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Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)


Graduate School

First Advisor

W. Preston Gleason

First Committee Member

Douglas Matheson

Second Committee Member

James McIlwrath

Third Committee Member

Jerald Nelson

Fourth Committee Member

J. Marc Jantzen


The effects of self-fulfilling prophecies have been observed under various situations in the past, but Rosenthal and Jacobson's recent South San Francisco study has probably stimulated increased public and professional interest in the effects of expectations on learning. It was felt that additional research in this area was desirable ·in order to further examine how and to what extent expectancies can influence learning situations.

This study was designed to study the effects of informing randomly selected pupils and their teachers that these particular pupils had greater potential for school success than they had been demonstrating. It was hypothesized that if teachers and pupils developed a greater level of expectancy, improvements would be observed in school performance. In addition to the initial interviews for transmitting this information, reinforcement was provided for some of the sample students and teachers. The various possible combinations of the independent variables of: (1) informing pupils, (2) informing teachers, and (3) reinforcement led to the formation of eight cells. Two hundred pupils were selected at random from the seventh grade population and assigned randomly to the various treatments with cell sizes of twenty-five each.



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