON CAUSAL THINKING


Upper Lower
Socioeconomic Socioeconomic
Group Group

N 33 43

Mean Scores 17.21 14.98

t-value 2.5

Probability 4.02


10. Fourth grade elementary school children from higher socio-
economic levels will not be significantly more causally
oriented than children from lower socioeconomic levels.

From the set of correlations listed in Table 2, a "best"

regression equation for predicting the causal thinking score was

derived. The Social Adjustment variable (5) was the most highly cor-

related (0.43). The following regression equation presents the variables

in the order of their inclusion:

Causal Thinking = +.2 (Social Adjustment) + .12 (I.Q.) -2.0
(Temperament: Teacher Rating) + 1.6 (Attitude
toward School: Teacher Rating) -7.27.

The following table presents the beta weights and t-values

for each predictor.

Table 5 indicates the substantial predictive value of both Social

Adjustment and I.Q. with regard to the criterion variable: causal

thinking. While the Social Adjustment variable proved to be of signifi-

cance as was predicted, there remained the question of the line of

causality between social adjustment and causal thinking. The assumption











TABLE 5

THE STANDARDIZED REGRESSION EQUATION OF MAJOR VARIABLES PREDICTIVE
OF CRITERION: CAUSAL THINKING


Variables Beta t-value Probability*

5. Social Adjustment (C.P.P.) 0.398 3.94 4.01

26. I.Q. 0.278 2.95 <.01

14. Temperament (Teacher Rating) -0.363 -3.01 /.01

18. Attitude Toward School
(Teacher Rating) 0.261 2.22 4.05


*Population value of beta is zero (two-tailed; N = 97).

was that the latter facilitates the former although the relationship

might well be reciprocal. Partial correlation was utilized to provide

some suggestive evidence for the direction of the line of causality.

Table 6 lists the variables and their relationships with each of the

variables being alternately partialed out.

Table 6 indicates that a significant relationship between causal

thinking and social adjustment remains when I.Q. is partialed out.

Furthermore, the removal of causal thinking lessens to a greater extent

the relationship between the,remaining two variables than does the

removal of either social adjustment or I.Q.

To further refine our understanding of the causal thinker, an

additional stepwise multiple regression technique was utilized to choose

predictors for the criterion variable among the sub-scales of the battery

of tests whose total scores had been used in the previous intercorrelation

(Table 2).










TABLE 6

INTERCORRELATIONS OF CRITERION: CAUSAL THINKING WITH TWO
MAJOR PREDICTORS


Variables
1 2 3

I.Q. Social Adjustment Causal Thinking
Change
r2 = 0.34 .01 r12.3 = 0.22 4.05 -.12

r23 = 0.43 401 r23.1 = 0.35 .01 -.08

r13 = 0.39 (.01 r13.2 = 0.29 .01 -.10


Table 7 provides the initial zero-order matrix of correlations

among the sub-scales. It indicates a significant relationship between

the criterion variable: causal thinking (28~ and the majority of the

sub-scale variables. The exceptions were: Interpersonal Skills (2),

Community Relations (22) and Leadership (26). This latter, however,

is the only exception among the five variables making up the total

description of Democratic Behavior and therefore prevents our reject-

ing the second part of null hypothesis 2, to wit: "each of the

secondary characteristics subsumed under democratic behavior is in

turn not significantly related to causal thinking."

An additional regression equation was built up in a stepwise

fashion as before. Freedom from Behavioral Immaturity (variable 6) was

the most highly correlated (0.44). When this variable was partialed

out, variable 5: Adequate Outlook and Goals had the highest partial

correlation with the criterion. As before, this process was continued

until the increase in variance fell below an arbitrarily set probability







40


a o o o o o o eo, l ~*to

C f0 0 0 0 0d o 0 Li L- 0 -I r-0V-I -d- 0)
T-I 0C n\ Y n -.U- v- CM N N rM NM nCM
aON 04-O0004NNNNHN

C n 0\ 0 V-1IO 0 C: 0 C cO O v\ O _: VM C\O- VIA\
r-1 U T-1 0 Cn --- 9 CM\rV Ulv CQ C\) -i-I T -I CM C'
.* *z o 8 8 o o o .-;

H COC 0 0-,"0t 0 .N, U \ 0 C. 0 -o0 0- C I.
-I r i \0 0 V"\ n CQ N .4 o n? ,:; , cf c; d -I 0 CU (r
N O-fO0000000000N00

*





U I-f i- \O 0 C-a--- n C CV "- T-i r 0 C'(
.. * * *.* *.* * *




Sooooooooooooooooo
C- N--- O i00000VUn]ONO\0\0

s *
0 i- O OWNOOD N01C\
El 0oU O oo BO-... 0 000 r M 00 N o0 ~ 0 000 00 CM 0 00r
0- i-


L ( C 0 (OcO -O'N O -I Oi C- -r iO 0 r- 0\T0 n
F4 Co * O * * * * * * * * * *
C) t-i0 _ztoooo oooooooooooooooo


n .o 0 N V-- C OCN E- 1 0 0 -.-- 0 0\ 0\U ... ON 0 N \0 VA -"
CD C- 0 co*- \ CMlE c c \0"^--n C^ IA n- O CQ- C- "-q 0 rA C


n r01 00 000 000- 000000000


0 I i 4 O O- OOO "OO O


0,Q. 0 \o 0 r-A \ O\ 0-> V -\o 00 o 0^ Co 0 0 0 CO --.-d VIA 0--It
O C- 0 ONOMC To :CC O n l C NM N n N





Cn nOoOOOOddddddOOOOOOOOOOO
0 N-a \ o'N 0 0-\ C 1O N C0N q n-O C N C \0 0 0 o- I CM' l- --- 0 C IQ O

OO C 0 \ON r-NlOM n N Cc)cMn I\ cN N -z:- C* C\ \ C n" CM.. ..-I 0' CM *

S0 -00 0000d000d000 00;000 00 0000dddd
H
0

"\0 o' C) NV- nO0\ v- (\2 V N\L-'\O \O \0 E- ('1 c --t O --f r \,O xr. 1 0 r-f O\
0 0- o 0 0 0C 0 N n(D O Co ,--t, NI- 0 - -4 r 4 n c 4 CN \J c N
U * *. **. * * * * * 5 * ** * **











C vf00000dd00000000d000000000000

i--
S*** *



OC O CI- clr) rO C O U- N Z:)-OO (DL'-T-j W 0 n\ Nir 0E N n








a ) v 0 O C<--no CO N-( Co ON 0 -- 00 01C-L-- 'l-r<\ CN- ON0 i-f C0V0 3 CVnVL-r OD
E *









N\O 0




~1 ',*o o
N 'ON ON



0 0 0 00
0-IO00









* * *


c% 1 O-O 0 O n\O





** * * *
Oo .- 000C- 00-







i-I ,o-- O N N C0 1

CN o-I o \0ccN No .-\M






o.1 D,. oo I o ~c, oo %.0 c l
,4 V-\ 0 \0 -Y N R D2
** * *


ON I OOI 000000
-3- T OIO T- 10,1 o- ,n -










ON 0oCN 0 \CO --I 0 ) 0 co0 N
* * * * * S
CM N 00000d O0


CM 0 00 ON 0 --4M ON C-I U\ NC\) x I
-I, cMoo O CD N C) .,- CO r-l V- cn n-I
0;u c c;C c;


vM-o o 0 0 'h o cy=r 0 Nl 'U\ -i co ONO OO


S\OODO COO O-e OOOOOOOCl - n O

Oo o .oooooO-_o 0
O COco 0 0O \00 \0\00\0o xo-or1 *


-i0 oo 0OH-N NOAN q 0


-\ 00 o 0 ) 00o .O 00000000 -
- COO 0 0' 0 IS- C N 00 C N 0 C\ 0 C0


SI 0




* U)
0M C'A i q q-i O -0i 0 0N 0i N N
0*
0 0





















0







'd 0
o
0



On <

0 0
0)0E





)a 0o
*0



'm U)

' o c6
4-' C0
"-I 0 0
il I- U)


U)


0 0 4-
o o c6
-4 *.-I r-4
4-' 4-' 0D
- .*-1
0)a)
1-I
r- 0

AC 0 )
F^ U30


m
U)


cd a
0 0)
o o
,(-


4+> .i--

.*H 2
i-l F!



S m U)


0) aD Ca
i-l r o


'A \0 rc oo0 o 0 C cN xn o-
- t-i T-- T-I 3 N N N N N ( l


0
0 o

q FF -
Saa oFa
0 0 0 10 0
d 5 'd 0D f-

,0 r-4 --I P F, a
o -- co F H F4 '- 0o
+. 0-0 O

o o w-

n 0 o
P- 4-' 4 d 4- o0
r-I 0- 0 D F

S 4+> co p 1-4 a) CH
0 .O 0 .- 4 ( o- -



U) F-4 R 0 r-4 oP A
aM o cd -3 c4 4 m


-- d 4-' 0 (0 +d U

< cD pi ,--i o : ,-I
. s: +> 0 o0 .4 0
l i ra Od o A cd o
0) q-4 *-4 cd +3 r-l m- >
: o c0 'd 0) (0 X! CD
Heatedmm m


T-I C' C( -4 V I' c:_. 0) oN 0 C- C.) -:4
-A -1 T-4l -l l-


_4-

,r-I 4- q


0 v 0
lO V

p-1 4-


o
o





(2 0
OTa Ca




S*,H 0
0-10


S- C *_4 0-
Cd >


ood U
4- 0 (D


+> i +
4- C ** 0
0 )d a s *-



a--1 0( 11
4c- (n H 0
eo eo ..-



cd c!d a c a


S pO P


** U)


Cd (a
U 0







O




a) U)
-n -I






cd CD


)** **U)
)0Q)
mm
asD <
cd C

I I

0 0



\0 C'

I C D



U) U)

r-4 r-4
co Cd

=- '=4










was .1. The following regression equation presents the variables in

order of their inclusion.

Causal Thinking = +.33 (Freedom from Behavioral Immaturity)
+.32 (Adequate Outlook and Goals) +.40
(Sense of Personal Freedom) +.47 (Self-
Reliance) +.56.

Table 8 presents the beta weights and t-values for each

predictor.


TABLE 8

THE STANDARDIZED REGRESSION EQUATION OF SUB-TEST SCORES
PREDICTIVE OF CRITERION


Variables Beta t-value Probability*


6. Freedom from Behavioral
Immaturity 0.267 2.76 4.01

5. Adequate Outlook and Goals 0.198 2.13 4.05

13. Sense of Personal Freedom 0.179 1.88 4.10

11. Self-Reliance 0.159 1.65 .11


*Population value of beta is zero (two-tailed; N = 97).


The multiple correlation associated with the above regression

equation is 0.56. This is almost identical with the multiple cor-

relation associated with the first regression equation (Table 5).

This means we are explaining about 32 per cent of the criterion vari-

able with each of the equations. While this is somewhat low, it must

be taken into consideration that not all variables that might affect

causal thinking have been taken into consideration. Furthermore,

perfect prediction is not possible even when a precisely analogous










test is given within a short time interval (test-retest reliabilities

rarely run above 0.90 or 81 per cent of test variance).

An additional investigation was made with respect to the

parent-child relationship existing for the members of our two experi-

mental groups (N = 52). The parents of these children were requested

to complete the causal thinking test as they thought their own children

would complete them. These scores were then compared with the scores

of their own children and a discrepancy score was derived for each

parent-child relationship. A product-moment correlation was then

run between these discrepancy scores and the four individual scores

measuring personal and social adjustment of each of the children.

Table 9 lists the variables and the corresponding correlations with

the discrepancy between parent and child on the causal thinking test.


TABLE 9

RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN PARENT-CHILD CAUSAL THINKING SCORES
AND ADJUSTMENT


Variables r-value Probability

Discrepancy and Social Adjustment (C.P.P.) -0.39 <.01

Discrepancy and Personal Adjustment (C.P.P.) -0.35 .01

Discrepancy and Mental Health Assets -0.18

Discrepancy and Mental Health Liabilities -0.31 4.05


Results clearly indicate a significant and negative relation-

ship between the discrepancy of parent-child and the adjustment of the

child. This offers a confirmatory note to what has been accepted in

clinical circles for years.











Analyses of Measures Secured After Behavioral
Science Class

Data from the post-testing conducted following the termination

of the experimental behavioral science class were analyzed first, to

test the following hypotheses:

1. Exposure to and participation in a class in behavioral
science (which includes the disciplines of psychology,
sociology and anthropology) will foster significant growth
in causal thinking in fourth-grade elementary school
children (p. 9).

3. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science
class will foster significant growth in democratic be-
havior among fourth-grade children (p. 13).

5. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science
class will foster significant growth in critical thinking
among fourth-grade children (p. 13).

7. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science class
will foster significant correspondence between self- and
peer-perceptions of self among fourth-grade children (p. 14).

9. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science class
will foster significant growth in mental health assets and
will minimize or correct significantly mental health li-
bilities among fourth-grade children (p. 15).

11. Children from high socioeconomic levels, being more
receptive to causal orientation, will show significantly
greater increase in causal thinking than children from
lower socioeconomic levels as a result of exposure to
and participation in a behavioral science class (p. 16),

and secondly, to assess the contributing force of each of the more sig-

nificant measured variables to positive change in the criterion variable:

causal thinking.

To accomplish these two aims, a 2 x 2 design analysis of covar-

lance (ANOVA technique, p. 29) was utilized. Subjects were grouped

into experimental and control, high socioeconomic level and low socio-

economic level.










The criterion variable, causal thinking, was assessed first.


TABLE 10

ANALYSIS OF COVARIANCE FOR CAUSAL THINKING SCORES


Adjusted
Sums of Mean Prob-
Effects df Squares Squares F ability

Experimental-Control 1 37.3376 37.3376 2.07 <.2

Socioeconomic Levels 1 6.1555 6.1555

Interaction 1 1.2799 1.2799

Within 89 1599.5215 17.9722

Total 92 1644.2944


Significant F ratio for the first effect indicates a significant

difference between the experimental and control groups with respect to

change in the causal thinking variable. Review of the mean test scores

indicates greater change was in the direction of the experimental

group (Table 11).

At the stated level of significance, we may, therefore, reject

null hypothesis 1:

1. Exposure to and participation in a class in behavioral
science will not foster significant growth in causal
thinking in fourth-grade elementary school children.

Table 11 also indicates that the second effect (Socioeconomic

Levels) was in the predicted direction but a level df significance

was not reached. Therefore, we may not reject hypothesis 11:









TABLE 11

MEAN TEST SCORES FOR CAUSAL THINKING


Mean Scores

Groups Pre Post Adjusted

Experimental 15.85 19.34 18.72

Control 15.89 18.11 15.87

High Socioeconomic 16.26 19.19 19.35

Low Socioeconomic 15.35 18.10 18.09



11. Elementary school children from higher socioeconomic
levels, will not show significantly greater increase in
causal thinking than children from lower socioeconomic
levels as a result of exposure to and participation in a
behavioral science class.

Assessmentof change in the variable; Democratic Behavior

brought about a significant F ratio for the first effect indicating

a significant difference between the experimental and control groups

with respect to change in the democratic behavior (Table 12).

Review of the mean test scores indicates greater change-was in

the direction of the experimental group (Table 13).

At the stated level of significance, we may, therefore, reject

null hypothesis 3:

3. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science class
will not foster significant growth in democratic behavior
among fourth-grade children.

Assessment of change in the variable, Critical Thinkingbrought

about somewhat different results.









TABLE 12

ANALYSIS OF COVARIANCE FOR DEMOCRATIC BEHAVIOR SCORES


Adjusted
Sums of Mean Prob-
Effects df Squares Squares F ability

Experimental Control 1 87.2341 87.2341 2.95 (.1

Socioeconomic Levels 1 3.2369 3.2369

Interaction 1 24.5352 24.5352

Within 89 2632.2552 29.5459

Total 92 2747.2614


TABLE 13

MEAN TEST SCORES FOR DEMOCRATIC BEHAVIOR


Mean Scores

Groups Pre Post Adjusted

Experimental 21.34 23.32 23.49

Control 21.96 21.72 21.56

High Socioeconomic 23.09 23.46 22.68

Low Socioeconomic 19.70 21.25 22.30









TABLE 14

ANALYSIS OF COVARIANCE FOR CRITICAL THINKING SCORES


Adjusted
Sums of Mean Prob-
Effects df Squares Squares F ability

Experimental Control 1 74.1107 74.1107

Socioeconomic Levels 1 0.5857 0.5857 -

Interaction 1 343.2307 343.2307 5.47 4.05

Within 89 5583.6515 62.7264 -

Total 92 6000.5785


Significant F ratio for the third effect indicates a significant

difference involving the interaction between the four groups with

respect to change in the critical thinking variable. Review of the

mean test scores indicates greater change was in the direction of the

low socioeconomic experimental group and the high socioeconomic control

group.

TABLE 15

MEAN TEST SCORES FOR CRITICAL THINKING

Mean Scores

Groups Pre Post Adjusted

Experimental 71.13 71.53 71.19
Control 68.98 72.64 72.98
High Socioeconomic 72.83 72.89 72.02
Low Socioeconomic 66.30 71.00 72.18











TABLE 16

ADJUSTED INTERACTION EFFECT MEANS


Experimental Control

High Socioeconomic 69.48 74.55

Low Socioeconomic 73.51 70.85


Results, though significant, do not allow us to reject null

hypothesis 5 as originally stated:

5. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science
class will not foster significant growth in critical
thinking among fourth-grade children.

Assessment of change in the variables, Mental Health Assets

and Mental Health Liabilities (freedom from), revealed yet another

different result.

TABLE 17

ANALYSIS OF COVARIANCE FOR MENTAL HEALTH ASSETS SCORES


Adjusted
Sums of Mean Prob-
Effects df Squares Squares F ability

Experimental Control 1 514.6324 514.6324 4.81 z.05

Socioeconomic Levels 1 229.4326 229.4326

Interaction 1 29.7836 29.7836

Within 89 10083.8101 113.3012

Total 92 10857.6587










Significant F ratio for the first effect indicates a significant

difference between the experimental and control groups with respect to

change in the Mental Health Assets variable. Review of the mean test

scores indicates greater change was in the direction of the control

group (Table 18).

With regard to the Mental Health Liabilities, significant F

ratios for the first and third effect indicate both a significant

difference between the experimental and control groups and a significant

difference involving the interaction between the four groups with

respect to change (Table 19).


TABLE 18

MEAN TEST SCORES FOR MENTAL HEALTH ASSETS


Mean Scores

Groups Pre Post Adjusted

Experimental 72.40 73.23 72.42

Control 69.96 76.30 77.12

High Socioeconomic 74.57 78.50 76.17

Low Socioeconomic 66.47 69.72 72.87










ANALYSIS OF COVARIANCE


TABLE 19

FOR MENTAL HEALTH LIABILITIES SCORES


Adjusted
Sums of Mean Prob-
Effects df Squares Squares F ability

Experimental Control 1 1598.5294 1598.5294 11.09 (.001

Socioeconomic Levels 1 59.4285 59.4285 -

Interaction 1 441.0841 441.0841 3.27 <.1

Within 89 12013.6451 134.9848

Total 92 14112.6871


TABLE 20

MEAN TEST SCORES FOR MENTAL HEALTH LIABILITIES


Mean Scores

Groups Pre Post Adjusted

Experimental 63.30 66.11 65.90

Control 62.68 73.94 74.15

High Socioeconomic 65.19 72.20 70.71

Low Socioeconomic 60.02 67.07 69.09










TABLE 21

ADJUSTED INTERACTION EFFECT MEANS


Experimental Control

High Socioeconomic 68.47 72.96

Low Socioeconomic 62.43 75.75



Review of the mean test scores indicates greater change was

primarily in the direction of the control group, with further indi-

cation of significant change in the direction of the high socioeconomic

experimental group.

In light of these findings, we may not reject the null hypoth-

esis 9 as originally stated:

9. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science class
will not foster significant growth in mental health assets
and will not minimize or correct significantly mental health
liabilities among fourth-grade children.

Assessment of change in the variable, discrepancy between self-

and peer-perception of self revealed no significant change.

Although the mean scores indicate that change is decidedly in

the predicted direction (Table 23), lack of significance prevents

rejection of null hypothesis 7:

7. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science
class will not foster significant correspondence between
self- and peer-perception of self among fourth-grade
children.












ANALYSIS OF COVARIANCE FOR


TABLE 22

SELF-PEER PERCEPTIONS DISCREPANCY SCORES


Adjusted
Sums of Mean Prob-
Effects df Squares Squares F ability

Experimental Control 1 504.8267 504.8267

Socioeconomic Levels 1 311.4614 311.4614

Interaction 1 24.7593 24.7593

Within 89 57560.6704 646.7491

Total 92 58401.7178



TABLE 23

MEAN TEST SCORES FOR SELF-PEER PERCEPTION DISCREPANCY


Mean Scores

Groups Pre Post Adjusted

Experimental 16.91 21.60 21.97

Control 18.79 17.70 17.33

High Socioeconomic 18.24 21.37 21.22

Low Socioeconomic 17.32 17.32 17.53


To assess the contributing force, if any, of each of the more

significantly related measured variables to positive change in the

criterion variable, causal thinking, a stepwise multiple regression

technique was employed once again. Table 24 provides the initial zero-

order matrix of correlations among the significant variables.












CM 0 0






iO-l
oo D ocu ,t- 0



ViO 0 0\
00 P OC
C * *
00 00





0 r-1I
V-l

v\\ 0 CC- CQ



it- Oil -OO
r-0. * * *
N O0 0 0




-- 0-C I



-M 0-.. -. 0--CMO-HO-
l a * *
Sc-o r-1000
E-i N NQ I I

a0\01\ 0C- 0\\O N
C O -i O r-i N- r-i



Ci,
0 r l 0 cy n 0 i1 V-l
SC * .* *. *



U--\ O 0 0 C CO .-l- ON C --
O23 0I0000




. =4 I l0U 0 il
0o . ... o .




0- O 0- OOOC 0 0







SI I I


o \ 0 0 -, ol -l- c 0 C
O g c 0 0-* *** * -*1 C*Ci


0 Io ^ c dooddd do0 0o
o 0
\- 0 0 4l 0 0 \O -0 \O 0-

1 N I:l I Iq
(\Mt






0 a\ 0 O
S0 0C 0 000 c0 V cmO V-1 00 C *l
.i-II C; lS


OO
CN i'OO 'r\\ 0 P-CI 0 0 i-C 0 0 Cn ||














S0C C* C \O CO \0 _:t \ l N -
t= n S- Vn-1 1-1-11r-1






























0




a a
o 0




a ->
0
+o 4- '+ *


Il O m- A -
SD 0 ) C E-


d -1 M -(4 ) 0 0 4)
0d U>-4 a)

H pp 4-' 0 4 -- (1)0+ P P-

C" m 4-2 +D o ++
1 0 "-1 0 0 0
4- 2 C a+


$, a,
03 .1+- d







** 0
- 0- 4-*t 4-* (






0 d 0 0 0 0 a 0 a 0 0 a -
ua, u u u u o t5u)i a







1) U) 0 () ) U (C D (5 ) P 4 pa
0 000 0 0 w
0 000 000000 p
Cl C) C) i- Cl1 Cl) A! (D Cl Cl) Cl)










C -4 ** .1H
1-1 ** ** * ** ** ** ** 0} ~-










Table 25 lists the variables significantly related to the

criterion variable identified in the matrix as the post-test scores

in causal thinking (variable 13).

From the set of correlations listed in Table 25, a "best"

regression equation for predicting positive change in causal thinking

was derived. The initial level of causal thinking (variable 2) was

the most highly correlated (0.59) to which was added only the I.Q.

(variable 12).

TABLE 25

VARIABLES SIGNIFICANTLY RELATED TO POSITIVE CHANGE IN CRITERION


Prob-
Variables r ability

2. Pre-test Scores: Causal Thinking 0.59 (.01

3. Pre-test Scores: Assets (M.H.A.) 0.31 4.01

4. Pre-test Scores: Liabilities (M.H.A.) 0.22 4.05

5. Pre-test Scores: Personal Adjustment (C.P.P.) 0.22 (.05

6. Pre-test Scores: Social Adjustment (C.P.P.) 0.38 <.01

7. Pre-test Scores: Democratic Behavior 0.21 <.05

10. Pre-test Scores: Negative Self Perception 0.20 z.05

12. I.Q. 0.39 <.01


Regression Equation:

Positive Change in Causal Thinking = +.5 (Initial level of
causal thinking) +.09
(I.Q.) +.56.










Table 26 presents the beta weights and t values for each of

the predictors included in the equation.


TABLE 26

THE STANDARDIZED REGRESSION EQUATION OF MAJOR VARIABLES PREDICTIVE
OF POSITIVE CHANGE IN CAUSAL THINKING


Prob-
Variables Beta t-value ability*

2. Initial Level: Causal Thinking 0.523 5.87 <.01

12. I.Q. 0.188 2.12 <.05


*Population value of beta is zero (two-tailed); N = 94.











CHAPTER IV


DISCUSSION


Causal Thinking and Personality


The initial analysis was oriented, first, toward determining

the relationship between causal thinking and certain personality

variables recognized as enhancements of the personality and deter-

rents to maladjustment, secondly, toward providing a more complete

and objective description of the causal thinker per se.

Table 3 (p. 35) indicates that a relationship (significant

beyond the .01 level) does exist between causal thinking and several

of these personality variables. This suggests that any program to en-

hance or to further develop causal thinking in elementary school

children would also positively effect a larger segment of the person-

ality structure. It also suggests that the enhancement of causal

thinking should be the joint concern of the mental health worker and

the educator.

The relation between personality and causal thinking holds up

when one considers the regression equation (Table 5, p. 38) which takes

into account the overlap and redundancy among the variables present in

any zero-order correlation. The primary four variables listed in

Table 5, Social Adjustment, I.Q., Temperament and Attitude toward

School, remained after the significance of some of the variables listed

in Table 3 dropped out during the build-up of the equation in a










stepwise fashion. It can be assumed that the primary four contain

much of what was being measured by the other variables, and, therefore,

usurped the weight of these variables in the equation.

In support of these considerations, Table 6 (p. 39) points

out clearly that there is a significant relationship between causal

thinking and social adjustment when I.Q. is partialed out, suggesting

that causal thinking identified as an intellectual variable involves

factors other than I.Q. Furthermore, the absence of causal thinking

lessens to a greater extent the relationship between the remaining two

variables than did the removal of either Social Adjustment or I.Q.

Only the relationship between I.Q. and Social Adjustment dropped below

the .01 level of significance on the partialing out of the remaining

third variable-in this case, causal thinking. This suggests that

intelligence facilitates to a certain degree social adjustment, but

that this facilitation is considerably enhanced by specific training

in the appreciation of the multiple causality of behavior and in the

ability to decipher out and to deal with such multiple factors-all of

which is implied inccausal thinking as a distinct and separate ability.

This is further supported by evidence that the upper socio-

economic group of children are significantly more causally oriented

than children from the lower socioeconomic group (Table 4, p. 37).

The former group has long been recognized as significantly higher in

I.Q. and adjustment as compared to the lower socioeconomic group.

However, the factors of significance are the levels of I.Q. and

adjustment rather than the socioeconomic level per se. When two

diverse socioeconomic groups are found to be fairly matched in mean









scores on both I.Q. and adjustment as were the two groups in this

study (Tables 1, p. 20; 17, p. 50; 19, p. 52), they are not signifi-

cantly different on the causal thinking variable (Table 11, p. 47).

Both Tables 3 and 5 give us further descriptive data regard-

ing the causal thinking child. Table 3 lists four teacher-rating

variables that are significantly related to causal thinking: Attitude

toward Schoolwork (10) involves a 5-point scale ranging from 1-almost

never attempts any schoolwork, to 5-is actively creative in school-

work; Types of Associates (13) ranges from 1-either associates with

those who are often in trouble or socially irresponsible, or isolates

himself socially, to 5-associates with those who are highly responsible

socially; Activities and Interests (17) ranges from 1-appears to have

no interests or participates in no activities, to 5-has a creative

interest in almost everything and is a leader or star in a variety

of activities; Attitude toward School (18), ranges from 1-actively

dislikes school, to 5-sees school as being invaluable and capitalizes

on the opportunity school affords him.

The causal thinker, then, relative to his classmates, is seen

through the eyes of his teacher as one with creative interest in many

facets of his life including his present school experience from which

he derives much benefit. This creative interest is accompanied by

active social participation in many activities which he shares with

others as highly responsible as himself.

Interestingly enough, the four teacher-ratings also offer

confirmatory evidence from another point of reference with respect

to the causal thinker's own self-report of social adjustment (Table 3,

P. 35).










In the regression equation, furthermore (Table 5, p. 38) we

have included a fifth teacher-rating: Temperament (variable 14).

This variable was not significantly related to the criterion in the

zero-order correlation matrix (0.09); nor was it significant at the

first order (-0.15), although it was at this point that its sign

changed. Once, however, both Social Adjustment (5) and I.Q. (26)

were partialed out, the relationship rose to significance (-0.21;

p e.05). In other words, Social Adjustment and I.Q. were serving as

suppressor variables to the Temperament variable. The Temperament

variable on which the teachers rated their pupils ranged from

1-unstable-excitable most of the time, to 5-meets stress constructively

and creatively. Therefore, with the negative relationship between

causal thinking and Temperament it can be interpreted that if Social

Adjustment and I.Q. are held constant, the teacher will tend to see

the causal thinker as more unstable than his classmates. The causal

thinker is seen as a social deviant when the deviancy cannot be ex-

plained away in terms of I.Q. or adjustment. He is seen as a disruption

in the established order, which is understandable if we define the

causal thinker as one intent on plumbing a situation for the multi-

plicity of causes; not content with, and at times openly opposed to,

generalizations, stereotypes, or time-worn formulas. We have a

supportive parallel with the fourth variable: Attitude toward School

where the teacher rates the causal thinker as significantly more

creative than his peers in schoolwork.

Further refinement and specificity in our description of the

causal thinker was obtained in the second correlation matrix











(Table 7, p. 40) and the multiple regression formula (Table 8, p. 43)

generated with the sub-scales of the battery of tests and inventories.

To facilitate description of the causal thinker described in terms of

these new variables, we liste the test manual description of the four

individual components which were most highly correlated with causal

thinking.

6. Freedom from Behavioral Immaturity.-Free of unacceptable
or socially disapproved behavior for chronological age
and social maturity. Test items examine proneness to
selfishness; rudeness; impatience; spitefulness; and a
lack of consideration for others.

5. Adequate Outlook and Goals.-Possession of generally
positive and constructive attitudes in developing personal
long-range plans and goals. Test items sample willingness
to uphold the moral value of society, such as respect for
rights of others; sense of justice; adherence to the
Golden Rule; and belief in equality of opportunity.

13. Sense of Personal Freedom.-An individual enjoys a sense
of freedom when he is permitted to have a reasonable share
in the determination of his conduct and in setting the
general policies that shall govern his life.

11. Self-Reliance.-An individual may be said to be self-
reliant when his overt actions indicate that he can do
things independently of others, depend upon himself in
various situations, and direct his own activities. The
self-reliant behavior is also characteristically stable
emotionally and responsible in his behavior.

Here we have a picture of the causal thinker as one who is

attuned to the social needs of others and mindful of social mores and

values, which mores and values, on the other hand, do not interfere

with personal initiative and creativity-a balance of the inner- and

outer-directedness.

This accumulation of descriptive evidence is supportive of the

contentions that interest in causal thinking as an important personality










factor can justifiably be fostered among mental health workers and

educators alike; that efforts can justifiably be made to develop

programs and techniques to foster its development.

Of complementary concern in any such endeavor would be the

parent-child relationship. Table 9 (p. 44) indicates that there is a

significant negative relationship between poor parental understanding

of the child and the adjustment of the child. This relationship, of

course, has been accepted in clinical circles for years, as noted

previously. The more attuned the parents are to their own children

and the more aware of and the more responsive they are to their needs,

the more positive will be the emotional growth and personal stability

of their children.

In light of the discovered relationship between causal think-

ing and good adjustment (Table 3, p. 35), it appears to be of decided

importance that one recognize that the parent-child relationship may

well affect the child's receptivity to the behavioral science concepts.

One might in part deal with this by initiating the child's exposure to

behavioral science concepts at an early age when one could be more

assured of a closer tie between parent and child.

At the same time, however, behavioral science itself may have

some effect on the parent-child relationship. Occasional reports

from the children and their parents revealed ever-increasing family

discussions on the class material and increased awareness of and an

understanding of family dynamics. A case in point was an incident

that followed a class discussion on displacement and scapegoating in

which were discussed at some length the many sources of frustration











and anger for parents outside the home, which often resulted in the

parents displacing the anger on children within the home. The im-

portance of being able to distinguish between oneself as a legitimate

object of other's displeasure and oneself as a scapegoat was stressed

and related to the development of one's self-concept. The next day,

one little girl returned to school and reported somewhat excitedly to

her fourth-grade homeroom teacher, that this experimenter was right.

Her father had come home exceedingly angry the previous evening be-

cause he had missed his train, and promptly began to shout at and

discipline her and her brother. But she reported to her teacher:

"I didn't get upset because I knew why Daddy was angry."


Change in Causal Thinking and Personality

The second set of analyses was oriented toward assessing the

presence of change in causal thinking and in the related personality

variables as a result of exposure to and participation in a defined

behavioral science class and toward evaluating the contribution of

certain personality characteristics and social factors to the recep-

tivity to and development of causal thinking.

Tables 10 (p. 44) and 12 (p. 48) indicate a significant change

in the experimental group as opposed to the control group with respect

to both causal thinking and democratic behavior. The change was not

distinguished by socioeconomic level which means that both profited

equally from the exposure. It suggests in part that with I.Q. and

adjustment held fairly constant, social background has little bearing

on development in causal thinking, as well as democratic behavior.











Although the level of significance is minimal with regard to

the assessed change, and relative to the customarily accepted levels

of significance in psychological studies, the assessed difference far

exceeds chance and, therefore, deserves consideration. As with other

experimental projects, the total effectiveness of the experimental

behavioral science class in bringing about change in these two vari-

ables may not be fully estimated because of the possible limited

sensitivity of the chosen instruments to assess the totality of

change, and because of the short duration of the class itself.

Both variables are recognizably large in scope, not easily

encompassed by single instruments. At the same time, a total of

20 classes with an entire week in between classes to minimize continuity

and significant reinforcements is only a poor approximation of an

average elementary class during the school year. The evidence is

suggestive that with a refinement of instruments and a closer approxi-

mation to an average elementary school class, far more significant

change could be effected.

Tables 14 and 16 (pp. 49 and 50), on the other hand, outline a

significant interaction effect with respect to the critical thinking

variable. One might well associate greater critical thinking in

social and personal behavior with the higher socioeconomic group

because of the emphasis on competition, professional growth and self-

enhancement. There may well be greater compliance and satisfaction

with the status quo, both personal and social, among the lower socio-

economic group. This contention is partly supported by the significant











negative correlation (-0.20) obtained between critical thinking and

socioeconomic ranking (Table 2, p. 32).

The behavioral science class appears to have reversed this

process by effecting a greater change in the lower socioeconomic

group (Table 15, p. 49). Probably for the first time with any con-

sistency, the children in the lower socioeconomic group were acquainted

with the process of critical thinking with regard to personal and social

behavior; encouraged and supported in its use. The novelty of it, as

well as its awakened value, may have contributed to the children's

increased utilization of and facility with critical thinking.

Tables 17-20 (pp. 50-54) indicate that the control group in-

creased significantly greater in reported self-adjustment as measured

by the Mental Health Analysis than did the experimental group. This

reversal of the predicted direction of change could well be attributed

to the interaction of two effects: one, the social desirability factor

which may well have enhanced the control group's post-test scores after

the children had the duration of the experiment before retesting to

reflect on the test items and to think more in terms of what looked

more acceptable, and two, the experimental process itself which was

directed toward encouraging and demonstrating among the children the

process of critical analysis, both with regard to self and to social

interactions. This latter presumably minimized the social desirability

phenomenon in the experimental group where the teacher was seen as

encouraging and rewarding a more critical approach, and decreased the

verbal impression of adjustment because the encouraged critical analysis

was turned toward self and its interaction with its environment.












This picture is further enhanced by the minimal significance

in the interacting effect with regard to the freedom from the mental

health liabilities variable (Table 20). The interaction adjusted

means (Table 22) indicate that the significantichange is to be found

in the high socioeconomic group on the experimental level and the low

socioeconomic group on the control level. This tends to corroborate

the results found involving the critical thinking variable (Tables

14-15, p. 49) where we noted the significant change also in the

interaction-the lower socioeconomic group on the experimental level

showing greater significant change along with the higher socioeconomic

group on the control level. What is apparently crystalizing here is

the effect of the experimental behavioral science class enhancing

critical thinking primarily among the lower socioeconomic group. The

increased ability in critical thinking, coupled with the lower socio-

economic group's less involvement in social desirability and the

questions of competition, prestige and self-enhancement, enables it

to turn the critical analysis more inward toward self and its relation-

ship with others. The result is an apparent decreased emotional adjust-

ment as measured by the self-reporting instruments.

This phenomenon may be analogous to the process of psycho-

therapy where in the initial involvement with the therapist, there is

closer self-examination and a willingness to both examine and to

accept one's liabilities before dealing with them. At this early

stage, the client often appears worse until such time as the individual

pathologies actually began to lessen. In the time available to the











experimental class, the children may have reached the point where

they were at least casting a more critical view upon themselves and

willing both to accept what limitations may have begun to appear and

to admit to others that they exist.

Table 22 reveals no significant change in the discrepancy

between self- and peer-perception of self. After the experimental

class, however, test mean scores (Table 23, p. 54) do indicate move-

ment in the predicted direction with greater change shown in the

experimental group than the control group. The lack of significance

may be partly attributable to the fact that the discrepancy variable,

among all the variables, is the furthest removed from the causal

thinking variable-the main focus of the experimental class (Table 2,

p. 32) and also, to the normal growth in positive social relationships

among the children in the individual classes that occurs through the

daily interaction in the classroom and on the playground. This rec-

ognized effect may mask any specific effect of the experimental class

or at least place a great demand on the experimental class and/or the

measuring instruments. Both contentions could possibly be tested by

selecting a more refined instrument or instruments to measure social

relations and by utilizing a class of longer duration.

Of further import was the assessment of those factors contrib-

uting to the significant change in the criterion variable, causal

thinking, i.e. those factors facilitating or enhancing the effect of

the behavioral science class on the causal thinking ability of the

children.










On the strength of the evidence it is recognized that though

statistically significant, the experimental class change in causal

thinking relative to the control class was minimal, and that there

was a decided difference in the amount of change of each of the

individual children.

Included among the variables significantly predictive of

change in causal thinking (Table 25, p. 57) are to be noted measures

of adjustment. When, however, one allows for the intercorrelation

of these significant variables, change or facilitation of change in

causal thinking may be attributed to two primary variables, the

initial level of causal thinking and the I.Q. (Table 26, p. 58).

What we have in essence is a readiness concept. The measure

of profit from a behavioral science class oriented toward development

in causal thinking and the associated factors of adjustment (as

defined by the results of this study) is primarily one's initial level

of attainment with regard to these factors. This measure of profit

will, in turn, be greater for each succeeding exposure because of the

growth arising from each prior experience-analogous to a geometric

progression.

This is the pattern for many subject areas in the present

school curriculum. It is support for both an early and continual

involvement of the child in an ongoing developing subject area, and

presumably, no less true for behavioral science.











CHAPTER V


SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS


Introduction


The present study was designed to examine the possibility

of utilizing a didactic or teaching approach to develop mental health

in elementary school children. It was planned to test whether the

direct teaching of a course in behavioral science would aid in develop-

ing in the children the cognitive element, causal thinking, and at

the same time, certain personality variables recognized as enhance-

ments of the personality and as deterrents to maladjustment. Further

effort was made to ascertain whether certain social factors might

influence the receptivity to and development of causal thinking in

the elementary school children.

It was felt that the effect of the behavioral science course

would be enhanced by the children's previous exposure to physical

causality in other subject areas, and because of the very framework

of behavioral science and its concepts which are patterned after the

physical sciences, and thus causally oriented.

The choice of the specific personality variables to be investi-

gated was dictated by certain theoretical considerations regarding

causal thinking. To the extent that causal thinking is defined as an

awareness of the dynamic complexity of human motivation and as an

understanding of the interacting nature of personal and social forces,











it would include among other things a recognition of the fact that

there are alternative ways of solving most social problems that

necessitate, in turn, positive interaction with others which are

characteristic of democratic behavior.

To the extent that an individual acquires a dynamic awareness

of the complexity of human motivation and an understanding of the

interacting nature of the multiple determinants of behavior, he

acquires a flexibility in thinking which is characteristic of critical

thinking.

To the extent that one acquires an increased insight into the

dynamics of one's own behavior and a willingness and/or ability to

understand the problems and behavior of others, he acquires an ability

to perceive himself and others more accurately fostering a correspondence

between self- and peer-perception of self.

Furthermore, at face value, causal thinking and its assumed

relationship with democratic behavior, critical thinking and adequate

reality testing may well be considered an indication of positive

adjustment. To the extent a child appears to be more realistic in

his evaluation of the world around him, more aware of hiw own limi-

tations as well as his assets, and more willing to admit that he can

learn from others, he would be expected to be psychologically healthy.

In addition, previous studies citing differential receptivity

to causal thinking concepts on the part of elementary school children,

and analyzing the dearth of positive influences toward causal thinking

from the child's social milieu, led to the thought that familial










background and social environment have considerable bearing on the

present functioning level of causal thinking as well as on the

receptivity of the child to an exposure to causal thinking. Other

considerations such as advanced education and more complex reading

material would lead one to favor higher socioeconomic levels as more

conducive to growth in causal thinking than lower socioeconomic levels.

In the light of these theoretical considerations, the follow-

ing hypotheses were selected to be tested.

Hypothesis 1 is a statement of the predicted effect of the

behavioral science course:

1. Exposure to and participation in a class in behavioral
science will foster significant growth in causal thinking
in fourth-grade school children.

Hypotheses 2 through 9 are statements of the predicted re-

lationships between causal thinking and selected personality variables:

2. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and democratic behavior which is a com-
posite of several secondary characteristics, each of which
is in turn, significantly related to causal orientation.

3. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science
class will foster significant growth in democratic behavior
among fourth grade children.

4. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and critical thinking.

5. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science class
will foster significant growth in critical thinking~among
fourth grade children.

6. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and the correspondence between self- and
peer-perceptions of self among fourth grade children.










7. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science
class will foster significant correspondence between self-
and peer-perceptions of self amongifourth grade children.

8. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and mental health assets, and a signifi-
cant and negative relationship between causal thinking and
mental health liabilities.

9. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science
class will foster significant growth in mental health
assets, and will minimize or correct significantly mental
health liabilities among fourth grade children.

Hypotheses 10 and 11 are statements of the predicted relation-

ships between causal thinking and certain social factors:

10. Fourth grade elementary school children from higher
socioeconomic levels will be significantly more causally
oriented than children from lower socioeconomic levels.

11. Fourth grade elementary school children from higher socio-
economic levels will show significantly greater increase
in causal thinking than children from lower socioeconomic
levels as a result of exposure to and participation in a
behavioral science class.

Four groups of fourth grade elementary school children, an

experimental and a control group from each of two schools, one of high

and one of low socioeconomic level, in the Quincy, Massachusetts school

system, were selected. Groups were matched as closely as possible

with respect to intelligence, grade achievement and chronological age.

Prior to the initiation of the behavioral science class, the

groups were involved in a series of measures to assess (1) the initial

level of causal thinking, (2) the initial level of adjustment, (3)

social relationships, (4) individual profiles of personality factors.

The tests included three types of measures: ratings by teachers, self-

reports and evaluations of and by peers. The parents of the children

in the experimental groups were also involved in the testing of

causal thinking.










The experimental groups participated in the behavioral science

course conducted on the basis of one 50-minute class per week over a

period of approximately five months (January 5, 1965 June 7, 1965)

corresponding to the second half of the regular school year. The

class meetings totaling 20 in number, were conducted partly on a lecture

basis including presentation of pertinent research studies, with the

children contributing to lengthy group discussions and minor class

experiments. The content of the classes included, among others, an

appreciation of and an exposure to the varied sources of individual

differences, an acquaintance with scientific methodology ordered

toward the understanding of human behavior and a detailed investi-

gation of several early stages of human development.

At the end of the term there was a readministration of the

tests given earlier.

The data were analyzed with the assistance of the 7094 com-

puter, utilizing two major programs, STEPWISE (a multiple regression

technique to assess the intercorrelations among variables and their

relationship with the criteria) and ANOVA (a modified analysis of

covariance technique to assess the significance and the direction of

group change).


Findings

Analysis of Pre-Treatment Measures

The following is a list of conclusions supporting four of the

major hypotheses (2, 4, 8, 10) predicting a relationship between

causal thinking, certain personality variables and social factors.











1. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and democratic behavior, including
specific positive relationships with four of its five
component secondary characteristics.

2. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and critical thinking.

3. There is a significant and positive relationship between
causal thinking and mental health assets, and a signifi-
cant and negative relationship between causal thinking
and mental health liabilities.

4. Fourth grade elementary school children from higher
socioeconomic levels are significantly more causally
oriented than children from lower socioeconomic levels.

Listed below are additional conclusions from further analysis

of the data relevant to a description of the causal thinking child.

5. Social adjustment, I.Q., positive teacher-rating on
Attitude toward School and negative teacher-rating on
Temperament are four "best" predictors of causal
thinking.

6. There is some suggestive evidence that the line of
causality between causal thinking and adjustment runs
from the former to the latter.

7. Another "best" predictive equation for causal thinking
includes the specific traits: Freedom from Behavioral
Immaturity, Adequate Outlook and Goals, Sense of Personal
Freedom, and Self-reliance.

8. There is a significant and negative relationship between
the discrepancy of the parent-child scoring on causal
thinking and the adjustment of the child.

In line with the descriptive intent of this analysis, the

causal thinker, relative to his classmates, is seen through the eyes

of his teacher as one with a creative interest in many facets of his

life including his present school experience from which he derives

maximum benefit. He, nonetheless, is seen as a social deviant when

his deviancy cannot be explained away in terms of I.Q. and/or adjustment.










In the causal thinker's own self-description, he is one who is

attuned to the social needs of others and mindful of social mores and

values. These mores and values, on the other hand, do not interfere

with personal initiative and creativity resulting in a balance of

inner- and outer-directedness.


Analysis of Post-Treatment Measures

The following is a list of conclusions supporting three of

the major hypotheses (1, 3, 5) predicting change in causal thinking

and selected personality characteristics as a result of exposure to

the behavioral science course.

9. Exposure to and participation in a class in behavioral
science fosters significant growth in causal thinking in
fourth-grade elementary school children.

10. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science
class will foster significant growth in democratic
behavior among fourth-grade children.

11. Exposure to and participation in a behavioral science
class will foster significant growth in critical thinking
among fourth-grade children of lower socioeconomic level.

One additional conclusions isolates those factors contributing

to change in causal thinking.

12. The initial level of causal thinking and the I.Q. are the
two "best" predictors of change in causal thinking.

Lack of significant change in reported self-adjustment among

the experimental group was attributed to the interaction of two

effects: the social desirability factor, and the experimental process

itself.

Lack of significant change in the discrepancy between self-

and peer-perceptions of self among the experimental group was attributed











to the interaction of two effects, the lack of significant relation-

ship between the discrepancy and causal thinking, and the average

growth in positive social relationships from the daily interaction

in the school milieu.


Future Considerations

Consideration of the present findings leads to the suggestion

that programs to enhance or further develop causal thinking in ele-

mentary school children can positively affect a larger segment of the

personality and that the enhancement of causal thinking can thus justi-

fiably be the joint concern of mental health workers and educators

alike.

Furthermore, the fact that children are not only eager to

learn in this field of knowledge but are capable of grasping its

concepts, and that the behavioral science course is a substantial

effector of change in causal thinking suggest that behavioral science

could have a legitimate place in the elementary school curriculum. In

addition, the measure of profit from exposure to behavioral science

would seem to suggest an early and continual involvement of the child

in this subject area.

Further research will be enhanced by the careful search for

additional instruments both to assess more finely the variables in-

cluded in this study and to go beyond its limited scope to include the

assessment of values and other related variables. Extension of the

investigation to older and younger school age children should also be

encouraged.










In the application of the principles supported in the present

study to education, work needs to be directed toward the expansion of

the curriculum in behavioral science and toward the assessment of the

properly timed introduction and pacing of newer concepts in the planned

ongoing curriculum through the elementary grades on into junior high

school and high school. This will involve the expansion of individual

lessons and the search for appropriate pedagogical tools with the

assistance of both curriculum planners and experts trained in the

specific subject areas included in behavioral science, viz. psycholo-

gists, sociologists and anthropologists. It will also involve the

development of special programs for qualified students who wish to

pursue a career in teaching the behavioral science in the elementary

schools.

Those educators who are able to see the school's role as

extending beyond the teaching of the three R's and those mental health

workers who are able to see the clinic's role as extending beyond the

treatment of pathology, should not find it difficult to justify this

work.



































APPENDIX A










STORIES AND ADVENTURE


I. There is a story of six boys in the junior high school in
Sunnyside. These boys usually go around together. They are
often in trouble. One time the boys got into trouble for tear-
ing down a fence in somebody's yard. Another time they broke
all the basement windows in one of the store buildings. Just
a little while ago, they broke into an empty house and smashed
the light bulbs and tore down the window shades.
What things do you think are important in explaining the be-
havior of these boys?

T. F. 1. The boys are probably all alike in most ways because they
all do the same thing.

T. F. 2. A person wouldn't have to find out much about these boys
to know why they do such things.

T. F. 3. I am sure there can be no excuse for the behavior of these
boys.

T. F. 4. These boys are breaking things because they are mean.



II. Mary was a little pioneer girl who lived with her family in the
woods. One day on her way home through the woods, she lost a
sewing needle she was carrying. She began to look and look all
along the path. Suddenly some Indians appeared. Mary became
very frightened. The Indians asked if they could help. Mary
said "Yes." Soon they found the needle. Mary thanked the
Indians, and used the needle to mend a hold in a blanket one
of the Indians was wearing.

T. F. 1. Mary was wrong. Strange people cannot be trusted.

T. F. 2. There was no reason for Mary to be frightened.

T. F. 3. Mary and the Indians are so different I don't see how they
can be friends.

T. F. 4. The Indians only helped because they were afraid Mary
might tell on them.











III. Joey the duck was adopted when he was very young by a big family
of very friendly chickens. They were very good to him. They
gave Joey their food to eat, and let him join in all the
chicken games. One day Joey decided that he wanted to leave
and went to tell Mother Chicken and her family. They were very
surprised and hurt that he wanted to leave them after all they
had done for him. The Chicken family became angry and told
Joey never to come back again. They slammed the door leaving
Joey outside holding his suitcase.

T. F. 1. I think Joey should be ashamed of himself for treating
Mother Chicken and her family like that.

T. F. 2. I don't think Joey had any reason for wanting to leave his
adopted family.

T. F. 3. It just shows that the more you do for people the less they
appreciate it.

T. F. 4. Mother Chicken and her family had no way of finding out
why Joey wanted to leave.



IV. Tom's father was a famous airplane pilot who flew all over the
world. One day he let Tom join him and they flew across the
ocean to Africa. It was very hot there. Tom met a boy his
age who lived in Africa. His name was Moro and he was very
different from Tom. He was very dark and wore very few clothes.
His home was made of leaves and mud and stood on poles high
above the ground. Moro spent most of his time hunting and
fishing. Tom wished Moro was more like him so that they could
have fun together.

T. F. 1. I guess Moro is different just because he likes to be
different.

T. F. 2. Tom would never be able to understand Moro because Moro is
too different from him.

T. F. 3. Tom is right. If Moro doesn't change, they could never
have fun together.

T. F. 4. I don't see any good reason why Moro has to be so
different.











V. Jane and Alice, who were ten years old, were sewing on the ear
of a stuffed dog. They were sitting on the front porch of
Jane's house. A little girl who lived next door came over
and tried to touch the dog. Jane and Alice didn't trust the
little girl. They told her to go away. The little girl left
feeling very angry. Pretty soon she came back and hit Jane
and Alice. When they began to chase the little girl, she
said: "If you hit me I'll tell my mommie. You can't hit me.
I'm younger than you."

T. F. 1. The little girl tried to touch the dog, and hit Jane and
Alice just because she's mean.

T. F. 2. She was just being a pest like most little girls.

T. F. 3. There was nothing else Jane and Alice could have done
but chase her away.

T. F. 4. If Jane and Alice had let her touch the dog, she still
would have been mean to them.



VI. Four girls who were all special friends were playing jump-
rope in front of old Mrs. Grady's house. They were having
loads of fun laughing and seeing who could jump the longest.
Suddenly Mrs. Grady came out of the house shouting and telling
them to get away from her house. Then she went inside and
called the parents of each of the girls on the phone. All
the girls were scolded when they got home. Now the girls are
secretly planning on how to get even with Mrs. Grady.

T. F. 1. I'm sure that old Mrs. Grady just doesn't like children.

T. F. 2. There can't be any reason for Mrs. Grady not letting the
girls play.

T. F. 3. There really isn't anything else the girls can do but
get even.

T. F. 4. Mrs. Grady is like most old people who always spoil
children's fun.










VII. Bill and Larry were Army pilots. They flew everywhere together.
This way they could protect each other from enemy planes. One
day while they were high above the clouds, Larry's plane
suddenlyturned away and left Bill all alone. Soon Bill was
attacked by enemy planes. Luckily Bill was able to get away
and return safely to his base. But Bill was very angry with
Larry for leaving him.

T. F. 1. Bill was right to be angry. Larry should not have left him.

T. F. 2. Larry probably left because he was afraid of the enemy.

T. F. 3. I am sure Larry had no reason for leaving Bill all alone.

T. F. 4. Bill shouldn't bother asking Larry why he left.



VIII. Willie the Chipmunk and Luke the Rabbit were the best of friends.
They decided one day to visit Farmer Roy's garden to nibble on
the carrots and lettuce. On the way they came to a stream where
Mac the Beaver was busily building a dam. Willie and Luke
asked if they might cross the stream on Mac's dam. "Certainly
nott" cried Mac but Willie and Luke started across anyways.
When Mac saw them go near his dam he began to splash water on
them with his big tail. Into the water they both went. Willie
and Luke never did get to Farmer Roy's garden and were they
mad at Mac the Beaver!

T. F. 1. Mac is like all beavers. They just aren't friendly.

T. F. 2. I don't think Mac had any excuse for not letting Willie
and Luke cross on his dam.

T. F. 3. Mac was just being mean and wanted to show that he was
boss.

T. F. 4. I think Willie and Luke have a good idea why Mac wouldn't
let them cross.



Which story did you like best?

Why did you like this story best?



Which one of these story characters would you like to be?

Why?


































APPENDIX B









Class 2-January 11, 1965

Both classes began with a quick review of the points of dis-

cussion at last week's class, viz. the definition of a behavioral

scientist and three sciences which fall under his domain: anthropology,

psychology and sociology. Interestingly enough both classes remembered

anthropology and psychology but both failed to remember sociology,

although a few youngsters from each class could give the meaning of

the word.

Some difficulty was met in both classes with regard to the

actual nature of the science of anthropology with a few grasping the

fact that it dealt with the study of man but could not readily dif-

ferentiate it from the other sciences. A little time was devoted to

elaborating to some degree the nature of the science as one involving

the study of man's development, culture and past history. It seemed

apparent that the concept culture was not readily grasped and would

require further elaboration. At the same time, an attempt was made

to elicit from both classes the nature of the contribution to our

present understanding and own behavior that anthropology makes. With

a few initial associations of anthropology with museums and fossils,

and prehistoric animals, the class moved into focusing on the past

contribution to our present knowledge and to our comfort of living.

The invention of the wheel was a case in point and this was used as a

springboard to introduce the fact that the people of the past could

well help us understand ourselves and others in the present due to the

fact that they conceivably shared many of our own thoughts, ideas,

wishes, etc. The wheel, for example, was illustrative of the past's

desire to move more rapidly. So too, today, our need of sports cars,










airplanes, etc. is also illustrative of our own present desire to

travel faster and further. This sharing of more intimate feelings

was drawn out a little further in the afternoon session at Atherton

Hough on the strength of one youngster's reference to the caveman's

retreat in caves and huts. This was used to illustrate the caveman's

need for safety and security, his underlying fears, etc. The

youngster readily saw that these are ever present among us today.

To further draw out the contribution of the three basic

sciences to our own self-understanding and to the understanding of

others, we moved to a discussion of behavior and the causal complexity

of behavior. This was illustrated by a simple example utilizing a pen,

marble, toy block and a sponge. The marble was hit by the pen, send-

ing it rolling along the table. Then the class was asked to explain

the reason for the rolling of the marble. Both classes centered on

the fact that the marble was round as a reason for the movement. The

marble was then placed upon the flat surface of the table and I pointed

out the fact that even though the marble was round, it was not rolling.

The class replied that it had not been hit by the pen. Then the marble

was placed upon a sponge and hit by the pen with little to no movement

on the part of the marble.

Many of the youngsters were quick to point out that it did not

roll because of the sponge. With this simple illustration, we moved

into a somewhat lengthy discussion of the complexity of causes under-

lying behavior. This complexity being threefold: The thing or object

itself, its surroundings, and the forces acting upon it. It was under-

lined time and time again that unless these three were adequately










grasped and understood, no behavior in and of itself could be ade-

quately explained. An example of a Martian looking upon the simple

rolling of the marble across the table through a telescope which would

not allow him a view of an outside force or the surroundings high-

lighted the fact that we only end up guessing about the reasons for

the observed behavior as long as we are not able to see and under-

stand the other factors involved in the behavior.

We then moved into a very simple example of a behavior

response of one of the children. The advent of last evening's snow-

fall and the possibility of school closure which did not occur

prompted us to give an example of a youngster coming into school with

a frown on her face. The reason for the frown was not readily apparent

but if we investigated further, we would discover that this snowfall

prompted the youngster's hope for school closure, and the morning

announcement that school would be in session prompted the unhappy feel-

ing which brought on the frown.

When we moved into discussing other reasons for the frown on

the youngster's face, one child in the Wollaston group noted after we

had raised the possibility that the death of a pet parakeet might have

prompted the frown that maybe the parakeet had been dead a month but

the memory of the pet parakeet made the girl unhappy. This immediately

allowed us to expand the third category, viz. that of forces acting

upon an object, into forces inside and outside the object. In con-

tradistinction to the marble, the child was alive and that though the

marble was hit, it could not respond to the one who struck it. This

would not always be the case of a living thing such as a child, and so









it was emphasized that this additional distinction in the third cate-

gory simply added to the complexity of understanding fully any observ-

able behavior and increased the necessity for care and conscientious

study. To strengthen the importance of the three sciences, we associated

them with the four factors underlying observable behavior: psychology

giving us knowledge of the object and the forces acting upon it or in

it, while anthropology contributingto further understanding of the

surroundings and sociology contributing to both the surroundings and

the forces.

Thence we moved into the question of how the knowledge of

these factors underlying behavior can be grasped or obtained. Three

procedures were highlighted: (1) asking, (2) observation, (3) experi-

mentation. With the young girl and her frown there was a simple

question of asking her. It was noted, however, that this method should

be utilized with caution because of the possibility of untruthfulness.

At the same time, some people are not always willing to volunteer

information for one reason or another. To determine whether or not a

boy can jump higher than girls, it was pointed out that we could obtain

this information by observation but not a simple observation of only

one boy and one girl. Both classes seemed quick to grasp the fallacy

of generalizing upon a small sample. However, they were not critical

only on the basis of the size of the sample but also on the question

of the representativeness of the sample. One boy in the Wollaston

group, for example, noted that the girls chosen might have had more

practice at jumping than the boys while one girl in the Atherton Hough

group mentioned the fact that some might be stronger than others. This

was encroaching upon the third category, viz. experimentation, into










which the class readily moved. The Wollaston group gave an inter-

esting breakdown of this third category without prompting by highlight-

ing the various steps: (1) guessing, (2) looking for clues, (3) put-

ing them together, (4) figuring it out, which led directly into the

experimentation. This brought us back to the need for adequate

samples, comparable groups and sufficient observation. Again the

question of the avoidance of generalization was emphasized by one of

the youngsters in the Atherton Hough School. He was quick to point

out that the findings would be only of this particular group of boys

and girls in a particular neighborhood and that you would have to

take samples from other neighborhoods and other corners of the world.

This was developed by this teacher to highlight one important point

that experimentation often gives us knowledge about a particular group

or groups and that we should observe a great deal of caution in ex-

tending these results or findings to other groups. This again illus-

trated the need to have a much deeper grasp of other cultures and

peoples involved in the study of anthropology for a more adequate

grasp of human behavior.

Toward the close of the hour it was pointed out to both groups

that they would be given little folders next week in which they could

keep the notes that they would take during the various classes. At

the same time, they were encouraged to think about some segment of

behavior that they might like to study by one of three methods that

we had discussed in the previous class, namely, experimentation, ob-

servation, or asking. The children seemed to be on the whole, quite

eager about becoming involved in their own study.











At one point toward the closing part of the class, it appeared

that the children's attention began to wane. This raised some question

as to the proper length of the class. It is conceivable that a 50-

minute to an hour period might be a little too long. This will be

duly noted next week. It is also interesting to note that in the

Atherton Hough group we used as an example of a topic for experimen-

tation the question of who can jump higher-boys or girls. The

distancesjumped by groups of boys and girls were added separately

with the boy's column coming out higher. This immediately brought

out whoops of joy from the boys in the class. This teacher con-

jectured that the boys were jubilant for having come out on top for

one of the few times in a predominantly female population and that

they had found an ally in this male teacher.










Class 10-March 15, 1965

In the early morning Wollaston class, the children immediately

began to chorus the request for the story of the little boy and the

chimpanzee which this teacher had promised to tell some time ago.

This appeared to be an appropriate time for this story as an addition-

al example of changes in behavior through growth and maturation and

could be readily associated with the previous discussion on the

experiment of crawling with two groups of children. The story of

child and chimpanzee involves a psychologist who raised a female

gorilla by the name of Gua and his son Donald for about ten

months between Donald's age of eight months to eighteen months, with

the chimpanzee being six and one-half months at the time of her adop-

tion. The children thought the name Gua was very comical and the

boys began to chide the girls over the fact that the chimpanzee was a

girl. The children were asked what they thought happened while the

two were being raised by the psychologist and his wife. Most of them

agreed that the chimpanzee began to walk and crawl, eat and play

much more readily and better than Donald. However, they were asked

(at the end of the 18 months) what they thought might possibly happen.

There was some confusion at this point. Some thought the chimpanzee

died; most had difficulty in assessing this experience as similar to

the experiment of the two groups of children, one having the practice

of crawling and one not, but at the end of the practice period, the

other group soon reached the level of the other because they had

reached their maturational level, appropriate for their age. One

child, however, came up with the correct answer and said that Donald











began to do things better than Gua. Then the children were asked why

they thought this was happening at the 18-month period. Again there

was a chorus of answers-some a little out of context, such as "Ani-

mals have instincts to crawl." Gradually the appropriate answers

emerged from the discussion. Gua did things much earlier and quicker

because (1)she was stronger in the beginning, (2) animals are much

more independent at an earlier age, and (3) animals have a shorter

life span and so need to grow up faster. This last answer was

pointed out to the early morning class because it was not solicited

from the group in their discussion. It was noted that animals have

the shorter life span. Age 12 is ordinarily an old age for an animal.

The children laughed at this.

Again we emphasized the fact that once the maturational level

is reached, appropriate and more developed behavior is readily

apparent. To reinforce this, we wondered if the children had any

idea as to how we might set up an experiment, similar to the one with

the two groups of children crawling, in which we could actually utilize

an everyday occurrence without our acquiring elaborate laboratory

setups. Where could we find in existence children who are subject

to an inhibiting environment during the early part of their develop-

ment whom we could observe and who at a certain period of time are

released from this inhibitory environment and allowed to manifest a

behavior which had not been previously practiced? The children

began to chorus answers such as in orphanages and hospitals, while

one youngster suggested children with cerebral palsy. We pointed out




University of Florida Home Page
© 2004 - 2010 University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries.
All rights reserved.

Acceptable Use, Copyright, and Disclaimer Statement
Last updated October 10, 2010 - - mvs