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Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)



First Advisor

Martin T. Gipson

First Committee Member

Kenneth L. Beauchamp

Second Committee Member

Gary N. Howells


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the feasibility of training children as young as 3 years old to engage in appropriate responses to potentially dangerous situations. Eighty-five children ranging in age from 3 to 5 years from various preschools were randomly assigned to one of two groups (post-test-only or pretest-post-test). Treatment involved the training package, Children Need to Know: Personal Safety Training (Kraizer, 1981). Training effectiveness was assessed by an analog measure of self-protection, in which a confederate adult approached and verbally attempted to lure the child from the setting. The results showed that (a) in comparing pretest and post-test scores of the pretest-post-test group, the post-test mean was significantly higher than the pretest mean; (b) in comparing the pretest scores from the pretest-post-test group and the post-test scores from the post-test-only group, no significant interactions or main effects were found; these results with the results in (a) support the idea of a testing effect and/or a pretest sensitization effect; and (c) in comparing the post-test scores from the pretest-post-test group and post-test scores from the post-test-only group, there were no significant interactions, however there was a significant main effect for Group. These results show that post-test scores were higher than pretest scores indicating the possibility of treatment increasing post-test means. However, the post-test-only group means were not significantly higher than the pretest means from the pretest-post-test group. Additionally, the significant difference between the post-test means from the two groups indicate there was a testing effect or possibly a pretest sensitization effect, or both. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)



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